|11 Amber Road||Amber Road||S$700||F||2005|
|833 M B Residences||Mountbatten Road||N/A||F||2012|
|9 @ Seraya||Seraya Lane||N/A||F||2009|
|Aldea Blanca||Upper East Coast Road||S$640||F||1970|
|Alpha Apartments||Koon Seng Road||S$531||F||2005|
|Amber Park||Amber Gardens||S$746||F||1986|
|Amber Point||Amber Road||S$929||F||2000|
|Amber Residences||Amber Road||S$1,070||F||2012|
|Amber Towers||Amber Road||S$852||L99||2000|
|Amberville||Marine Parade Road||S$632||L99||2000|
|Anchor Gardens||Upper East Coast Road||S$524||F||2000|
|Apollo Gardens||Sunbird Circle||S$651||F||2000|
|Aquarine Gardens||Upper East Coast Road||S$678||F||2004|
|Aquarius By The Park||Bedok Reservoir View||S$608||L99||2002|
|Arthur 118||Arthur Road||S$929||F||2006|
|Arthur Mansions||Arthur Road||S$960||F||2000|
|Aspen Loft||Joo Chiat Terrace||S$681||F||2005|
|Axis @ Siglap||East Coast Terrace||S$883||F||2010|
|Balcon East||Upper East Coast Road||S$841||F||2012|
|Bayshore Park||Bayshore Park||S$755||L99||1986|
|Baywater||Bedok Reservoir Road||S$618||L99||2006|
|Bedok Court||Bedok South Avenue 3||S$457||L99||1985|
|Bedok Park||Limau Garden||S$601||F||1970|
|Bedok Ria||Bedok Ria Crescent||S$790||F||1993|
|Bellezza @ Katong||Ceylon Road||S$662||F||2007|
|Bleu @ East Coast||Upper East Coast Road||S$740||F||2010|
|Blu Coral Condo||Lor L Telok Kurau||S$750||F||2011|
|Breeze By The East||Upper East Coast Road||S$806||F||2011|
|Butterworth 33||Butterworth Lane||S$713||F||2006|
|Butterworth 8||Butterworth Lane||S$797||F||2004|
|Butterworth View||Butterworth Lane||S$699||F||1999|
|Cadence Light||Telok Kurau Road||S$625||F||2007|
|Callidora Ville||Lor N Telok Kurau||S$724||F||2009|
|Camelot||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,172||L99||2001|
|Canary Park||Jalan Simpang Bedok||S$604||F||1992|
|Cantiz @ Rambai||Rambai Road||S$768||F||2011|
|Casa Aroma||Chiku Road||N/A||F||2003|
|Casa Merah||Tanah Merah Kechil Avenue||S$772||L99||2010|
|Casa Meyfort||Meyer Road||S$648||F||1992|
|Casafina||Bedok South Ave 1||S$566||L99||2000|
|Cascadale||Upper Changi Road East||S$533||F||1994|
|Casero @ Dunman||Dunman Road||S$895||F||2008|
|Casuarina Cove||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$659||L99||1996|
|Celestia||Joo Chiat Terrace||S$576||F||2010|
|Ceylon Crest||Ceylon Road||S$782||F||2005|
|Changi Court||Upper Changi Road East||S$680||F||1997|
|Changi Green||Upper Changi Road East||S$700||F||2001|
|Chapel Lodge||Lorong Stangee||S$804||F||1994|
|Chateau La Salle||La Salle Street||S$554||F||2012|
|Chelsea Lodge||Tanjong Katong Road||S$728||F||2000|
|Coastarina||East Coast Road||S$847||F||2006|
|Costa Del Sol||Bayshore Road||S$988||L99||2003|
|Costa Este||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$749||F||2010|
|Costa Rhu||Rhu Cross||S$879||L99||1998|
|Cote D’Azur||Marine Parade Road||S$1,002||L99||2005|
|Country Park Condo||Bedok Road||S$733||F||2003|
|Crane Court||Crane Road||S$775||F||2004|
|Crescendo Park||Jalan Tua Kong||S$662||F||1996|
|Crystal Rhu||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$985||F||2000|
|D’Ecosia||Still Road South||S$580||F||2003|
|D’Fresco||Joo Chiat Lane||S$787||F||2011|
|D’Manor||Tanah Merah Kechil Ave||S$439||L99||2001|
|D’Marine||Joo Chiat Road||S$825||F||2005|
|D’Sunrise||Joo Chiat Lane||S$627||F||2006|
|Dawn Ville||Butterworth Lane||S$705||F||1999|
|De Casalle||Lor N Telok Kurau||N/A||F||1996|
|De Centurion||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,081||F||2010|
|Dunman Place||Dunman Road||S$796||F||2001|
|Dunman View||Haig Road||S$824||L99||2004|
|E-Space||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$828||F||2008|
|East Bay||Tay Lian Teck Road||S$758||F||2012|
|East Coast Hill||Sennett Avenue||S$609||F||1977|
|East Coast Mansions||East Coast Road||S$683||F||1970|
|East Coast Residences||Upper East Coast Road||S$859||F||2010|
|East Elegance||Joo Chiat Terrace||S$664||F||2007|
|East Galleria||Sea Avenue||S$860||F||2008|
|East Grove||East Coast Road||S$619||F||1970|
|East Meadows||Tanah Merah Kechil Rd||S$681||L99||2001|
|East Palm||Palm Road||S$948||F||2004|
|East Signature||Elliot Walk||S$911||F||2005|
|East View||Brooke Road||S$808||F||1999|
|Eastern Lagoon I||Upper East Coast Road||S$735||F||1985|
|Eastern Lagoon II||Upper East Coast Road||S$942||F||1985|
|Eastwood Centre||Eastwood Road||S$575||L99||1998|
|Eastwood Green||Eastwood Road||S$563||L99||1999|
|Eastwood Park||Eastwood Walk||S$475||L99||1998|
|Eastwood Ville||Eastwood Terrace||S$422||L99||1998|
|Ebony Mansions||Lorong M Telok Kurau||S$690||F||1995|
|Eight @ East Coast||Upper East Coast Road||S$533||F||2009|
|Emerald East||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,139||F||1998|
|Emery Point||Ipoh Lane||S$718||F||2005|
|Emprado Suites||Lorong N Telok Kurau||S$895||F||2009|
|Equatorial Apartments||Meyer Road||S$954||F||1977|
|Espira Residence||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$641||F||2010|
|Espira Spring||Lorong G Telok Kuarau||S$805||F||2010|
|Excelsior Gardens||Minaret Walk||S$806||F||1991|
|Fairmount Condo||Eastwood Road||S$664||L99||2000|
|Fernwood Towers||Fernwood Terrace||S$817||F||1994|
|Finland Gardens||East Coast Avenue||S$619||F||1989|
|Fort Gardens||Fort Road||S$814||F||1993|
|Fortredale||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$678||F||1999|
|Fortune Jade||Dunman Road||S$814||F||2004|
|Frankel Estate||Siglap Road||S$919||F||1970|
|Galaxy Towers||Onan Road||S$563||F||1989|
|Gallery 8||Pulasan Road||S$641||F||2004|
|Goldearth Lodge||Joo Chiat Place||S$623||F||2002|
|Goldearth View||Joo Chiat Place||S$724||F||1970|
|Gracious Mansions||Jalan Rendang||S$632||F||1970|
|Grand Duchess at St Pat’s||Saint Patrick’s Road||S$958||F||2010|
|Grand Residence||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$558||F||2008|
|Haig Court||Haig Road||S$840||F||2004|
|Haig Eleven||Haig Avenue||S$740||F||2006|
|Haig Gardens||Ipoh Lane||S$619||F||1980|
|Hawaii Tower||Meyer Road||S$971||F||1984|
|Heritage Residences||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$623||F||2008|
|Homey Gardens||Lorong M Telok Kurau||S$702||F||2004|
|Idyllic East||Upper East Coast Road||S$795||F||2011|
|Idyllic Residences||Lor M Telok Kurau||S$587||F||2009|
|Imperial Heights||Ipoh Lane||S$1,150||F||2009|
|JC Residence||Joo Chiat Lane||S$560||L99||2006|
|Katong Gardens||Tembeling Road||S$640||F||1984|
|Katong Omega Apt||East Coast Road||N/A||F||1988|
|Katong Park Towers||Arthur Road||S$695||L99||1987|
|Kew Gate||Limau Garden||N/A||L99||1997|
|Kew Green||Kew Crescent||S$422||L99||1998|
|Kew Residencia||Kew Crescent||S$405||L99||1997|
|Kew Vale Collection||Kew Avenue||S$633||L99||1997|
|King’s Mansion||Amber Road||S$873||F||1980|
|La Meyer||Meyer Road||S$960||F||1994|
|Lagoon View||Marine Parade Road||S$511||L99||1970|
|Laguna 88||Eastwood Road||S$602||L99||2001|
|Laguna Green||Jalan Hajijah||S$693||L99||1999|
|Laguna Park||Marine Parade Road||S$757||L99||1993|
|Laguna Villas||Upper East Coast Road||N/A||F||1993|
|Landbay Condo||Jalan Hajijah||S$767||F||1999|
|Le Conney Park (phrase 2)||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$573||F||1997|
|Le Merritt||Lorong M Telok Kurau||S$803||F||2008|
|Legenda @ Joo Chiat||Joo Chiat Lane||S$605||L99||2004|
|Limau Villas||Limau Terrace||S$699||L99||1998|
|Livingston Mansions||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$598||F||2002|
|Lucky Court||Lucky Heights||S$530||F||1990|
|Mabelle||Lor M Telok Kurau||S$785||F||2010|
|Malvern Springs||Onan Road||S$682||F||2004|
|Mandarin Gardens||Siglap Road||S$691||L99||1986|
|Marine Point||Marine Parade Road||S$545||F||1985|
|Martia 8||Martia Road||S$568||F||2002|
|Martia Residence||Martia Road||S$508||F||2007|
|Meier Suites||Margate Road||N/A||F||2014|
|Mera Terrace||Seagull Walk||S$669||F||1997|
|Meyer Park||Meyer Road||S$1,194||F||1985|
|Meyer Residence||Meyer Place||S$1,208||F||2009|
|Mia Place||Arthur Road||N/A||F||1997|
|Mistral Park||Jalan Angin Laut||S$626||F||1995|
|Mountbatten Lodge||Mouthbatten Road||S$1,304||F||1998|
|Mountbatten Regency||Mouthbatten Road||S$745||F||2007|
|Mountbatten Suites||Mountbatten Road||S$725||F||2009|
|Naturalis||Lor M Telok Kurau||S$820||F||2011|
|Neptune Court||Marine Vista||S$581||L99||1975|
|Ocean Park||East Coast Road||S$845||F||1983|
|Odeon Katong Shop’ Com||East Coast Road||S$810||L99||1970|
|OLA Residences||Mountbatten Road||S$965||F||2012|
|One Amber||Amber Gardens||S$1,115||F||2010|
|One @ Pulasan||Pulasan Road||S$1,012||F||2009|
|One Fort||Fort Road||S$1,052||F||2005|
|One K Green Lane||Green Lane||S$624||F||2005|
|Opera Estate||Carmen Street||S$724||F||1980|
|Optima @ Tanah Merah||New Upper Changi Road||S$821||L99||2014|
|Ovada 8||Koon Seng Road||S$609||F||2002|
|Palazzetto||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$917||F||2003|
|Palm Galleria||Lor K Telok Kurau||S$947||F||2010|
|Palm Loft||Joo Chiat Terrace||S$554||F||2008|
|Palm Oasis||Lorong H Telok Kurau||S$836||F||2009|
|Palm Vista||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$739||F||2010|
|Palmwoods||Upper Changi Road||S$558||L99||2000|
|Paradise Palms||Dunman Road||S$833||F||2003|
|Parbury Hill Condo||Parbury Avenue||S$749||F||1998|
|Parc Seabreeze||Joo Chiat Road||S$1,269||F||2012|
|Park East||Jalan Tua Kong||S$710||F||1994|
|Parkshore||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$999||F||1995|
|Parkway Mansion||Amber Road||S$616||F||1982|
|Peach Garden||Peach Garden||S$886||F||1970|
|Pebble Bay||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,122||L99||1998|
|Picardy Gardens||Jalan Pari Burong||S$445||F||1975|
|Pine View||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$564||F||1970|
|Pinehurst Condo||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$638||F||1995|
|Poshgrove East||East Coast Road||S$860||F||2008|
|Prestige Residence||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$867||F||2008|
|Rambutan Mansions||Rambutan Road||S$574||F||1994|
|Residence 118||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$715||F||2006|
|Residence 66||Telok Kurau Road||S$700||F|
|Residences @ Limau||Limau Grove||S$585||F||2007|
|Residences @ Stangee||Lor Stangee||S$517||F||2010|
|Residences 81||Lorong G Telok Kurau||N/A||F||2010|
|Rich East Garden||Upper East Coast Road||S$565||F||1983|
|Ritz Regency||Ipoh Lane||S$820||F||2010|
|Riviera Residences||Riviera Drive||S$847||F||2008|
|Rose Mansions||Rose Lane||S$664||F||2002|
|Rose Ville||Rose Lane||S$607||F||1995|
|Roxy Square||Brooke Road||N/A||F||2000|
|Royale Mansions||Pulasan Road||S$620||F||1992|
|Saint Patrick’s Loft||Saint Patrick’s Road||S$759||F||2010|
|Sanctuary Green||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$829||L99||2003|
|Santa Fe Mansions||Margate Road||S$966||F||1998|
|Sea Avenue Residences||Sea Avenue||S$842||F||2006|
|Seaview Point||Amber Road||S$704||F||1994|
|Seraya Breeze||Seraya Road||S$664||F||2003|
|Seraya Ville||Seraya Lane||S$555||F||1992|
|Shu Jin Court||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$559||F||1970|
|Siglap Court||Siglap Road||S$835||F||1970|
|Signature Crest||Gray Lane||S$680||F||2006|
|Signature Residence||Green Lane||S$846||F||2008|
|Singa Garden||Mouthbatten Road||S$655||F||1970|
|Spring @ Katong||Ceylon Road||S$647||F||2007|
|Spring @ Langsat||Langsat Road||N/A||F||2013|
|Springvale||East Coast Road||S$662||F||1995|
|St Patrick’s Garden||Saint Patrick’s Road||S$664||F||1981|
|St Patrick’s Villa||Saint Patrick’s Road||S$548||F||1970|
|Stillingia Court||Still Road||S$996||F||1970|
|Stratford Court||Bedok Ria Crescent||S$559||L99||2000|
|Suites @ Amber||Amber Road||S$1,350||F||2011|
|Summer Gardens||Upper Changi Road East||S$380||L99||2004|
|Sunhaven||Upper Changi Road||S$673||F||2003|
|Sunny Palms||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$370||F||2004|
|Sunshine Grandeur||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$944||F||2008|
|Sunshine Mansions||Joo Chiat Place||S$596||F||2006|
|Sunshine Regency||Rambai Road||S$651||F||2007|
|Sunshine Residences||Lorong K Telok Kurau||N/A||F||2006|
|Taipan Grand||Marine Parade Road||S$889||F||2005|
|Tanah Merah Green||Jalan Tanah Rata||S$719||F||2000|
|Tanamera Crest||Pari Dedap Walk||S$624||L99||2004|
|Tanjong Ria Condo||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$800||L99||1997|
|Telok Indah||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$447||L99||1996|
|Telok Kurau Court||Telok Kurau Road||S$432||F||1970|
|The Adara||Chapel Road||S$626||F||2013|
|The Albracca||Meyer Road||S$565||F||1990|
|The Amarelle||Lim Ah Woo Road||S$800||F||2010|
|The Ambra||Lor H Telok Kurau||S$570||F||2012|
|The Ambrosia||Lor N Telok Kurau||S$835||F||2011|
|The Amery||Lor K Telok Kuaru||S$809||F||2012|
|The Aristo||Amber Road||S$1,074||F||2013|
|The Atria at Meyer||Meyer Road||S$1,003||F||1996|
|The Azzuro||Lor H Telok Kurau||S$589||F||2014|
|The Bale||Lorong H Telok Kurau||S$796||F||2008|
|The Baycourt||Upper East Coast Road||S$716||F||1994|
|The Bayshore||Bayshore Road||S$736||L99||1999|
|The Beacon Edge||Tembeling Road||S$670||F||2010|
|The Belvedere||Meyer Road||S$1,151||F||2008|
|The Carpmaelina||Carpmael Road||S$628||F||2005|
|The Clearwater||Bedok Reservoir View||S$682||L99||2002|
|The Daffodil||Upper East Coast Road||S$740||F||1999|
|The East Side||Joo Chiat Road||N/A||F||2006|
|The Espira||Lorong L Telok Kurau||S$775||F||2010|
|The Esta||Amber Gardens||S$877||F||2009|
|The Geranium||Mangis Road||S$707||F||2007|
|The Glacier||Joo Chiat Place||S$508||F||2005|
|The Glenwood Regency||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$801||F||1985|
|The Hacienda||Hacienda Grove||S$650||F||1985|
|The Lucent||Lor N Telok Kurau||S$620||F||2012|
|The Makena||Meyer Road||S$1,124||F||1998|
|The Medley||Lor G Telok Kurau||S$898||F||2009|
|The Mint Residences||Joo Chiat Terrace||S$656||F||2008|
|The Montage||Lorong M Telok Kurau||S$788||F||2010|
|The Nclave||Lorong N Telok Kurau||S$766||F||2008|
|The Prominence||Haig Road||S$566||F||2006|
|The Sea View||Amber Road||S$1,294||F||2008|
|The Seafront on Meyer||Meyer Road||S$1,311||F||2011|
|The Silver Fir||Butterworth Lane||S$876||F||2012|
|The Sovereign||Meyer Road||S$1,401||F||1993|
|The Springfield||Chempaka Kuning Link||S$444||L99||1999|
|The Summit||Upper East Coast Road||S$708||F||1994|
|The Sunnidora||Lor G Telok Kurau||S$814||F||2006|
|The Sunny Legend||Lorong H Telok Kurau||S$715||F||2006|
|The Taipan||Jalan Hajijah||S$515||F||2003|
|The Tanamera||Tanah Merah Kechil Rd||S$593||L99||1994|
|The Treeline||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$851||F||2008|
|The Tropic Gardens||Upper East Coast Road||S$573||F||1995|
|The Vermilion||Lorong G Telok Kurau||S$488||F||1970|
|The Verte||Lorong H Telok Kurau||S$613||F||2012|
|The Vesta||Lorong K Telok Kurau||S$699||F||2008|
|The View @ Meyer||Meyer Road||S$1,330||F||2010|
|The Waterside||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,100||F||1993|
|Tierra Vue Condo||Saint Patrick’s Road||S$995||F||2010|
|Tropicana||Jalan Tiga Ratus||S$514||L999||1994|
|Venezio||Upper East Coast Road||S$662||F||2006|
|Veranda||Lor K Telok Kuaru||S$632||F||2007|
|Versilia On Haig||Ipoh Lane||S$888||F||2012|
|Villa Marina||Jalan Sempadan||S$607||L99||1999|
|Villa Martia||Martia Road||S$745||F||2000|
|Villas La Vue||Siglap View||N/A||F||2010|
|Water Place||Tanjong Rhu Road||S$1,063||L99||2004|
|Waterfront Waves||Bedok Reservoir Road||S$718||L99||2012|
|Whitfield Garden||East Coast Terrace||S$589||F||1970|
|Yi Li Apartment||Tay Lian Teck Road||N/A||F||1970|
|Zephyr Park||Sea Breeze Avenue||N/A||F||1993|
David Swenson tours internationally as one of the world’s leading Ashtanga Yoga teachers. He has written several books, including Ashtanga Yoga: The Practice Manual, and produced a series of instructional yoga videos as well as a series of audiocassettes. We caught up with Swenson in Houston, Texas, where he lives.
Yoga Journal: How did you discover Ashtanga Yoga?
David Swenson: I ran away from home. I had just turned 16. I sent my parents a letter explaining that I loved them and knew they loved me, but I couldn’t live in Texas any longer. Long hair, yoga, and a vegetarian lifestyle didn’t offend anybody on the West Coast, so I rented a room and got a job flipping hamburgers in Encinitas, California. One day, a surfing buddy invited me to a yoga class where people were doing these incredible, intricate, fluid asanas. Though this yoga was so hard I couldn’t finish the first session, I loved it. And I have loved Ashtanga ever since.
YJ: You eventually went to India to study with Pattabhi Jois. What was that like?
DS: There were four students in Mysore when I arrived there in 1976. We met three times daily for intense asana and Pranayama classes. These were incredibly challenging, enthralling, and transforming. It was perhaps the most difficult thing I’d ever done except for coming back home.
YJ: Home to Texas?
DS: Yes. It was a hard landing. I had to figure out how to integrate my experience in India within the “real” world. Nobody was interested in yoga. By and by, I started feeling bitter. I wrote Pattabhi Jois a long letter asking “Hey, what about the eight limbs? What’s the meaning of life? Who is God? Why are we here? And when do I get samadhi?” I thought these were reasonable questions, yet when he didn’t reply, I began to search for the answers on my own.
I looked everywhere, including astrology, parapsychology, palmistry—you name it. Then I ran into some folks from the Krishna temple. They had answers. I shaved my head and became a Hare Krishna on April Fools’ Day, 1982. For the next five years, I lived as a celibate, gave up asanas, memorized the Bhagavad Gita in Sanskrit, and traveled the world giving lectures and raising money. Until one day, as I stood hawking the Gita on a street corner in Houston, my mom happened by. She saw that nobody was buying books from me, so she walked up and said, “Oh honey, no one will take one from you. Give me one.”
A Texas mother’s worst nightmare. But she showered me with unconditional love. When I got back to the temple, they chastised me for not raising enough money. I’d had enough. It was time to move on, so I quit.
YJ: And went back to yoga?
DS: I bought a suit and went into commerce. I felt completely disillusioned with spirituality. I became a hard-nosed businessman and a closet yogi. But this didn’t work for me. Within a few years I found myself deep in debt and very unhappy.
Fortunately, my life has a life of its own. I happened to be in Hawaii in 1989 when Pattabhi Jois came to teach on his American tour. I attended; he didn’t remember me. Ten years had passed. I looked completely different. But at one point in the workshop, Jois put his hands against my spine to adjust my back and called out, “Oh, David Swenson,” then burst into laughter, and started chanting “Hare Krishna, Hare Ram.”
He had recognized me from touch! And he seemed so happy to see me that I suddenly felt my whole journey come to an end. I was home again. I had found the answer to all my questions.
YJ: How so?
DS: Jois says, 99 percent practice, 1 percent theory. Yoga takes care of you if you stick with it. You start to sense what’s right and what’s wrong, and you follow a path of moral living and meditation because it feels right. The answers are in the practice, and the practice never judges you. It’s ready when you are.
YJ: In one sentence, what did you realize about the meaning of life?
DS: That there’s a big difference between doing yoga and simply making an asana out of yourself.
Haute Living, 27 June 2007
Kwek Leng Beng is pure business. He is known for being highly driven, and addicted to making deals. This billionaire magnate and international property developer has amassed a plethora of hotels that span the globe from London to New York to China, but Kwek’s real passion is making an indelible mark on his beloved city of Singapore’s dynamic, changing skyline.
Kwek, whose UK-based Millennium & Copthorne (M&C) Hotels Plc group once owned half of the prestigious Plaza hotel in New York, is taking his hotel know-how and developing the St. Regis Residences, Singapore, among other projects. As Singapore’s first hotel and residence property, St. Regis Residences will introduce world-class designs to this island nation, and set the country’s new luxury real estate benchmark.
Executive chairman of City Developments Limited (CDL), Southeast Asia’s second largest property developer with 20,000 homes and 100 developments in Singapore, and Executive Chairman of Hong Leong Group of companies (parent co to CDL), Kwek’s acumen as a businessman and entrepreneur is renowned worldwide. Chairman Kwek, having just returned from his first holiday in years-he doesn’t enjoy taking time off, claiming, “I love business more.”-outlines his vision for Singapore during an interview with Haute Living, a vision that rings with an enthusiasm that is nothing less than contagious. “We want to be a biotech city, the medicinal hub, a city of amazing integrated resorts with downsized casinos,” he exclaims. He gets excited when talking about Singapore’s rapidly changing landscape, which will position the city as the leading dynamic business and tourism hub in Asia.
Once dubbed ‘Kwek Land Bank’ for his group’s sizable land bank in Singapore, Kwek is the country’s second-richest man, ranked 185th on Forbes 2006 list of the wealthiest people wordwide, and stands to gain as Singapore lures the jet-set with private banking services and new tax laws. He heads up an empire worth more than US$20 billion, with a worldwide staff of 30,000. One of the most influential players in Singapore’s luxury real estate boom that has led to a massive investment by developers in residential, hotel, office, and real estate markets, Kwek has his hands full with the St. Regis, Sentosa Cove, and Marina Bay projects, and as an advisor to the new US$3.6 billion integrated resort being built in Singapore by Las Vegas Sands corporation, set to open in 2009.
Kwek’s twin investment strategy- hotels with a residential component-has been taken to a new level with the St. Regis Hotel & Residences. Situated close to famed shopping district of Orchard Road, Kwek says that he has tried to create an iconic design and a concept of luxury lifestyle living at the St. Regis. Kwek himself loves luxury. He says, “I enjoy the finer things in life; I enjoy a good lifestyle and sense of design. I have the Maybach and the Bentley, Aston Martins and Ferraris.” His main residence is a mansion on one-acre in the prime district of Singapore, but he may choose to live at the St. Regis, where he has already purchased two sky villas. He describes these residences as exclusive, limited edition, and world class. “The arrival of a branded development where residents can enjoy the extended privileges and services from the adjoining six-star St. Regis hotel is a first in Singapore, and very exciting,” Kwek says.
The 20-story St. Regis Hotel, with 299 guestrooms, is planned to open in 2007, while the residences are expected to be ready in 2008. CDL will develop the residences along with Hong Leong Holdings Ltd and TID Pte Ltd (a joint venture company with Mitsui Fudosan, a leading real estate company in Japan), managed by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. The estimated price-range for the 173 chic three- and four-bedroom residences start at around US$3.1 million, ranging in size from 1,500 to 4,000 square feet. Residents will have a private elevator lobby leading directly into their suites. Owners of the illustrious residences will also have access to the prestigious St. Regis Hotel’s Bespoke services, which includes personal butlers, chauffeurs, and flower arrangements. Those with truly deep pockets (a la Kwek) can opt for a sky villa, upper roof decks that will house bedrooms, a private pool, and steam room, coming in between 5,000 to 7,200 square feet each.
CDL has created some of the most extravagant show suites in Singapore for the property’s launch, designed to show off handpicked furnishings and fittings. Kwek says, “I have seen condos in New York and London, and without boasting, I can say that the standard of finishing at St. Regis is far better than I have seen elsewhere. We have the best imported marble, the best of everything… New York might have showrooms and a sales office where you can see the type of material that will be used, but in Singapore, potential buyers get to see the actual showroom apartments.
“At the end of the day, it has to be functional and beautiful.” Kwek brings this philosophy to several other high-end projects in the city, all in very strategic locations. He is building a sail-shaped skyscraper, called The Sail @ Marina Bay, part of the multi-billion dollar waterfront that will include the casino, a marina, and parks. Kwek explains, “I wanted a design of my own. I wanted a ship sailing out into the harbor in the form of a sculpture.” He created this twin-tower project with 1,111 luxury apartments, and managed to sell out within weeks of launch.
His iconic project, One Shenton, was launched in January 2007, and sold out in mere hours. Next to be launched? Quayside Isle, a marina-lifestyle project featuring waterfront homes on Sentosa Island, complete with W Hotel & Residences.
Singapore’s high-end market began taking off in late 2005, after steep declines from a property crash ten years ago. With a slew of new luxury projects, Kwek bullishly predicts a 10-20 percent rise in home prices next year. “Singapore is seeing a buying frenzy,” he says. “We are just at the start of an upward trend as the economy expands.” He also sees a lot more foreigners purchasing in Singapore. “In the old days, it would be about 20 percent, but with the St. Regis, foreigners are 65 percent. Because the population base in Singapore is small, the government has been promoting [the country] to foreign talent as a wonderful place to live and enjoy, and the people are listening.”
While other developers now race to launch new projects, Kwek understands that success depends on the design the developer can offer. “Buyers are very discerning,” he explains. “They understand if you want to sell your project at good prices, you have to do something more than what you have done in the past. A lot of that depends on creativity.”
Creativity is something that Kwek has brought to virtually every project he has gotten his hands on since he entered the real estate world at a very young age. Kwek is 53% owner of M&C, which currently owns 112 hotels and operates around a dozen. M&C’s origins come from the Hong Leong Group Singapore, an empire built from rubber plantations, cement, and property in the 1940′s and 1950′s by Kwek’s father, Kwek Hong Pong. Upon returning to Singapore from London with his law degree in 1963, young Kwek already had a knack of rising to the occasion. “At the age of 30, I took over a company called City Developments Limited, then a loss-making company,” recalled Kwek. Kwek was able to turn the business around, allowing the company-purchased for US$3 million in 1971-to become a favorite blue chip company in Singapore, with a capitalization of US$8.5 billion. “This deal was the start, combining my love for takeovers and property. It was very inspiring.”
He credits his father, whom he described as a tough master, for teaching him high standards. “When I couldn’t stand it anymore, I ran away to Malaysia, and he told someone to go and bring me back,” Kwek jokes. “His way of teaching was not actually explaining. He would ring at any time of the day and say ‘I want you to do this.’ Usually, I would not do it straight away, and within ten minutes, he would ring back and want to know how anything could be more important than what he asked me to do.”
Hiromichi Iwasa, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mitsui Fudosan, has known Kwek and his family for years. He says, “The late Mr. Kwek passed on his legacy of being a far-sighted entrepreneur. Kwek looks after joint venture partners.”
From his father, Kwek learned the importance of following up quickly, how to be innovative, and how to get the best customer. He also credits Leslie Grossman, a man from New York, as being a mentor, along with his father. “Both have passed away,” says Kwek, “but I learned a lot from them, especially that you must be passionate about what you do. If you are passionate, you can push the envelope farther, and be better than others.” He sets high standards, and has a competitive streak that extends to his morning bouts on the tennis courts. But regardless of where he is, his focus is always on work. He explains, “I work ten hours a day, but sometimes, I am so interested in something that I can’t sleep. My wife understands what makes the difference between an outstanding person and an average person, and is very understanding.” His wife, Cecilia is qualified as a barrister. She offers Kwek design tips inspired by her travels to art museums and concert halls, and her trips to art auctions in Paris and Venice. Her main advice is to not be carried away by minimalist or overly modern designs. “I always tell him to respect the local aesthetic, lifestyle, and Feng Shui principals.” She best sums up Kwek when asked what he really is like: “Kwek will not take no for an answer. He discusses five different topics in five minutes, and has extraordinary vision.”
These sentiments are echoed by others who have had the pleasure of doing business with this real estate mastermind. Dolly Lenz, Vice Chairman for Douglas Elliman says, “During my many trips to Asia over the past 20 years I have had the opportunity to meet practically all the movers and shakers shaping the Asian landscape. None has impressed me more with his vision and drive than Kwek. He is truly a man on a mission. He is simply the savviest and most brilliant developer in the Far East.”
Kwek’s talent for identifying trends, and following his gut feeling in business dealings has earned him tremendous respect from others in the industry. “The first time I met Kwek, I flew to Singapore with an offer to buy The Plaza [hotel in New York],” says Mike Naftali, President and CEO of Elad Properties. “My first impression was that he was a very savvy businessman-extremely smart, and knows the business upside down. But he was also a person you could talk to, and try to negotiate with in good faith.” Naftali’s partial condo-conversion plans as a way to boost the hotel fortunes at The Plaza sat well with Kwek, and the deal was completed before Naftali flew back to New York. Currently, the two are involved in other projects together, including a high-end residential condo development in Singapore. “I see he really cares about details; he personally looks into every detail. What I admire about him most is that he’s very focused, very smart, and he is tough with the numbers-Tough in a good way.”
Another friend and co-investor, Dr. K.S. Lo, deputy Chairman and Managing Director of Great Eagle Holdings Ltd in Hong Kong, backs that view. “Kwek does not have the air of a big tycoon, even though he was then already one of the richest men in Asia. He’s very, very intelligent, but he would pretend he doesn’t know anything, and would keep asking questions, and playing devil’s advocate… Kwek drives a hard bargain while negotiating a deal, but he’s reasonable and he’s trustworthy. He always keeps his word.”
For the future, Kwek is keeping an eye on China, where M&C has been awarded its first hotel management contract, with the Millennium Hongqiao Hotel in Shanghai in the prime business district. This move comes years after M&C first moved into China. “We were the first to have gone to Beijing and developed a gated community with single-family homes in 1994. It was very profitable, but then we stopped.” Just last year, he purchased a hotel in Beijing, to be ready in 2008.
In Los Angeles, Kwek is considering creating condos at his Millennium Biltmore Hotel; In London, he is being courted by developers to do condos at five of his hotels. He is considering a hotel/residence project with a partner in Japan as well. Kwek also has a solid presence in Thailand, including a 600-unit residential project, and an additional hotel development in Bangkok as well as the largest shopping mall in Phuket.
His various projects have led him to travel the world, but Singapore is where he chooses to spend the majority of his time. Here, he settles in with his two sons. One son, age 26, just graduated from Wharton Business School, and is studying International Relations and Comparative Politics at Columbia. His other son worked at Credit Suisse, then at one of Kwek’s New York hotels. Now he is in China, trying to take a loss-making company recently acquired and turn a profit. Do we have yet another Kwek that will one day be changing the global landscape in such a dynamic way? One can only hope.
“There is a Hindu tantric saying, nādevo devam arcayet, ‘by none but a god shall a god be worshipped.’ The deity of one’s worship is a function of one’s own state of mind. But it is also a product of one’s culture. Catholic nuns do not have visions of the Buddha, nor do Buddhist nuns have visions of Christ. Ineluctably, the image of any god beheld—whether interpreted as beheld in heaven or as beheld at çakra 6–will be of a local ethnic idea historically conditioned, a metaphor, therefore, and thus to be recognized as transparent to transcendence. Remaining fixed to its form, whether with simple faith or in saintly vision, is therefore to remain in mind historically bound and attached to an appearance.”
~ Joseph Campbell, The Inner Reaches of Outer Space: Metaphor as Myth and as Religion, p.39
That’s why he decided not to be a doctor and became a corporate head honcho instead
Over a two-hour chat with Koh Boon Hwee, one learns three key things about the corporate titan.
One, he does not like to give up on what he has started.
Two, he does not look back.
Three, he believes education is the key to changing one’s life.
These attributes have helped him navigate through life more than just niftily.
Just look at his curriculum vitae. A respected investor who co-founded private equity firm Credence Partners, the 63-year-old has chaired some of the country’s biggest and most successful organisations including SingTel, Singapore Airlines and DBS Bank.
He serves on the board of several public and private companies, both locally and in the United States and Hong Kong. He also chairs the board of trustees of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and is credited for overseeing its growth into an internationally recognised research university.
“I’m just lucky,” he says, trying to downplay his achievements. Several good mentors and some astute decisions at critical junctures, he suggests, are responsible for who, what and where he is.
Breaking out into a hearty laugh, he adds: “You know, being lucky is better than being smart.”
Perhaps so but Mr Koh – who has a first-class honours degree in mechanical engineering from Imperial College London and an MBA (Distinction) from Harvard Business School – also has one heck of a brain.
Almost sheepishly, the eldest of three children of a trader and a homemaker says: “Studies came very easily to me.” He breezed through his years at St Andrew’s and was Singapore’s top boy in the O-level and A-level examinations.
I carry the weight of you in my heavy heart
And the wind is so icy, I am numb
I carry the weight of you heading back to start
With the thousand eyes on me, I stumble on
I am tired, I’m growing older
I’m getting weaker everyday, yeah
I carry the weight of you
I carry the weight of you
Lay down here
Beside me in the shallow water
Beside me where the sun is shining on us still
Lay down here
Beside me in the hallowed water
Beside me where the silver lining stays until
The sirens’ calling
We follow the sun down low till we hit the night
And you hold me so tightly
It’s hard to breathe
“Sirens” is a song by British singer-songwriter Cher Lloyd. It premiered on 14 March 2014. “Sirens” was lauded by music critics, with many praising the song’s mature sound, Lloyd’s vocals, and also noting the change in direction from Lloyd’s previous work.
The music video for “Sirens” premiered on Lloyd’s Vevo account on 29th April 2014. In the video, Lloyd plays a woman whose husband has become involved in drugs, showing the effect that drug use can have on a family. While Lloyd’s character is seen caring for the couple’s young daughter, Police raid the house, arresting her partner. Lloyd then carries the evidence through the house and burns it in a barrel in the garden, soon returning to the house where she is greeted by her young daughter as they sit together on the floor. In the “Behind the Scenes” footage, Lloyd reveals that the story of the video is inspired by a similar event from her childhood, and that the young daughter in the video represents Lloyd herself at a younger age. In an interview after the premiere, Lloyd revealed that the story behind the video retells an event from her childhood in which her father was arrested when she was five years old.
“Pressure” is a song by Nadia Ali, Starkillers and Alex Kenji. It was released on February 15, 2011 by Spinnin’ Records. The song reached No. 16 on the Ultratip Chart in Wallonia, Belgium.
Ali described “Pressure” as ‘a fun song venting about the frustrations and expectations which come with being successful’. The song was left untouched until March 2010, when at the Winter Music Conference Ali introduced Terranova to Bacci, who was subsequently asked to collaborate with the two and co-produce the track creating the final version.
The Alesso remix of “Pressure” became a club and festival anthem during summer 2011 and was included in their sets by prominent DJs such as Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, Kaskade, Calvin Harris and Swedish House Mafia. The song was described by Kaskade as the “Tune of 2011″. The remix was also nominated for the Best Progressive Track at the 27th International Dance Music Awards at the Winter Music Conference.[
“Empty yourself of everything.
Let the mind become still.
The ten thousand things rise and fall
while the Self watches their return.
They grow and flourish
and then return to the source.
Returning to the source is stillness,
which is the way of nature.
The way of nature is unchanging.
Knowing constancy is insight.
Not knowing constancy
leads to disaster.
the mind is open.
With an open mind,
you will be openhearted.
you will act wisely.
Being wise, you will
attain the divine.
Being divine, you will be
at one with the Tao.
Being at one with the Tao
And though the body dies,
the Tao will never pass away.”
~ Lao Tsu-Tao te Ching