Saturday, March 19, 2011

Lakefront Residences (Review - Part 2)

As mentioned in Part 1 of our review on Lakefront Residences, one of the two showflats featured is a 1507sqft, 3-Bedroom (ground floor) – Type C1-G1.

The size of of a typical 3-bedder (Type C) is about 1000sqft, and has the exact same layout as the ground floor unit - only difference is that you get a balcony instead of the 500+sqft of PES space.
3-Brm (FP)

As you enter the unit, you are greeted by the rectangular-shaped living and dining area, which comes with 60cm X 60cm compressed marble floor and 2.9m ceiling. The wife and I find this area a tad small and somewhat narrow.

The living/dining room splits the apartment into 2 sides - on one side you find a common bedroom (Bedroom 3) and common bathroom, while directly across houses the kitchen/utility area, another common bedroom (Bedroom 2) and the master bedroom.
Living (3Brm)

The kitchen is square-shaped and of good size. The homongenous-tile flooring is rather non-descript, but is compensated by the extensive range of "Tekka" kitchen appliances that the developer has thrown in. This include hood, hob, oven, 2-door fridge, washing machine and even a dryer. The kitchen cabinets also come with "anti-slam" drawers.
Kitchen (3Brm)

The biggest issue we have with the 3-bedroom unit is that it does not come with a yard or a toilet at the back of the kitchen. There is a decicated space to house the washing machine and dryer (stacked one on top of the other). You also get a tiny utility room, which will pose quite the challenge if you decide to use this as a maid's room. We also reckon that the balcony will probably become the "drying area" for clothes, which is a sore but common sight for most new developments these days.
Utility (3Brm)

Both the common bedrooms are squarish and too small for our liking. With a single bed and wardrobe fitted, there is hardly any space left in the room. The rooms come with laminated timber flooring - some may find this a "cheaper looking" option than timber strips - and the 2-panel wardrobe is probably too small for most people with more than a few change of clothes.
C.Bedroom 3 (3Brm)

The common bathroom is next to Bedroom 3. It is rather decent in size and comes fitted with homogenous floor/wall tiles. You also get "Hansgrohe" shower fittings/mixer tap and "Vitra" toilet bowl. However, the wall-mounted shower set in the shower stall looks distinctively ordinary.
C.Bath (3Brm)

The master bedoom is again quite small - the showflat is fitted with only a queen bed, and this already takes up most of the space in the room. If you are one of those that needs a TV in the master bedroom, this will have to be wall-mounted as you are unlikley to find enough space for a TV console.
Master Bedroom (3Brm)

The master bathroom is surprising huge for a change. It comes with almost identical furnishing/fittings as the common bathroom, and as per the later, it only has a standing shower stall. So for those who are looking
forward to your own bath tub, be prepared to be disappointed.  Master Bath (3Brm)

What we like:

• With the MRT being almost right at your doorsteps, Lakefront Residences will appeal to those who utilize the trains for their daily commutes. And given its close proximity to Lakeside MRT, this may boost the rental prospects of this project.

• Once the Jurong Lake district/Jurong Gateway takes shape over the next decade or so, one can expect the value of private properties around this supposed "City Centre of the West" to appreciate, Lakefront Residences included.

• Rulang Primary, supposedly one of the best school in the western part of Singapore, is located within 1-km of Lakefront Residences.
What we dislike:
• The quality of furnishing and fittings are nothing much to shout about. This is especially considering the asking price for this project.

• Everything about the units – from the overall size of the different unit types (1000+sqf for 3-bedder, 1200sqft for 3+Study & 1400sqft for 4-bedder), to the living/dining area and right down to the bedrooms – are just too small for our liking.

• No yard area and toilet (behind the kitchen area) for the 3-bedder – this is especially annoying if you need a separate living space for the maid. Those who need a yard will have to opt for the 3+Study (still available) or 4-bedder (from the resale market).

• Despite all the hype about Lakefront Residences offering a superb view of the future Jurong Lake district, we reckon this is only privileged to the selected few who have bought the limited number of “correct facing and unblocked” units. For the rest of you, your best bet is probably units facing the pool/club house.

• Having the MRT at your doorstep is one thing, but having the pillars that support the MRT tracks running across your condominium grounds is quite the other.

• Other than the MRT, there is few amenities (to our knowledge) that is within walking distance from Lakefront Residences.
Price wise, here are some indications of what you can expect to pay:
• #06-22, 3+Study (inward facing) - $1.289 million, or $1048psf
• #12-13, 3+Study (lake facing) - $1.329 million, or $1050psf

As a comparison, here are some recently transacted price ranges for the surrounding condo projects:
• Parc Vista (TOP 2000, diagonally across from Lakefront Residences): $675 – 843psf
• Lakeholmz (TOP 2005, down the road from Lakefront Residences): $711 – 746psf
• Caspian (TOP 2013, next-door to Lakefront Residences): $806 – 886psf

Looking at the maths, the wife and I feel that Lakefront Residences is somewhat over-priced, MRT at its door-steps notwithstanding. And based on what we have seen, we are unable to justify paying over $1000psf for this project.


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