SUITES DE LAUREL (Review)

By The Folks @PropTalk - July 27, 2010 15 Comments
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District:  21
Location:  Jalan Anak Bukit
Developer:  Sustained Land Pte Ltd
Tenure:  999-years Leasehold (from 10 June 1884)
Estimated site area:  33,300sqft
Expected TOP:  01 June 2014
Description:  1 blocks of 5-storey each
Total number of units:  72
Total number of carpark lots:  72 (ground level)

The wife and I decided to visit the sales gallery of SUITES DE LAUREL last Sunday morning. This is an “Apartment Status” project developed by Sustained Land Pte Ltd, a boutique developer that is responsible for projects like Coastal View Residences (Changi), Coastal Breeze Residences (Changi) and 833 MB Residences (Mountbatten).

The sales gallery is located at the actual site along Jalan Anak Bukit, next to Garden Vista Condo. We understand that SUITES DE LAUREL has started its VVIP Preview since end-May but it is still not officially launched yet.
Location Map
Show Flat
The actual site looks rather small – understandable given that it is only about 33,000sqft. The wife and I were told by the marketing agent that more than half of the total units in SUITES DE LAUREL will enjoy unblocked view, with some units getting a full view of the Bukit Timah Nature Reserves. The development is also about 5 minutes walk to the future Beauty World MRT Station.

Those seeking big units at SUITES DE LAUREL will be solely disappointed – the project consists of mainly 1, 1+1 and 2-bedders of no larger than 721sqft, while the 15 penthouses range from a mere 937sqft to 1593sqft.
  • 1-Bedroom (18 units):             484 – 527sqft
  • 1+1 Bedroom (21 units):         571 – 624sqft
  • 2-Bedroom (15 units):             646 – 721sqft
  • 3-Bedroom (3 units):               915sqft
  • 2/2+1/3-Bedroom Penthouses (15 units):        937 – 1593sqft

Given the “Apartment Status” and the small plot area, the facility offering at SUITES DE LAUREL is very basic – you get a swimming pool, BBQ pit at the pool deck, gym… and that is basically it. However, one aspect that we find rather interesting is the rectangular shaped swimming pool acts like a rooftop connector between the 2 “wings” of the block. And since the pool is only supported at both ends with nothing underneath, you get a “floating pool” effect.
Site Plan
Carpark lots are found on the ground level. Most of these are uncovered, unless you are fortunate enough to be assigned a lot that is directly beneath the block.

The only showflat on display is a 721sqft, 2-bedroom unit (Type J).
Type J

The home shelter is next to the main door as you enter the unit. The living/dining area is a small rectangular area that will probably accommodate a small sofa, coffee table and a 2-seater dining table (Ok, 4-seater maybe, if you can find a small enough rectangular table). It comes with 60cm x 60cm marble floors and a standard ceiling height of 3.15m, which is quite impressive. The balcony is a narrow rectangular strip that will probably offer standing space only.
LivingRoom
The unit comes with an “open concept” kitchen – we were told that most of the unit layouts in SUITES DE LAUREL are fitted with such kitchen. The wife is not particularly thrilled about open concept kitchen as this is usually fully enclosed, i.e. with no windows for ventilation. So you cannot really do serious cooking without having the whole house smelling like what you are having for dinner. The kitchen is fitted with “Tekka” induction hob/hood and faucet, which are all the appliances that come with the unit. A small space for your washer/dryer is available at the end of the kitchen, but there is no yard area in this unit. We find the quality of the kitchen worktop and cabinets average at best. One thing that we must warn you about is that the kitchen layout in the showflat (as shown in the photo below) is NOT an exact replica of what you actually get for this unit type. You should refer to the floor plan to have a better feel of the actual kitchen layout.
Master bath - Kitchen
The common bedroom is small but regular shaped and comes with bay windows. So you probably have to go with a single (super-single max.) bed in here. The room does come with decent looking timber-strip floors but a rather small wardrobe.

The common bathroom has ceramic-tile walls and floors and come with a standing shower stall with standard wall-mounted shower.

The master bedroom is longish rectangular in shape and comes with similar timber-strip floors. The outer walls are surrounded by bay windows. Our first impression of the master bedroom is that it is actually quite spacious for a 700+ sqft unit. But this is largely due to the fact that the rather small dressing table and round-shaped bed are custom fitted onto the bay window ledges.
Master Bedroom
The master bathroom is good size and even comes with rain-shower in the standing shower stall (no bath-tub, sorry). However, the wife and I were not impressed by the ceramic-tile walls/floors – perhaps we are overly spoilt by the fact that nearly all the new projects we have seen lately come with marble walls/floors in the master bathroom. Again we have to warn you about the master bathroom layout – we were told that the actual unit will have a slightly different layout compared to what is shown in the showflat. However, the furnishing you get should be similar.

What we like:
  • Location – SUITES DE LAUREL is right across from Bukit Timah Plaza, diagonally across from Beauty World Plaza and short walking distances to the various eateries nearby. So amenities are aplenty. 

  • The project is approximately 5 minutes’ walk to the upcoming Beauty World MRT Station – ideal for owners/tenants without cars.

  • Primary school wise, you have a choice of Pei Hwa and Methodist Girls’ Primary that is within 1-km of SUITES DE LAUREL.
What we dislike:

  • Location – The stretch of road along Jalan Anak Bukit where SUITES DE LAUREL is sited is busy almost whole day round. So units facing the road may find it a tad noisy.

  • Unit size – 3-bedroom units of 915sqft and “penthouses” of 937sqft are waaaay too small for our liking.

  • The unit layouts are less than ideal – home shelter located in the living area, enclosed kitchen, lots of bay window etc. However, we were told that there is one unit type (Type N: 721sqft, 2-Bedroom) where there is no interior bay windows (i.e. the bay windows are outside of the unit and do not constitute as part of the unit’s total floor area) and another unit type (Type M: 915sqft, 3-Bedroom) where there is actually a small yard area and the home shelter is located in the yard.
Pricing wise, here is a sample for the different unit types

  • #05-08, 484sqft 1-bedroom unit (Type H): $791,520  or  $1635psf     (* This is supposedly the best 1-bedder unit in the whole project – highest floor and with full view of the Bukit Timah Nature Reserves *)
  • #04-04, 624sqft 1+1-bedroom unit (Type D): $863,940  or  $1385psf     (* This unit is located diagonally from the main entrance *)
  • #02-13, 721sqft 2-bedroom unit (Type N): $967,980  or  $1343psf     (* This is the unit with no interior bay windows – only unit left in this stack *)
Site Plan2

As of last Sunday morning, about 25 of the 72 units in SUITES DE LAUREL are already sold. All the 3-bedroom units and 3-bedroom penthouses have also been taken up.

The marketing agent claimed that there will be good demand for such smaller units at SUITES DE LAUREL, as they are popular as rental investments and with DINKs or working singles. This is especially when the other new projects in District 21 by bigger developers does not have similar unit sizes. We were told that the 1-bedder can expect to fetch a monthly rental income of $2.5k. However, the wife and I are less than convinced by the claims – most buyers and especially tenants will prefer a full-facility condo. A “Condominium Status” development will also generally command better rental and resale values than one with “Apartment Status”.

Click on below link to view full set of floor plans
http://www.flickr.com/photos/47881767@N05/sets/72157624467427719/
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15 comments to ''SUITES DE LAUREL (Review)"

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  1. the flooring in the living room is compressed marble, not ceramic tiles!

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  2. The Folks @PropTalkJuly 30, 2010 at 11:00 PM

    Eh... We DID say 60cm x 60cm marble floors in the living/dining area.

    Did you put your comment on the correct post? :)

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  3. It says the master bathroom is marble or compressed marble in the specs on the website

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  4. Agree with you that each layout is very different so got to study it carefully. notice that not all units have lots of bay window, I see that penthouse type A has only a room that has bay window, and no planter, whereas other penthouses have trellis, planters, bay windows at 2 rooms, in addition to the roof top so looks like the live in space is very much reduced for some of these configuration.

    That said, in terms of pricing, it still beats the projects nearby such as jardin and florida tho personally I think jardin is really nice it is facing the main road.

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  5. by the way, you said type H has the best view, from the floor plan type H are nested in between type J and type G, any idea how it is able to get the full view of the reserve? type J is facing the back, and type G is the road facing ones. type H faces type c in the opp block.

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  6. The Folks @PropTalkAugust 1, 2010 at 12:32 PM

    There are so much interests in this post that the wife and I can hardly keep up with all the comments. But we aren't complaining so keep them coming!

    1. Master Bathroom floors - we have not read the specs in the website although the marketing brochure did say marble or compressed marble tile as well. However, what we saw in the showflat looked rather ceramic-like. But we could be wrong on this one.

    2. There are actually 2 different stacks of Type H. The one that we are referring to is Stack #08 - this stack is indeed sandwiched between Type J and G. But looking at the floor plan and compare this with the actual site plan, we do believe the balcony and the bedroom window actually faces the Bukit Timah Reserves.

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  7. The units facing behind will get some view of Bukit Timah Reserve. H will get half of the reserve, and half of Jalan Anak Bukit. Just look at the bird's eye view from google earth. Type J will probably get the best view in my opinion. However, both stacks will get some noise from the road due to it's proximity with nothing much blocking.

    M would probably be the best stack. Furthest from the road, view of bukit timah reserve and possibly over the landed houses, and only morning sun. Can choose to knock down bdrm 3 to make a nice 2 bedder. Balcony is ok, bay windows no excessive, but thumbs down to the planters.

    For 2 bedders, B and J-1 seems decent.

    Jardin is overpriced. Starting from over 1750psf. It's not nice enough to justify such a price. But it's FEO after all.

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  8. I thought M is exposed to afternoon sun, given its EW direction ?

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  9. Nope, it's NE. No west sun at all. Are you looking at the correct stack?

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  10. the entire stretch at the back faces the rifle range right ?

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  11. No.
    The back mostly faces the landed properties, and beyond that the eastern side of Bukit Timah nature reserve.
    I think only stack J actually faces the Rifle Range itself. And even then it's after the PIE, over 600m away as the crow flies.
    U can have a look at Google Earth to get a better idea.

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  12. I am curious about the launched psf vs the current psf for a small unit; maybe a 1 + 1 study. I believe there are still some facing the road. I might consider if developer has some sort of sound proof glass panel for these road facing units. Any agent care to list the price for the remaining units?

    Thank you

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  13. Given that it's next to the ktm line which is part of green corridor proposal , wonder if price will go up i?

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  14. dear SGPropTalk,

    Suites de Laurel has TOP and i heard owners are collecting keys this week.

    However, i also heard that the maintenance fee of a small unit is $400++, how is that possible?

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  15. The Folks @PropTalkOctober 16, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Hi Anonymous (16/10/12, 1:11PM):

    Firstly, the wife and I do not know what the actual maintenance fee of Suites de Laurel is.

    But going by pure logic, the development has to charge a higher maintenance/sinking fee given the small number of units (72).

    Despite the fact that the facilities are rather basic given the "apartment" status, it still takes money to maintain these as well as the common areas. So the development has to try and build up the necessary funds quickly enough from a much small pool of apartment owners.

    This probably explain the higher fees.

    Hope the above helps and if anyone else has a better explanation, please share!

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