Paradise in Singapore for mining Elite
9th August 2012
Mining magnate Gina Rinehart has reportedly spent $S57 million ($43.8 million) on two units, off the plan, in the Seven Palms Sentosa Cove condominium project in Singapore.
A company linked to Mrs Rinehart's Hancock Prospecting purchased a unit on the third floor of the four-storey complex for $S23.3 million as well as a top-floor unit for close to $S33.9 million, according to Singapore's Business Times newspaper.
The director of Savills International Residential Sales in Singapore, Julian Sedgwick, said Mrs Rinehart's purchase was being hotly discussed in Singapore's real-estate circles as it would set a new residential price record for the cosmopolitan hub.
The previous record was set when a buyer secured the two-storey penthouse in a development called Boulevard Vue for $S33.4 million in late 2009.
Seven Palms Sentosa Cove has been designed by Australian firm Kerry Hill Architects, which was responsible for some of the Aman resort developments. Touted as Singapore's only beachfront condominium, the 41-unit development, due to be completed next year, is located between the Sentosa Golf Club and the South China Sea.
But Mrs Rinehart might not be the only Australian mining magnate with an eye on Singapore property. It's been widely reported that billionaire Nathan Tinkler of Whitehaven Coal was planning to move to Singapore. However, a representative for Mr Tinkler has contacted Domain and denied that he has bought in the Singapore market.
Mr Tinkler recently put his plans for a $13 million beachfront pad in Newcastle on hold and sold another property, also in Merewether.
Personal tax rates in Singapore are among the lowest in the world with a cap of 20 per cent, compared to the top tax rate of 46.5 per cent in Australia.
Mr Sedgwick said that ''Singapore is turning itself into a mini-Switzerland.''
''It's got the banking secrecy laws, it's becoming a financial centre, new casinos and now a lot of the big banks are operating out of Singapore purely because it's becoming a very exclusive place to live.''
Mr Sedgwick said that Sentosa Cove is the perfect getaway for wealthy internationals.
''It's been designed so you can have your boat out the front, it's quite similar to Australian living - a little island hidden away with a little jetties and all of them [developments] have big swimming pools so it's all been designed for the wealthy.''
Under Singaporean law, Sentosa Cove is only is the only location where foreigners can buy houses. Properties here are bought on a 99-year lease program under strict conditions that the property is owner-occupied and never rented out.
Mr Sedgwick said that most of the foreigners that buy in Singapore are either from Malaysia, Indonesia or China but he has seen an increasing level of high net worth Australians moving to the business hub, drawn in by the exclusivity and privacy. ''What you do there is kept there,'' he said.
Source: Domain News