Park Nova is a luxury development located in District 10. Aside from its freehold status, the development also offers super spacious units and easy access to MRT stations and nearby amenities.
Formed in November 2000 from a merger of DBS Land and Pidemco Land, CapitaLand Limited is now one of Asia’s largest real estate companies as well as the parent company of The Ascott Limited.
Project Name: Cairnhill Nine
Address: Cairnhill Circle
Type: Mixed development
Site area: approx. 279,858 sqft
Tenure: 99-year leasehold
Configuration: 268 residential units in one, 30-storey block
Unit types: 47, 1BR units (592 sqft – 657 sqft)
90, 1BR + guest units (732 sqft – 967 sqft)
38, 2BR units (1,033 sqft – 1,324 sqft)
63, 2BR + guest units (1,033 sqft – 1,324 sqft)
22, 4BR units (1,528 sqft – 2,013 sqft)
8, 4BR penthouses (2,400 sqft – 3,864 sqft)
Estimated TOP: latest by Sept 2017
The showflat for Cairnhill Nine is located along Ganges Avenue, next to the Boys Brigade, instead of the actual location. It was officially launched on March 12th but prior to that, the VIP showings have been occurring, with much promise for the development.
Three showunits are available for viewing in the posh showflat; 1BR + guest, 2BR + guest and a 4BR.
Every bedroom type is designed with a different motif. The 1BR and 1BR + guest are covered in darker marble so as to elicit a cosier and more professional look for the single executives that tend to prefer such units. The 2BR and 2BR + guest units have a more vintage look, with the colours being predominantly champagne and white while the 4BR and penthouse units have what is considered a Scandinavian look.
Even though the 4BR types are as bright as the 2BR versions, the aesthetic is more of a blend between the light and dark styles of the other two types to deliver a familiar and yet contrasting theme.
Motifs aside, there are other consistent design choices in all the units. Firstly, all units are outfitted with Air Door cabinets by ernestomeda. As a first in Singapore, Air Door is a type of breathable cabinet that allows airflow to enter the cabinets when closed to keep certain foods fresh. More importantly, it helps to ventilate the interiors to keep the smell of food down to a minimum, if not removing it altogether.
The cabinets are located above the stove, which according to Air Door facts, makes it work even more efficiently as the variations in air pressure increases the air exchange inside the cabinet to ensure “optimal conservation of foods”. The perimeter seal is airtight, so dust and dirt is kept out.
Secondly, all units come move-in ready with a whole list of appliances and furnishing installed. A shoe cabinet is provided for every unit including the biometric door and CCTV that come as part of the smart home feature. Other smart features are available, though they’re likely to be installed at the owner’s cost.
For appliances, all units have an oven and coffee maker, the brand of which is Miele. The washing machine/dryer (separated for 4BR and penthouse) are Bosch.
In the smaller units, especially the 1BR + guest, much of the walls that separate the living and kitchen area from the bedroom and bathroom can slide open and close. This ‘walling off’ of the living area is useful when there are guests over and/or when privacy is needed. The sliding walls are certainly part of the feature set of Cairnhill Nine as they make their presence felt in one way or another in all units that have them.
The highlight of the units however has to be the one-of-a-kind modular wardrobe. This unique addition is found in all the master bedrooms.
First glimpsed as a walk-in wardrobe, the space allows for clothes to be hung on both sides, with some drawers installed for under garments. But when more space is needed, the entire wall can slide forward to reveal a hidden compartment for additional storage.
This effectively blocks access to the bathroom but the ease at which it can be moved makes for yet another incredibly exciting new feature for Cairnhill Nine.
Consistent design elements aside, each unit stands well on their own merit.
1BR + Guest (743 sqft)
The 1BR + guest showunit is a beautifully designed home with smart layout planning that makes it look incredibly spacious. Marble flooring is used throughout the unit (only for 1BR and 1BR + guest) including the bedroom and guest room. As this unit type has a darker and more professional look, the lighter marble floor helps to brighten it up considerably.
For 1BR units, an open kitchen is the standard now. The open kitchen here is particularly well thought out. The preparation area is substantial as a parallel induction cooker is installed instead of a horizontal one, which would take up more space.
And due to the length of the larger living area, there’s quite a lot of space from where the kitchen ends to where the living room begins. Even with a dining table in between, the space is barely hindered. CapitaLand obviously understands this given their choice of a more visually stylish and larger dining table in the showunit.
The guest room in the showunit was converted into a study room. The interior designing choice however shows that if the owner intends to turn the room into a smaller bedroom, that it is possible.
A queen size would however not be practical as doing so would limit other furniture that could have been fitted inside. A super single or a custom bed would be a better use of the space.
The master bedroom is more than capable of accommodating a king size bed. It does this without compromising on walking space. With the wardrobe being both walk-in to the master bathroom as well as modular with the sliding hidden compartment, the bedroom exudes that professional executive feel with ease.
In addition, given that the bedroom is directly behind where the TV is installed in the living room, CapitaLand built in a swivel on the TV’s feature wall so the resident can simply turn the TV to face the bedroom should they want.
This eliminates the need to install more cabinets to mount a separate TV in the bedroom which would only take up more space. This ergonomic design is simple but surprisingly rare in Singapore. Its inclusion here is yet another bullet point extolling Cairnhill Nine’s marked differences that sets it above its competitors.
2BR + guest (1,044 sqft)
The size for the 2BR + guest unit is typically seen as a 3BR unit in other developments and while standing in the cavernous living room, it’s easy to forget that this is indeed a 2BR unit. Part of this is attributed to the guest room having the walls removed. But even with it up, the layout which allows for a more clearly separated cooking, dining and living areas looks and feels big.
The lighter champagne colour only works to make a big unit look more spacious. It certainly helps that the living and dining area combined is 172 sqft. The guest room is 56 sqft so adding that to the greater living/dining area begets more depth and size to the common area.
The kitchen area is particularly impressive. It’s a neat setup which includes a unique dining siting arrangement. Showunit interior design aside however, it’s nice touch that the kitchen and dining area occupies their own space rather than segueing into the living room. The decor might not be for everyone but the unit delivers exceedingly well in functionality and livability.
A common issue about open kitchens are that cooking aromas can sometimes become overwhelming if the dish is question is particularly heavy. Fortunately, its distance from the living room helps to mitigate any smells from the kitchen. The closeness to the balcony means better ventilation in addition to the installed hood above the induction stove.
All in all, the way the unit is laid out, ventilation should not be an issue.
While marble flooring is used for the common areas, the bedrooms are timber for 2BR units and above. The showunits are carpeted however.
The common bedrooms are fairly large and capable of holding a queen size bed. A wardrobe is built-in though unlike the master bedroom’s modular walk-in wardrobes, the ones in the common bedrooms are the standard types.
The master bedroom has a sort of L-shape with the walk-in closet facing the entry way, next to the master bathroom entrance. This view is blocked from the bed, which helps to imbue the room with a simple and uncluttered aesthetic.
The bigger space is useful here in the event the resident wishes to install shelves and/or to mount a television. While this unit also sports the swivel on the TV console, the guest room is the one that benefits from it instead of the master bedroom.
Thus, the additional space in the master bedroom gives residents the wherewithal to install their own shelves and TV console should they want. There’s certainly more than enough room to do so.
4BR (1,528 sqft)
To illustrate the size of the unit upon entering, consider that should the walls around the wet and dry kitchen, including the washing area and yard be broken down, this area looks like it might be a small 1BR serviced apartment.
The kitchen comes as seen, minus the bar countertop. This unit type is equipped with similar kitchen appliances but with a wine chiller included as well. The washing machine and dryer are two separate appliances stacked above one another.
Those things are situated at the back of the wet kitchen. However, there are no partitions between the wet and dry kitchen which makes moving to and fro easier. The 4BR units come with the traditional gas cooker instead of induction for more heavy duty food preparation.
But as large as the cooking and yard areas combined is, the living room is even more luxurious. In the showunit, the bedroom behind the couch in the living room was broken down to be used as a dining area. This is mainly the reason why the living room comes across as extremely commodious.
However, even with that room up the living room which is connected to the balcony teases a fantastic view. The view is one of an Orchard Road rife with hilly buildings and taken in from a space that presents many further furnishing options.
Should the resident choose not to customize further, the default living room already works extremely well with CapitaLand’s aesthetic for this unit type. The contrast between the light and dark styles makes the showunit pop and the higher ceiling with cove non-LED lighting further elicits a warm and welcoming mood.
Aside from the two bedrooms, there’s the master bedroom and a junior master bedroom. Both of these come with en suite bathrooms although only the master bedroom has the modular walk-in closet.
The junior suite sports a more traditional built-in wardrobe in a room that is just slightly less spacious than the master. Visually, it’s the same as the master bedroom, with the large casement windows that are used in every unit type admitting a substantial amount of sunlight that will serve to make the room feel bigger and allowing ample ventilation.
This bedroom type also comes with an electronic safe in the wardrobe. The electronic safe is available for unit types E, F & G only. The master bathroom for the 4BR and penthouse units are designed to be far grander than their smaller counterparts.
Rain showers are almost a necessity when luxury units are concerned and it’s no different here. A marble bath tub is also part of the ensemble. What CapitaLand adds to the bathrooms however is notable. A TV screen commonly known as a ‘Magic Mirror’ is situated at the foot of the bathtub, above where the tub’s shower head is.
While the magic mirror is only provided for the master bathroom in every 4BR and penthouse units, its addition is yet another special feature to a long list of special features CapitaLand has seen fit to imbue Cairnhill Nine with.
Such things are common in luxury hotels, so having it here helps elevate the development to a tier above common luxury developments in Singapore.
There are few places in Singapore as evocative and immediately identifiable than Orchard Road.
Once a simple shopping belt, Orchard Road has been and is still undergoing massive transformation into something more. New malls are being built and old ones are either torn down and rebuilt or retrofitted with modern trappings to sync them with the rapidly changing aesthetic.
And between the shopping malls and office buildings, numerous residential properties are also springing up – the very nature of their location automatically signalling them as luxurious developments.
And the biggest one coming to the district is CapitaLand’s Cairnhill Nine.
Situated behind The Heeren, between Bideford Road and Cairnhill Road, on what was formerly Somerset Grand Cairnhill, CapitaLand’s latest juggernaut is expected to be the tallest development in this part of Orchard Road.
One half serviced residences (to be managed by Ascott) and one half condominium, Cairnhill Nine is shaping up to be a rather impressive new addition to a district that may very well be Singapore’s version of Midtown Manhattan in New York City.
Cairnhill Nine is on a slight elevation and its position behind The Heeren keeps it away from the constantly busy and noisy main road. Cairnhill Nine will also be connected to luxury mall, Paragon by a link bridge. This puts popular high-end brands like Burberry, Prada and Gucci a short and sheltered walk away.
But Paragon is hardly the biggest reason to buy into the hype of Cairnhill Nine. This is after all, Orchard Road so both sides of the street are lined with so many shopping malls that someone new to Singapore can be kept occupied for a long time.
Another mall, Cineleisure Orchard, is just across the road from The Heeren and no more than a seven minute walk away once you’re on the street. It’s commonly frequented by scores of teenagers but the cinema there is the closest one to residents of Cairnhill Nine. Across the road from Cineleisure is H&M and slightly further down is Somerset MRT station. The station is now part of a shopping complex with shops and restaurants on the street and basement, called Somerset 313.
There are several more shopping malls and food centres in that direction, toward Dhoby Gaut where Plaza Singapura is. Walk past Paragon and in the direction of Orchard MRT station (which is integrated with ION Orchard) there are various other shopping outlets.
Shaw House sits along Scotts Road and is yet another cinema in the vicinity. Shaw House is connected to Orchard MRT station by a mostly air-conditioned underground network. There are even more shops, grocery stores and various other distractions while walking through the underground network toward Wheelock or Shaw House.
Far East Plaza which is further down along Scotts Road is an older mall that thrives on its south-east Asian food, nail & hair salons and clothing shops. It is in fact, a nice contrast to the encroaching modern malls with their identical styles and retail stores throughout Orchard.
Cairnhill Nine absolutely nails it where the location is concerned. It’s in a quieter part of Orchard but offers so many distractions for its residents the minute they exit the development.
But for residents whom may enjoy living in the city but would rather take in the sights and sounds from the comfort of their home, Cairnhill Nine hits yet another jackpot by delivering exquisite and luxurious units no matter the bedroom type.
Since its official launch on March 12th 2016, Cairnhill Nine has seen 99 out of its 268 units sold. One week later on the 21st of March, its total units sold has risen to 139.
For a luxury project, with a minimum starting quantum of $1.3m, this is extremely positive.
For clarity, 106 out of 137 1BR/1BR + guest units were sold. Out of 101 2BR/2BR + guest units, 15 have been sold. Out of 22 4BR units, 12 were sold and out of eight penthouse units, six have been sold.
There’s still a healthy number of units left for most of the types, except the penthouses of which only two are left at the time of writing. These penthouses are split equally between single floor and double storey, although which two are left is something CapitaLand can answer. These penthouse units may very well have been sold by the time of publishing.
Based on how quickly units have been snapped up since its official launch, CapitaLand’s latest development has gotten off to a good start. Even if it slows down now, as most properties tend to do after the initial marketing push, it should come close to having 200 units sold out within the next couple of months.
There aren’t any competitors for Cairnhill Nine within its immediate vicinity which puts it at the uppermost echelon for affluent buyers looking for upmarket luxury projects in the Orchard area. The closest development would be Helios Residences which saw TOP in 2011 and 2004’s The Light @ Cairnhill.
While those two developments are along Bideford Road, they are further up the hill in a quieter enclave that is further from the main Orchard Road. Given that Cairnhill Nine units starts on the 8th floor and is already inoculated from the noises of the street, the extra privacy only makes getting to Orchard Road a little harder.
However, the existing monthly rental for those two projects can help to set a minimum standard for people who have bought units at Cairnhill Nine for investment.
Based on URA data, The Light @ Cairnhill has an average of $5,300 for 2BR units while Helios Residences has a monthly average of $6,300 for 2BR units. As Helios Residences has a TOP date closer by comparison to Cairnhill Nine, the average of $6,800 is used as a minimum. Add that amount to the difference between the Light and Helios and the monthly average for Cairnhill comes up to $8,300 for a 2BR unit. Factors like floor level and furnishing are not taken into consideration.
With an average monthly rent of $8,300 for a 2BR unit at a median transacted price of $2,711,000, the gross rental yield is at 4%. With no direct competitors, the lower rental yield is expected, although by the time the investors start renting out their units, the gross rental yield of the immediate area is expected to rise.
However, given the high monthly rent it may be difficult to find people willing to fork out so high an amount per month. This is the biggest caveat potential investors must consider before deciding to buy for a purpose other than personal stay.
One thing to note is that CapitaLand have been pushing Cairnhill Nine toward wealthy Indonesian and Chinese buyers so it is likely that future rental may come from that pool as well.
If property were like collectors’ items like prized cars or museum pieces, then Cairnhill Nine is a must-have.
Every unit type is designed meticulously to enhance its offerings rather than drawing attention to the size. Even with its smallest unit already at a generous 592 sqft, Cairnhill Nine brandishes its strengths so expertly that whatever faults may otherwise have come to light are hidden or at the very least mitigated.
Take for example, the walk-in closet. A common inclusion for luxury developments, most walk-in closets hinge on the look it brings rather than actually be designed to hold clothing for more than one person.
While Cairnhill Nine’s wardrobe is limited, CapitaLand have built a modular wardrobe that effectively doubles the space while making the entire ensemble look remarkably attractive. This only smoothens out potential sore spots by turning a potential negative into a positive selling point.
Good layout planning also helps elevate Cairnhill Nine as each unit type, despite their size, offers proportionately spacious living areas that do not feel cramped or limited in any way. While the differences between a 1BR and a 4BR unit are stark in comparison, the smaller units never loses that luxurious impression.
And at a starting price of $1.3m for 1BR units, Cairnhill Nine is affordable by comparison. That it is located in Orchard Road and within walking distance to not just the MRT station but a wealth of shopping malls and restaurants is yet another plus point justifying its cost.
While it does get crowded at Orchard Road and driving to and fro can be stressful during peak hours, you’ll be paying for well-designed, spacious units in a shopping belt surrounding the development. And if you can’t drive because of traffic, Orchard MRT station is a five minute walk away from the street level.
Simply put, Cairnhill Nine is a project that is worth buying, especially if it’s for personal stay.