Real Estate

Ovialand bets on Sto Tomas as next boom town

The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Ovialand Inc., a subsidiary of Malate Construction and Development Corp. (MCDC), has picked Sto. Tomas in Batangas as the site of its first project in the low-cost housing category.

Called Terrazza de Sto. Tomas, the project is also the MCDC Group’s first master-planned community, and features 55 percent open space, generous compared to industry standards.

Located in a 5.8-hectare property, Terrazza de Sto. Tomas will have only 333 units, making the project a low-density and spacious community for its residents.

It will likewise offer a convertible, one-of-a-kind sports and recreational court (mini football field and basketball half-court), a multi-purpose clubhouse, swimming pool and fully landscaped pocket gardens, among others.

For this project, Ovialand is spending around P500 million for its development. Terrazza de Sto. Tomas will be offering house and lot units priced from P1.7 million to P3.2 million, with three models to choose from: the single-detached Amore on a lot area ranging from 100 - 189 sqm; Dolce or the duplex units with lot area of 76 -  to 114 sqm; and Bacci or the quad units with a lot area of 55 - 68 sqm.

Ovialand’s developments are currently focused in the Southern Luzon region, with projects in Laguna and Batangas. An upstart firm, it took over the project of parent MCDC in Calamba City, Laguna called Vermont Place.

Fatima Olivares-Vital, business unit head of Ovialand, said Southern Luzon is proving to be a very lucrative market for real estate and is seen to be among the top three growth areas in the country.

“The financial readiness, land development, and evolution of style of living are slowly but progressively turning the region into the newest hotspot for people looking for meaningful property investments,” she added.

MCDC also has a project in Calamba called Bamboo Grove; another in Rosario, Batangas called Eco Verde Homes; and one in Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon.  All projects of MCDC and Ovialand, except for Terrazza, are in the economic or socialized housing segment (between P450,000 to P1.7 million).

Sto. Tomas is now just an hour away from Makati, thanks to the Southern Tagalog Arterial Road more commonly known as STAR Tollway or Calabarzon Expressway. Soon, this first-class municipality and host of  the First Philippine Industrial Park  will be a city of Batangas.

Olivares-Vital said while the market sees a lot of condominiums being built addressing the low-cost segment of between P1.7-P3.2 million, there seems to be an unaddressed need for house and lot packages for this segment which Ovialand aims to partly address.

For his part, MCDC Group head Giovanni Olivares said the secondary market for condominiums that are priced between P1.4 million and P3 million is weak basically because of the availability of new units. This means if speculators are buying because they plan to resell later, then they will be disappointed.

Olivares said their group would rather sell to those who want to live in it, especially in Terrazza. “That is why we do not talk about future values when we market the product, although we expect that after completion, the values will increase by 50 percent. We would rather talk about the quality of living they and their children will experience in our project.”









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