Surge in buying interest at Daintree Residence

/ EdgeProp Singapore |
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SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - Daintree Residence is a sort of sleeper hit among new residential projects launched over the past two years. New units sold in the 327-unit private condo shot up to 14 the first weekend that sales galleries reopened — making it the top-seller that weekend. Since then, more than 70 units have been snapped up. And these sales were achieved without any price adjustments, says Neo Keng Hoe, general manager of SP Setia International, the developer of Daintree Residence. To date, total sales is 188 units (57.5%), based on caveats lodged with URA Realis as at July 26.
Daintree Residence - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
The five-storey blocks of Daintree Residence are arranged in two wings, namely the Rainforest Wing and Valley Wing, so that all units enjoy either views of greenery or a pool (Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
The surge in sales can be attributed to several reasons. First and foremost, the Covid-19 “circuit breaker” forced people to stay in for two months. This gave prospective buyers time to view projects online and zoom in on their preferred options, reckons Neo. During these past few months, SP Setia has also embraced the use of technology and digitalisation through its virtual showflat tours, as well as intensified social media engagements, he adds.
Bigger, greener homes
The work from home phenomenon also fuelled the desire for bigger homes, notes Neo. This led to the recent sales of predominantly two- and three-bedroom units at Daintree Residence, with sizes ranging from 710 sq ft to 1,119 sq ft at prices ranging from $1.14 million ($1,753 psf) to $1.85 million ($1,752 psf).
With Covid-19 comes greater emphasis on lush landscaping and outdoor facilities in residential projects, Neo points out. Designed by Singapore’s acclaimed architectural firm, ADDP Architects, with EcoPlan Asia as the landscape architect, the low-density, five-storey blocks of Daintree Residence are arranged in two wings, namely the Rainforest Wing and Valley Wing, so that all units enjoy either views of greenery or a pool.
Scale model showing the well-manicured roof deck offering panoramic Treetop Walk experience (Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
“Buyers are attracted by the exclusive feel of just 327 apartments in a lush nature resort setting,” says Neo. “Residents get to enjoy a unique lifestyle, with a well-manicured roof deck offering panoramic Treetop Walk experience as well as numerous social facilities to enjoy and relax.”
Besides the architectural design, attention has also been paid on the interior finishes of the apartments, adds Neo. Units range in size from 517 sq ft for a one-bedroom apartment to 1,539 sq ft for a four-bedroom unit. “All our developments incorporate green and sustainable features,” observes Neo. “Increasingly, this influences the decisions of prospective buyers.”
After all, SP International is the international property arm of Malaysia’s leading listed property developer, SP Setia. A frontrunner in sustainability for more than two decades, SP Setia has developed a series of nature-inspired, residential projects it has branded Eco Sanctuary in Malaysia and Singapore. SP Setia has also won many accolades, the most recent being its 12th FIABCI World Prix d’Excellence Gold Award for KL Eco City on July 17.
Daintree Residence showflat - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Showflat of a three-bedroom unit at Daintree Residence where units are fitted with De Dietrich kitchen appliances ( Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua)

Proximity to nature

In fact, the name Daintree Residence was inspired by the World Heritage listed Daintree Rainforest in Queensland, Australia. The 140-year-old tropical rainforest was also the inspiration behind the world of Pandora, a fictional world in James Cameron’s 2009 science fiction movie, Avatar.
What drew SP Setia to the 201,523 sq ft, 99-year leasehold site is its location within the quiet private residential estate of Toh Tuck Road in the Bukit Timah area of District 21. It is also near the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Bukit Batok Nature Reserve, which will be linked to the Rail Corridor and Rifle Range Nature Park via the 36km Coast-to-Coast trail.
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SP Setia had won the hotly contested site in a government land which saw 24 bids received at the close of the tender in April 2017. SP Setia won the site with a top bid of $265 million.
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
One of the attractions is the project's proximity to Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Bukit Batok Nature Reserve, which will be linked to the Rail Corridor and Rifle Range Nature Park via the 36km Coast-to-Coast trail (Photo: Albert Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)

Beauty World integrated transport hub

Another catalyst driving interest in Daintree Residence last month was the URA announcement at the end of June on the launch of a 1.039 million sq ft, mixed-use, commercial and residential development site at Jalan Anak Bukit, which will be part of the new integrated transport hub at Beauty World. Neo notes an increase in interest from “serious buyers” since the announcement, given the proximity of the site to the Toh Tuck enclave.
“The [Jalan Anak Bukit] site has good potential for place-making,” says Tricia Song, head of research for Singapore at Colliers International. Retail malls nearby such as Beauty World Plaza, Beauty World Centre and Bukit Timah Shopping Centre are mostly strata-titled and outdated. However, new private and public developments together with this mixed-use site integrated with a transport hub, will “rejuvenate and inject vibrancy into the Beauty World district”, she reckons.
A minimum area of 5,000 sq m (53,822 sq ft) of the site at Jalan Anak Bukit is to be earmarked for a bus interchange, which will be linked underground to the Beauty World MRT station on the Downtown Line, and form part of the Beauty World integrated transport hub. The 99-year leasehold site has the potential to yield 845 residential units, while a maximum of 20,000 sqm (215,278 sq ft) designated for commercial use. About 7,500 sqm (80,729 sq ft) can be allocated to shops or restaurants.
Given the significance of the Jalan Anak Bukit site, it will be sold under a double-envelope, concept and price revenue tender approach. “This would ensure meaningful integration of amenities with a seamless network of pedestrian-friendly streets and well-designed public spaces,” according to Song of Colliers.
Bukit Timah region is a preferred address given its central location, proximity to nature (Bukit Timah Hill pictured), excellent amenities and choice schools nearby, says SP Setia (Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)

Heightening awareness

The launch of the 633-unit Forett at Bukit Timah located directly across the road from Daintree Residence, also raised awareness and interest in the Toh Tuck Road neighbourhood.
The freehold Forett at Bukit Timah is a redevelopment of the former Goodluck Garden, which was purchased en bloc by Perennial Real Estate Holdings and Qingjian, the Chinese contractor-turned-property developer. Qingjian is also the main contractor for Daintree Residence.
Schools nearby include Bukit Timah Primary School, Pei Hwa Presbyterian Primary School and Methodist Girls’ School. “The Bukit Timah region is a preferred address given its central location, proximity to nature, excellent amenities and choice schools nearby,” says Neo.
For price trends, recent transactions, other project info, check out these projects' research page: Daintree Residence, Forett at Bukit Timah

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