TOKYO - Singapore real estate firm CapitaLand said on Tuesday (June 6) that it is "on track" to grow its Japan portfolio to at least $3 billion by the end of the year, up from $2.5 billion now.
The company first entered the Japan market in 2001 and has been gradually expanding its presence here, including through the acquisition of three office buildings and a shopping mall in Greater Tokyo earlier this year for $620.1 million.
The announcement comes as Ascott - CapitaLand's serviced residence arm - held the grand opening of its 130-unit Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo property on Tuesday.
The launch was attended by Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, who said in his brief remarks that above Japan's famous sakura cherry blossoms, onsen hot springs and the majestic Mount Fuji, a prized tourism asset is its brand of omotenashi hospitality - which is the Japanese way of entertaining guests wholeheartedly. This is something that Singapore would do well to learn from, Mr Goh said.
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CapitaLand said it sees the potential to grow its assets under management in Japan to $5 billion in the near future, with a diverse portfolio of shopping malls, serviced residences and offices.
The current $2.5 billion in assets under management, across 11 cities in Japan, comprises five shopping malls, four office buildings and 23 serviced residences and rental apartment properties.
Mr Lee Chee Koon, chief executive officer of Ascott, noted strong demand for serviced residences. He said: "Demand for serviced residences is likely to grow with the government's proactive efforts to attract foreign direct investment and promote Tokyo as an international financial and business centre."
Ascott is targeting at least 12 more serviced residences in Japan by 2020, including an upcoming venture with Takashimaya in Osaka's Namba area, a popular district for shopping and leisure.
Ascott Marunouchi Tokyo overlooks the East Garden of the Tokyo Imperial Palace, and is located near the shopping mecca of Ginza. It is a 10-minute walk to Tokyo station that provides guests access across Japan via the shinkansen bullet train.
As part of an opening special, it is offering special promotional rates from 35,000 Japanese yen ($440) per night until June 28, inclusive of complimentary breakfast, daily housekeeping service and one of three benefits - a voucher for the next stay, a complimentary bottle of wine, or late check-out.