Hong Kong property

Revealed: Suzhou contractor is buyer of one of Asia’s priciest flats at Mount Nicholson

Zhu Xingliang, founder of Suzhou Gold Mantis Construction Decoration, last month paid almost half a billion Hong Kong dollars for a flat at Mount Nicholson, making it the third-most expensive home in Asia.

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 20 December, 2017, 5:50pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 21 December, 2017, 2:55pm

Mainland decoration billionaire Zhu Xingliang is the likely owner of Asia’s third most expensive flat, located at the exclusive Mount Nicholson development on The Peak.

Zhu, from Suzhou, was revealed as the buyer of the 4,266 sq ft flat on the 10th floor of the development’s third phase, according to data released by the Land Registry Wednesday.

The buyer paid HK$498.88 million, or HK$116,945 per square foot, for the four-bedroom flat on December 1.

The buyer’s surname, spelt “Xhu” in the Land Registry, appeared to be the same in Chinese script as the majority shareholder of Shenzhen-listed Suzhou Gold Mantis Construction Decoration, which engages in interior design, construction and landscaping in the mainland.

The Land Registry confirmed on Thursday that there was a mistake in its records relating to the surname of the buyer.

“After we verified with the law firm which submitted the legal document for deeds registration, it found a typo error in the spelling of the buyer’s surname,” a spokeswoman at the Land Registry told the South China Morning Post on Thursday.

The law firm will make a new submission for the deeds registration to correct the surname as “Zhu”, the Land Registry said.

With a net worth of US$2.6 billion, Zhu came in at No 112 on the 2017 Forbes China Rich List of the wealthiest people in the mainland.

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Zhu was unable to be reached by phone on Wednesday.

Mount Nicholson, comprising 48 flats and 19 houses, is a joint development by Wheelock and Co and Nan Fung Development over three phases.

The development counts some of Hong Kong’s wealthiest families among its owners.

“Having a residence on The Peak is a social symbol … As new supply is limited, homebuyers are willing to pay a big premium,” said Vincent Cheung, a deputy managing director for Asia valuation and advisory services at Colliers International.

If Zhu is not a Hong Kong permanent resident, he is likely to face a 30 per cent stamp duty on the purchase, or HK$149.66 million.

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The most expensive flat in Asia is located two floors above Zhu’s. Last month, an unnamed buyer bought two adjoining 12th-floor flats, paying HK$1.16 billion for them.

The 4,242 sq ft Unit C sold for HK$560.2 million, or HK$132,060 per square foot, taking the crown as the continent’s most expensive flat.

“It is a new symbol for the rich as Mount Nicholson boasts the No 1, 2 and 3 most expensive flats in Asia,” Cheung said.

Other buyers at the development include Edwin Leong Siu-hung, the founder of Tai Hung Fai Enterprise, Hong Kong’s 17th richest businessman last year.

Leong and a family member paid a total of HK$1.22 billion for three flats in the development on November 8, according to the Land Registry.

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Alice Ho Chiu-yan, a daughter of Macau casino tycoon Stanley Ho Hung-sun, paid HK$646 million for two adjoining flats on the ninth floor.

Her sister, Sabrina Ho Chiu-yeng, also bought two adjoining flats, on the 10th floor for HK$644.6 million.

Wheelock Properties said 30 flats and 11 houses in the development had been sold so far at a cost of more than HK$19.3 billion