Jewels in the crown
Commanding some of the best views of Hong Kong's skyline, the cluster of buildings above Kowloon station has also become a city landmark.
The Waterfront, Sorrento, The Harbourside, The Arch and The Cullinan, the five major residential developments on top of Kowloon station, were completed from 2000 to 2007, and each is architecturally distinctive, providing luxury clubhouse facilities. They sit alongside the 118-storey International Commerce Centre, the tallest office building in the city.
According to a report by consultants Savills, property prices in West Kowloon rose 138 per cent since 2008, the sharpest increase anywhere in Hong Kong.
With the Elements shopping centre below, residents can enjoy world-class shopping, dining and entertainment facilities without having to leave the complex.
Central is only a five-minute MTR train ride away, while a journey to the airport via Airport Express takes less than half an hour. The West Kowloon concept is regarded as a prime example of MTR's success in its rail-plus-property model.
And the success story seems to go on and on. The Coronation is the best-selling property in West Kowloon this year, having sold about 700 of its 740 units by April. The project was jointly developed by Sino Land, Nan Fung, K. Wah and Chinese Estates.
'The project is right next to the future Express Rail Link Terminus. When the railway is running, travelling to Guangzhou will take only 48 minutes,' says Victor Tin, general manager, sales department, at Sino Land, adding that mainland buyers account for about 30 per cent of all customers.
Tin also expects buy-to-let investors to make up a significant portion of buyers during the planning stage.
'They would look at whether there is an active rental market in the neighbourhood and the rental yields. We have to provide a wide range of property sizes and configurations to accommodate these two market segments.'
The project offers units in six towers, ranging from 403 sqft to 2,652 sqft.
In Tsim Sha Tsui, The Masterpiece is another residential high-rise with stunning views of Hong Kong's skyline. Built by New World Development and the Urban Renewal Authority, The Masterpiece comprises 345 luxury apartments, the K11 art mall, and a Hyatt Regency hotel.
The residential units are arranged over the 27th to 67th floors of the building. Located on Hanoi Road, the completion of The Masterpiece has transformed the area into what is sometimes described as 'TST's Tribeca', after the neighbourhood in Lower Manhattan, New York.
'With K11, the world's first art mall, the neighbourhood has become a sublime confluence of multicultural elements, very much like the Tribeca area of New York,' say Melvin Yeo, director of sales and marketing at New World Development.