Category Archives: Heritage

9999 years heritage home for only $1.55M @ Farrer Park vicinity

Rare walkup apartment that contains memories of distant past. Looking to own an heritage home? With Collective sale potential! Call David King @ 9477-2121for more details

Accessibility (Location) : Joo Avenue (Walking distance to Farrer Park MRT and City Square Shopping Mall.
Budget: S$ 1.56M for almost Freehold space.
Capacity/Size: 1700 sqft   |  3+1+1 Beds   |  4 baths
Date of Availablity: Competitive offers are coming. Please hurry to secure your chance for great value!


Sime Darby Centre for sale

Blackstone Group plans to sell Sime Darby Centre in Bukit Timah, one of the office and retail assets it acquired last year from Malaysian palm-oil producer Sime Darby Berhad, according to people familiar with the matter.

Located in an ageing commercial block along Dunearn Road and directly in front of King Albert Park MRT station, Sime Darby Centre houses tenants like kitchenware retailer ToTT, Scanteak, Cold Storage and ChildFirst pre-school. The block consists of builtup area of 250,000 sq ft — 80 per cent is office space and the rest is retail. The development sits on freehold and 999-year leasehold land parcels zoned for commercial use and with 1.8 plot ratio.

Blackstone owns a 70 per cent stake in the Sime Darby Centre and Sime owns the rest. The conglomerate, Malaysia’s biggest listed palm-oil producer, sold some property assets in Australia and Singapore to help pare debt.

The site could attract bids from large and mid-sized Singapore developers including Far East Organization, City Developments, Frasers Centrepoint and United Industrial Corp.

The New York-based private equity firm expects to fetch about S$300 million for Sime Darby Centre, which it bought for just under S$200 million last year. Blackstone in May acquired a majority stake in three Singapore property assets, including the Sime Darby Centre, in a deal that valued them at about S$300 million.

Blackstone, which manages more than US$100 billion (S$140 billion) in real estate assets worldwide, in the past has bought residential apartment blocks in Singapore’s prime area.

Shophouses in the vogue again among investors

Investment in Singapore shophouses has stabilised and shows signs of picking up after taking a hit following the introduction of a loan curb in 2013. Total transaction value has been rising in the past two years even though the number of caveats lodged remained fairly steady at just over 100 a year.

Transaction value rose by about 7.6 per cent to $707.07 million last year, from $657.3 million in 2015. Demand for shophouses fell off a cliff in 2014, after the imposition of the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) framework at the end of June 2013.

Three adjoining 999-year tenure shophouses in Amoy Street in Tanjong Pagar were recently acquired by an institutional fund for $59.6 million, or about $2,500 per sq ft, based on the floor area. In another deal, a family office bought a shophouse at 54 Boat Quay for $12.9 million or about $2,985 psf on the floor area.

Office properties, seen as a proxy for shophouses, have faced challenging leasing environment as a deluge of new office buildings weighed on rents in recent years. The average rental yield for shophouses ranges from 2.5 to 3.5 per cent, depending on the tenure of the asset.

Heritage building affected by the new Tunnel along NSC

Part of a 1924 building at the edge of Selegie Road will be demolished, and later rebuilt, to make way for the construction of the North- South Corridor. This is despite the Ellison Building’s status as a conserved structure gazetted by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Three of the building’s 16 two- storey units will be torn down. The affected units – 235, 237 and 239 – currently occupied by a mama shop, Colonial Bistro Cafe and part of a fruit shop, are along the building’s curved facade.

The Land Transport Authority (LTA) will reconstruct and reinstate the affected part of the government-owned building to its original architectural design, under the URA’s guidance, once construction of the tunnel is completed in 2026.

The Ellison Building was built in 1924 by Isaac Ellison, a Romanian Jew. It could have been built for his wife Flora, a Baghdadi Jewish woman from Rangoon, the former capital of Myanmar.
The building has two domes and balconies. The Star of David, the Ellison name and its date of construction still sit proudly atop the relatively rundown building. Lying at the foot of the Mount Sophia conservation area, it is located within the former Jewish quarters. Some records also indicate that the building had been sold to the Government in the late 1980s.The new expressway needs to be as straight as possible to accommodate higher speeds. It said acquisitions along the route, including Rochor Centre, were necessary because of the highly built up area that includes Bukit Timah Road and Rochor Canal.

Construction of the 21.5km underground corridor is expected to take place progressively from next year.


Shophouse for rent at Prinsep/Dhoby Ghaut area

Prime location at famous chillout place, at the Dhoby Ghaut/Bras Basah vicinity. 2600-4500 sqft. Rental @ $30K onwards. Suitable for F&B, pub and restaurant space. Call David @ 94772121  for more details.

Prinsep Street

Villas at Somerset area

Went to an Open house at Brentwood Villa and Villa Madeleine this week. There are beautiful houses right at the periphery of Orchard area. Convenience is definitely is an understatement. The interiors were also luxurious. At 2300sqft of luxury living space right in the prestigious district of district 9 it is only at $10k per month ie slightly over $4psf. A bigger house at Villa Madeleine that is twice the size is available for only $15.2k. That’s only $3.7psf.






Dempsey gets a new lifestyle quarter

Tanglin Village started out in the 1860s as army barracks. In the 1990s, it became known for its furniture shops. After the turn of the century came upmarket restaurants such as PS. Cafe, as well as art galleries.

Now, Tanglin Village is undergoing a makeover and is getting Dover Street Market a well-known multi-label fashion store in  a new lifestyle quarter.

Chang Korean BBQ Restaurant and antique store Shang Antique – will move out when their leases expire on Feb 29, to make way for the new tenant.

Como Dempsey, a complex housing Dover Street Market, is an edgy concept store conceived by Comme des Garcons’ Rei Kawakubo, and a specially conceptualised restaurant and bar by renowned French restaurateur Jean-Georges Vongerichten. The 5,268 sq m site, comprising blocks 17 and 18, will also have a new dining concept offering signature dishes from around the world. Popular local Peranakan restaurant Candlenut has been included in the proposal.

The new project is expected to “significantly contribute to creating and sustaining the vibrant Dempsey atmosphere and Singapore’s tourism scene”, said Ms Ranita Sundramoorthy, STB’s director of attractions, dining and retail.
Como Lifestyle offered to pay a monthly rent of $106,300 for an initial lease term of three years, renewable up till Dec 31, 2022.
The debut of “Como Dempsey” will mark the latest chapter in the area’s transformation.
You can find out more:

All is not black and white at Burkill Hall

Mistaken to be a black-and-white bungalow for more than 50 years, the historic 1868 Burkill Hall at the Singapore Botanic Gardens will soon be returned to its original white palette.

The two-storey bungalow, now a popular wedding venue, will have its black window and door frames, timber beams and railings repainted in January.

This comes after Gardens director Nigel Taylor discovered two years ago that the structure is actually an Anglo-Malayan plantation-style house. It is the last one standing in the region, and possibly the world.

While researching on the Gardens’ structures in the lead-up to its Unesco World Heritage Site bid, he found that Burkill Hall pre-dates the black-and-white style, which appeared here only in 1898.

Photos of Burkill Hall from the late 1800s up till 1959 also showed it clad in white paint. Dr Taylor said the Public Works Department, which likely did not know as much about the building’s history, painted it black and white in the 1960s.

The repainting project will also include giving the Gardens’ iconic 1930s bandstand a fresh coat of paint. It is part of an overall effort to conserve the heritage features and retain the authenticity of the 156-year-old site’s original structures and features.

Work is expected to be completed in February.

Dr Taylor said the repainting project “relates very much to the Unesco accolade because one of the things that Unesco looks for is authenticity”.

On Burkill Hall, he said: “It’s something much older and much more special (than a black-and-white). To recognise that, we now need to redecorate it in the style it was originally decorated.”

The effort will be undertaken and sponsored by paint and coating company AkzoNobel, which declined to provide the cost of the sponsorship.

Designed like a farmhouse, Burkill Hall was built to function without electricity. For instance, it has verandahs on the east and west sides to create a wind-tunnel effect.

Such plantation houses were common in Orchard Road, which was dominated by nutmeg plantations in the 1840s and 1850s.

These homes made way for development alongside the decline of the crop from 1857 due to disease.

Constructed by contracted builder “Ah Wang” at a cost of $4,000, it served as the residence of the Gardens’ superintendents and directors for more than 100 years.

These included its first superintendent, Scotsman Lawrence Niven, who designed and developed the Gardens between 1860 and 1875 for the Agri-Horticulture Society.

Burkill Hall was conserved in 2008, while the bandstand received protected status in 2009.

Volunteer tour guide Chia Bee Lian, 60, who takes visitors to the Gardens, said she supports the National Parks Board’s push to upkeep and maintain the space.

She said: “I think it’s a good idea to put everything back to what it was intended. Tourists usually make a beeline for the National Orchid Garden where Burkill stands, so it will be meaningful for them to see the building in its original form.”

Two adjoining shophouses in Chinatown for sale

Two adjoining commercial shophouses in Chinatown have been put up for sale at an indicative asking price of S$30 million.

The units, 54 and 56 Pagoda Street, are on the main pedestrian thoroughfare in the heart of Chinatown.

They have a combined land area of 3,010 sq ft and a built-in area of 9,226 sq ft.

Under the Master Plan 2014, the three and a half-storey conservative shophouses are zoned “commercial” within the Kreta Ayer Historic District.

They are fully occupied. The ground floor is leased to two retail shops, and the upper floors, accessible via an external staircase, are leased to three office tenants. Both units have a 99-year leasehold tenure that began on Oct 30, 1995.

Christina Sim, director of capital markets at Cushman & Wakefield, said: “This sale represents a rare opportunity to own two units in the heart of busy Chinatown with its unique history and heritage. We expect interest to come from traditional homegrown house brands within Chinatown that require tremendous visibility for their business, high-net-worth investors and institutional funds seeking a trophy heritage property in downtown Singapore.”

Cushman & Wakefield has been appointed to sell the shophouses; the Expression of Interest will close at 3 pm on Nov 27.

The shophouses are just 50m from Chinatown MRT station, and enjoy significant pedestrian footfall throughout the year, especially during key festivals such as the Lunar New Year and the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Other nearby tourist attractions include the Chinatown Heritage Centre, Sri Mariamman Temple and the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. The Tanjong Pagar office sub-market is a stone’s throw away.

Teochew club to do more for arts, needy

Chui Huay Lim, a club for the Teochews here, is marking its 170th anniversary with a pledge to do more for the arts and culture, and the needy in the community.

Club president Roland Heng, 68, said its modern clubhouse in Keng Lee Road, completed four years ago at a cost of nearly $70 million, is now a cultural centre where talks and seminars on culture and the literary arts are held every fortnight.

“Our exhibition hall on the fourth level is also a popular venue for art exhibitions, especially those featuring Teochew artists,” he told The Straits Times.

In conjunction with the anniversary celebrations, the club is also spending $200,000 to invite the 85-member Guangdong Teochew Opera Troupe 1 from China to give nine performances at the Kallang Theatre – nightly from tomorrow to Oct 11, and a Saturday matinee on Oct 10.

A gala dinner for about 600 guests, including Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, will be held at the club’s ballroom today.

At the dinner, the club will present each of seven Teochew clan associations here with $8,000 as bursary money for needy students, up from the $6,000 it gave last year. The clan associations include Teo Ann Huay Kuan, Teo Yeonh Huai Kuan, Singapore Kityang Huay Kuan and Nanyang Pho Leng Hui Kuan.

“We will continue to do more to help the needy in our community,” Mr Heng promised.

He said the club had also recently organised its first Teochew karaoke singing competition successfully and that he hoped to make it a biennial event from now.

Until four years ago, membership of the club was restricted to a select group of about 100 of the wealthiest Teochew business and community leaders here.

The tradition of membership by invitation and for men only was started when Teochew community leader Tan Seng Poh set up the club in 1845.

Since the completion of its new clubhouse in 2011, ordinary membership has been opened to all Teochews, irrespective of wealth and gender. However, ordinary members have no voting rights and are unable to become office-bearers in the club, unlike the 100 founding members.

“We have over 300 of these ordinary members now, including some women, and their number is still increasing,” Mr Heng said.