The Maple by YTL Land a winner

The Star Online, April 2, 2007

YTL Land & Development Bhd's first residential project in Sentul West, The Maple, is a stunner!

The two slender 30-storey towers that rise above the old Sentul area in Kuala Lumpur have been turning heads since they were completed in July last year.

However, it is more than just two tall handsome buildings that have attracted the city folk. The magic in this entire development is of course the 35-acre lush green park that is the icing on the Sentul West “cake”.

Imagine you are oblivious of your surroundings and your blindfolds are removed. Hey presto! You are standing on a tranquil park with three-lined trails, moats, aerial walkways and a mini forest that are so lovely and surreal.

“Am I in St James Park or Hyde Park?” You may wonder as you spot a gaggle of white, fat ducks waddling on a pond towards a pontoon with a boat tied to it. Willow trees droop low on the water's edge while your eyes feast on the rolling greens with sculptures like a metal “crane” or wooden “deer” dotting the landscape.

Except for a row of “skeletal” concrete pillars that look like a war relic and seems to contradict the park’s 18th century English gardens charm, everything is near perfect.

The cool breeze brushes your cheek and you wake up realising these were no dreams. This was how I felt when YTL Group deputy managing director Datuk Yeoh Seok Kian recently showed me around The Maple, the park and the koi centre. Colourful koi fishes, some two feet long, swam in a pond at a Japanese Restaurant as well as in 36 tanks.

Yeoh, who fed the ducks with pieces of bread, said the ducks, birds and the peaceful environment reminded him of his childhood days when everything was so carefree.

Indeed, Yeoh’s pride in the Sentul project is understandable, as the YTL Group has put in so much effort into it.

Through the freehold Sentul West and Sentul East development, it is setting a new benchmark in city living by creating an exclusive green haven for the resident. These include expatriates, shoe couturier Datuk Jimmy Choo, a renowned CNN International anchorwoman, international celebrities and some members of royalty.

Sentul West, with 186 acres, celebrates the outdoors with exclusive residences, offices and shops amidst pristine lakes bordering the park (formerly a golf course) while Sentul East, with 108 acres, will be more vibrant and attuned to the young.

YTL has transformed an old railway workshop in Sentul West’s Festival Plaza into the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (KLPac). Many concerts, music festivals, theatrical shows and art exhibitions have been held at the KLPac since it was opened on May 25, 2005.

Yeoh said another old railway yard would be turned into an art exhibition area.

Meanwhile, the 318-unit Maple is a 3.2-acre sanctuary boasting of four themed gardens: a maze (cut out figures of animals peeping out from the maze), spice garden (herbs and spices), water garden and a meditative garden (for Taichi/yoga) reminiscent of Kyoto’s famed Ryoanji Temple with a mass of white stones (islands) surrounded by a “sea” of pebbles.

One of The Maple’s highlights is the 25-metre infinity edge cantilevered lap pool where, from afar, it looks like the water meets the sky above a canopy of trees.

This pool is furnished with outdoor beds and special “floating decks”.

The bottom of the infinity edge of the pool is made of glass. People below can see the swimmer above.

Other outdoor amenities include a lie-down jacuzzi, barbecue area with open lawn, two squash courts, two tennis courts, a basketball court, gymnasium and clubhouse. There are three swimming pools. The recreational deck (sitting above the car park) is huge.

Buyers have started moving into their luxury 3+1 room apartments. With only six corner units on each floor, the three standard types of 1,535 sq ft, 1,569 sq ft and 1,707 sq ft were priced from RM547,000 to RM1.4mil, comparable to properties in Mont’ Kiara.

The recent completion of the Sentul Link and the Duta-Segambut Link has boosted The Maple’s appeal with easier connectivity to various parts of the Klang Valley.

I was told that the latest sale of The Maple had hit RM400 psf, almost double that of the initial price!

If you are fed up of living in a concrete jungle, then you should move to The Maple (there are about 20 units left unsold) where you currently share the park with residents of the Sang Suria apartments (an uncompleted project revived by YTL) next door.

However, Sentul West will have about 4,000 luxury condo units and about 20,000 residents. The park may be quite crowded then.

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