Property developer Eastern & Oriental Bhd

Property developer Eastern & Oriental Bhd (E&O), well known for its hotel services in Penang, has expanded its luxury hospitality brand to include the serviced apartment industry with the inauguration of its first serviced apartments here in December last year.

Dubbed “E&O Residences Kuala Lumpur”, the serviced apartments are sited within its high-end St Mary Residences development off Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur, occupying one of the three towers.

E&O deputy managing director Eric Chan Kok Leong said the serviced apartments are an extension of the group’s expertise in hospitality management honed from its years of experience in running the heritage Eastern & Oriental Hotel and Lone Pine Hotel in Penang.

“The extension into serviced residence management represents yet another vital pillar in the cachet of lifestyle elements that collectively make E&O a true luxury lifestyle (property) developer,” he told SunBiz in an email interview.

Chan declined to disclose the contribution expected from its serviced apartment business to E&O Group’s revenue, saying it’s still early days for E&O Residences with its official opening only targeted for early this year.

“Once established in the market, we expect the E&O Residences to generate healthy revenue and boost the overall contribution of our hospitality segment.

“Notwithstanding this, E&O is at its core a lifestyle property developer. Our businesses like the E&O Residences showcase how we infuse complementary lifestyle elements and experiences into our portfolio of properties,” he added.

On other potential serviced apartment projects, Chan said the group will allow for the E&O Residences to take off first but remains “open to future opportunities in this area”.

“We anticipate that with the unfolding of the Economic Transformation Plan and the Greater Kuala Lumpur initiatives, there will be more opportunities in the city which will in turn attract more business professionals and expatriates to fuel the demand for serviced residences.

“We anticipate that this discerning crowd will want higher quality and more exclusive accommodation, a niche that the E&O’s five-star standard serviced residences is well prepared to cater for,” said Chan.

Targeting the global business or leisure traveller on an extended stay as well as short term stay in Kuala Lumpur, E&O Residences has 200 one- and two-bedroom apartments covering 250,000 sq ft of net lettable area, built with an investment of RM350 million.

“Kuala Lumpur is a vibrant city and based on the growing demand for five-star accommodation we are confident that this investment, which is long-term in nature, will provide returns consistent with the industry norm of 10-15 years,” said Chan.

Well aware of the existing competition in the market, E&O Residences sets itself apart from other serviced apartments in the area by its heritage.

“We are the first service residence to share the name and pedigree of the legendary Eastern & Oriental Hotel, Penang. You can expect to enjoy the same immaculate attention to detail and personal care afforded by E&O’s hospitality and concierge service,” said Chan.

“Our rates are in line with the current market leader with rack rates starting at RM980++ for the one-bedroom unit and RM1,580++ for the two-bedroom.”

In conjunction with its opening, the group is offering special introductory daily rates of RM490.00++ for the one-bedroom and RM790.00++ for the two-bedroom while the monthly rate is RM 11,688++ for the one-bedroom and RM14,688++ for the two-bedroom.

Meanwhile, adjoining the St Mary development is the St Mary Place retail annexe. Presently, the Delicious Café has begun operations there. Other confirmed tenants include an established coffee outlet, an art gallery cum café, a fine dining sushi bar, a laundry, beauty salon and a foot reflexology outlet.