BINTAN Island in Indonesia is one of key investment destinations for Malaysian investors in the Asia.
It is close to the borders of Singapore and Johor Baru.
Just 45km south-east of Singapore, Bintan is a sought-after destination for holidaymakers.
The government designated the entire northern coast of the island for tourism, which includes 17,500ha parcel of land, an area 35 times the size of Sentosa Island in Singapore.
There are two key areas in Bintan that are being developed currently, namely Lagoi Bay and Treasure Bay Bintan, and both have Malaysian investors.
Treasure Bay Bintan is a 338ha integrated resort city, a project by Malaysian hospitality investment and destination development company Landmarks Bhd, an associate company of Genting Bhd.
The project, which has a gross development value (GDV) of over RM2 billion, started more than two years ago. The concept of the development is wellness, culture and leisure (preventive healthcare themes) with its master plan integrating tourism, wellness, culture, leisure, residential and commercial real estates.
There were reports that Landmarks had planned to undertake the project jointly with United States-based healthy living and luxury spa vacations provider Canyon Ranch, but the deal was aborted in 2016.
Canyon Ranch had announced the proposed Canyon Ranch Bintan health and spa facility in June 2014, although there was no announcement by Landmarks on the joint venture.
The US firm said the wellness resort development would consist of 64 hotel suites and 64 villas, arranged in compound-like configurations of one to three units each. Each villa was to be appointed with luxurious finishes, private fitness area and lap pool as well as service quarters.
Villa sales were to have started in October 2014 and each would have cost between S$3.5 million and S$6.5 million (RM10.68 million to RM19.82 million).
In 2017, Landmarks chief operating officer Fong Chee Khuen said the group planned to have eight to nine hotels surrounding its iconic 800m long crystal water lagoon covering some 6.07ha which has opened.
Fong said Landmarks had signed up with Mercure, Ibis, Canyon Ranch and Chiva’som for Phase 1 of the project and was in talks with another five international brands, with two to three of the discussions in advanced stages.
He said Landmarks had invested about RM800 million to develop the project as at 2017, including RM700 million to acquire the land.
The Bintan development was funded by cash, mainly generated from the RM1.2 billion gains from the disposal of some assets like Teknologi Tenaga Perlis Sdn Bhd and Datai Langkawi.
MALAYSIA’S PRIDE IN BINTAN
Ipoh-based developer Superboom Projects Sdn Bhd is developing The Haven Bintan in Lagoi Bay.
The company’s chief executive officer Peter Chan said the project had garnered strong interest from foreign investors.
According to Chan, there are several investors currently exploring opportunities with Superboom Projects to build within The Haven Bintan.
“There are investors talking to us. They include institutes of higher learning and wellness operators. There are also several hotel operators talking to us to operate the six-star hotel that we plan to develop in Phase One. We hope to sign a deal in 2020,” Chan told NST Property.
The Haven Bintan sits on a 25.8ha site and has an estimated GDV of over RM4 billion.
Last year Superboom Projects awarded a US$288 million (RM1.21 billion) construction contract to China’s Yunnan Construction Investment Holding Group and Indonesia’s PT Total Bangun Persada to build six 26-storey towers of condominium suites, a 250-room six-star hotel and a convention centre with a capacity of 3,000 in four phases.
The final few phases of The Haven Bintan will include a commercial centre with medical facilities, restaurants and retail.
“There will also be 32 private villas,” said Chan.
HOLIDAY VILLA SHINING IN BINTAN
Holiday Villa Hotels & Resorts, founded by Tan Sri Azman Shah and his wife Puan Sri Mavis Masri, is managing Holiday Villa Pantai Indah Bintan Island (pool villas) located in Lagoi, north of Bintan Island for a Singapore-based group.
Holiday Villa Pantai Indah is sprawled across 13ha of lush tropical land and flanked by stunning seaside views.
It has a total to 99 private pool villas.
The soft opening introduced 40 private villas that comprise a private swimming pool with one and two bedrooms. Fully furnished like a stylish private home, each villa is designed to offer complete privacy and is a short walk to the beach.
In the first quarter of 2017, Holiday Villa Pantai Indah launched another 50 private villas.
“Bintan Island is the ultimate destination for every holidaymaker, honeymooners, adventurer seekers and those looking for exclusivity and luxury retreat. The island possesses rich hinterland, culture and historic sites that make it different from other beach destination. We are targeting expatriates, residents and corporates from Europe, Singapore, Indonesia, India, China and Malaysia,” said Nina Karina Azman, director of corporate affairs at The Holiday Villa Group.
Nina told NST Property the group was looking forward to the opening of a new international airport in Bintan that will spur demand for hotel rooms in the island.
It was reported that the US$150 million airport project is expected to start operation next year with a 3,000m runway. The airport terminal will be connected to a ferry terminal which will service Singapore and Batam.
Nina said visitors from Malaysia currently fly to Batam and take a 20 minute ferry ride from there to Bintan Island.
Bintan is set to surpass its 2018 visitor numbers of over one million with key new developments and sporting events.
The island is home to a variety of independently owned and operated resorts, recreational facilities and attractions.
Nina said one of key attraction is the four designer courses by Ian Baker Finch Course (Bintan Lagoon), Jack Nicklaus Course (Bintan Lagoon), Greg Norman Course (Laguna Bintan) and Gary Player Course (Ria Bintan).