Peak rewards come early, but at a price

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 24 October, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 24 October, 1999, 12:00am

Ever thought about living on the Peak? Most people will have to wait until the end of a glittering career, when owning a spacious townhouse in the few square miles that constitutes Hong Kong's most prestigious neighbourhood might be a reality.

But next week, there is an opportunity for those still on the road to success to take up residence, when one of the few developments in the area with smaller units comes on to the market.

Four two-bedroom flats at Le Bonheur, 26 Mount Kellet Road are ready for tenants - and the agent expects they will be in hot demand.

Entry to the exclusive neighbourhood will not come cheap, however. Isabel Michie, senior director of residential leasing at FPD Savills, which is marketing the properties for developer the Kilberg Group, expects prices for the flats to be among the highest per square foot in Hong Kong.

The combination of a desirable location, high-quality fittings and facilities that will include a sauna and swimming pool, enable the developer to expect rentals of about $60,000 a month for each of the 1,600 sq ft units, or about $38 per sq ft.

If the price seems steep, Ms Michie points out that there probably are no more than three other developments on the Peak with units of a similar size - and they generally are older and come complete with the odd leaky roof.

Not only do you get drip-free comfort at Le Bonheur, but you also will have one of the best views in Hong Kong.

The almost floor-to-ceiling windows stretch the width of the living room/dining room, giving unimpeded views of the south side of Hong Kong Island.

Tenants look down over the Tai Tam Reservoir to the hills around Stanley and Shek O and - on a clear day - to the sea beyond.

The bedrooms also face south, making the most of the Peak location.

Three of the four units have the same layout, with the fourth mostly mirroring the others, but with small differences.

All include two bathrooms, fitted out in a creamy orange-veined marble, and a roomy kitchen complete with all the modern appliances (dishwasher, large fridge-freezer, air-conditioning) you would expect in such a neighbourhood.

Even the small storage rooms at the rear have air-conditioning, and there are walk-in cupboards off the master bedroom.

The block is fully wired for entertainment, with access to cable and satellite stations, and a clubhouse, which has yet to be built, is to include a sauna and exercise room.

Ms Michie promised the developer would build a barbecue area and add outdoor furniture and more plants to the complex, which felt a little bare in some corners.

But the icing on the cake at Le Bonheur is the swimming pool.

One of probably just a handful of heated pools in Hong Kong, it will offer year-round swimming in a relatively sheltered nook behind the block. And even as late as 4pm, the pool was still catching plenty of sunlight.