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YTL launches Posh Villas in Sentosa Cove


MALAYSIA-BASED YTL Corp is defying the global financial turmoil by launching the sale of its 18 posh houses in Sentosa Cove.


The Sandy Island villas all have five bedrooms and boast master suites that occupy the entire second floor as well as a swimming pool, private berth for a 12-metre boat, basement garages big enough for two luxury cars and passenger lifts.


Prices start at $13.9 million and go up to $26 million. This works out at $2,000 to $2,600 per square foot.


They are designed by Italian architect Claudio Silvestrin, acclaimed for such commissions as the 26 Giorgio Armani flagship stores around the world. Australian landscaper Jamie Durie was also involved in designing the plots, which range from 7,000 to 10,000 sq ft.


'There are still buyers out there willing to pay this kind of money for a property seen as a collectible,' said Mr Ku Swee Yong, director of marketing and business development at Savills Singapore, the project's marketing agent.


YTL had reportedly planned the launch for the start of this year.


It said it has already sold three of the 18 houses at prices ranging from $13.9 million to $18 million to 'a good mix of local and foreign buyers'.


YTL said it may hold roadshows overseas, depending on the market performance in the next few months.


It is believed to have marketed the development in Hong Kong a fortnight ago but failed to attract any buyers.


Sentosa Cove homes were considered sure bets but the luxury market boom has subsided this year and condo prices in the area have declined.


Property experts commenting on the release of Government monthly sales data yesterday said buyers continue to avoid high-end homes.


'With the deepening financial crisis, the growth in Singapore's foreign population, particularly the expatriates, could slow down in the coming quarters,' said Colliers International's director for research and advisory, Ms Tay Huey Ying.


International investors, spooked by the financial storm, are largely expected to remain cautious so prices of high-end homes are expected to continue to slide in coming quarter, by up to 5 per cent, she added.


By Joyce Teo

This article was first published in The Straits Times on October 16, 2008.




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