Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Jet Li buys $20m Binjai Rise bungalow

Tommie Goh acquires GCB from neighbour Sam Goi

(SINGAPORE) Action star Jet Li seems to be sinking deeper roots in Singapore. He and his wife, Nina, bought a good class bungalow (GCB) on Binjai Rise for $19.8 million last month. The price works out to $871 per square foot based on the freehold land area of 22,723 square feet.

Mr Li is understood to have become a Singapore citizen.

Last year, he announced plans to set up a base in Singapore for his charity and disaster-relief group One Foundation. The Jet Li One Foundation Singapore was registered in June 2008.
Mr Li had said at the Forbes Global CEO Conference here in September last year that Singapore offers the right conditions for grooming future NGO leaders.

He was spurred to set up his charitable foundation after a narrow escape from the 2004 tsunami. According to earlier media reports, Mr Li moved his two daughters and wife to Singapore in 2007 for his children's education.

The Beijing-born Mr Li led a life of hardship as a child (his father died when he was two) but persevered to emerge as China's overall national wushu champion for five consecutive years in the 1970s. He began his acting career in the early 1980s, starting with Shaolin Temple and today has about 40 movies under his belt.

Mr Li became a US citizen in the 1980s.

When contacted, a spokeswoman for Singapore's Immigration and Checkpoints Authority declined to confirm if Mr Li is now a Singapore citizen. 'Due to reasons of confidentiality, the ICA will not discuss individual cases publicly,' she said.

Mr Li was not the only luminary who picked up a GCB here in May.

2G Capital co-founder Tommie Goh bought 2A Ridley Park, next to his existing home, for $30 million or slightly over $1,100 psf.

The seller was 'popiah king' Sam Goi, executive chairman of Tee Yih Jia Food Manufacturing and an established investor in the GCB market.

Mr Goi is expected to move to a new palatial home that he has built on Nassim Road. BT understands that the two neighbours had been discussing the sale of 2A Ridley Park on and off for the past few years.

GCBs, with their stringent planning requirements, are the creme de la creme of Singapore's housing market. There are only about 2,400 such bungalows on the island.

Source: Business Times, 17 June 2009

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