The Edge Singapore
Andermatt Swiss Alps to launch Vera, apartments with Louis Vuitton décor, in Singapore
Developer Andermatt Swiss Alps is giving Asian investors first pick of its units at its latest residential offering, Vera. Located in the heart of Andermatt Reuss in the village of Andermatt, it is surrounded by the mountain ranges of the Gotthard Massif. Being in the Canton of Uri in Central Switzerland, it is just a 90-minute drive to Zurich.
Vera debuts in Asia with a roadshow in Hong Kong on May 10, Kuala Lumpur on May 13–14, and Singapore on May 20–21 at Raffles Hotel Arcade.
Buyers of the units at Vera will have the option to decorate their homes with furniture, fixtures and equipment, including art pieces and lighting curated by award-winning Swiss design studio Atelier Oï, in collaboration with Louis Vuitton.
There are nine units within the development. Seven are a mix of one- to three-bedroom apartments ranging from 875 to 1,575 sq ft. There are also two four-bedroom duplex penthouses, ranging from 2,302 to 2,603 sq ft. Prices start from CHF1.25 million (CHF1,428 psf) for an 875 sq ft, one-bedroom unit and from CHF1.65 million (CHF1,406 psf) for a two-bedroom unit of 1,173 sq ft. “We offer a chic alpine lifestyle at Andermatt,” says Maureen Yeo, regional director of Asia at Swiss Andermatt Alps.
While Singapore has slapped foreign residential property buyers with a 60% additional buyer’s stamp duty from April 27, Andermatt is “one of the few developments in Switzerland where international purchasers have no restrictions on purchase and resale”, says Doris Tan, regional director of Benham & Reeves, who is marketing Vera in Singapore.
However, foreign buyers will have to pay income tax of up to 28.6%, and asset tax of 0.22% based on 80% of the property’s value, notes Tan. Capital gains tax is 30% if one sells the property within the first year of purchase, and it is on a sliding scale of 1% less annually. There is a small tax holiday if buyers put up the property for rent. After 20 years, capital gains tax is capped at 20%. “On account of the capital gains tax, it’s advisable to have a longer-term investment horizon of at least 10 years,” says Tan.
Buyers can finance their purchase with a mortgage from the Bank of Geneva or UBS.
According to Tan, this property appeals to Singaporeans who enjoy skiing, and savvy investors who already own properties in London and Singapore and are now seeking an alternative investment destination.
A decade ago, buyers at Andermatt were predominantly Swiss nationals. In 2022, buyers from Asia made up 30% of all Andermatt’s property buyers, says Yeo. “There has been a pick-up in interest from Chinese buyers since the start of the year, following the reopening of China’s travel borders,” she adds.
Record sales in 2022
Last year, Andermatt Swiss Alps Group recorded a 24% increase in property sales to CHF151.1 million ($225 million). The group sold 70 apartments (from 92 in 2021), with the average price up 17% to over CHF17,000 psm (CHF1,579 psf).
Average prices of the residences at Andermatt Reuss increased by 51.4% over the past decade — from 2012, when the group launched the first residential apartment, to 2022. As of last year, the group sold 650 of 665 apartments and hotel residences, both under construction and completed.
The planned construction of six apartment buildings and initial work on a new lifestyle and sports-themed hotel have begun. Additional shopping and restaurant offerings, including 12 retail and three gastronomy outlets, will open within Andermatt Reuss by the end of 2024. It will be developed into a premium retail boulevard. “It’s Andermatt’s version of Orchard Road,” says Yeo.
As the resort’s clientele has become more international, Andermatt expanded its year-round amenities to include an award-winning 18-hole golf course, a new 650-seater concert hall and three Michelin-starred restaurants. “Discerning Asian buyers are not just asking about the property’s investment value but also the lifestyle aspects,” notes Yeo.
Group to invest CHF500 mil in the resort
The group is investing CHF500 million in the coming years to further enhance the resort’s attractiveness. It is collaborating with the Cotton Club, famous for its exclusive restaurants and clubs in Mallorca, Ibiza and Zaknythos. Cotton Club will operate The Swiss House on the golf course from the winter of 2023/24. Swiss three-star chef Andreas Caminada will open a restaurant under the Igniv brand in the late autumn of 2024. Further cooperative ventures with national and international brands are underway.
There are two existing hotels at Andermatt. One is the five-star, 119-key The Chedi Andermatt, which achieved an average occupancy of 68% in 2022. The 281-room Radisson Blu Hotel Reussen clocked an average occupancy of 48% last year. The group says the first few months of 2023 have seen a jump in the number of guests and occupancy.
Demand for holiday home rentals under the Andermatt Alpine Apartments brand increased 24% to CHF3.2 million last year. The number of holiday apartments in the rental pool increased by 50% y-o-y and was at 143 properties at the end of 2022.
Buyers of Vera can also put their apartments in the rental pool when they are not using them, says Yeo.
Andermatt is a year-round destination with skiing and snowboarding opportunities in the winter months and access to over 120km of slopes. In the summer, it is known for hiking, mountain biking and other outdoor pursuits. Surrounded by beautiful lakes and rivers, it offers swimming, fishing and other water activities.
The village is well-connected by road and rail, with easy access to other parts of Switzerland and Europe. “It appeals to those who want to be close to nature and enjoy outdoor activities like golfing or skiing,” says Yeo.