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Eastern & Oriental Berhad: Crafting Community-Centric Townships

Imagine living in a tropical paradise, where you awake to a glorious sunrise shining across the waters or drift off to sleep to the sound of gentle calming waves. This is what residents of Eastern & Oriental Berhad’s (E&O) Seri Tanjung Pinang (STP) development in Penang have at their doorsteps. It is a home with a view, set amidst a world class waterfront community. For E&O, building a township is so much more than simply designing award-winning buildings. It is about building communities that stand the test of time. Drawing from its heritage of luxurious, timeless designs, E&O prides itself on designing townships curated around the evolving needs, wants and desires of its communities.

This can clearly be seen at STP, where residents are blessed with not only first-class craftsmanship and amenities, but also world class landscaping, facilities and green communities that allow for communal interaction at every corner. As resident Foong Kok Ching puts it, “I have met many neighbours and made friends with those I see regularly, especially other dog owners. By making full use of the facilities every day – jogging, walking the dogs, swimming, and cycling – I’ve lost 7kg since moving in,” he said.

With perfectly manicured landscaped parks and seafront promenades, residents can enjoy a weekend of leisure having a picnic at the park or heading over to Straits Green, a playground by-the-sea, to enjoy its 4-acre green filled with water features, wet playground gazebos and running tracks. There are also free weekly activities such as Zumba, yoga and cooking classes for residents to enjoy and socialise.

STP is also lined with wide pathways designed to encourage residents to walk, jog or cycle for exercise, or to run nearby errands, while enjoying the sight of Ketapang trees forming the main boulevard and palm-tree lined roads. Resident Gillian Lim used the word “awesome” to describe the lifestyle in STP, “I love living here. I love my morning walks and getting to see the sea before sunrise!”

Echoing her thoughts was fellow resident Tang Yin Kham who said, “I’ve always loved cycling but never really had the chance to do so until I moved to STP. I can say that I have a much better quality of life since moving here; I sleep so well now.” Acknowledging these testimonials, Eastern & Oriental Berhad’s Managing Director Kok Tuck Cheong said, “Putting communities first was the pivotal point of the STP masterplan. It was all about designing around the needs and desires of the community we envisioned would make STP home. So, it was not just about beautifully-designed and finished homes, but very much also about secure environments, green spaces, broad walkways, beautiful landscaping, and communal spaces designed for shared activities. We strived to build a community that would flourish.”

STP was also built with convenience in mind. Everything was designed to be within walking distance from homes, including its festival retail marina Straits Quay, Penang’s first seafront mall. With its breadth of F&B, retail and service offerings, this mall has become a beacon for STP and its nearby communities. It not only offers a space to run daily errands but also for relaxing evenings along the promenade. This attraction is also a tranquil space for seafarers, who have also found the marina at Straits Quay to be welcoming and comforting refuge. Commenting on STP’s unique attractions, Kok said, “One unexpected outcome is how Straits Quay has become a highly sought-after spot for wedding photoshoots. We have seen so many newly-married couples coming to catch the sunset as part of their wedding photos, not to mention those who have found it the perfect spot to pop that all-important question!”

STP has also been designed with children in mind. Bearing in mind how children enjoy running around or cycling outdoors, security is an important feature of this gated and guarded community, with strategic security guard posts placed around the development so that residents can be rest assured that their sanctuary is safe.

“In terms of more bang for the buck, this is the place to be. STP is a child-friendly neighbourhood where our kids can cycle safely on the streets,” said David and Claire Lacey. E&O’s focus on safety and security is probably best exemplified at STP’s Quayside condominium, which prides itself in having world-class integrated security systems. Designed by GDSS Security Consultants, the system uses a multi-layered approach complemented by state-of-the-art security technology. Sophisticated high-end control systems are also used to monitor resident and visitor access, as well as lift access.

Commending the effort to ensure the residents have peace of mind from excellent security and safety standards, resident Tan Siew Hoon said, “Hourly patrols ensure top notch security, pest control systems reduce health risks and landscaping is done well.” Homes on STP feature tropical designs, with an emphasis on ample living spaces, large floor to ceiling heights, generous window openings, abundant balconies and in some houses, internal courtyards. Some residents also get to enjoy the privacy of linear parks and a seaside promenade.

“When it came to the homes, we took even more care to ensure that there was something special in every phase,” said Kok. He cited STP’s maiden terrace houses Ariza, which debuted in 2005. “The classic colonial designs, inspired by 19 th century Straits-eclectic homes, were completely different from other new developments in Penang at that time, and took the market by storm. We followed this with Avalon homes in 2006, which featured air wells, high ceilings of up to 11-feet, open concept courtyards, large windows and a very generous house dimension measuring up to 3,800 square feet for the terrace and up to 4,000 square feet for the semi-detached.” He added that E&O also ensured that the entire development features lush landscaping, backyard gardens and streetscaping, which turned unsightly back lanes into welcoming green areas.

Villas By-The-Sea took STP’s cache to new levels. Located at the northeast coastline, the bungalow development featured three different designs to suit the varied lifestyles of residents – Martinique, Abrezza and Skye. Martinique offers two-storey villas measuring between 9,000 square feet to 13,000 square feet with rolling green lawns, private sea frontage, a private lap pool, a spacious courtyard and a private pavilion. Abrezza, on the other hand, stands three storeys tall and comes with a fully-equipped modern wet and dry kitchen complete with appliances. There is a magnificent master bedroom suite with a luxurious bathroom. This home exudes elegance with the rich marble and timber flooring, along with a patio and reflection pool.

For lovers of all things contemporary, Skye is the villa to own. With modern, cutting-edge designs, this three-storey bungalow allows ample natural light to flow into the house, lighting up the double-level breakfast and family area. Spaciousness is the key element in Skye, as seen in its open concept kitchen and island workspace with an ultra-spacious dining area that overlooks the patio and garden water feature.

“With every phase of STP’s development, we raised the bar higher,” said Kok. Quayside Seafront Resort Condominiums houses the region’s first ever private waterpark. Measuring 4.5-acres and set within the development itself, the waterpark features an extensive water playground and lagoon surrounded by seven acres of tropical greenery, a 1-acre open park, a 1.4km long jogging/cycling path, and a 5-star hotel clubhouse. This private waterpark has a water playground comprising seven distinct activity areas, a sandy beach pool, whirlpools, outdoor spa, and massage falls, just to name a few.

Despite housing seven 28-storey towers sprawled across 21 acres of land, Quayside is the lowest density exclusive condo on Penang Island, with 298 units and a generous built-up ranging from 1,137 to 7,000 square feet. There are also facilities like an aerobic studio, games room and tennis court, among others.

Keeping such a development in tip-top condition takes a strong and passionate team. The management and maintenance team at STP work 365 days a year to support residents 24/7, resulting in a close relationship and strong rapport between the team and residents. In line with building green communities and practicing sustainable development, E&O is also instilling the principle of sustainability into their strategies, policies and procedures. One of the ways is through E&O’s Think Green community education programme, that aims to build eco-centric communities via a community food garden. The Think Green food garden located at Straits Green is a 4-acre public park that serves as an outdoor classroom for local communities, partners and employees to proactively embrace volunteerism, instill earth care practices and encourage community building. The garden is home to a compost bay, keyhole mulch bed with herbs, raised vegetable beds and informative boards on how to compost and grow healthy food. Since its inception in 2014, the Think Green education programme has continuously strived to help the local community make better choices for the environment through organised lessons and workshops.

Thanks to E&O’s continuous efforts to give buyers more than just homes, STP today offers a holistic lifestyle for a thriving community comprising both locals and expatriates from over 30 nationalities. Following its success, E&O is set to launch a second master-planned development in Penang. Aptly named Andaman after the surrounding sea, this 760-acre island, just across the waterway from STP, is envisioned to become another iconic E&O address. Andaman will be an integrated township built around six core pillars – residential, education, shopping, health & wellness, work, and sustainability – perfectly crafted to offer the perfect balance between peaceful island life and exciting urban living. For more information on E&O, STP and Andaman, visit www.easternandoriental.com.

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