now brings luxury hotel service and living to private homes.

To put it in the words of Mr Herve Humler, president of the The Ritz-Carlton Company, it “aims to up the ante in high-end living by providing the legendary Ritz-Carlton experience to residents, who will enjoy the same gold standard of hospitality encompassing the finest personal service and facilities”.

Apart from the excellent facilities – only the highest-quality materials and finishings are used – buyers get first-class service. “From housekeeping and valet services to gourmet dining and dedicated concierge, you’ll enjoy five-star living,” said Mr Humler.

Unlike serviced apartments, which are managed apartments under one title, The Ritz-Carlton Residences in Singapore is the company’s first full strata-titled residential project in Asia.

Already more than two dozen of the 58 apartment units, which include two penthouses, have been sold and most of the buyers are moving in themselves to savour the almost hedonistic lifestyle that is promised.

Of course such luxury does not come cheap. According to Ms Leny Suparman, chief executive officer of KOP Properties, the project’s developer, the apartments – which range from 2,800 sq ft for three-bedroom units to 3,000 sq ft for four-bedroom units – are going for upwards of S$4,000 psf, or about S$12 million a unit. Maintenance fees add up to another S$2,600 a month.

Just this week, one of the penthouses was said to have been sold to a Chinese national for S$4,500 psf or around S$22 million. The other is said to be close to being sold. Buyers are an eclectic lot – from Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, China, the Middle East and Russia.

KOP, together with an Arab partner, had bought the former Horizon View site of 47,000 sq ft for about S$120 million in 2007 and spent another S$100 million constructing the 36-storey building.

But considering the facilities offered, the maintenance fees are cheap, points out the Indonesian-born Ms Suparman. “In fact, most of our buyers plan to live here to experience the facilities and the service we provide,” she adds.

The place comes with 24-hour concierge services; not one but two swimming pools, including a 40m lap pool on the fourth level; a gym, a tennis court and a maze garden. “We devote proportionately more space for common use by our residents than most other condominiums do,” claims Ms Suparman. No expense has been spared in giving the place a truly luxurious feel – the bars on the 24th floor are wrought from lapis lazuli, which is often used for jewellery and cost S$100,000 each.

At present, there are nine full-time staff, to be increased to 22 when the facilities are fully operational. Says Mr Humler: “Our staff (all 42,000 of Ritz’s employees worldwide) are referred to as ‘ladies and gentlemen’ and they live by our credo, ‘We are ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen’.”

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