The builders of one of New Zealand's most prestigious high-rise apartments – it will be the highest residential building in the country – say they are fielding many overseas inquiries from people looking to settle in New Zealand because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Seascape Apartments, Auckland's $300 million development of 52 floors and 221 apartments of luxury and north-facing views, has already sold two of their most expensive penthouses to overseas buyers and say calls from the US are outstripping all other inquiries.
Tashunka Bolton, spokesman for developers Shundi Customs, says: "It's because of Covid-19. People are seeing, from events like the America's Cup and the New Year's celebrations, that New Zealand is mostly free of the virus."
Bolton says the inquiries are mostly from American and UK citizens worried about the pandemic and who see New Zealand as a safer haven – "and I am always pleased to be able to tell them that, because we have an overseas exemption when it comes to selling the apartments, they can buy into the New Zealand property market."
Already two of the Seascape's sophisticated penthouses have sold – one off the plans on the 47th floor (costing somewhere between $13m-$23m) and the other on the 41st floor (price: somewhere between $8.15m-$12.35m). At this stage, those who purchase a penthouse off the plans can customise the interior – and a few unique designs have been created by buyers.
Seascape's 'jewel in the crown' is still available. The $23m master penthouse which occupies the top two floors, 51 and 52, and has five bedrooms, all with en suite (a guest bedroom on the 51st floor and four on level 52), 5.5 bathrooms, two German-designed kitchens, one for Western cuisine, one for Asian, with one able to double as a bar.
The 2.9m stud accommodates air conditioning and ventilation in every room with wall and floor features of marble and American white oak timber, a closable, north-facing winter garden and within easy reach (in the rapid lift system, as fast as the Sky Tower's) of built-in Seascape amenities like the gym and pool (Level 7), the podium and garden on Level 5 and restaurants.
But perhaps the biggest selling point of all is the view. Bolton says the luxury penthouses have 360-degree views, including an unobstructed view of the Waitemata Harbour and the ocean beyond.
"We are installing UV-treated ultra-clear glass from floor to ceiling," he says. "That will give unrivalled views from Seascape – and, in fact, all 221 apartments are north-facing.
Altogether there are 15 penthouses; 10 will be found between levels 41-46 with two penthouses on each floor while another five will occupy a whole floor each; the master penthouse will occupy the top two floors. The penthouses will vary from approximately 220 to 350sq m and have 3-5 bedrooms while the master penthouse will have 5 bedrooms.
The price levels vary from $13m-$23m. All are freehold, as are all apartments – Shundi say Seascape is Auckland's first coastline freehold development.
A 12-level SHY Hotel is to rise hand in hand with Seascape – a refurbishment project on the corner of Fort St and Customs St East – meaning residents of Seascape will be able to enjoy hotel services like room service. Levels two and three of Seascape will be devoted to parking for penthouse owners.
Bolton says the CBD site – Seascape will rise at Customs St East in Auckland City, with completion expected in the first quarter of 2023 – is another attraction: "It's right in the heart of Auckland, Queen Street, next door to Britomart and Commercial Bay and a huge selection of restaurants and bars – plus a short walk to the Spark Arena for concerts.
The Seascape build is now beginning to climb skywards, planned to reach Level 30 by the end of the year. The annual price increase is expected in March or April.
To find out more visit: www.seascapeauckland.co.nz/enquire