Category Archives: West Coast/Pasir Panjang

District 5

Singapore Heritage tour of Gillman Barracks launched

A new history and heritage tour of the Gillman Barracks was launched on Saturday (May 2), in conjunction with Singapore HeritageFest 2015.

The conserved colonial barracks is currently home to the visual arts community.

Members of the public can go to to register for the free hour-long tour, where museum volunteers will share many interesting facts about Gillman Barracks.

The tours will take place on May 2-3 and May 9-10. Subsequent tours will be held once a month from June.

The tour is in addition to the weekly Art and History tour at Gillman Barracks.

PORTFOLIO of nine freehold shophouses and two 9,999-year leasehold strata shop units is up for sale #sgbayhomes

A PORTFOLIO of nine freehold shophouses and two 9,999-year leasehold strata shop units is up for sale to a single buyer.

The seller is The Bamboo Group, a six-year-old boutique property investment and development company specialising in repositioning shophouses.

With a total floor area of 31,774 square feet, the portfolio has an indicative price of S$77 million and is up for sale through an expression of interest (EOI) exercise being conducted by Cushman & Wakefield. The offer will close on May 21.

Included in the portfolio are five two-storey conservation shophouses along Tanjong Katong Road and three shophouses along South Buona Vista Road. The Tanjong Katong Road properties comprise No 362 (at the junction with Wilkinson Road) and four adjoining properties at No 332, 334, 336 and 338 (at the Branksome Road corner).

Along South Buona Vista Road, two adjoining properties, No 30 and No 32, are available along with No 38 a few doors away.

Under the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s Master Plan 2014, all these eight shophouse properties are zoned “residential with commercial at first storey” and have a 3.0 plot ratio (ratio of maximum gross floor area to land area).

The ground-level space in the shophouses is either leased to or approved for use as food and beverage/retail outlets.

The upper level contains furnished boutique residential studio units with tenancies of six months or longer.

Also part of the portfolio is a corner freehold two-storey shophouse at 101 Soo Chow Walk, off Upper Thomson Road and a stone’s throw from the future Upper Thomson MRT Station. Zoned for commercial use within a two-storey envelope control streetblock plan, the property has five shop lots on the ground floor and a single large shop lot on the upper floor. Negotiations are ongoing with potential tenants.

The final component of the portfolio for sale comprises two adjoining corner strata commercial units at 1 & 1B Figaro Street, at the junction with Jalan Tua Kong. The units have two separate titles with 9,999-year leasehold tenure. Both units are leased.

Queenstown’s past has a new trail

Princess House. -- ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG  

The empty field next to Alexandra Fire Station in Queensway has a dark history.

In February 1942, it was the site of the British army’s Normanton oil depot and, in a vain attempt to stop Japanese soldiers from advancing, troops set fire to its oil silos. Thick plumes of smoke engulfed the nearby Boh Beh Kang and Alexandra villages.

Many residents were massacred as enemy troops marched onwards. The death toll is unknown.

The field is now part of a new history trail of Dawson and Alexandra launched today. It is being organised by civic group My Community, Queenstown Citizens’ Consultative Committee and urban explorer group The Other Sites of Singapore.

The trail focuses on the estate’s military history and the stories of residents.

It is the second trail to be launched in Queenstown – the other covers community landmarks in Tanglin Halt and Duchess estates – and explains the different layers of history in Singapore’s first satellite estate, showing how it has evolved since the colonial period.

My Community founder Kwek Li Yong said the story of the damaged oil silos and the killing of the Boh Beh Kang and Alexandra villagers has often been overshadowed by the 1942 massacre at the British Military Hospital – known as Alexandra Hospital today – where 200 patients and staff members were killed in 30 minutes.

There are 18 stops along the Alexandra and Dawson trail, one of which is hidden in a wooded area in Kay Siang Road, where the remnants of two storage bunkers lie. The bunkers were likely to have been constructed in the 1940s and have features such as double doors to reinforce them against bombings.

The trail also takes participants through community sites such as the Taoist Tiong Ghee Temple, which started as an altar in a villager’s hut in 1931; the Housing Board’s first point blocks, 160 and 161 in Mei Ling Street; and the site of the 1950s Hock Lee bus riots at the junction of Dawson Road and Alexandra Road.

Ms Badariah Hussein, 65, who lives in one of the point blocks in Queenstown, noted that participants will get to learn a little about Singapore’s housing evolution through the trail. Constructed in 1970, the point blocks were designed to give residents more privacy by restricting the number of units to just four per level. “I’m very proud to live in one of Singapore’s special blocks and will never sell it off,” the former clerk said.

Dr Chia Shi-Lu, MP for Tanjong Pagar GRC, said participants will get to hear first-hand accounts from long-time residents, shopowners and librarians. “Our stories are big in heart and soul, and certainly speak volumes of life in the 1960s and 1970s,” he said.

Members of the public can sign up for tours at www.myqueens The tours will be held on the last Saturday of each month, starting next month.

Organisers are seeking about 100 volunteers to run the new tour and an existing one in Tiong Bahru over the next few months. Those who are interested can sign up by sending an e-mail to

– See more at:

More new space planned for startups: Spring Singapore

Second LaunchPad is in planning stage; three new blocks will be added to the first facility

THE government is planning to set up a second LaunchPad for startups even as it expands the first one – JTC LaunchPad @ one-north – with the construction of three new blocks.

The existing LaunchPad at Ayer Rajah Crescent – which comprises blocks 71, 73 and 79 and is jointly spearheaded by JTC Corporation and Spring Singapore – offers facilities such as co-working, incubation, and startup space for entrepreneurs.

The three new blocks – 75, 77 and 81 – will provide an additional 12,000 square metres of space and house 250 more startups. These blocks will be completed over 2016 and 2017.

At the existing LaunchPad, block 71 is about 95 per cent filled,block 73 is about 50 per cent taken up and block 79 is more than 80 per cent occupied. It will house about 500 startups and 35 incubators.

The new LaunchPad will be in the vicinity of JTC’s CleanTech Park, which is next to Nanyang Technological University (NTU). Plans for the new facility are still underway, but its main tenets are similar to the current site.

Locating it next to NTU and within the vibrant living laboratory in CleanTech Park will allow startups to benefit from the proximity to research experts and academia from the university and the industries and businesses, noted Heah Soon Poh, assistant chief executive officer of JTC’s Cluster Group.

In addition to providing physical facilities, other means of supporting the entrepreneurial community in Singapore include the opening of Block 71 San Francisco, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Friday, when he officially opened JTC LaunchPad @ one-north. Block 71 San Francisco will help connect Singapore’s startups to the US market and startup eco-system of mentors and investors, said Mr Lee.

Taking the LaunchPad community to the next level will be the newly privatised Action Community for Entrepreneurship, said Minister of State for Trade and Industry Teo Ser Luck. Its welcome centre and collaborative ideation space at block 79 will be a one-stop shop for new entrepreneurs and also be a focal point for players to connect and network.

With this match between the “software” and the “hardware”, it will be possible to replicate this model in other parts of the world, said Mr Teo.

Entrepreneurial activity in Singapore has increased steadily over the years, with the number of employing startups growing from 24,000 in 2005 to 42,000 in 2013. The proportion of startups in higher-value sectors has also grown. Startups in these knowledge-intensive, technology sectors comprised 39 per cent of all active startups in 2013, an increase from 33 per cent in 2005.

Singapore’s startup sector employs about 9 per cent of the country’s workforce. About 20 per cent of Singapore respondents in the latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Report have indicated their intention to start a business within the next three years.



Couple of private condos for rent now. For more information, kindly contact David Teo, + 65 97442121.


Location: 53A GRANGE ROAD


Property 1

Description : 4 bedrooms, fully renovated

Total Area : 1744 sqft

Available for Rent : February 2015

Asking: $7,800/m (partially furnished). Fully furnished can be negotiated

Property 2

Description : 3 bedrooms, fully renovated

Total Area : 1,389 sqft

Available for Rent : February 2015

Asking: S$6,800/m (partially furnished)


THE SAIL (Marina Bay)


the sail

Property 1

Description : 3+1 bedrooms, partial furnished, full panoramic bay view

Total Area : 2,200 sqft

Available for Rent : April 2015

Asking: $12,000/m


Property 2

Description : 2 bedrooms, partial furnished, full panoramic bay view

Total Area : 900 sqft

Available for Rent : April 2015

Asking: $6,800/m


THE VISION (West Coast)



Property 1

Description : 3 Bedrooms, high floor, panoramic view, corner unit

Total Area : 1,303sqft

Available for Rent : Immediate

Asking: $4,900/m

Singapore Startup incubator sets up US hub

The tech community around the world sat up and took notice when The Economist magazine dubbed Block 71, Ayer Rajah Crescent last year as the “world’s most tightly packed entrepreneurial ecosystem”.

Even as Block 71 – run by JTC Corporation and housing more than 200 high-tech start-ups and several incubators – is being expanded, it is also going overseas.

A slice of it is being taken to the South of Market district in San Francisco, California. The district, often just called Soma, which is in the city, is fast becoming another hotbed for start-up activity in the Bay Area, after Silicon Valley.

The National University of Singapore’s (NUS’) entrepreneurial arm and the investment arms of SingTel and Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) – which are involved in Block 71 – have set up an incubation space to enable Singapore student start-ups and other companies which they support to access the market in the United States.

The 5,000 sq ft facility, called Block 71 San Francisco, which started operating this year, provides co-working space, brainstorming rooms and a gathering area for community events.

The three groups will organise community events for Singapore- and US-based tech companies, professionals, students and investors to network and explore business opportunities. NUS Enterprise, Infocomm Investments and SingTel Innov8 will also have offices within the facility to provide backing and support to the companies they have invested in.

Dr Lily Chan, chief executive officer of NUS Enterprise, said: “We are happy to be partnering two of Singapore’s iconic investment entities to extend Singapore’s entrepreneurship community into the San Francisco Bay Area.”

The setting up of Block 71 strengthens the role of Infocomm Investments as an ecosystem builder to help local innovation-driven tech start-ups scale up fast, said its head, Dr Alex Lin.

He added: “There is no doubt that the Bay Area houses some of the best tech talents and communities, and we want to provide the collaborative space for our local tech start-ups to churn big ideas and push the boundaries further.”

Mr Edgar Hardless, chief executive of SingTel Innov8, noted a steady rise in the number of US-based companies and venture funds seeking access to the South-east Asian market. Likewise, start-ups and venture funds in South-east Asia are looking towards Silicon Valley.

Mr Hardless said: “Beyond funding, SingTel Innov8’s mission is to nurture and develop a vibrant innovation ecosystem in the region. Block 71 San Francisco will help create synergies for the greater ecosystem.”

Indonesian-born serial entrepreneur Himawan Gunadhi, who is a consulting professor for NUS’ overseas college programme to nurture entrepreneurs, said that for some start-ups, the US, especially Silicon Valley, is the place to be.

“Very few places in the world have the concentration of talent that Silicon Valley has,” said Dr Gunadhi, who is based in the area.

Tech start-ups from Singapore are excited by this new initiative. One company, NUS student start-up Patsnap, will be operating temporarily from Block 71 in San Francisco at the end of this month.

NUS biomedical engineering graduate Jeffrey Tiong, 31, who founded the patent search and analysis firm, said he and his staff plan to hot-desk at the new facility while they search for a permanent office to base their US sales and marketing team.

He said: “The establishment of Block 71 comes at an ideal time for Patsnap as we are now looking at the US market, specifically for clients, partners and investors. We expanded to China with the help of the NUS incubator in Suzhou, now we hope to access the US market, again with the university’s help.

“I am excited. The US is a big market and San Francisco and Silicon Valley are where the action is.”

– See more at:

Soilbuild Reit takes JTC to court over additional land rent

SB Reit Management, the manager of Soilbuild Business Space Reit, will be commencing proceedings in the High Court of Singapore regarding additional land rent payable to JTC corporation, which amounts to some S$3.5 million per annum, it announced on Friday.

The property, Solaris, was acquired by Soilbuild Reit on Aug 16, 2013, and the rent payable to JTC comprised of land rent of S$405.10 per square metre per annum and subterranean rent of S$23.48 psm per annum, said Soilbuild.

In April 2014, JTC wrote to DBS Trustee Limited, the trustee of Soilbuild Reit, to inform of an error on the rent charged and said that the correct rent should be S$855 psm per annum for land rent and S$70 psm per annum for the subterranean rent.

Consequently, JTC is seeking to adopt the revised rents and claim back payment to make up for the difference between the revised rates and the applicable rates with effect from the completion date.

Based on that difference, the additional rent would be approximately S$3.5 million per annum (excluding goods and services tax), said Soilbuild.

“The manager does not agree with the imposition of the revised rates by JTC as it has relied on JTC’s determination on the applicable rates and proceeded to complete the acquisition of the property.

“After numerous attempts to resolve the issue with JTC, the manager has decided to seek a determination of this matter in the courts to resolve this in an impartial manner and to safeguard the interests of its unitholders, Soilbuild said.

New Dawn for Sunset Bay with a new Master Tenant

There may soon be a new shine to Sunset Way.

A new master tenant has taken over nine Housing Board shops in Sunset Way and the challenge of drawing a crowd to the area earmarked as a dining destination.

On Dec 1, Aquilyne Capital took over as master tenant for three years from Circles International Solutions, which had been managing the area since its million-dollar revamp in 2007. Circles did not renew its contract.

The area was touted as the next Holland Village back then, but has failed to live up to its tag. Four of the nine shops at Block 106 Clementi Street 12, all set aside for use as eateries, have remained closed for about a year.

Instead of Holland Village, Aquilyne Capital director Derrick Kuek, 56, now wants to make it “the next Dempsey”. He wants his eateries to be “destination brands” like Dempsey Hill.

“For example, today I say, ‘Let’s go somewhere for coffee.’ You may just say, ‘Go to Dempsey’ without having a specific place in mind.”

Mr Kuek, former chief operating officer of ABR Holdings, which has Swensen’s as one of its brands, believes he can pull this off with branding, signage, and the right tenant mix.

Aquilyne used to run Manhattan Fish Market at Junction 8 and has franchised Sin Kee Famous Chicken Rice. It is now discussing terms with the five existing tenants – Buttercake n Cream, Smokey’s BBQ, Bai Li Xiang, Rocky’s Pizza and Megumi Japanese Restaurant – whom Mr Kuek said are likely to stay.

With four shops to lease out, Mr Kuek wants to create variety in the cuisine, perhaps add Chinese, Indian or Thai food and something for the tea time crowd. “Ideally a couple who already have a reputation,” he said.

He also wants tenants who can open throughout the day or even 24 hours. Current eateries open mostly for lunch and dinner.

Mr Kuek is also thinking of naming the cluster of shops to distinguish it from the rest of Sunset Way – which includes other HDB blocks, Clementi Arcade mall, and private homes. “Perhaps Sunset Lane?” he said, referring to the road just before Sunset Way.

Sunset Lane leads to a little-known multistorey carpark linked to Block 106. Mr Kuek hopes to add signage just outside Sunset Lane to draw diners.

As it is costly and takes time to make drastic physical changes to the place given the permits needed, Mr Kuek said minor works will do. He has added skylights to the canopy of the eateries’ alfresco dining area and painted parts of it white to brighten the space.

As for clientele, he wants to get students in the day, office workers for lunch, and residents from the west for dinner.

Mr Jeremy Fox, 40, co-owner of Smokey’s BBQ, said he intends to stay and is excited by the new plans. “It’s nice to have someone who is going to do a bit of marketing, branding and cleaning. This whole place has huge potential.”

Viva Vista – New Residence for lease in Pasir Panjang

Viva Vista, the latest project to be TOP in District 5.
Highest Floor, unblocked! Mins to town, NUS, Japanese school, West Coast and nearby amenities. Live in the quiet enclave of Pasir Panjang and West Coast area. Seafront stay in the west.
2 bedrooms with high ceiling. Just TOPed.
Partially/Fully Furnished options avail. Available now. Call King at 94772121.
S$ 3,000 / month  Guide Price   |  
S$ 5.69 psf   |  
527 sqft (48.96 sqm)   |  
Fully Furnished    |  2 Beds   |  1 baths

For Rent – Varsity Park Condominium (D05)

Rental at S$ 6,000 / month 

Size: 2,040 sqft (189.52 sqm)   |  Fully Furnished    |  3 Beds   |  3 baths

Large and Spacious Penthouse in Varsity Park. Greenery and pool view with a large Master bedroom this is ideal for families working in the west. Mins to NUS, Japanese School, Pasir Panjang, Science Parks and Biopolis area. Avail in Nov. Call David @ 94772121 to find out more.