The internationally renowned Balmond Studio has taken on their latest design project in Sri Lanka, in developing the South Beach Weligama property that is set to break-ground in March.
In a press briefing held on 1 February, South Beach announced that the beautiful Weligama coast will soon play host to Sri Lanka’s most exciting new freehold address, courtesy of South Beach Weligama.
After speaking to Balmond Studio Managing Director John Blamond, who will be taking the lead on the South Beach Weligama project, he shared that the upcoming apartment structure with 106 units will be offering exceptional value owing to the Balmond Studio’s expert involvement.
Balmond Studio is an internationally renowned design initiative, best known in Sri Lanka for designing Cinnamon Life, Colombo. They combine over 50 years’ experience in architecture and design – having worked on the Gherkin in London, Bird’s Nest in Beijing, and Australia’s Sydney Opera House among others with Cinnamon Life being its visionary ideal for Colombo’s transforming skyline.
Speaking with Brunch, John Balmond shared on a personal note that his father, Sri Lankan born Cecil Balmond OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) who leads the London and Colombo design studios; which has grown into one of the world’s leading thinkers on form and structure, he is renowned for innovation, creativity, and his passion for modern design which he has passed on to John himself.
In his presentation, Balmond further explained the unique proposition Balmond Studios adds to the Sri Lankan property development landscape. Stating that “South Beach Weligama offers an affordable alternative to a five-star hotel infusing a complete, distinctive, and ethical lifestyle, promising year-round yield, setting a new trend for coastal living.”
Adding also that: “In 2017, the Oxford Business Group predicted that beachfront properties in Sri Lanka will increase in value by 50% and in fact, Weligama land values have increased 84% since 2016 as per a report by Jones Lang Lasalle. With these statistics depicting the high value, South Beach Weligama narrates, our one and two bedroom apartments at 727 sq. ft .and 1,137 sq. ft. respectively are predicted to bring in a gross rental yield of 6.5%.”
He also shared that in their design philosophy for this particular property, what they hope to evoke is the celebration of modern Sri Lankan talent, providing that they hope to showcase local artists in their art gallery, to include artisan furniture and lifestyle vignettes handmade by Sri Lankan carpenters and masons. “The feel is about elegant sophisticated beachfront living embracing international lifestyle vignettes with our renowned food and beverage (F&B) partner from London operating the restaurant and poolside bar, while our design intertwines the surrounding Sri Lankan landscape in all its multiple hues” he said.
It is also important to note the sustainability objectives adopted by Balmond studios, as they provided that they believe in the “360-degree sustainability principles”, also adding that they aim to meet the platinum standards of the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka.
John Balmond added: “We infuse the synergies of renewable energy and design into our project, with turbines and solar panels powering the lobby and restaurant areas and rainwater harvesting conserving water. We are building strong relationships with our local communities to not just ensure sourcing local produce but also that every piece of furniture within the property is artistically crafted by Sri Lankan artisans and for every apartment sold, we will donate $ 1,000 to Lanka Environment Fund towards their conservation projects. It is up to us to protect today in order to create tomorrow.”
Balmond Studios has partnered with global commercial property and investment management company Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. and with an investment of $ 16 million, the property currently has 40% foreign and 60% local buying into the property.
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