The Orchard Residences hits $4,299 psf

The 175-unit The Orchard Residences saw two transactions from Aug 12 to 23. The 54-storey condominium tower sitting on top of the ION Orchard mall is the new landmark on Singapore’s famed shopping strip, and was developed by CapitaLand and Hong Kong’s Sun Hung Kai Properties. The Orchard MRT station sits underground and is linked to the neighbouring malls.

Completed late last year, the landmark 99-year leasehold condo contains a mix of three- and fourbedroom apartments of 1,808 to 2,800 sq ft, as well as penthouses of about 4,200 to 5,000 sq ft each and garden units measuring 4,500 to 6,500 sq ft. “In the development, you have a mix of owner-occupiers, investors who prefer to leave it vacant rather than accept a lower rent, and foreign buyers who intend to use it as a holiday home,” says Jacqueline Wong, head of residential at Jones Lang LaSalle. “For many of these buyers, it’s a trophy asset.”

The Orchard Residences is also a hit with wealthy Asians, including those from Indonesia and China, and has seen strong interest from Singaporeans. “The Indonesian buyers, in particular, like it because of the location above ION Orchard, where there are many luxury boutiques such as Cartier, Louis Vuitton and Prada,” says Daphne Lean, team director at ERA Realty Network. “There are also a lot more facilities in The Orchard Residences compared with other luxury properties in the Orchard area.”

So far, 160 units have been sold, with only 15 still available from the developer. The latest recorded transaction, according to URA data, was on Aug 15, when a 2,174 sq ft apartment on the 46th level with three bedrooms and a study was sold for $9.35 million, or $4,299 psf, by the developer.

Three days earlier, a smaller three-bedroom unit on the 20th level, measuring 1,808 sq ft, was transacted at $6.33 million, or $3,499 psf. “Some buyers prefer to buy from the secondary market rather than from the developer, because they think they can get a better deal, but even individual sellers are still holding on to their asking prices,” notes Wong.

For many of the buyers at The Orchard Residences, the premium has been the panoramic views from the high-floor units. Generally, investors can also achieve rental yields of 3% to 3.5%, according to property agents.

Patrick Lai, director of residential leasing at Savills Singapore, concluded the rental of two four-bedroom apartments at The Orchard Residences just two months ago. Both went for $20,000 a month and to American couples who relocated from Hong Kong. “They appeal to people relocating from Hong Kong because of the location, which is within walking distance of the shopping area,” says Lai.

In recent listings on, a three bedroom, 1,808 sq ft apartment recently posted an asking rent of $16,000 a month, while a penthouse unit is asking for $42,000 a month.

Property agents such as ERA’s Lean consider The Orchard Residences to be in the same league as The Marq on Paterson Hill by SC Global, which recently saw a 3,003 sq ft unit sold for a whopping $19 million, or a record-breaking $6,400 psf. The buyer was also said to be a foreigner.

Source : The Edge – 12 Sep 2011

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