T: The Lure Of Iskandar – Part 2

NO doubt there is a lot of controversy and difference of opinion when it comes to Iskandar Malaysia. What more with the drop in oil prices and the bleak economic forecasts. Still, the optimists claim life is a cycle, now a challenging time for the country and its people. However, still focusing on the south of the border, theSun will detail development projects within Medini Iskandar and those surrounding the masterplan over the next few weeks.

For a start, the objective under the Medini Iskandar masterplan is to “develop Medini into a bustling metropolis” states the Iskandar Development website. Gone over with a fine-tooth comb and projected to attract investors with catalytic projects, foreigners and their foreign currencies and investments, plus tourists, visitors and business entrepreneurs. A challenge now, especially as the oil and gas industry had a major role to play in this project.

Nevertheless, like all good property purchases and investments where the people are told to look out for good land DNA, Iskandar still ticks all the right boxes, UMLand’s Medini lakeside development included.

JEWEL IN THE SOUTH

One of many exceptional property development projects on-going in Medini Iskandar is an integrated project by UMLand Medini Lakeside Development Sdn Bhd. Phase 1 of this development project runs across 5.03 acres. Poised to fuel the economy in the south, UMCity Medini Lakeside (UMCity) offers modern lakeside living that is laced with urban amenities and facilities, intricately designed within a healthy ecosystem environment.

Sounds like a hodge-podge and a mouthful, yet when you look closer, you will see how well planned this fully integrated “city” is designed to become, offering world-class comforts and commercial conveniences amid green spaces.

The birth of UMCity amounts to a gross development value of RM1 billion. Designed for ideal business and living, some
renowned “partners” include:

>>The Ascot Limited providing award-winning serviced residences;

>>Shama Medini (the first Shama property in Malaysia) offering serviced residences;

>>Along with OZO Medini (after OZO Penang) presenting stylish hotel accommodation;

>>ready and serviced offices offering flexible work spaces by Regus and more.

“UMCity Medini Lakeside will redefine metropolitan living. UMCity is Phase One of UMLand’s Medini Lakeside master plan. It is situated at the gateway that leads into Medini Iskandar and is strategically positioned to offer corporate office towers, two internationally branded serviced residences, a hotel, a lakeside shopping centre and a variety of business suites to suit a wide range of commercial outfits,” said UMLand Group CEO Datuk Charlie Chia Lui Meng (pix).

IDEAL LOCATION

It looks as though UMLand has all angles covered. No doubt Medini Iskandar is a special enclave, carefully designed to attract investors and purchasers, local and foreign, with its economic incentives. “A lot of industries are also relocating there, even from Singapore. And with that, these multinationals and expats are going to need a place to reside,” shares Chia, who has looked into seeing to the needs of the workforce, across the board.

Call it the ideal place, UMCity offers homes, temporary residences, serviced apartments, even transitory offices complete with all the necessary ready-to-use equipment and services apart from the more grounded, long-term office spaces. The extraordinary part of what this developer has thought of is, including acclimatisation programmes to help foreigners settle in – perhaps not directly though.

RELIABLE BRANDS

“Shama Medini is famous in Hong Kong. Though they offer slightly higher-end apartments, most expats feel comfortable staying with them. They have an acclimatisation programme and a hospitality team to help expats who want to know where is the nearest market, the best shopping areas, schools and education institutions … which makes foreigners feel really at home really. Citadines is another brand that is similar (under the Ascot Group) … A little more suited to the working or middle class, while Shama is more luxury,” informs Chia.

With Shama and Citadines accommodating the longer staying visitors and guests, OZO will cater to those on shorter hauls. “The OZO is more of a businessman or touristy brand. It is part of the Amari and Shama Group, operated by Onyx, which is a Thai brand,” explains Chia.

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From serviced apartments, serviced residences, hotels, apart’hotel suites, temporary and permanent office spaces all seen to, covering short stints and longer stays plus relocations lasting a couple of years – what more is there to ask of UMCity Medini Lakeside? Entertainment and education, of course.

FRILLS AND SPILLS

With accomodation and business needs seen to, lifestyle requirements are a must. To this, Datuk Chia shares of the area surrounding the lake. “This water body is good in a sense that when you have all the necessitites covered, you also have this amazing feature that comes with a performing arts lakeside auditorium, waterfront F&B locations to wine and dine in, green open spaces to enjoy the outdoors and activities, and so much more.”

Chia also informs how UMCity will double up as the place for some R&R, especially with Legoland in close proximity. “Going to Legoland for just one day is not enough. So, UMCity will come in nicely, providing stop-overs and stays for visitors to Legoland. People can stay in UMCity and shuttle up and down to enjoy the thrills of the themepark nearby,” Chia figures.

An award winner at the recent Asia Pacific Property Awards under Best International Office Development, Chia says: “The reason we won this award was because we were integrated. From all aspects of the development – the integration with the environment, the features in the office, the raised flooring, the inter-connectivity, the green design … Most of the office blocks are single-pointed which means they exist on their own, disconnected, yet are on the same footprint, connected, with lodging, hotels, shopping, working environment, even recreation.”

Moreover, working with Samsung Electronics, a brand known for its latest in technology and cutting-edge applications, the developer assures that all one’s office connectivity requirements will be seen to. “Just plug and get to work. Anyone who relocates to our offices here will enjoy the best of technologies,” Chia adds. Security is another area one will not need to worry about with Samsung, a leading security solutions provider working closely with the developer from design to development.

–THE SUN DAILY

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