MALAYSIA, July 2016: Tired of investing in “yet another concrete block”, seasoned property developers Dato’ Sri Michael Yong and Rosalind Foo decided to look for opportunities outside of cities. This went on to lay the foundation for South Oceans, a 1,200-acre ocean-front development in Kuala Rompin along the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia.
The project is owned by Malaysian entity Kairos & Dashen Resources (Rompin) Bhd, of which the duo are directors at. “We have been working in cities for the past 30 years and after investing in the sixth property – yet another concrete block – we started to get bored,” shared Foo.
They then turned their sights on opportunities in rural areas. Guiding them was the desire to avoid crowds, commune with nature and be close to the sea. So they looked in faraway places like Croatia, but felt handicapped by the distance.
Then, in August 2014, they were invited by a friend to visit a plot of land in Kuala Rompin in Pahang, Malaysia that was available for sale. “She said the area reminded her of the Great Barrier Reef, which we thought was awesome,” recalled Foo. When they arrived, they were won over immediately. An unblocked panoramic view of the ocean greeted them. Behind, the lush tropical jungle stood with its abundance of flora and fauna.
“We wanted to bring out deck chairs to sun tan in the day, and camp out at night under the stars,” explained Foo. To sweeten the deal, 750 acres is designated as commercial land – a rare occurrence in the coastal regions of Malaysia. Needing no further persuasion, they bought it and christened it South Oceans.
A Grand Vision
Working with master planners from Surbana Jurong, they envision a coastal township that when developed, will be the coolest and largest eco oceanfront living development in the world. It will contain affordable residences that face the ocean, and support a lifestyle that allows for working from home.
Need to grab groceries or meet a friend? Amenities are just a bus ride or quick walk away at Wave Boulevard. Want to go for a sail and enjoy the breeze? The marina is just around the corner. Because security is of utmost importance, South Oceans will also be integrated with the latest anti-crime systems, including CCTV cameras embedded with software that can detect suspicious behaviour.
Residents aside, the development will also attract tourists who want to go sail fishing, an adventure sport that Kuala Rompin is renowned for. South Oceans is easily reached by air, road and sea with access points that include Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Kuantan. Because of the size of the plot, there is no fear of overcrowding. “There will be enough space for everyone,” emphasised Foo.
Appreciating Land Value
The plan is underway to let the world know about South Oceans. Working with partners, Foo has been sharing their vision with them, who will then further spread the word. They have also met up with authorities from Pahang to communicate their intentions. She says, “We will talk about South Oceans till the light becomes a fire. As we grow year by year, as South Oceans is being developed, we are confident that the land prices will increase by leaps and bounds.
” Already, that seems to be the way things are going. An independent valuation done in December 2014 valued the land at 100 times more than the purchase price. Earlier this month, the tax authority of Malaysia valued South Oceans at 970 times more than the purchase price.
The first phase of the project, Wave Boulevard, will be launched for sale in August 2016. it consists of 113 land parcels and 314 Retail Cabana Boutiques, set in 30.6 acres of commercial land, that are all available for purchase. Once the ball starts rolling and momentum builds, it is expected that the prices will continue to climb, bringing early investors healthy returns that will only increase over time.
For more information, visit http://www.southoceans.com/
*Image Caption: An aerial view of the Wave Boulevard