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25 December 2012

25th December, Tuesday




CityDev to start selling Echelon this week

Source: Business Times

City Developments Ltd (CDL) will begin sales later this week for Echelon, its long-awaited, 99-year leasehold private condominium project next to Redhill MRT Station, sources say.

Business Times understands that bookings for the Alexandra Road condo - next to the completed Ascentia Sky condo - are likely to start on Friday. Potential buyers are said to have been given an average price indication of "$1,700 per sq ft plus". Word on the street is that about 30-50 per cent of the development's 508 units may be released for this week's preview, and more than 300 cheques are thought to have been collected.

Designed by SCDA, units in the 43-storey, twin-tower development will range from studios to four-bedroom apartments and penthouses.

City Developments is developing Echelon jointly with Hong Leong Group's Intrepid Investments and Hong Realty's Garden Estates. The trio clinched the site for $396 million, or $754 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr), at a state tender that closed on 6 December last year - a day before the government announced the additional buyer's stamp duty (ABSD), aimed at curbing the wave of foreign buying at the time and excessive private residential property investment by Singaporeans and permanent residents.


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Investment Sales


US group incurs hefty loss on luxury condo investment

Source: The Straits Times

United States financial services group Wachovia has sold its investment in City Developments' (CDL's) freehold Grange Road project at a hefty loss.

The sale, which is likely to cost Wachovia a loss of $55 million, underscores the continuing weakness in the high-end residential property market, despite hopeful talk of a recovery next year.

Wachovia teamed up with CDL in November 2007 to acquire 44 Cliveden homes for $432.4 million. Under the deal, which worked out to an average price of $3,750 per sq ft (psf), Wachovia's real estate arm, Wachovia Development, took a 60 per cent stake in the joint-venture company, Grange 100. Grange 100 is the vehicle which owns the 44 units - a mix of three- and four-bedroom apartments and penthouses in two of the four towers at Cliveden.

Based on its equity share, a back of the envelope calculation puts Wachovia's investment at $259.4 million. In selling its 60 per cent stake in Grange 100 to CDL for $204.5 million, the average price works out to $2,956 psf.

That is a drop of 21.2 per cent from the price it paid in 2007.

The last time Cliveden saw any transaction, based on caveats lodged, was in April 2008, when a 2,842 sq ft unit was sold for $11.1 million, or $3,914 psf. The 110-unit Cliveden was completed last year. URA data shows that the condominium is 80 per cent sold, at prices ranging from $3,265 psf to $4,313 psf.


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