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Dyson owner forks out S$73.8m for Singapore’s costliest penthouse

The founder of privately-held British consumer electronics maker Dyson and his wife have become the owners of Singapore's most expensive condo.

Sir James Dyson and his wife, Deirdre, paid S$73.8 million for the triplex super penthouse at Wallich Residence, which is the Republic’s tallest residence.

The unit occupies the top three levels of the 64-storey, 290-metre high tower at Tanjong Pagar Centre developed by GuocoLand.

The price works out to S$3,496 per square foot based on the 21,108 sq ft strata area (including 6,577 sq ft of strata void).

Talk in the market is that the deal was entered into some months ago and completed recently.

(Related: 6 out of 11 super penthouses on sale globally are located in Singapore)

Tanjong Pagar Centre, an integrated mixed development that also includes offices, a hotel and retail space, is on a site with 99-year leasehold tenure starting from February 2011; this leaves a balance lease term of about 90.5 years.

Dyson and its billionaire inventor founder, Sir James, were in the spotlight in January after the company announced that it will be moving its corporate headquarters from Malmesbury, Wiltshire in the UK, to Singapore. Sir James, an outspoken Brexiteer, and his wife are Singapore permanent residents.

When contacted by BT on Tuesday, a Dyson spokesperson said: “Given the decision to locate the headquarters in Singapore and the growing focus of the company’s business in the region, of course James Dyson has bought a property there.”

But he declined to comment further for personal privacy reasons.

James Dyson

Dyson said that given its decision to relocate its HQ to Singapore… “of course James Dyson (above) has bought a property there.” Sir James and his wife are Singapore permanent residents. BT FILE PHOTO

The Dysons seem to have gotten a good deal for their Singapore penthouse purchase; the price is a far cry from the S$108 million tag touted for the unit back in July 2017, although the project’s developer would probably attribute the estimate to the work of agents creating hype.

Nevertheless, the transaction is the highest in absolute price terms for a penthouse in Singapore, toppling the nearly S$60 million that Facebook cofounder Eduardo Saverin paid for the 10,300 sq ft super penthouse at the freehold Sculptura Ardmore in 2017. The transaction worked out to around S$5,650 psf. That penthouse, on levels 35 and 36, has a cantilevered private pool.

The super penthouse at Wallich Residences

A rendering of the penthouse’s private pool

The Wallich Residence super penthouse the Dysons bought also comes with a private pool, pool deck area, cabana, jacuzzi room, entertainment area and a cantilevered balcony with panoramic views including of the Central Business District, Marina Bay and Sentosa. It has a dedicated lift but there is no dedicated carpark lot, according to an earlier media report.

The 181-unit Wallich Residence occupies the top 26 levels of Tanjong Pagar Centre’s 64-storey tower; below the apartments are the offices, known as Guoco Tower.

The mixed-use integrated development’s second tower, which is 20 storeys, houses the Sofitel Singapore City Centre. Tanjong Pagar Centre also has a retail podium and an urban park.

On the decision to relocate its corporate head office to Singapore, Dyson said in January that this is “to reflect the increasing importance of Asia” to its business.

(Related: Dyson has just set up a $587m technology centre in Singapore)

Dyson chief executive officer Jim Rowan said at the time that the move to Singapore had “nothing to do with Brexit” but was about “future-proofing” the business.

The company, which is well-known for its bagless vacuum cleaners and bladeless fans, said that a growing majority of its customers, as well as all its manufacturing operations, are now in Asia; this shift “has been occurring for some time and will quicken as Dyson brings its electric vehicle to market”.

“As a result, an increasing proportion of Dyson’s executive team is going to be based in Singapore,” said the company, adding that this does not change its investment and recruitment plans.

Dyson’s upcoming electric car will be manufactured in Singapore.

The company said the decision to move to Singapore was not made for tax reasons.

Last year, Dyson’s profit grew 33 per cent to £1.1 billion (S$1.87 billion), breaking the £1 billion mark for the first time. Turnover was up 28 per cent at £4.4 billion.

(Related: Luxury Homes: A bachelorette’s penthouse apartment in Ardmore Park)

This article was originally published in The Business Times.