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Monday, February 22, 2010

Developers to launch RM1b projects in Penang

An artist’s impression of water villas at The Light Collection project by IJM Land.

GEORGE TOWN: Four major Kuala Lumpur-based developers plan to launch some RM1.16bil worth of luxurious residential properties in Penang this year, in view of a recovering domestic economy and continuing demand for high-end homes.

The properties are IJM Land Bhd’s RM422mil The Light Collection I & II, SP Setia Bhd’s RM60mil Brooks Residences, RM230mil Reflections condominium and semi-detached schemes for its Setia Pearl Island project, E&O Property Development Bhd’s RM380mil first phase of the Quayside project, and Mah Sing Holdings Bhd’s RM71mil first phase of the Legenda@Southbay.

Datuk Soam Heng Choon says residential properties in the mid to h igh-end categorie s will be the main growth drivers this year.

The RM165mil Light Collection I, scheduled for launch in the second quarter on a 7-acre site next to the Penang Bridge, comprises 152 condominiums and 24 water villas, priced at RM650 per sq ft and RM800 per sq ft respectively.

The built-up areas for the condominiums range from 1,375 to 1,580 sq ft while the water villas have a built-up area of 3,169 sq ft.

The RM257mil Light Collection II, scheduled for launching on a 8.58-acre site in the second half of 2010, comprises 297 condominiums with built-up areas ranging from 516 to 3,528 sq ft, priced at about RM700 per sq ft onwards.

IJM Land managing director Datuk Soam Heng Choon said residential properties in the mid to high-end categories had proven to be good hedging instruments and would serve as the main growth driver for the property sector this year.

He said IJM Land also planned to launch in May its RM123mil Maritime Square, which comprises 244 serviced suites and 67 shop and office units.

SP Setia Property (North) general manager S. Rajoo said the RM150mil Reflections condominium scheme and the 54 semi-detached homes for the Setia Pearl Island project in Sungai Ara would be launched in the first and second quarter respectively.

“The Reflections comprises 317 condominiums with built-up areas of 1,077 to 1,512 sq ft and priced from RM378,800 onwards.

“The Brooks Residences project, located in the prime residential vicinity of Jesselton Road, is expected to be launched in the final quarter of 2010,” he said.

Rajoo said the group planned to introduce an innovative financing package for its new projects in Penang soon.

“The special financing package is for the new launch of semi-detached homes in the Setia Pearl Island scheme and a new project, Setia Ara, on a 28-acre site in Sungai Ara,” he said.

Mah Sing deputy chief operating officer Teh Heng Chong said the first phase of the RM284mil Legenda@Southbay project would offer 19 bungalows with an estimated gross sales value of RM71mil.

Comprising a total 76 bungalows, the Legenda@Southbay is a gated and guarded project that comes with a clubhouse and is equipped with features such as personal pool, smart-home features, solar hot water system and rain water-harvesting system.

“We also plan to launch the first phase of the RM911mil Southbay City commercial project in Batu Maung this year.

“The Southbay City is an integrated commercial hub comprising serviced residences, commercial lots, lifestyle mall, and four and five-star hotels,” Teh said.

Eastern & Oriental Bhd executive director Eric Chan Kok Leong said the company’s property arm E&O Property would launch the first phase of the RM1.8bil Quayside luxurious condominium scheme for its sea-fronting Seri Tanjung Pinang project in Tanjung Tokong early next month.

“The first phase is a 26-storey block, comprising 298 units,” he said.

Quayside, resembling sea-fronting home projects in Sentosa, and Sovereign Island in Gold Coast, comprises seven high and low-rise blocks surrounded by 4.5 acres of water park.

The Quayside is located within the first phase of the 908-acre Seri Tanjung Pinang housing project.

By The Star

Sunway Pyramid building into the future

The Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall plans to be Malaysia's biggest mall by size within the next five years

The Sunway Pyramid Shopping Mall in Selangor is likely to overtake the Mid Valley Megamall in Kuala Lumpur as the country's biggest mall by size within the next five years as it adds two new phases to the mall.

Called "SP3" and "SP4", the two phases form part of Sunway City Bhd's (SunCity) planned development on a 2.35ha open car park land adjacent to the existing Sunway Pyramid and the Sunway Lagoon Theme Park.

Currently, Sunway Pyramid has a total gross floor area of 4.5 million sq ft, with a net lettable area (NLA) of 1.7 million sq ft.

Chief executive officer of Sunway Group of Shopping Malls, H.C. Chan, said SP3 will see 500,000 sq ft added to the gross floor area of the mall.
He did not say what the NLA will be, but typically 65 per cent to 70 per cent of a mall's gross floor area makes up the NLA.

"SP3 and SP4 have been planned and should be ready within the next five years ... it is a sizeable addition," Chan told Business Times in an interview.

He said timing of their launch would depend on economic conditions.

Phase SP3 of Sunway Pyramid features a small-office-home-office (SOHO) suites development to be built on 0.73ha.

While Chan declined to reveal details about Phase SP4 of expansion, it is understood that it will include retail, office blocks and residential units on 1.62ha.

"Integration and physical connection is our first priority," Chan said of the mall. The two new phases will be linked to the existing mall.

"We are building into the future, the mall is already big. So, we have to think of niche and innovative ways to attract consumers," Chan said of the concept the mall may have.

The new project will also increase the number of parking bays in the mall, hotel and theme park area by 2,000 to 9,500.

Today, Sunway Pyramid's larger rivals include the Mid Valley Megamall and the Gardens with a combined NLA of 2.5 million sq ft and 1 Utama Shopping Centre in Petaling Jaya at 1.85 million sq ft.

Its smaller rivals are One Borneo in Kota Kinabalu with a NLA of 1.5 million sq ft and Pavilion Kuala Lumpur at 1.37 million sq ft. Suria KLCC together with its upcoming space will have some 1.18 million sq ft of NLA.

Apart from Sunway Pyramid, SunCity also manages Sunway Carnival in Seberang Prai, Penang and Sunway Giza in Kota Damansara, Selangor.

By Business Times

Mah Sing may gear up RM1b war chest

Mah Sing Group Bhd, a Malaysian developer, may gear up to build a RM1 billion war chest for acquiring land to capitalise on an expected rebound in the Malaysian property market, group managing director Leong Hoy Kum said in a statement today.

“We believe that developers like us with sufficient cash and a healthy balance sheet will continue to grow stronger,” Leong said, in a statement accompanying the company’s fourth-quarter results.

Mah Sing had RM400 million in cash and zero net gearing at the end of December. “Should we gear up to 0.5 times, we can build a war chest of approximately 1 billion ringgit to purchase good prime land that suits our business model,” Leong said in the statement.

By Bloomberg

Al-Rajhi Capital, Arcapita form US$500m property fund

Al-Rajhi Capital, the investment unit of Al-Rajhi Bank, and Arcapita Bank bought a warehouse in Riyadh as they set up a US$500 million property fund to seek investments in the Persian Gulf.

The ARC Real Estate Income fund will invest in warehouses, healthcare centers and education-related assets in Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf countries, the two companies said in an e-mailed statement today.

Savola Al Azizia United Co, Saudi Arabia’s second-largest food producer, announced the sale of the warehouse in Riyadh for US$79.7 million in January.

By Bloomberg

Sun Hung Kai sells homes for HK$4.2b

Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd sold a batch of 900 homes in Hong Kong for HK$4.2 billion (US$540 million) at a new development over the weekend amid crowds of thousands, fueling speculation the city’s housing market is overheating.

The apartments at the Yoho Midtown apartment complex in Yuen Long sold for an average HK$5,400 per square foot, Amy Teo, project director at the world’s biggest property developer by market value, said in an interview. That compares with an average HK$3,000 per square foot for new homes in the area a year ago, according to Wong Leung-sing, an associate director at Centaline Property Agency Ltd.

Hong Kong’s home prices surged 29 percent in 2009 as low interest rates and an increase in buying by mainland Chinese stoked demand.

By Bloomberg