Asian Real Estate in Full Momentum
A prestigious address at Boulevard Vue
While the European and North American economies are still clouded with fears of a prolonged recession, Asia has, since the global financial crisis began, embraced changes in the world economy by exploring its domestic economies and finding opportunities to move ahead. Leveraging strong economic fundamentals and a broader Asian growth story, the real estate sector in Asia has rebounded since the second half of 2009, opening up a future full of possibility.
Different Asian countries and cities are forging ahead with their aggressive plans to stand above the rest. The burgeoning region is attracting international corporations and cosmopolitan talents, stimulating demand for world-class luxury homes, full-fledged industrial parks, integrated business areas and serviced apartments for global business travelers. Leading developers are energizing the Asian landscape at a tremendous rate.
In Singapore, Far East Organization—the country’s largest private developer—has recently launched “Inessence,” its new ultra-luxury development brand, setting a new benchmark for bespoke luxury living. The Inessence collection of properties includes Alba, Boulevard Vue, and Skyline@Orchard Boulevard, all nestled in the prestigious Orchard district. Designed by world-renowned master architects and further distinguished by the brand’s unique “white plan” concept, the Inessence residences are rare finds in the busy metropolitan landscape.
In Hong Kong, the Kowloon Station Project of Sun Hung Kai Properties glitters as the iconic cosmopolitan development of the 21st century. Here, the city’s tallest residential tower, The Cullinan, offers a premium lifestyle concept, strategically located alongside the supergrade office International Commerce Centre, ultra-deluxe serviced suites, an upscale shopping mall and two of the finest hotels in town. In addition, the Project lies in the heart of a sophisticated transportation network that offers unparalleled accessibility for conducting local and international business in the prospering mainland.
With the Gwangyang Bay Area Free Economic Zone (GFEZ) in Korea charting a course to become the new logistics and manufacturing hub in Northeast Asia, five distinctive districts in this multipurpose national land development are gearing up for big business. With an optimal business environment offering comprehensive benefits and support to tenant companies, GFEZ is capturing the attention of companies worldwide.
Meanwhile, Oakwood Worldwide—the most trusted name in serviced apartments and temporary housing—continues to expand in the region, serving those on extended trips to Asia. The company also is celebrating its golden anniversary this year, with Oakwood Asia Pacific rolling out a series of unique and exciting activities for guests and partners on its 50th anniversary Web site.
As the Asian economy resolutely forges ahead, the real estate industry has emerged as a key driver in bringing about ample investment opportunities. For those sharing the aspiration to be part of Asian’s legendary growth, the time has come.
Alba – Exquisite residences in the heart of the Orchard district
The Inessence Residences: A New Standard for Bespoke Luxury Living
Singapore is consistently ranked as one of the world’s most livable cities, and Far East Organization is setting a new standard for bespoke luxury living in this cosmopolitan city. Making its debut is the new ultra-luxury brand “Inessence,” which offers a world-class quality lifestyle to the discerning urban elite.
The Spirit of "Inessence"
The definition of luxury has changed over time. In the 21st century, it is all about matchless individualism and distinctive experiences, perfectly exemplified by the Inessence homes. Embodying the exquisite elegance of these residences in full bloom is the Inessence orchid—a delicate white Phalaenopsis with its coy citrine heart defining simple purity at its best, symbolizing the ultimate purity of perfection found in the brand’s state-of-the-art architectural designs as well as its unique “white plan” concept.
All Inessence residences begin with an open white plan, which gives the owner the privilege of creating a bespoke, distinguished living space to suit his or her personal preferences and lifestyle. Among the first in the Singapore market, white plans offer owners great flexibility in designing the homes of their dreams. From the spatial layout to every minute fitting and fixture, an Inessence design team will assist in turning the owners’ visions of their ideal homes into reality.
Four distinct pillars guard the Inessence brand: address, design, thoughtfulness and bespoke elements. Each Inessence residence is located in Singapore’s most sought-after, highly valued address: Orchard Road. The collection, sited within the country’s most famous shopping and entertainment enclave, comprises Skyline@Orchard Boulevard, Alba and Boulevard Vue.
Every Inessence residence is an individual masterpiece created by world-renowned architects and designers: Fumihiko Maki of Maki and Associates, Bernardo Fort–Brescia of Arquitectonica, and Takashi Sugimoto of Super Potato. True visionaries in their own right, each brings the very best of his craft to the Inessence brand.
In perfecting these homes, meticulous attention has been given to every little detail so that the final product will offer the highest standards of privacy, comfort and elegant luxury. In addition, a dedicated concierge team, well abreast of current trends and residents’ preferences, takes personalization to an entirely new level.
The Mastermind Behind the Masterpiece
An exceptional home for the privileged few, Skyline@Orchard Boulevard is designed by Pritzker Prize-winner Professor Fumihiko Maki, an eminent figure in the architectural world with a series of award-winning projects, including Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Hillside Terrace Complex in Tokyo, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. His current major projects include the Redevelopment of Taipei Main Station Area and Tower 4 of the World Trade Center Redevelopment in New York City.
Reflecting a clean and functional aesthetic that is quintessentially Japanese, the stunning design of Skyline@Orchard Boulevard is characterized by simplicity and harmony. According to Maki,“This kind of evolutionary approach to architectural design constitutes the essence of modernism and provides fertile ground for our present and future explorations in architecture.” Skyline@Orchard Boulevard is Maki’s first residential project in 40 years.
An extraordinary work of art and inspiration, Alba is the masterpiece of Bernardo Fort–Brescia, founder and principal architect of the highly respected U.S.-based architectural firm Arquitectonica. Its award-winning portfolio includes The Atlantis, Miami; The Westin Times Square, New York; and the Banco de Credito in Peru.
A class of its own – Skyline@Orchard Boulevard
Widely acclaimed by many critics as a perfectionist in pursuit of modernity, Fort-Brescia deems that an architect’s mission is “to design with some ingenuity and style against the fact of impermanence.” Alba’s sculptural silhouette is unquestionably dramatic. The white façade and soft curving corners accentuate the fluidity of Alba’s form and projects purity and coolness.
Boulevard Vue is the reputable work of Takashi Sugimoto, the founding principal and designer of Super Potato, Japan, and one of the world’s foremost visionaries in spatial design today. Forging ahead with his principle to be “at the forefront of design by emphasizing Japanese tradition and geographical features as a method to express our thoughts whilst maintaining our originality,” the Mainichi Award winner has created some of the most radically constructed environments. Among his many impressive projects around the world are Radio, a legendary Tokyo Bar; and Mezza9 restaurant in Singapore.
At Boulevard Vue, Sugimoto provides the optimal use of space with the residence’s sleek sculptural profile, distinctive glass-sheathed architecture and magnificent curvilinear “beacon” atrium. Here, his signature style is characterized by the imaginative use of materials, which are sourced from around the world to enliven the original design. Offering expansive living spaces that sprawl across at least an entire floor while complemented by unsurpassed privacy and unparallel services, Boulevard Vue is luxury at its finest.
The World Is Waiting
The launch of Inessence marks a milestone for Far East Organization, Singapore’s largest private property developer. Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, Far East Organization has built over 700 properties in Singapore in the last five decades. Inessence’s launch propels it into an entirely new market segment— that of ultra-luxury residences.
As it continues to enhance its product offerings, Far East Organization also is growing its regional footprint. Today it has offices in China, Indonesia and Korea. Along with its commitment to augment the Singapore skyline with bespoke luxury residences, the Organization will continue to develop new products for the Inessence collection. Designed by renowned Dutch architect Ben van Berkel, the next project in the pipeline is The Scotts Tower, another rare find in the Orchard Road area.
Gwangyang Bay Area Free Economic Zone: The New Leader in Northeast Asian Logistics
Gwangyang Bay Area Free Economic Zone (GFEZ) is fast becoming Northeast Asia’s most advanced business hub. Leveraging its location at the epicenter of the region’s shipping and logistics industries, GFEZ is the flagship free economic zone in Korea, embracing highly competitive industrial infrastructure to capture the flourishing Northeast Asian market.
Gwangyang Container Port and Lee Sun Shin Bridge
Indeed, GFEZ is naturally suited to achieve its mission. Lying strategically between China, Japan and Russia with proximity to major regional ports, GFEZ is also home to the world-class Gwangyang container port, whose 34 berths are expected to handle over 12 million TEU by 2020. Its unrivaled accessibility is further enhanced by a far-reaching land transport network and four nearby airports that empower GFEZ as a gateway to Europe and Northeast and Central Asia.
Five districts in GFEZ are now steaming ahead to become the new regional leaders in different industry sectors:
GFEZ has evolved into a manufacturing hub by bringing together a growing number of synergistic international companies and offering tenant companies an optimal business environment with comprehensive benefits. Support includes assistance with loans, tax, labor, education, healthcare and housing. GFEZ also offers the opportunity to collaborate with renowned global names—specifically those in steel, petrochemicals, advanced materials and technologies, ship and structural building, and logistics.
Since its designation as a free economic zone in 2003, GFEZ has attracted nearly US$7.3 billion in investments from 92 companies; among them are 33 foreign investors that have put GFEZ on a footing to serve as an international business hub in the region. In 2009, the Zone recorded an annual turnover of US$59 billion, with its exports reaching US$23 billion—an encouraging increase of 30% over its export value in 2008.
As it prepares to host Expo 2012 Yeosu and International Garden Exposition Suncheon 2013, and as its growing, sophisticated infrastructure continues to draw worldwide investors, GFEZ is expected to attract a population of some 1.2 million within its hinterland and generate an additional 200,000 jobs by 2020.
Undoubtedly, GFEZ is the future economic hub of Northeast Asia, presenting bountiful investment opportunities for today and tomorrow.
SHKP’S Kowloon Station Project: Hong Kong's Iconic
The Cullinan Rooftop Pool, The multimedia exhibits at sky100, The interior of sky100
The Cullinan at Kowloon Station is the crown jewel of Hong Kong’s luxury development. The 270-meter-tall towering twin edifice has a sleek glass wall that reveals a spectacular glow, and its architectural excellence helps it stand out in picturesque Victoria Harbour. The premium lifestyle concept of this—Hong Kong’s tallest integrated residence—is further epitomized by its HK$500-million d’Oro Clubhouse, which sets a new standard for luxury living.
The Cullinan has become the talk of the town ever since its introduction by the Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP), drawing keen interest from local high-niche end-users, frequent international business travelers, enthusiastic mainlanders who have made Hong Kong their second home, and worldwide investors who have readily added this rare commodity to their lists of luxury properties.
“The attraction of The Cullinan does not stand alone,” says Sun Hung Kai Real Estate Agency Executive Director Victor Lui. It is “strategically located above the Kowloon Station: a world-class neighborhood listing the 118-story super-grade office International Commerce Centre (ICC); the ultra-deluxe serviced suites, The Harbour View Place; the one-million-square- foot upscale mall, the Element; the chic W Hong Kong Hotel; and the grand Ritz-Carlton Hotel. The Cullinan is going to be in the heart of a new commercial and entertainment hub in Hong Kong,” he adds.
International Commerce Centre (middle) and The Cullinan (left)
“What’s more, it has a prominent location. Just one stop from the metropolis’ CBD, and with close proximity to the airport, this thriving area will also be linked up with the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link in three years, taking just 15 minutes to get to Shenzhen and 48 minutes to Guangzhou,” says Lui. “Its accessibility will be further enhanced when the Mainland’s new high-speed national rail network is completed in another three to four years. Notably, the Kowloon Station project will stand as an iconic development of Hong Kong in the new century.”
Meanwhile, this new landmark’s unique observation deck, “sky100,” is set to open in phases. The name “sky100” was inspired by the mesmerizing view seen from the 100th floor of the ICC—393 meters above sea level—where tourists can relish a 360-degree view of the majestic Hong Kong skyline and Victoria Harbour.
“sky100” will be the highest indoor
observation deck in town and feature multimedia exhibits to showcase
the development and culture of Hong
Kong, as well as a guest center offering
comprehensive information for tourists.
Complemented by top international
restaurants on the 101st floor of ICC,
the 30,000-square-foot “sky100” is set
to become the most significant world class
tourist destination in town—and
one that is sure to leave visitors with a lasting impression of Hong Kong.
Oakwood's 50th Anniversary: In Celebration of Trust
Oakwood, a recognized global leader and provider of furnished and serviced apartments, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. “The foundation of our success is our culture, which is centered on our associates who passionately strive to meet the needs of our clients and guests every day,” says Howard Ruby, Founder and Chairman.
The original concept for Oakwood was hatched in 1960, when Ruby and two business partners decided to offer custom-designed housing for young singles in Los Angeles. This successful venture further evolved into creating full-size, serviced apartments for professional business travelers. Both property types have been met with an overwhelmingly positive response, and Oakwood has expanded its footholds in North America, Europe and Asia Pacific over the last few decades to become a renowned brand and market leader.
Today, Oakwood Worldwide—the most trusted name in serviced apartments and temporary housing—oversees 35,000 associates, 23,000 apartments and over 300 network partners around the globe. In Asia Pacific, the Oakwood Premier, Oakwood Residence, and Oakwood Apartments brands are all pledged with the Oakwood Gold Standard service, providing a cut-above-the-rest housing solution with distinctive choices of living concepts, flexibility, customization, facilities and amenities that suit the needs of every resident and traveler.
Oakwood Premier Joy-Nostalg Center Manila
Oakwood Asia Pacific is now celebrating its golden anniversary. Its properties in China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Philippines and Thailand are rolling out a series of unique and exciting activities for guests and partners detailed on a special anniversary Web site: www.oakwoodasia.com/50anniversary.
These activities celebrate being the most trusted name in the industry since its incorporation. One such competition, which closed at the end of September, offered a chance to win 50 nights at Oakwood properties located in 11 cities across seven countries in the Asia- Pacific region. Other ongoing initiatives and competitions include:
“Our 50th year will be another where we extend our Gold Standard service to
our customers, and we look forward to
welcoming business travelers and their
families as we continue to grow across
Asia Pacific and the Middle East with
exceptional housing options,” says P.G.
Mathew, Managing Director, Oakwood Asia Pacific.
Headquartered in Singapore, Oakwood Asia Pacific will open 23 more fine, serviced
apartments for business and leisure
travelers in multiple cities across
Asia Pacific and the Middle East by 2014.
Come celebrate and win a chance to be pampered by its unhurried ambience and gracious hospitality. Learn more at www.oakwoodasia.com/50anniversary.
A Promising Future
Asia is charging ahead of the recovering global economy on the back of broadbased growth in both its domestic and international sectors. Supported by persistent regional economic growth, burgeoning demographics, competitive interest rates and strong cash reserves, confidence in real estate is apparent across Asia.
Indeed, there is much to be optimistic about. According to the Cap Gemini– Merrill Lynch World Wealth Report 2010,
the global wealth situation has recovered
lost ground, rising 18.9% to US$39
trillion in 2010. Notably, wealth held by
Asia-Pacific high-net-worth individuals
(HNWIs) is surging. The numbers of Indian and Chinese millionaires are growing at the fastest rates ever, and Singapore currently has the highest concentration of HNWIs in the world.
It is therefore not surprising that there is a regional trend of institutional and private investor capital flowing into the area’s real estate markets—with luxury apartments leading the way—and strengthening investment activity.
There has never been a better time for Far East Organization to offer its world class “Inessence” homes. Not only does the introduction of the unique brand mark a major turning point for the Organization’s entry into the ultra-premium property sector, it is also a testament to Singapore’s strong foundations and its transformation into a vibrant global city.
Rated as one of the most-favored cities for investment, Hong Kong reported a strong increase in transaction volume in the second quarter of 2010 as HNWIs and domestic buyers continued to hunt for prime investment property. The Kowloon Station Project of Sun Hung Kai Properties is a microcosm of a metropolis encapsulating today’s paradigm of modern living.
The Cullinan Club d’Oro Lounge, Oakwood Premier Midtown Tokyo, Yulchon Industrial Complex I of GFEZ
As one of the three largest economic blocs in the world, Northeast Asia also presents a positive outlook as Korea brings together overseas investments in its Free Economic Zone. This year sees the completion of the first of the threephase development of Gwangyang Bay Area Free Economic Zone (GFEZ), which will continue until 2020. In the coming years, GFEZ will execute an aggressive investment campaign promoting more favorable conditions and continuous support for resident companies—benefits that are sure to attract the attention of global companies.
Meanwhile, as business continues to thrive throughout Asia, the demand for serviced apartments and temporary housing is likewise on the rise. Oakwood Asia Pacific—an increasing presence throughout Asia Pacific and the Middle East—is working hard to fill this void with superb housing options for business travelers and their families.
As Asia is poised to grow faster than most other regions around the globe, pioneering real estate developers are eagerly working to keep up with the astounding demand, supplying the market with new innovative, inspired developments.
Now, perhaps more than ever, the optimistic ambience of the Asian real estate industry is truly inviting.
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