Rare freehold landed site in Orchard area expected to draw offers of over S$300m
Rare freehold landed site in Orchard area expected to draw offers of over S$300m. A 151,205-square-foot (sq ft) elevated freehold residential landed site at 5 Oxley Rise in District 9 has been put up for public tender, with bids expected to exceed S$300 million.
The property is one of the last remaining freehold residential landed sites in the prime Orchard Road district, according to CBRE, and it could be redeveloped into a single large mansion, strata or mixed landed developments, or multiple Good Class Bungalows (GCBs).
5 Oxley Rise is a hilltop property with two land plots, a two-story bungalow, and four outbuildings surrounded by lush greenery.
The bungalow is an iconic mansion with a rich history that has housed many notable figures in Singapore’s history.
Sir Manasseh Meyer, a Jewish businessman who built the nearby Chesed-El Synagogue, and Cheong Eak Chong, a pioneer real estate developer and founder of Hong Fok Corporation and Tian Teck Group, are among them.
According to a Business Times article from October 2020, the property is owned by seven members of the same family, all of whom are sons of the late Cheong.
Among them were Cheong Hooi Hong, Cheong Keng Hooi, Cheong Kheng Lim, Cheong Sim Lam, Cheong Pin Chuan, Cheong Kim Pong, and Cheong Pin Seng. The majority of them are associated with Hong Fok, a Singapore-listed company, or Tian Teck Land, a Hong Kong-listed company.
The bungalow at the site has large windows, spacious balconies, a terracotta roof, and a 360-degree view of the city.
According to the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) Master Plan 2019, the site is zoned for residential (2-story mixed landed) use.
According to CBRE, potential developers and owner-occupiers can consider redeveloping the site to accommodate a single large mansion, a strata or mixed-use landed development, or multiple GCBs, subject to approval from the relevant authorities.
Michael Tay, CBRE’s head of Singapore capital markets, said plum landed sites larger than 100,000 sq ft are typically tightly held and rarely put up for sale, citing the property’s location in one of Singapore’s most exclusive and highly coveted residential enclaves.
“As a result, these prestigious asset classes have demonstrated resilience across multiple market cycles.”
“Due to its prime location and superior physical attributes, we anticipate that this trophy asset will attract offers in excess of S$300 million.”
2 Cluny Hill sold for S$63.7 million – S$4,291 per square foot per plot ratio (psf ppr) – in April 2021, 30 Nassim Road sold for S$128.8 million (S$4,005 psf ppr) in March 2021, and 33 Nassim Road sold for S$230 million (S$2,721 psf ppr) in March 2021.
“We understand that the URA will consider gazetting the site into a Good Class Bungalow Area (GCBA) if the existing mansion is preserved,” Tay added.
“With only 39 gazetted GCBAs in Singapore, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for developers to develop a product within a brand new GCBA.”
Bungalows in gazetted GCBAs are the most prestigious type of landed housing in Singapore, with the URA imposing strict planning conditions to preserve their exclusivity and low-rise character.
According to KH Tan, managing director of Newsman Realty, the land would cost S$1,984 per square foot at a selling price of S$300 million and is “not very expensive, compared to say, the Holland belt.”
Bruce Lye, co-founder of Singapore Realtors Inc, agrees.
“Prime District 9 land zoned for landed development can easily command in excess of S$2,500 psf in today’s market,” he said.
“However, given the parcel’s size, the buyer would most likely be a local family office looking to land bank, or a luxury developer looking to capitalize on the demand for prime brand new GCBs.”
However, Realstar Premier founder William Wong believes that converting the site into a GCBA is “almost impossible” because housing density in the Oxley area is “quite high.”
“Depending on how they carve out the plot, the buyer is more likely to develop boutique-sized bungalows ranging from 5,000 to 7,000 sq ft each on it,” Wong said.
“They can then be sold for as much as S$4,000-S$4,500 per square foot of land, or approximately S$20 million for a small bungalow.”
The majority of prime-area landed houses are in Districts 10 and 11, and new landed housing in District 9 is “almost non-existent,” he adds.
5 Oxley Rise is located between the Central Business District and Orchard Road, making it convenient to nearby amenities such as popular food and beverage and lifestyle destinations, Robertson Quay and Clarke Quay; parks such as Fort Canning Park and Pearl Bank Park; private clubs such as The Tanglin Club and The American Club; and medical facilities such as Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, Gleneagles Hospital, Camden Medi Centre, and Camden Med.
River Valley Primary School, St Margaret’s Primary School, and Anglo-Chinese School Junior are all nearby educational institutions.
River Valley Road, Penang Road, and the Central Expressway are all major arterial roads and expressways that lead to the site.
The public tender will close at 3 p.m. on June 8.
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