Cheng Hsing Yao, Group Managing Director of GuocoLand Singapore.
Property developer GuocoLand remains optimistic on the prospects for the luxury housing market despite the muted economic outlook and the cooling measures implemented last year.
“There are good and bad times,” said Cheng Hsing Yao, Group Managing Director of GuocoLand Singapore. “With or without the cooling measures, people still need to buy a home.”
He believes there is still genuine demand for luxury properties in Singapore and that “unique projects with special qualities will always do better”.
Even during the market slump in 2013 and 2014, the developer managed to sell a number of apartments at Goodwood Residence and Leedon Residence in prime District 10.
Its latest project called Meyer Mansion will open for preview tomorrow (September 7), with the official launch on September 13. Located at Meyer Road along the East Coast, the 200-unit freehold condominium is inspired by the seafront mansions that once dotted the area.
GuocoLand bought the plum site through an en bloc sale for $319.88 million in July 2018, which works out to a land price of about $1,580 psf.
Cheng is excited about the site’s potential due to its rarity. “When we first looked at this site, we thought it had a very nice feel and felt it would be good to bring prime district luxury to the east.
“The whole stretch of Meyer Road is already built up. To get a freehold site along Meyer Road is not possible unless there is a collective sale,” he said.
Prices of units at Meyer Mansion have not yet been disclosed, but the estimated breakeven price is around $2,300 psf.
Interest in the one- to four-bedroom units is expected to come from affluent local and foreign buyers, including singles, families and retirees.
Meyer Mansion is GuocoLand’s first condo launch in over two years – the last one being Martin Modern at Robertson Quay in July 2017. To date, about 77 per cent of the 450 units at Martin Modern have been sold.
“The design of the units, landscaping, and overall development concept makes Martin Modern a very attractive project for owner-occupation or as an investment,” said Cheng.
Over 80 per cent of Martin Modern has been set aside for landscaping while residents will get to enjoy concierge services when the development is completed next year.
Other projects by GuocoLand include Wallich Residence in Tanjong Pagar Centre, which has sold about 45 per cent of the 181 units. According to Cheng, there has been strong interest across all unit types.
Located in Singapore’s tallest building, Wallich Residence recently made headlines after a three-storey super penthouse was sold to British billionaire James Dyson for a whopping $73.8 million.
Looking ahead, GuocoLand hopes to launch residential units at its Guoco Midtown mixed-use development by the end of the year. Situated within the Ophir-Rochor corridor, the area is rapidly transforming with new integrated developments such as DUO and South Beach.
GuocoLand was also named as part of a consortium that submitted the top bid of $800.19 million for the Government Land Sales site at Tan Quee Lan Street in Bugis. The 99-year leasehold site only attracted two bids in the tender exercise which closed on Thursday (September 5).
“This is a very attractive site and is the last piece of the puzzle in the rejuvenation of Bugis,” said Lee Sze Teck, Director of Research at Huttons Asia.
“Only developers with the experience of developing projects in the city centre will participate which is why we do not see many bids.”
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