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WHEN it comes to investing in real estate, seafront properties are considered the “gold standard” for discerning investors. Despite varying property market landscapes around the world, seafront properties typically showcase greater increase in valuation, yielding higher rentals and resale value. This explains the ever-growing demand globally for such highly valued properties.

In Malaysia, prime seafront property locations, such as Penang, have consistently been leading the charts and statistics, particularly related to property valuations and demand. In fact, the Pearl of the Orient has been a popular “playground” for real estate and property investors, not only within Malaysia, but from abroad. This bears testament to the demand commanded by property within the island state.

Penang’s unique appeal to investors, be they local or foreign, lies in some of its well-planned seafront developments by developers, such as Eastern & Oriental Bhd (E&O). These include the 240-acre master-planned seafront development in Seri Tanjung Pinang (STP), which was built on reclaimed land on the foreshore of Tanjung Tokong, on the northeast of Penang island. This first-of-its-kind master-planned integrated seafront development houses the largest waterfront community in the country. With the first phase of the development launched in 2005, STP is now home to a thriving community comprising both locals and expatriates from over 30 nationalities.

The development is located right next to Gurney Drive, a thriving stretch in Penang synonymous with street food and hawker centres, while accommodating a good number of hotels, condominiums and office buildings. Gurney Drive also serves as a pit stop between Penang International Airport and the famous Batu Ferringhi beach, and is in close proximity to the affluent suburbs of Pulau Tikus and Tanjung Bungah. All these have also given rise to the vicinity’s popularity among locals and visitors alike.

Eastern & Oriental Bhd managing director Kok Tuck Cheong said that aside from its unique location, STP also benefits from the developer’s track record, which focuses on a holistic appeal for investors.

“When you invest in STP, you are investing in more than just a home. It is an investment into a holistic living environment and a closed-knit community, in homes that offer luxurious seafront living …,” he said.

Adding to this is the design and infrastructure of STP, which appeals to a large base of investors with everything from sea-facing villas to luxury condominiums, spacious jogging paths along the promenade, green parks, and a 4.5-acre private Quayside Waterpark that comprises seven distinct activity areas.

Properties within STP have extensive built-up areas with ample open spaces and designs that reinvent an age-old formula to invoke nostalgia and charm of the original 19th century Straits-eclectic homes. A majority of the homes in STP feature air wells, high ceilings of up to 11 feet, open concept courtyards, large windows and very generous house dimensions starting from about 3,800 sq ft for its terraces.

All in all, STP certainly has the workings of a prime investment within a prime seafront located. There is an old saying that goes: “The best time to buy a property in Penang was yesterday”.

This certainly rings true as property prices within Penang have shown an upward trend in past years, and will only continue increase in value in time to come, even as land within the state becomes scarcer.

This article was contributed by E&O.

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