Thursday, March 24, 2011

Waterfront Isle: Review

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District:   16
Location:   Bedok Reservoir Road
Developers:   Far East Organization/ Frasers Centrepoint
Tenure:   99-year Leasehold
No. of Blocks:   4 (15-storey each)
No. of Units:   561
No. of Parking Lots:   580
Expected TOP:   2015

This review is specially for Veron, who has asked us about WATERFRONT ISLE yesterday.

Art2

WATERFRONT ISLE is the fourth and final project in the “Waterfront” series of condominiums co-developed by Far East and Frasers Centrepoint. The project was launched on the third day of Chinese New Year (5th Feb) and have already seen strong take-up rate of around 70%.

WATERFRONT ISLE is situated along Bedok Reservoir Road, adjacent to Waterfront Gold and overlooking the Bedok Reservoir. The 99-year leasehold project resides on a plot of about 224,000sqft, and consists of 561 units in total housed in 4 main blocks (Block 730, 732, 736 & 738) of 15-storey each. Each block consists of 2 towers, each with its own lift lobby. The project is expected to TOP in 2015.
untitled

In terms of unit mix, WATERFRONT ISLE offers a range of 1- to 4-bedders, as well as penthouses. And with the 3-bedder units, you have a choice of either the 3-bedroom (Standard) or the 3-bedroom (Compact) – this essentially is a 2+Study unit. The typical sizes of each unit types are:

• 1-Bedroom (122 units): 581 – 850sqft
• 2-Bedroom (204 units): 893 – 1206sqft
• 3-Bedroom (188 units): 1152 – 1389sqft
• 4-Bedroom (43 units ): 1378 – 1442sqft
• Penthouses (4 units): 2482 – 2930sqft

1-Bedroom (Type A)                         4-Bedroom (Type D)
Type AType D1
3-Bedroom (Type C)                                          2-Bedroom (Type B)
Type C1Type B

WATERFRONT ISLE, like its 3 other “Waterfront Collection” predecessors, is a full facility condo project. A large portion of its ground is dedicated to water and water-themed lifestyle offerings – various “themed” swimming pools, isle cabana, island pavilion with hot tub etc. Tennis enthusiasts will be happy to know that there are 2 “sunken” tennis courts in the project, which are essentially just your normal tennis court built slightly below the ground level – maybe to reduce chances of tennis balls flying across the fences (?!)
siteplan
 
Two features that particularly caught our eyes are:
• Isle Villa – this is a modern looking piece of architecture that is built on stilts and located beside the main pool, which houses the 3 function rooms (2 air-conditioned and 1 outdoor).
waterfront_isle_isle_villa

• Sky Terrace – this traverses the rooftops of Block 370 and 372 (i.e. the two blocks facing Bedok Reservoir), and is accessible by two sets of dedicated lift between the 2 blocks. For those owners with lower-floor or inward-facing units, this is the perfect spot to enjoy the reservoir view and surrounding sights.
Sky Terrace

For those with cars, you be pleased to know that WATERFRONT ISLE is one of the few new projects these days that actually has more parking lots than units – a total of 580 lots are available in the two levels of basement carpark.

There are 2 showflat types on display at the sales gallery
• A 900+sqft 2-bedroom unit (Type B)
• A 1200+ 3-bedroom unit (Type C)

Upon entering the showflat for the 2-bedder unit, we were immediately hit by a sense of déjà vu. Of the 4 projects in the "Waterfront Collection", WATERFRONT ISLE is probably the one with the strongest Far East signature in terms of looks and designs of the apartment units.

The living area is expectedly small, so it will be a challenge to try and fit both a regular sofa-set and dining table in here. You probably end up using the dry kitchen table-top for dining purposes. The living area comes with 60cm x 60cm compressed marble flooring and 3m high ceiling (2.85m if you plan to install false-ceiling).
 Living

The dry kitchen comes standard even for the 2-bedroom units. Only difference is that the dry kitchen in the 2-bedder is basically just a marble top, whereas those for the 3- and 4-bedders come with an additional sink for washing purpose.

The wet kitchen is a rectangular strip of an area, and comes equipped with the standard hod/hoob/oven and fridge. However, the coffee-maker, wine-fridge and washer/dryer that you see in the showflat are all "for display purposes" only. The kitchen cabinets come installed with Blum "anti-slam" drawers, while the black marble work-top looks really slick.

The 2-bedder unit comes with a small home shelter behind the kitchen area, but no yard or "maid's" bathroom. The wife and I understand that some of the 3-bedder units do not come with a yard or "maid's" bathroom either.
Kitchen

The common bedroom is...you guessed it... small, and the bay windows do not help. It comes with wood-strip floors and a tiny 2-panel "modular" wardrobe.
C.Bedroom

As if acknowledging the fact that the bedrooms are small, the developers have come up with options that may save you some space - but not for those with height anxiety though.
C.Bedroom (alt)

The common bathroom is decent in size, and we are pleasantly surprised to find marble flooring and walls (as opposed to homogenous-tile). You also have a choice of either a "light" or "dark" tone for the bathroom wall colors. Below is an example of the "light" color-tone option.
C.Bathroom

The master bedroom is not big on size either - a Queen bed, two small bedside tables and you probably have little space left for anything much else.
Master Bedroom
The master bathroom is huge in comparison to the rest of the living areas. And for the shower cubicle, you get to choose from one of the three options:

• Long bath-tub with surrounding glass partition walls
• Sunken bath with either glass or concrete partition walls
• Standing shower stall with either glass or concrete partition walls

Below is an example of the "dark" color-tone option for the bathroom walls.
Master Bath

Price wise, we understand that the current list price for units at WATERFRONT ISLE range from around $1200 - 1300psf. This is in comparison to the launch price of around $920psf back in February.

However, the list price is before developers' discount, which comprises two components - a straight discount (10% upon booking) and a "furniture offset" (given at TOP).

For bookings made before 24th March, a 13% discount (i.e. 10% straight + 3% furniture offset) is given. For bookings after 24th and before 28th March, the discount is reduced to 12%. For booking after 28th March and before 2nd April, only 10% discount will be given (i.e. no furniture offset).

The wife and I have requested and received the folowing list-price for 4-bedroom units (1378sqft, Type D1) in Block 730 that face the reservoir:

• #11-03 (Tower A1) - $1,753,330 or $1,272psf
• #11-05 (Tower A2) - $1,787,270 or $1,297psf

As a comparison, below are the latest median transacted prices for units at the other “Waterfront Collection” projects:

Waterfront Waves:   $812psf (Apr 2010)
Waterfront Key:   $1052psf (Feb 2011)
Waterfront Gold:   $968psf (Feb 2011)
Key Plan

On what we like and dislike about WATERFRONT ISLE, a lot of these are similar to what we have detailed in our reviews for Waterfront Gold. So rather than repeating ourselves (also to give you added incentives to check out our post for Waterfront Gold), we will highlight those that are particular to this project.

What we like:
• The furnishing in the showflats of WATERFRONT ISLE is the best that we have seen of the 4 projects in the “Waterfront Collection", and more in-line with the type of quality that we expect from Far East. That is probably also the reason why the developers are marketing the project at a higher price point.

• The project is supposedly within walking distance to Bedok Town Park MRT station, which is part of the future downtown Line 3 (DTL 3), which is scheduled for completion in 2017. This may raise the rental prospects of the project once the MRT station commences operation.

What we dislike:
• Some of the towers in WATERFRONT ISLE looked to be too close to each other for our comfort. This is especially so with the inward-facing clusters of Tower A2, B1 and C1.

• The unit sizes (less than 1400sqft for a 4-bedder?) are too small for our liking. This translates to small living spaces, which we are most uncomfortable with.

In summary, the wife and I felt that WATERFRONT ISLE is probably the “Lexus” amongst the 4 projects within the “Waterfront Collection", and is priced thay way too. It will probably be the one that we will go for, if we can get over the “size” hurdle or alternatively, find the couple of millions to buy one of the 4 penthouses.

Last but not least, we shall complete the review by giving you a birdseye view of what the whole "Waterfront Collection" will look like, site-wise - that's ALOT of new apartments if you ask us.
masterplanv4 - no go

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