Midtown Bay Condo Review: The Luxurious Residential Arm of Integrated Development Guoco Midtown along Beach Road
If you have been following the local property news, you would have likely heard about Guoco Midtown, an upcoming massive mixed-use development along Beach Road that spans nearly 1 million square feet. Sure, it’s big. But what’s all the hype about?
Artist impression of Guoco Midtown.
Turns out, there’s plenty to be excited for this new property. The idea behind developer GuocoLand’s vision for the site was to have it become like a midtown area, reminiscent of those in capital cities around the world, where there is a mix of shopping, culture, entertainment, amenities, and prime corporate offices.
Guoco Midtown will therefore comprise a 30-storey office tower (which will house a jogging circuit, outdoor gym and a swimming pool), 10 different plazas and gardens (six of which will be open to public), pedestrian networks that will link to nearby MRT stations and precincts, ground-floor restaurants with alfresco seats, generous-sized public spaces inspired by the shophouse district across Beach Road, an internal street that will be flanked by low-rise retail shops and restaurants, and finally Midtown Bay, the residential component of Guoco Midtown, at the heart of it all. The former Beach Road Police Station, an iconic 3-storey, colonial-style building, will also be part of Guoco Midtown, and will be conserved and restored, housing retail outlets as well as boutique offices.
An overview of Guoco Midtown.
This mixed-use development is part of a larger transformation of the Ophir-Rocher area, which first began with Duo, an integrated development, and then South Beach. The 99-year leasehold site was sold for $1.622 billion in 2017, translating to about $1,706 per square foot per plot ratio. Sitting next to Shaw Tower—that will undergo its own redevelopment into a new 35-storey Grade A office tower and retail building by 2023, Guoco Midtown is slated to be completed by the first half of 2022.
Just next door, Shaw Tower will undergo its own revamp to turn into an office tower and retail building by 2023.
The residential arm of Guoco Midtown, Midtown Bay is a 33-storey, 219-unit building sitting west of the site. Buyers can select from 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units as well as duplex apartments with either two or three bedrooms.
Here’s a breakdown of the unit mix:
|No. of Bedrooms||No. of Units||Size (sqft)|
|1||107||409 – 527|
|2||72||732 – 775|
|2 (Duplex)||32||990 – 1,152|
Exclusive to resident facilities include various terrace spaces on the 25th storey, a pool garden, a water garden and pavilions.
Why Midtown Bay?
Site for Midtown Bay, taken during our site visit in July 2019.
Located within the Downtown Core Planning Areas: Midtown Bay sits right at the economic and cultural heart of Singapore—the Downtown Core Planning Area. The zone is known for its prime office space and is regarded as a vibrant commercial district, so residences are actually quite rare in the area. As evidenced by this, URA’s Draft Master Plan for 2019 announced that there were plans to include more homes in this district.
Being rare is a good thing, since it means there will be greater demand and you can fetch a better price if you’re looking to rent out your unit. The fact that this condo is located within an integrated development that comprises a Grade A office space and is also surrounded by large MNCs, which have a bigger probability of having a significant expatriate staff, and you’ve got a ready pool of renters who are willing to pay a premium sum to live close to their workplaces.
Midtown Bay is also located close to plenty of business centres, including the Suntec Convention and Exhibition Centre and Sands Expo and Convention Centre, which is a plus for business professionals.
It’s really well-connected: There will be a new underground pedestrian path that links residents at Midtown Bay directly to Bugis MRT, which is an interchange for two MRT lines—Downtown and East-West. Currently, it is a 4-min walk from the condo to the station entrance. The direct pathway will most likely reduce the walking time.
Networks at Midtown Bay.
Besides the two MRT lines, residents at Midtown Bay are also connected to the Circle Line through Esplanade MRT (8-min walk) and through the North-South line via City Hall MRT (10-min walk). Midtown Bay is therefore connected to, if you’re counting, four MRT lines in total.
Being in close walking proximity to four MRT lines mean you can virtually get anywhere in Singapore easily. Getting to Orchard Road, the main shopping belt of Singapore is just a stop from City Hall MRT. Similarly, the CBDs at Raffles Place and Tanjong Pagar are also a stop and two stops away respectively from City Hall MRT along the North-South line. The Downtown Line gets you to places along Bukit Timah, and getting to the Botanic Gardens takes just five stops on the line.
Plenty of buses ply this area, taking you to heartland neighbourhoods like Sembawang, Queenstown, Clementi and Bukit Merah, while also providing a direct connection to business districts in Paya Lebar, Tai Seng and Kallang.
For drivers, getting onto the major expressways in the area is also convenient. ECP is an estimated 4-min drive, KPE takes approximately 5 mins by car, while MCE is an estimated 6-min drive away.
Doorstep to amenities: Within the site itself, a wide array of retail and F&B options are available, so there’s really no need to venture further. But even if you do, most amenities are within walking distance from Midtown Bay.
Amenities near Midtown Bay.
Major shopping malls that are walking distance from the condo include Bugis Junction (6 min), Suntec City (accessible via an overhead pedestrian link bridge behind the condo), Raffles City (11 min) and Marina Square (13 min). You will find most of what you need in the malls, which are clusters of retail shops, F&B outlets, and supermarkets.
There are also quite a number of eateries in the walking vicinity, so you will never want for choices of dinnertime fare. You’ll find a good selection of coffee shops, restaurants and bars along Liang Seah Street and Tan Quee Lan Street just across the road from Midtown Bay. Walk a bit further along Beach Road and you’ll come to hipster haven Haji Lane (approximately a 7-min walk), known also for their café fare. Bypass Raffles hotel to reach Chijmes (an estimated 13-min walk), known for its late-night restaurants and bars with alfresco seating and live performances.
Just across the road from Midtown Bay is a whole street of eateries, comprising restaurants, bars, coffee shops and dessert spots that open till late.
Besides food, this area is also known for being the cultural district of Singapore, which will appeal to cultural buffs. Heritage centres, museums are all within easy reach. The National Library is a 7-min walk away, the Malay Heritage Centre takes 13 mins to reach by foot, the Singapore Art Museum requires a walking distance of 14 mins, and the National Gallery is 16 mins by foot.
For families with school-going children, the nearest primary schools in the vicinity include Stamford Primary School (14-min walk), Farrer Park Primary School (5-min drive) and St Margaret’s Primary School (4-min drive). Dedicated art and design schools like NAFA (10-min walk), Lasalle College of the Arts (14-min walk) and School of the Arts (SOTA) (16-min walk) are also within the area, opening up a bigger pool of renters who are looking to be located nearby to these educational institutions.
Finally, despite its urbanity, the district is also located close to the greens at Fort Canning Park (21-min walk), Kallang Riverside Park (25-min walk) and Gardens by the Bay/Marina Barrage (8-min drive).
The 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom units at Midtown Bay are available for sale under the first phase, while the duplex apartments will only be opened for sale in the second phase. While the units available are small in size, smaller units tend to have a better rental yield, so Midtown Bay is a good option if you’re looking for a long-term investment opportunity.
There will be a huge pool of potential renters with Midtown Bay located very close to the city. Also a big plus: its convenience in terms of access to public transport and amenities. With this district surrounded by offices, it is likely that renters will be individuals (likely to be expats whose accommodations are paid for by their companies) who want to live near their workplaces.
If you’re buying to stay (because why shouldn’t you), it’s important that you love the location. Is being close to amenities and the MRT important to you? Do you like the hustle and bustle of being in the heart of the city? If so, Midtown Bay is the home for you. There’s really nothing not to love here, unless you’re looking for a home that isn’t located in an area that is a constant flurry of activity—yes, this area can get busy.
There are also plenty of opportunities to foster a sense of community and participation within Guoco Midtown, thanks to the public spaces and the Midtown Hub at the centre of the site. The latter serves like a social club, and will bring together like-minded individuals together for opportunities of collaboration.
The indicative pricing for Midtown Bay starts from $1.5XM. For more information on this condo and to receive an invitation to the VVIP preview and sales launch on 19 July, complete the form below: