Billionaire James Dyson snags new Singapore home: First a ‘bungalow in sky’, then one facing heritage site

A caveat was lodged for this Good Class Bungalow in an ultra-posh locale in Cluny Road, facing the Singapore Botanic Gardens, on July 3, showing the buyer of the 1,402.8 sq m freehold bungalow to be Mr James Dyson, a British citizen and Singapore permanent resident.PHOTOS: GUZ ARCHITECTS

The modern bungalow (above) features a cantilevered spiral stairway, landscaped gardens, an infinity pool and an indoor waterfall. PHOTOS: GUZ ARCHITECTS

The modern bungalow (above) features a cantilevered spiral stairway, landscaped gardens, an infinity pool and an indoor waterfall. PHOTOS: GUZ ARCHITECTS

Just months back, Mr James Dyson said his technology firm will be moving its headquarters from Britain to Singapore.

Billionaire British inventor James Dyson, 72, is set to snap up a modern bungalow (above) in an ultra-posh locale facing the Singapore Botanic Gardens, The Straits Times has learnt. This comes shortly after his headline-grabbing purchase of the country’s most expensive and largest super penthouse in Tanjong Pagar. The Good Class Bungalow in Cluny Road sits on elevated land and features a cantilevered spiral stairway, landscaped gardens, an infinity pool and an indoor waterfall. PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN, DYSON

Billionaire British inventor James Dyson (above), 72, is set to snap up a modern bungalow in an ultra-posh locale facing the Singapore Botanic Gardens, The Straits Times has learnt. This comes shortly after his headline-grabbing purchase of the country’s most expensive and largest super penthouse in Tanjong Pagar. The Good Class Bungalow in Cluny Road sits on elevated land and features a cantilevered spiral stairway, landscaped gardens, an infinity pool and an indoor waterfall. PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN, DYSON

Dyson set to buy Good Class Bungalow in ultra-posh Cluny Rd

Fresh from his headline-grabbing purchase of Singapore’s priciest and biggest penthouse at Guoco Tower in Tanjong Pagar, billionaire inventor James Dyson is making waves again.

This time, he is set to snap up another of Singapore’s most coveted trophy assets – Good Class Bungalows, or GCBs – in an ultra-posh locale in Cluny Road facing the Singapore Botanic Gardens, the Republic’s first Unesco World Heritage site, The Straits Times has learnt.

Mr Dyson, 72, is believed to have initiated the purchase of his second Singapore property, which comes soon after he bought the unit at GuocoLand’s Wallich Residence in the Central Business District for $73.8 million. The modern bungalow features a cantilevered spiral stairway, landscaped gardens, an infinity pool and an indoor waterfall.

A caveat was lodged for 50 Cluny Road on July 3 showing the buyer of the 1,402.8 sq m freehold bungalow to be Mr Dyson, a British citizen and Singapore permanent resident (PR).

Based on documents obtained by The Straits Times, the Controller of Housing granted approval on July 2 for Mr Dyson to buy the property, after the option to purchase was granted to him on June 3.

Since the second half of 2012, the Government has been more stringent in granting approval to foreigners buying landed homes in a GCB area.

To win approval for this, foreigners, including Singapore PRs, must have made exceptional economic contributions in Singapore. They can use the landed property only for their own occupation.

Just months back, Mr Dyson announced that his technology company – known for its bagless vacuum cleaners and hair dryers – will be moving its headquarters from Britain to Singapore. His upcoming electric car will also be manufactured here.

As a Singapore PR, Mr Dyson will likely pay an additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) of 5 per cent on his first property, the penthouse at Wallich Residence, and 15 per cent for his second in Cluny Road. The purchases give him a “bungalow in the sky” and one on the ground. A foreign buyer who is not a PR is subject to 20 per cent ABSD.

Documents reveal that the seller is Mr Jason Lee Boon Leng, a director of developer Forte Global. Mr Lee helmed the JForte Group of companies, which ran popular karaoke chain K Box Entertainment Group before selling it to a Japanese group in March 2014.

Mr Lee is also the son-in-law of Madam Mary Chia, founder of the well-known beauty outlets for women. Suki Sushi, the company he runs with his wife, Ms Ho Yow Ping, operates Japanese restaurants in Singapore under various brands, including Momiji, Nihon Mura Kaiten and Sakura.

When contacted yesterday, Mr Lee declined to comment.

Industry sources said Mr Lee was listing the bungalow at above $3,000 per sq ft (psf), or $45 million.

The most expensive GCB in terms of price per sq ft of land area is currently a bungalow in Jervois Hill that was sold in June last year for $2,729.52 psf, or $41.2 million. It was sold to the daughter of Wah Loon Engineering founder Alan Chong.

Last month, another bungalow in Belmont Road was sold for $39.8 million, or $2,653 psf, to Ms Angela Loh Moo Cheng, the former wife of Centurion Corporation director David Loh.

According to Mr Samuel Eyo, managing director of Lighthouse Property Consultants, “based on recent transactions for GCBs in Belmont Road and Jervois Hill, I would not be surprised if the bungalow at 50 Cluny Road fetches the same or even higher psf, given that it is sitting on elevated ground with unblocked views of the Botanic Gardens, and is next to Nassim Road”.

Nassim Road is considered Singapore’s top GCB area because of the scarcity of properties available for sale there.

JLL senior director Carin Puah noted that the land area of 50 Cluny Road is similar to that of the Jervois Hill bungalow. But the Cluny Road property may sell for more than $41 million as its location is “much better than Belmont Road and Jervois Hill, (it) is highly elevated, and within the sought-after GCB cluster at Nassim, Dalvey and White House Park”, she said.

Bungalows in the 39 gazetted GCB areas are the most presti-gious form of landed housing in Singapore, with strict planning conditions stipulated by the Urban Redevelopment Authority to preserve their exclusivity and low-rise character.

As of the first quarter this year, the authority reported that there are 73,105 private landed homes (all types of tenure) in Singapore. Landed housing made up barely 5 per cent of all housing here.

“Source:[Billionaire James Dyson snags new Singapore home: First a ‘bungalow in sky’, then one facing heritage site] © Singapore Press Holdings Limited. Permission required for reproduction”

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