Kiaramas changing landscape

By THE STAR

KUALA LUMPUR: Asia Quest Holdings Sdn Bhd’s current development, Kiaramas, is changing the landscape on the west side of Mont’Kiara.

Slowly but surely, the neigbourhood has begun to take shape since the Kiaramas development took off in 2001.

Neighbouring the Penchala Malay Reserve, the 45-acre project would be developed over eight phases.

The self-proclaimed boutique developer launched its fourth project, Gateway Kiaramas, in January, which it hopes to be “different in some special way.”

Chief executive officer Woon Chung Neng said Gateway Kiaramas was originally earmarked as a full commercial development, but had been revised to include service residences and corporate suites.

Woon Chung Neng with a model of Gateway Kiaramas.

“The idea came about due to the preoccupation with Soho (small office, home office). Soho has its place but I do not think it is a good idea to have such a project.

“The concept suggests you live and work in the same building.

“I feel in the long run, people will convert the whole unit to working than living. The appeal of staying (in the same unit) is lost as outsiders are allowed to come in often,” he told StarBiz.

Woon refined the idea to allow working and living in the same place, but in two distinctive blocks with easy access.

“We want to promote the walk-to-work concept,” he added.

The RM170mil Gateway Kiaramas is a “twinned development” comprising 168 Gateway Residences and 168 Gateway Corporate Suites, housed in 30-storey and 11-storey blocks respectively. It is linked by a sky bridge.

A sky club on the rooftop of the office block will offer facilities such as sky lounge, fitness centre, aquascape garden, sauna, hot water spa, lap pool and a children’s playground.

Commercial-related amenities on the ground and mezzanine floors will offer retail, food and beverage and convenience outlets that are expected to serve the larger Kiaramas community in the future.

Gateway Residences has units with built-up of between 743 sq ft and 3,563 sq ft, with prices ranging from RM328,200 to RM1.84mil. Each floor will have six units.

Gateway Corporate Suites has 16 units per floor, with built-up ranging from 1,012 sq ft to 1,776 sq ft. It is priced from RM454,700 to RM834,700.

Woon said two-thirds of the residential units were earmarked as small units (743 sq ft), targeted at two extreme groups.

“Firstly, young couples with no children, single (people) and foreign business people who want a local home here and, at the same time, a local office,” he said, adding that there were a number of foreign owners staying in the vicinity.

“The other group is our existing Kiaramas (property) buyers who may want to have an office within walking distance,” he added.

In marketing Gateway Kiaramas, the company is offering a discount for purchasers who opt for the “twin concept,” by buying both residential and office units.

“It is also a way for us to gauge market reception towards such an idea, which we could implement again in some other projects,” Woon said.

So far, it has sold 30% of the units, with completion scheduled for mid-2009.

On its next project, Woon said there were still four more phases to go before the entire Kiaramas development was complete.

“When we have achieved 70% in sales for a particular phase, we will launch the next project,” he added.

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