Horizon Towers at Leonie Hill Launched for Sale Again for $1.1 billion
Horizon Towers, a collective sale site in the prestigious Leonie Hill locale, is launching for sale by tender by sole marketing agent JLL. The tender for Horizon Towers closes on Tuesday, 7 August 2018 at 3.00 p.m.
Built in the late 1970’s, the 99-year leasehold Horizon Towers comprises 211 units in two towers located on an elevated site with double road accesses. Nestled in the very prime District 9, the site exudes exclusivity amidst the tree-lined serenity of Leonie Hill and Leonie Hill Road.
The sprawling 1.9 ha site is zoned “Residential” in the 2014 Master Plan with an allowable height of up to 36 storeys. It has an “as-built” gross plot ratio (“GPR”) of around 3.28 as confirmed with the Urban Redevelopment Authority (“URA”) and may be redeveloped into a luxury high-rise residential development with marvellous city views all around.
The site is probably the largest high-rise residential redevelopment offering in the Orchard Road area in at least two decades.
“Given the premier address, a sprawling ground in the Orchard Road neighbourhood and its high-rise attributes, it is compelling for a discerning developer and its architect to deliver a luxurious masterpiece with comprehensive amenities and facilities, complete with bespoke services for its future well-heeled residents,” says Mr. Tan Hong Boon, Regional Director of Capital Markets at JLL. “The property has all the ingredients needed for a branded residences with unparalleled services, comfort and convenience,” adds Mr. Tan.
The site has an excellent connectivity, being a mere 150m to the upcoming Great World MRT station and 600m to the Orchard MRT Interchange (Thomson-East Coast Line), which is integrated into the existing Orchard Station at ION Orchard. A walk to the nearby Ngee Ann City is under ten minutes.
Splendidly located in the luxury exclusive precinct of Leonie Hill, Horizon Towers entices both the locals and expatriates with its excellent connectivity to the myriad of shopping, entertainment, education and cultural offerings, top-notch medical services and a host of other amenities. Within one km from the development is also the River Valley Primary School, for families with children budding to enrol into a prestigious school.
Kim Seng Park and the riverfront promenade are a short 550m walk to the South, suitable for residents who wish to take a respite or carry out their daily evening exercises. Not least to mention is the bustling Robertson Quay along the river with the great varieties of Food & Beverage options and entertainment offerings as well.
At a reserve price of $1.1 billion, Horizon Towers’ unit land rate reflects about $1,964 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf/pr) after factoring in the lease top-up premium estimated to be in the region of $220 million. As there is no development charge or differential premium for the intensification of the site even for the 10 per cent bonus gross floor area due to a high development baseline, the reflected unit land rate is $1,786 psf/pr.
“We expect very keen interests from large developers and consortiums for this very rare sprawling choice site, given its unparalleled attributes for a potential residential masterpiece at reasonable pricing”, added Mr. Tan.
The unit land rate of Horizon Towers compares favourably with the recent 99-year Government Land Sale site at Cuscaden Road sold for $2,377 psf/pr, the freehold collective sale sites of Park House in the same district, which achieved a record-breaking unit land price of $2,910 psf/pr, the Nassim Road site at $2,744 psf/pr, and the earlier Pacific Mansions site at River Valley Close at $1,987 psf/pr, as well as the Cairnhill Mansion and the adjoining sites at $2,311 psf/pr and $2,132 pf/pr respectively.
Horizon Towers was completed in 1984 but has a remaining lease of 60 years, as it sits on a 99-year leasehold site starting from 1979. Buyers of projects with 60 or fewer years left on their leases tend to face additional financing restrictions, which limits the pool of buyers.
Horizon Towers’ first en bloc attempt in early 2007 failed. 87 per cent of owners had then agreed to the sale of the property to a consortium led by Hotel Properties, but a protracted dispute between minority owners and the members of the collective sale committee resulted in the deal being overturned in 2009. Some minority owners then took the chairman and a member of the collective sale committee to court over costs and expenses incurred during the dispute, and the case was finally concluded in the High Court in October 2013.
Horizon Tower’s second attempt at collective sale comes at a time demand for properties in the Core Central Region is heating up. City Developments Limited’s (CDL) freehold New Futura project at Leonie Hill Road, for example, saw 48 units sold at an average selling price of over $3,200 psf (as of 22 Feb 2018).
Orchard Road home prices may breach the $4,000 per square foot (psf) mark given the aggressive bidding for prime sites within the area, suggested a note from DBS Group Research. The bank noted the recent activities of developers (like Hong Kong-listed Shun Tak) as well a movement in the real estate sector (like the recent acquisition of Park House), to arrive at their conclusion.
Mr Paul Ho, the chief mortgage consultant at icompareloan.com noted that the Orchard Road home prices reflect the increasing demand and reducing supply.
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