12 on Shan is a fantastic new, low-density and freehold condominium coming to Shan Road in the extremely convenient district 12
City Suites (formerly Cosmo Loft) offers buyers a chance to own an ultra-modern, sleek, elegant and stylish freehold apartment in the highly sought after and individual area that is Balestier Road.
Project Name: City Suites
Address: 235 Balestier Road
Site area: ~ 31,875 sqft
Configuration: 56 units
Unit types: 52 x 1 bedroom units (452 – 527 sqft)
4 x 1 bedroom penthouse + study (980 – 1173 sqft)
This development has been in the news over the past few months for reasons the developers and agents would not have wanted. After launching in the spring of 2013, sales have been disappointingly slow, and SingHaiyi – the property’s developer, was keen to sell the project to a third party to avoid financial penalties. The SLA have blocked this move however, so SingHaiyi will be forced to forge ahead with the completion and subsequent sales.
There are two things to note from this episode. First of all, the slow sales in no way reflect either the quality of the units and the project as a whole, or the area where it is located. Both of those are exemplary. The issue – and this is something that is certainly not unique to City Suites – is almost purely down to poor or unlucky timing.
The housing market in general has softened to say the least since this project was undertaken. Additionally, this development is a rather niche one. It offers high end one bed apartments. That is one of the sectors of the market that has seen a lot of competition while at the same time demand has shrunk. Both these factors have had a large, and negative impact on City Suites.
The second thing to note however is that whereas this is bad news for the developer, it can be very good news for investors and buyers. In situations where developers face financial penalties for unsold units they are more keen than ever to shift them, so there are definitely bargains to be had for the shrewd punter.
The development is a stunningly designed single 17 storey block that will quickly become an iconic landmark for the area. As stated previously, sales have been slow, but once again that should not be held against this project, it is purely an indication of the current state of the housing market particularly for these very specific type of units.
The 56 loft-style units were all designed and built very much with luxury in mind. Each unit, and the impressive range of facilities and ammenties are designed for a modern, 21st century lifestyle.
- Basement car park
- Sky gym
- Sky pool
- Floating pavilion
- Alfresco Clubhouse with BBQ
- Fully furnished interiors
- High end European brand bathroom fixtures and fittings
- Fully fitted contemporary kitchen, complete with cooker hob, built-in oven, fridge and washer/dryer
- Walk-in wardrobes
The development boasts three different types of 1-bed units, with the top two sories being home to four different styles of two-storey penthouses.
Balestier Road often flies under the radar when it comes to areas to relocate within Singapore, but those that live there consider it to be one of the best food places on the island.
It is an area that sums up the nation, taking all the best parts of Asia, and giving it that unique Singapore twist. It is lively, vibrant, but also very community based. It is an area that very much has its own identity, one forged on a rich history characterized by some of the best surviving examples of art décor shophouses.
But it has also embraced the 21st century, with 24-hour convenience, and international style coffee shops and delis.
Getting there and away
Located equidistant between the Pan Island, North South and Central Expressways, City Suites is conveniently placed to reach any part of the island.
Raffles Place, Suntec City, Marina Bay and Orchard Road are all just a short drive away, while Farrer Park and Boon Keng (on the North East Line) and Novena MRT (North South) stations are all a lot less than a mile away.
There is also a bus stop located right outside the development.
Convenience is the name of the game with City Suites. A brief stroll in either direction will bring you to more dining options than you can shake a chop stick at. A plethora of cafes and restaurants line the road, while two large and very popular hawker centres are just a stone’s throw away.
Just down the road are the distinctive culinary and cultural delights that are Little India and Kampong Glam. Several 24-hour convenience stores are just a couple of minutes’ walk away, with an NTUC Fairprice five-minutes up the road. Only slightly further away in the opposite direction is Novena with its United Square, Velocity and Square 2 shopping malls.
Just opposite the Suites is the incredible Whampoa Wet Market.
Education wise, the area is well served with all levels of school. The Hong Wen, NorthLight, Global Indian International, St Joseph’s Institution Junior, San Yu High, Balestier Hill Primary and Balestier Hill Secondary Schools are all within easy walking distance, with several more only slightly further away.
There is a cinema and 24-hour gymnasium within five-minutes’ walk of the development, and it is also very well served by medical facilities, with several noted hospitals and clinics in the area.
At the time of writing (September 2016), there have been just five caveated transactions for this property, with two type A and three type B units having been sold. The transacted prices have been at $921,000, $931,000 and $805,000, $818,000, $858,000 respectively. This gives the median caveated price of $1,756 psf for unit type A, and $1,809 psf for type B, and an overall median price of $1,781 psf.
The nearest competitor in terms of style, age and number of units is a little distance away, and is the Interweave (completed in 2014). That development has sold 161 of its 169 units, including 14, 441 sqft apartments
Caveated transactions have ranged from $515,000 to $657,000, and the development as a whole has a median transacted price of $607,000 with the median psf coming in at $1,375.
Future Rental Potential
To get a good understanding of what rental prices for City Suites are likely to be, we need to take a look at those for the area as a whole. Based on data for the last four quarters, the current median rental price for units in District 12 is $3.45 psf (at the time of writing, September 2016).
This equates to a 452 sqft type B unit at City Suites having a market value just shy of $1,900 a month (after factoring a 20% new build premium). Taking the median price for this type of unit as $817,668 the annual gross rental yield is likely to be in the region of 2.75%.
Despite the slowdown in the market, the fact still remains that this area has a great deal to offer to potential residents and investors alike. This development also ticks all of the boxes when talking about stylish, modern condominiums, with excellent local amenities and transport links. It is definitely also worth looking out to see what deals will be on the table so the developer can avoid further financial penalties.
Operating under its former name SingXpress Land Ltd, SingHaiyi Group Ltd established its reputation in the property development and real estate investment industry with its investment banking approach to its projects. This method aims to bring in co-investors to the opportunities it has identified. The company has enjoyed many successful developments in both Singapore and the United States.