A penthouse apartment in The International residential complex in Auckland CBD has sold for $15.3 million, according to its developer.

"In September, one buyer purchased the top floor penthouse of The International for a contract price of $15.3 million, making it the highest value apartment sale in New Zealand," said a spokeswoman for Gary Groves' Sanctuary Group.

The apartment is being created on the top level of the ex-Fonterra building at 9 Princes St and the spokeswoman said the penthouse would be huge at 678sq m, about three times the size of many suburban houses.

That would comprise 562sq m of indoor floor space and 116sq m of terrace or deck.


"The top floor penthouse looks out across the harbour and Rangitoto Island, Albert Park and Old Government House, the Auckland Domain and Auckland War Memorial Museum, with Mt Eden in the distance," the spokeswoman said.

Fonterra has shifted to the Jasmax-designed $93.2 million Fanshawe St premises owned by NZX listed Goodman Property Trust and the Singapore Government's property fund.

That has left Groves' Sanctuary to convert its former world HQ into 88 apartments and the building to get a new look, clad in a white steel and alloy lattice work exoskeleton.

Groves told the Herald in May that about 20 apartments worth $50 million had been pre-sold.

Residential was the highest and best use for the building, Groves said.

The dated 17-level office block is beside the Northern Club opposite the Pullman Hotel Auckland. It stands behind the Grand Hotel's facade and was developed by a Fletcher business with Argus Questar between 1988 and 1990.

Jasmax has worked with interior designer Rufus Knight to design changes to the building and create the apartments.

The Sanctuary spokeswoman said five other penthouse apartments at The International were also for sale.

These are 334sq m to 434sq m and will have 3.2m internal ceiling heights and many other luxurious features.