Picture source: sqftglobal.com
Now given that most mid / upper market developments are launched at the pivotal RM1,000 PSF price point and above, Astoria’s rather competitive pricing may raise an eyebrow or two. Indeed, prices start at about RM950 PSF, and the cheapest (and smallest) unit stands at just barely in the region of RM500,000. That’s practically unheard of for a city condominium these days…
Given that the upper tier high rise segment is due for a correction soon enough, perhaps the developer Land & General (L&G) is already plowing ahead of the curve. Looking at Astoria’s location on Jalan Ampang which is already somewhat cluttered by new projects (Arte+, D’Rapport, Mah Sing’s M-City, Novo), the sub RM1,000 PSF price point may reflect the state of increasing supply.
With an estimated gross development value (GDV) of RM900 million, Astoria will be a prominent showcase on L&G’s roster of projects (which include The Elements @Ampang and the townships of Damansara Foresta and Bandar Sri Damansara). These serviced apartments come in sizes between 560 sq ft to 1,505 sq ft, and the project is scheduled to be completed in 2019.
The Astoria comprises of four condominium blocks of 46 storeys in height, with each block housing some 253 units, bringing the total to 1,012 units. The project is situated on a little less than six acres of (leasehold) land on Jalan Ampang.
The unit types and sizes are as follows:-
- Type A: 560 sq ft (1R)
- Type B: 735 sq ft (2R)
- Type C: 888 sq ft (2+1R)
- Type D: 1,505 sq ft (4R)
Looking at the sizes and layouts, types A, B and C are perhaps suitable for the yuppie, city-dwelling kind while D seems to appeal to investors given its dual key facility (similar to the Expressionz off Jalan Tun Razak).
Perhaps a strong differentiating factor of the Astoria is its “green living” concept – something which is novel given that it’s a condominium designed for those who want to live in the inner city. Indeed, out of the six acres of land, four acres have been earmarked for a playground which will feature cycling and jogging tracks, waterfalls, a landscaped park, a water stream and a hammock garden. These facilities will be located on a podium of six levels.
Additionally, there are also swimming and wading pools which include some pretty nifty features like meandering streams, pavilions and water cascades. Social and entertainment amenities are also available: namely yoga and tai chi areas, a gym, BBQ areas, tennis courts, children’s play area as well as an amphitheater.
There is no sky lounge which somewhat surprises me given that the feature would definitely be a strong selling point for many prospective tenants and investors. Indeed, we have been receiving a substantial number of DealMatcher requests from investors who wanted city condominiums with view of KL skyline to be rented out at a premium during festivities and New Year Eves.
Although this might change, there are reports that there won’t be retail outlets and offices in the project (although the Astoria is on commercial land). This can be a good thing for some (less congestion) but bad for others (those who want superior Walkability).
However, given its location on Jalan Ampang, most amenities are near; indeed, we are expecting its Walkability Scores to be in the region of 70-80 (compared to KLCC condominiums which are typically in the high 80’s and 90’s range). Also, public transport facilities are abundant, with Dato’ Keramat and Jelatek LRT stations near the vicinity. Additionally, the Ampang Point MRT station will also be easily accessible once completed.
Access wise, since the Astoria is on Jalan Ampang, it is connected to a couple of major KL arteries such as the DUKE, SMART, MRR2 and AKLEH. Indeed, we can foresee tenants using the AKLEH to go to the city in order to avoid the perennially jammed up Jalan Ampang.