By YVONNE YOONG
THE trends for new properties have seen the mushrooming of landed, gated and guarded properties, projects clustering around upcoming MRT and LRT stations, green-rated buildings and branded residences, not to mention top-to-toe glass-clad residences.
Here are more innovative offerings which have caught StarProperty’s eyes:
1. Iconic sculptural structures
Iconic architecture is a dominant trend that’s set to stay, judging from the wave of new buildings such as The Capers and The Fennel (pic, above left) developed by YTL Land & Development Bhd, Datum Jelatek by PKNS (Selangor State Development Corporation), Angkasaraya by UEM Sunrise Bhd and Icon Residence Mont’Kiara (pic, above right) by Mah Sing Group Bhd. Few in number but growing in stature, they make their presence felt with creativity and imagination.
The Fennel, for example, alters the skyline with its sharp and angled towers. “Its form, while unique to high-rise towers in KL, is actually a composition of standardised floor plates for the units – albeit stacked in a manner where every floor is incrementally adjusted outward or inward in groups of eight.
The result is a distinct profile in the skyline – somewhat “gravity defying”– but the floor plans are typical and repeated,” shares Rene Tan of RT+Q Architects, the firm which designed the 38-storey residential towers.
2. Dual key units
Offering a studio apartment attached to the main apartment, each with separate entrances, dual key units are increasingly gaining ground with developers.
Recent projects offering this layout include Zefer Hill Residence developed by Villamas Sdn Bhd, AraGreens Residences @ Ara Damansara by HSB Development Sdn Bhd, Urbana Residences @ Ara Damansara by Weida (M) Bhd and EcoSky @ Taman Wahyu by Eco World Development Sdn Bhd.
They promise flexible occupancy for multi-generational families to co-exist under the same roof, or the ability to subsidise loan repayments by renting out one of the apartments.
“A family could live here and rent out the studio unit, or it could be for adult children who want their privacy and independence. It could also be the other way around. If the children leave, the husband and wife can move into the studio, and rent out the main unit,” says developer Mitraland Group’s CEO Chuah Theong Yee of his Vina Versatile Homes project (pic, right) in Taman Seri Taming, Cheras, Kuala Lumpur, which offers dual key units among its choice of layouts.
“The response to the dual key units has been pretty encouraging,” adds chairman Datuk Johan Ariffin. “People like it and they see the possibilities. It’s good for them to have the option for the older child to have privacy, or to rent out the studio to subsidise loan repayments.”
3. Condo beaches
The last few years have seen a race by property developers to offer the country’s first man-made beach for private residential dwellings. Projects include Verve Suites Mont’Kiara (pic, above) developed by Bukit Kiara Properties Sdn Bhd, LaCosta by Sunway City Bhd and Le Yuan Residence by UOA Group.
Christened Versilica Sky Beach, Verve Suites’ sandy playground is not only the first to complete, it physically tops the others by crowning one of its four condominium blocks, rather than being located on a podium. Besides the beach, a pool, cafe, “chill zones”, recreational rooms, Jacuzzi and sun garden with sunken seater sit on top of 37 storeys of 250 fully furnished suites.
4. Private lift lobbies
Lending one added advantage of security and exclusivity, private lift lobbies can be found in developments such as Sunway Palazzio by Sunway City Bhd, 28 Mont Kiara by UEM Sunrise Bhd and IOI Properties’ Puteri Hills luxury town villas.
The lift opens straight into your apartment as doors may open on opposite sides and on specific floors designated by your access card.
Another project to offer private lift lobbies is Serai by Bandar Raya Developments Bhd, currrently under construction in Bukit Bandaraya. The RM900mil luxury project will comprise 121 apartments in two 21-storey towers. Its five spacious layouts are generously proportioned from 4,000 sq ft to a royal 14,000 sq ft in the penthouse.
“Serai is poised to take your breath away with a treasure trove of thoughtful, well-designed luxuries,” says Hud Bakar, managing director of RSP Architects Malaysia which designed the project.
5. Landscaped back lanes