The awards season in the Hollywood entertainment industry runs from January and culminates in March with the Oscars. The global real estate industry has its own share of awards throughout the year, and in recent months, CapitaLand has been on a winning streak, sweeping up notable accolades across the world.
At the FIABCI World Prix d'Excellence Awards 2015 in June, the equivalent of the Oscars for the real estate industry, the real estate giant snagged the Gold Award in the Retail Category with Raffles City Chengdu in China as well as the Silver Award in the Residential (High Rise) Category with The Interlace in Singapore. To date, CapitaLand developments in Singapore and China have won eight FIABCI awards.
These accolades were quickly followed by more wins at the 10 th Global RLI (Retail & Leisure International) Awards, an event by the world's only global retail and leisure magazine, RLI Magazine, which recognises the highest standards in the retail and leisure industries.
Fabulous Haul at the FIABCI
Headquartered in Paris, France, FIABCI, a network of real estate professionals across more than 60 countries and over 120 organisations, advises the United Nations on various aspects of property activities. Every year, the FIABCI World Prix d'Excellence Awards recognises projects that exemplify excellence in all the disciplines of real estate. The Awards is considered one of the most reliable indicators of a development’s worth and its impact on future of commercial real estate.
Raffles City Chengdu was named the Winner of the Gold Award (Retail Category) this year, the first commercial property in China to receive this award. Designed by the world renowned Steven Holl to mirror the city’s rich cultural history, the architecture draws inspiration from the famous ‘Three Gorges’ depicted in a poem by one of China’s greatest poets, Du Fu. The five-tower development also incorporates plenty of open spaces that allow for natural light through its 'sliced porosity block’ design. This marriage of local culture and modern architectural concept is one of the reasons the development is a FIABCI winner.
The Awards also place a premium on green properties. Raffles City Chengdu is a green leader. It has several energy-saving technologies and was awarded the Chicago Green Good Design Award and the US Green Building Council LEED pre-certification-level Gold award.
Securing the World Silver Winner under Residential (High Rise) Category Award is Singapore residential development, The Interlace, which won over the panel of nearly 70 judges with its design excellence, impressive green features, and contribution to urbanisation. The Interlace features unique interlocking blocks stacked in a hexagonal arrangement to resemble a vertical village that a breakaway from conventional vertical high-risers.
“The 1,040-unit property incorporates cascading sky gardens and roof terraces plus extensive amenities and facilities interwoven into lush vegetation. The huge pockets of open space and deliberate positioning of the apartments also maintain privacy for the residents,” said Vice President, Product Development & Design, CapitaLand Limited, Eng Tiang Wah.
The Interlace also prides itself on its accessibility to people of all ages and levels of mobility. The large-scale complex has a prominent Y-axis pathway on its grounds to orientate residents as well as distinct landscape features and sculptures by renowned artists that create distinct, easily identifiable spaces. In addition, there are 131-ageing-in-place units that have no stairs and 16 dual-key apartments for multi-generational families.
Winning fans at the Global RLI Awards
At the Global RLI Awards 2015, CapitaLand’s China shopping malls scooped up more accolades. CapitaMall Tianfu in Chengdu was highly commended in the RLI Most Innovative Retail and Leisure Concept category while CapitaMall Jinniu, also in Chengdu, was highly commended for the RLI Shopping Centre Renovation category.
"Winning three international accolades for our China properties is a recognition of CapitaLand’s strength and expertise as Asia’s leading developer, our dedication to innovation, and our deep understanding of the Chinese market gained through our many years here. We will continue to challenge convention and leverage our development expertise to create more quality properties to enrich the communities in China,” said CEO of CapitaLand China, Lucas Loh, of the Global RLI Awards and FIABCI World Prix d'Excellence Award for Raffles City Chengdu .
Both RLI-commended malls are prominent projects in Chengdu, China. CapitaMall Tianfu, which opened in late 2014, sits in the Xin Nan Tian Di Commercial Zone just 6 km from the Chengdu city centre. Close to the train station, bus interchange and subway lines, it enjoys excellent connectivity.
The one-stop mall, which is part of an integrated development that includes offices and residences, impressed the judges with its iconic glass and aluminum façade that echoes the natural landscape of the mountainous Sichuan Province. Its innovative interior design is modelled on a ‘garden mall’ concept which boasts lush greenery in the atrium as well as extensive landscaped spaces throughout to bring nature into the mall. The landscaped areas on Levels 5 and 6 can even be used to create a garden theme for a thematic wedding. Completing the illusion of a garden within is a futuristic digital ceiling that displays gorgeous scenes of sunny blue skies or star-studded nights.
Within its eight storeys are a spread of 270 local and international brands and entertainment options that include CapitaLand Mall Asia's first gym with a heated pool and its first ice rink in China. The rink is surrounded by restaurants on two floors amidst lush sub-tropical landscaping so patrons can enjoy the view of the action on the rink as they dine. The rink has played host to ice hockey competitions and figure skating performances, and was the location of the first episode of season 2 of ‘Hurry Up, Brother’, a Chinese variety show broadcast on Zhejiang Television that is based on the wildly popular South Korean series ‘Running Man’.
The other highly-commended mall, CapitaMall Jinniu, impressed with its asset enhancement initiative that increased the mall’s gross floor area by 1.5 times to about 152,000 sq m, making it the largest one-stop shopping mall in north-west Chengdu. The design of the extension replicates the gentle curves of the Sichuan Basin and the meandering Yangtze River as seen in the curvatures of each level and the atrium.
The asset enhancement initiative rejuvenated CapitaMall Jinniu with a wide selection of retail offerings and entertainment offerings such as Chengdu’s first Korean CGV Cinema and the city’s first 13,000 sq m roof garden. Offering a pets’corner, an a fitness zone for the elderly, a youth activity zone, two multi-purpose courts alongside alfresco cafes - the roof garden is the perfect venue for community bonding.
Building the World’s Best Tall Buildings and Urban Habitats
Winning over the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) is CapitaLand’s newest office development, CapitaGreen, which it developed jointly with CapitaLand Commercial Trust and Mitsubishi Estate Asia. CapitaGreen beat five other finalists in the region to clinch the Best Tall Building in Asia and Australasia award. Completed in December 2014, the Grade A premium 40-storey, 242m-tall office building in Singapore’s CBD was designed by Toyo Ito, winner of the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2013. Ito designed CapitaGreen like a tree growing towards the sky, with its double skin green façade and an innovative wind scoop on its rooftop to draw and flow cool air throughout the building, thereby reducing energy consumption.
On why CapitaGreen stood out, Mr Antony Wood, Executive Director of the CTBUH, said: “CapitaGreen indicates a viable way forward for the high rise vegetated façade – within the double skin of a tall building, offering solar shade and possible agricultural output, as well as environmental and psychological benefits. The way this “living wall” connects a series of indoor and outdoor communal gardens, culminating in the grand roof terrace, is also commendable.”
The other CapitaLand winner at the 2015 CTBUH awards is d’Leedon, a finalist of the Urban Habitat Award which acknowledges projects that demonstrate a positive contribution to the surrounding environment. Comprising seven 36-storey towers offering 1,703 apartments as well as 12 exclusive semi-detached houses, d’Leedon is the largest private residential development in Singapore, with world-class amenities and offering views of the Singapore skyline and large expanses of greenery. The amazing part of its design is that its towers only occupy 22% of the site, “enabling us to create a true urban resort - a fantastic place to relax and enjoy with family and friends”, shares Zaha Hadid, the Pritzker Prize-winning architect behind the design of this ambitious project.
To-date, CapitaLand has won five prestigious CTBUH accolades, the world’s leading resource and not-for-profit organisation focused on the design and construction of tall buildings and future cities. Last year, its landmark condominium The Interlace won the inaugural Urban Habitat Award, and was a finalist in the Best Tall Building Award for the Asia and Australasia Region. In 2013, Raffles City Chengdu, China, was a finalist in the Best Tall Building Award for Asia & Australasia Region.
Driven by its credo of ‘Building People, Building Communities’, bold vision and technical excellence, CapitaLand continues to build distinctive, world-class developments that are not only winners on the international stage, but more importantly, improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of its stakeholders.