COMING HOME

SkyWhether you are a property magnate or just want somewhere nice to live, apartments aka condos aka units (depending on where you are from) now come in all shapes and sizes. Gone are the days when all you got were bare walls, a few windows and a door, today’s buildings offer nothing short of buying a “lifestyle”.

Where are these amazing lifestyles to be found? Here are a few that may take your fancy.

If you have US$58.7mill then Hong Kong is for you. There are twelve apartments to choose from located on The Peak, and are designed by Frank Gehry. It would take a person earning HK’s average wage roughly three thousand years of savings to afford one of the apartments. http://opushongkong.com

But don’t worry if you would rather rent than buy, there is another Gehry building in New York City that offers the highest residences in North America at 870 feet. Penthouses rent for $45,000 a month while the four bedroom apartments are $70,000 a month. Amenities include a pool, gym, Pilates studio and screening room. http://www.newyorkbygehry.com

Not upmarket enough for you? The penthouse apartment at One Hyde Park sold for $221 million, making it the world’s most expensive apartment (bought by Ukrainian billionaire Rinat Akhmetov). http://www.onehydepark.com

Back down to earth now and for US$1mill you can get into a 1 bedroom apartment in Singapore in a new building that offers some amazing facilities. Built as two 38-storey towers, Sky Habitat has three sky bridges on the 14th, 26th and 38th floors – the bridge on the 38th floor also acts as a lap pool! In addition to that there is a 50m pool, leisure and children’s pools, tennis courts, playgrounds, karaoke rooms, gym and BBQ pits.

So maybe it’s time to sell up and move to be part of a lifestyle!

HAPPY NEW YEAR… AGAIN!

snakeAbout 6 weeks too late you say! Well this isn’t the case for over a billion and a half of the world’s population as Chinese New Year is celebrated this weekend to welcome in the Year of the Snake.

So where are the best places to experience this celebration? Of course China, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan and more recently in the Philippines and Indonesia. And there are plenty of places outside of Asia too – a Sydney claims to have one of the largest celebrations and you can also try LA, San Francisco, NYC, Boston, Toronto and London. For the more obscure locations Mauritius and Butte, Montana also host parades.

And instead of nursing a hangover on New Year’s Day post-partying, you should consider doing the following to ensure a successful year ahead.

- On the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, every door in the house, and even windows, have to be open to allow the old year to go out.
- All debts have to paid by this time. Nothing should be lent on this day, as anyone who does so will be lending all the year.
- Everyone should refrain from using foul language and bad or unlucky words. Death and dying are never mentioned and ghost stories are totally taboo. References to the past year are also avoided as everything should be turned toward the New Year and a new beginning.
- If you cry on New Year’s day, you will cry all through the year. Therefore, children are tolerated and are not spanked, no matter what..
- Wear red… as it is considered a bright, happy color, sure to bring the wearer a sunny and bright future.
- Do not wash your hair because it would mean you would have washed away good luck for the New Year.
- Do not use knives or scissors on New Year’s Day as this may cut off fortune.

So don’t be surprised next week when anyone in Asia doesn’t respond to your email… we are all out setting off firecrackers and eating!

Gong Xi Fa Cai!