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Luxury Condo Architectural Design Award 2018

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 28th November 2018 in Blog
Best luxury condo architectural design

Wu Zhi Wei, Director, Asia at DP Architects (right), collecting the prize at the recent gala dinner.

Contributor Feature

By Nadia Willan

The “art of sophistication” and design in harmony, every element of the architectural design of 8 St Thomas inspires luxury condo living that feels contemporary, lifestyle-friendly and aesthetically stunning. Developer Bukit Sembawang Estates brings over 50 years of experience to the fore with eye-catching aplomb, presenting a visually stunning development with an art-inspired façade in Singapore’s iconic Orchard Street.

Winning Best Luxury Condo Architectural Design at the 8th annual PropertyGuru Asia Property Awards (Singapore) in October 2018, 8 St Thomas is an expression of a creative condo development. Bukit Sembawang utilises design to create the property’s best features and enhance the luxurious, city-living experience for residents.

DP Architects were involved with the rare freehold project, which boasts 250 units of one to four bedrooms, including two penthouses, in two towers set in almost a hectare of greenery. Stylish interiors by Janet McGlennon and stunning Ong & Ong landscaping seamlessly complement the architectural features.

Judge Henry Woon, director of environmental design consultants Atelier Ten, has a background in leading award-winning projects and renowned, standout developments. Part of this year’s judging panel, he praises the artistic architectural elements of the luxury condo. “The architects’ design of the exteriors of 8 St Thomas was inspired by the great painter Piet Mondrian, who was one of the key 20th century artists of abstract style and favoured simple, geometric elements. The wonderful inspiration gave this project an exquisite and timeless look, symmetric, but not square.”

Mondrian architecture creates a strong façade design using glass and balconies that look like drawers pulled out of the sleek structure to connect residents with the outdoors. Strategically positioned units, some with bay and corner windows, plus spacious living spaces with balconies are all designed to make the most of views over the city and the Marina Bay skyline. Within the abstract-art design philosophy are well thought-out architectural principles.

Communal sky gardens and sky terraces with dining facilities, along with fitness and chillout pods, offer further proof of Bukit Sembawang’s intention to utilise the architectural design of 8 St Thomas to create the art of living luxuriously with nature. Meanwhile, the artistic lines of the towers express a sense of evolved city living in District 9.

Beyond the façade, architectural design reaches out into social spaces too, with every element of 8 St Thomas fitting together as agilely as a Mondrian composition. The tropical-inspired waterfalls complement the geometry of the façade, with the green spaces, lap pool and garden trail adding a sense of movement and life to the architectural concept. The result is a coherent living environment with residential spaces invigorated with rich foliage. While art may be considered a way of life, the way of life at 8 St Thomas is directed by the impressive architectural design, set within a luxury framework.

Even the contemporary style of the interiors’ built-in features and elongated living-area design complement the architectural vision of creating a feeling of flowing yet seamlessly ordered space.

credits: propertyguru

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HDB Terrace Near Whampoa Sold For Record $1.185m

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 25th November 2018 in Blog
HDB flats in Ghim Moh

A total of 52 million-dollar HDB flats have been sold to date this year. 

A Housing and Development Board (HDB) terrace house along Jalan Bahagia near Whampoa was sold for $1.185 million in September – setting a new record for the priciest HDB unit sold, reported Channel NewsAsia citing an OrangeTee report.

The previous record was held by a five-room Design, Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS) unit in Bishan, which was sold for $1.18 million in February 2017.

A five-room DBSS flat located at Lorong 1A Toa Payoh was the third most expensive HDB flat ever sold at $1.16 million.

The 273 sq m Jalan Bahagia unit has 52 years left on its 99-year lease, which started in 1972.

In the first three quarters of 2018, a total of 52 million-dollar HDB flats were sold, 40 of which were less than 20 years old.

OrangeTee noted that resale transactions have been on the uptrend amid falling HDB prices.

HDB data showed that the number of resale applications received during the first three quarters of 2018 reached a five-year high at 17,462.

The number of HDB units resold for at least $700,000 also hit a six-year high during the same period, with 1,438 transactions.

Punggol posted the biggest increase in resale applications, jumping 334.4 percent for the first three quarters of 2018 as compared to five years back. The next highest increase was seen in Sengkang, at 58.3 percent over the same period.

OrangeTee attributed the hike to the growth in the number of Build-To-Order (BTO) units within those areas that have achieved the five-year minimum occupation period (MOP).

The entry of many condominiums in those areas may have also spurred HDB owners to upgrade.

Looking ahead, OrangeTee expects the number of HDB resale transactions to hit 23,000 units this year and about 24,000 units next year.

“The possible increase could be attributed to more BTO flats reaching MOP next year and subsequently ready for resale. The demand may continue to be supported by the healthy job market and robust economy,” it added.

credit: propertyguru

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Property Cooling Measures Averted A 10-15% Growth In Home Prices

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 18th November 2018 in Blog
Singapore residential area

National Development Minister Lawrence Wong clarified that the government wants to stabilise the property market so that prices may move broadly in line with income growth.

While developers may want a “complete laissez faire situation” of allowing “the market to run its own course”, the government cannot take a hands-off attitude on the property cycle and allow property bubbles to form, said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong.

“Let me be very clear. The government cannot and will not take a hands-off attitude to the property cycle. So there should not be any surprise when we intervene in the market,” he said at the anniversary dinner of the Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (REDAS).

In explaining the rationale of the July cooling measures, Wong said government intervention is necessary to prevent bubbles from forming and to achieve a stable property market.

He noted that property prices would have soared by up to 10 to 15 percent had the government not introduced the latest measures, reported Today Online.

And while prices had not come down with the measures, they have remained “flattish” or increased only at a very gradual rate. Overall transaction volumes and land sales have also slowed down, he said.

“(More) importantly, the measures have encouraged en bloc sellers and developers to be more realistic in their price expectations.”

However, Wong clarified that it is not the government’s aim to bring property prices down, but to steady the cycle and stabilise the market in order that prices may move broadly in line with income growth.

“Our own experience has shown that if corrective actions are not taken to prevent a bubble from forming, the costs will eventually be larger and more painful, and ultimately this will harm the vast majority of genuine home buyers and owners.”

Speaking at the same event, REDAS’ president Augustine Tan said the cooling measures has led to a state of uncertainty within the property market – with sales momentum at new private property launches slowing down, while supply of units in the market remains high.

Tan believes there would be 44,667 private residential units coming from the unsold stock and the potential new supply from collective sale sites and government land sales.

“Barring tighter regulations, it will take up to five years for these units to be fully absorbed”, he said, while noting that demand will likely remain subdued for the rest of the year on the back of the cooling measures.

Tan also underscored the challenges facing developers – development cost has become higher due to the new five percent non-remissible Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) payable whenever they acquire a land for residential development.

There is also the risk of paying the 25 percent remissible ABSD with interest, if developers fail to move all units at a residential project within five years from acquiring the site.

With this, Wong said that while developers believe that the market is very subdued with room for prices to grow, buyers think that prices are too high.

“Real estate and property is something that Singaporeans care deeply about. A residential property is a home and also an asset — probably the single largest asset that many people own. So, understandably, there will always be differing views when it comes to the property market… The government is in the position of having to take the responsibility and weigh these different views carefully,” he said.

Although Wong acknowledged that developers have short-term commercial goals, he hoped they would understand that actions taken by the government is the “more responsible approach”.

credits: propertyguru

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Kent Ridge Hill Residences Sells 116 Units

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 15th November 2018 in Blog
Kent Ridge Hill Residences showflat crop

Buyers waiting for their numbers to be called during the balloting process at Kent Ridge Hill Residences’ showflat. (Photo: Oxley Holdings)

Kent Ridge Hill Residences, a residential project by Oxley Holdings in 50 South Buona Vista Road, has sold 116 units or over 46 percent of the 250 homes released for sale in just two days after it was launched on Saturday (10 Nov).

According to an SGX filing on Monday (12 Nov), 80 percent of the units taken up consisted of one- and two-bedroom apartments. The remaining 20 percent were three-bedders, five-bedroom penthouses and strata landed homes.

These were sold at an average price of $1,700 psf. Around 80 percent of the buyers are Singaporeans, while the rest are permanent residents (PRs) and foreigners.

Located near the 1,000ha Greater Southern Waterfront site and an eight-minute walk to Pasir Panjang MRT station, the 99-year leasehold development consists of 498 private condos and 50 strata landed houses.

Aside from having good accessibility to public transport as well as educational hubs and business centres, the residential project comes with various facilities.

“Situated next to the Kent Ridge Park and surrounded by landed properties and low-rise apartments, residents at Kent Ridge Hill Residences will enjoy an exclusive, luxurious and serene lifestyle. With (its) launch, we are one step closer to our sales target of 2,000 units in 2018,” said Oxley Holdings’ Executive Chairman and CEO Ching Chiat Kwong.

He noted that the development was strongly received by buyers despite the imposition of new property cooling measures on 6 July. One reason for this is the more attractive pricing.

“The cooling measures imposed by the Singapore government have achieved its objective in softening home buyers’ sentiments. Fortunately, Oxley’s strategy in acquiring land parcels at competitive prices in previous years has allowed the group flexibility in pricing our projects. With our competitively lower costs, we are confident of achieving our sales targets,” Ching said.

Meanwhile, Oxley Holdings’ revenue fell by 45 percent year-on-year to $170.3 million in the first quarter ended 30 September 2018 due to softer contributions from the developments in Singapore and the UK. Consequently, net profit slumped 83 percent to $8.06 million.

credits: propertyguru

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Collective Sale Of Pearlbank Apartments Finally Completed

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 8th November 2018 in Blog
Pearlbank Apartments crop

The iconic horseshoe-shaped building in Outram was sold to CapitaLand for $728 million. (Photo: Colliers International)

Following several failed attempts over the past 10 years, the collective sale of Pearlbank Apartments was finally completed on 1 November – which was marked by a celebratory event held on Monday (5 Nov), revealed marketing agent Colliers International.

The iconic horseshoe-shaped building in Outram was sold for $728 million to CapitaLand in February this year through private treaty, following the close of an en bloc tender on 19 December 2017. A sale order from the Strata Titles Board was subsequently obtained in August.

“For more than a year, we worked tirelessly with the owners, staying the course despite facing numerous challenges along the way which included the introduction of the Pre-Application Feasibility Study on traffic impact for en bloc residential projects as well as managing pricing expectation amid market uncertainties. We are pleased to have overcome the various challenges and delivered an exceptional outcome for the owners,” said Colliers International managing director Tang Wei Leng.

Comprising 288 units (280 apartments and eight commercial units), the 37-storey development sits on a 7,653 sq m site. It is strategically located near the bustling Chinatown and central business district.

“Pearlbank Apartments will always have a special place in our heart due to its excellent hilltop location with fantastic views. The site is appealing and has good Feng Shui too – owners who were renting their units typically could secure a tenant within a day. Having said that, there have been numerous maintenance issues arising from the ageing building, and redevelopment seems to be the best option,” said Cecilia Seet, chairman of the Pearlbank Apartments Management Corporation Strata Title (MCST).

In concurring, homeowner Jennifer Lam said the completion of the sale is timely given that the building “is so old, with many maintenance and water leakage issues”.

“Like many residents, I am sad to leave this place which holds many memories. I will miss the tranquillity of the surrounding greenery and the convenience of living in the midst of the bustling Chinatown. However, the property is ageing and for retirees like myself, we would prefer a smaller unit for easy housekeeping,” she said.

“It would be difficult to find a similar property like Pearlbank Apartments again. If possible, I believe many owners would want to purchase a new unit from the developer when the new development at Pearlbank is ready in the future.”

credits: propertyguru

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Parc Esta To Open For Preview On Saturday

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 4th November 2018 in Blog
Parc Esta pool view crop

Artist’s impression of the pool view at Parc Esta. Source: MCL Land

Developer MCL Land is set to open the showflat for its highly-anticipated Parc Esta development at Sims Avenue for preview on Saturday (3 Nov).

Aside from being touted as the closest private condominium to Eunos MRT station, which is only 200m from the project, it is also one stop away from Paya Lebar MRT station and a bustling commercial hub.

Paya Lebar Central (PLC) has been earmarked by the government as one of several commercial hubs to be developed outside the city centre. The area is also home to Paya Lebar Square and the SingPost Centre mall, which houses Singapore’s biggest and most technologically advanced post office.

PLC also houses Lendlease’s Paya Lebar Quarter (PLQ), a $3.2 billion landmark integrated project comprising Grade-A offices, a shopping centre and the luxury Park Place Residences condominium.

Overall, Parc Esta will contain five shops and 1,399 residential units spread across nine 18-storey blocks. Buyers can choose from one- to five-bedroom units ranging from 420 sq ft to 1,604 sq ft.

Prices will start from about $698,000 for the smallest unit. This is considered attractive as prices at Park Place Residences, the last residential project to launch in the area, start from $900,000.

Parc Esta is located on the former Eunosville en bloc site. The HUDC development was sold last year to MCL Land for $765.78 million, or $909 psf per plot ratio.

Former Eunosville residents, who each pocketed between $2.25 million and $2.41 million from the collective sale, are understood to have been invited to Parc Esta’s launch, with some potentially looking to buy units at the new 99-year leasehold development.

Moreover, the upcoming project is close to eateries in Joo Chiat and Katong, while the central business district and Changi Airport are a short drive away.

Parc Esta, which is expected to be completed by 2022, is being marketed by ERA, Huttons, PropNex and OrangeTee.

credits: propertyguru