Compelling value in city-fringe homes – Margaret Ville

Jun 4, 2018

It is true luxury to own an exclusive retreat near prime business hubs, an opportunity that is hard to come by in highly urbanised Singapore.

Such opportunity is found in Margaret Ville, the latest residential project by MCL Land that is nestled in the heritage-rich district of Queenstown.

Located at the edge of the bustling downtown core along Margaret Drive, Margaret Ville offers the prestige of living close to Singapore’s prime districts and lifestyle clusters.

Served by two train stations Queenstown and Commonwealth in the vicinity, the residential project enjoys seamless connectivity to the Central Business District and the Orchard Road shopping belt.

Its verdant surroundings present boundless possibilities with parks, shopping streets, lifestyle destinations, and renowned gastronomical haunts just around the corner.

Here, residents can enjoy the conveniences of retail amenities in the vicinity, such as Queensway Shopping Centre, IKEA Alexandra and Alexandra Central.

An eclectic mix of food and beverage offerings can also be found in the nearby lifestyle clusters of Holland Village, Rochester Park and Dempsey Hill.

Heritage-rich precinct

Huttons Asia head of research Lee Sze Teck calls Margaret Ville “a choice investment”, given its prime location that offers a live-work-and-play environment for residents.

The 40-storey marvel is inspired by the heritage and history of the Queenstown district, a neighbourhood named to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953.

Roads within Queenstown reflect this royal connection, with Margaret Drive was named after Princess Margaret, the Queen’s younger sister.

With a rich history behind it, the modern Queenstown precinct benefits from close proximity to social and recreational amenities.

Queenstown benefited from a rejuvenation in the form of the Selective Enbloc Redevelopment Scheme, whereby older flats were demolished to make way for new ones.

There are now enthralling landscapes to explore in the vicinity.  An expanded park connector network links the Queenstown precinct to the future Round Island Route and a Rail Corridor as a green route for walking and cycling.

Deep value emerging

PropNex Realty CEO Ismail Gafoor notes that District 3 has always been a highly sought-after location because of its proximity to the CBD.

It is also a few train stops away from one north and a short drive to Mapletree Business Park in Kent Ridge. All this explains why rental demand in the district has always been strong.

“With the unit mix in Margaret Ville geared towards smaller unit sizes, this provides a sweet spot for most investors looking to buy a good asset in a city-fringe location that will offer good rental opportunity,” Mr Gafoor says.

Reflecting the location’s resilience, the prices of larger HDB resale flats in Queenstown have held up despite the continued decline in the overall HDB resale price index since Q3 2013, with a few already crossing the million-dollar mark.

With buyers anticipating further price increases, there has been no let-up in home-buying activities this year as new launches saw brisk take-up rates. According to Cushman & Wakefield research head Christine Li, half of all new home launches in 2018 registered more than one-third of sales within the first month of launch.

Developers’ ability to price higher and a surge in demand for resale private homes have already translated to a faster-than-expected rise of 3.1 per cent for private home prices in the first quarter this year – the biggest rise in nearly eight years.

With the opportunities to snap up homes of compelling value fast depleting, astute investors are now on the prowl for good investment opportunities.

City-fringe homes seem to have become the flavour of the season in the current market upturn, Mr Gafoor says.

With the high land bids tabled for residential parcels in areas like Jiak Kim and Bidadari, sites bought earlier by developers in the Rest of Central Region (RCR) have a competitive edge in terms of pricing, he adds.

Margaret Ville thus stands out, being developed on a land parcel acquired by developer MCL Land before the recent surge in land prices.

But only a special few can hone in on this opportunity, given Margaret Ville’s limited collection of 309 premium units.