Thakral in tie-up to build Aussie retirement resorts

GemLife's retirement homes are targeted at the baby-boomer housing market in Australia, says the company.
GemLife's retirement homes are targeted at the baby-boomer housing market in Australia, says the company.PHOTO: GEMLIFE

Joint venture gets positive response to launch of its first communities in Queensland

A new brand for resort-style retirement homes Down Under has been unveiled by a joint venture between units of Singapore mainboard-listed Thakral Corp and a Queensland firm.

Investment and lifestyle firm Thakral Corp said yesterday the brand "GemLife" would be used for resorts to be developed by the joint venture known as the GTH Resorts group of entities or GTH Resorts JV.

The firm also said the first retirement communities have been released. GemLife Bribie Island was launched late last month, and GemLife Highfields earlier this month.

GemLife Bribie Island is north of Brisbane and GemLife Highfields is near Toowoomba - both in Queensland - and "have achieved strong positive response from buyers".

"GemLife's retirement homes are targeted at the baby-boomer housing market in Australia, which is growing rapidly with the over 65-year-old cohort, the fastest-growing age group, growing at 3.6 per cent per year," it said in a statement.

The homes, costing A$360,000 (S$379,000) to A$575,000, are meant for owner-occupiers.

GemLife Bribie Island is expected to have 404 homes on a 24.9ha site, including a 9.5ha lake, while GemLife Highfields will have 233 homes on a 9ha site. The firm said the first occupants should move in by the middle of next year.

A third site in New South Wales, able to accommodate 210 homes on an 11ha site, is expected to be approved for development in the first quarter of next year.

GTH Resorts - a joint venture between Thakral's TCAP Partners and Living Gems Lifestyle Resorts' PVAP - has set up seven project companies, contracted three development sites for about 800 homes and is negotiating contracts on three more sites, it added.

Mr Inderbethal Singh Thakral, Thakral chief executive, said: "Joining hands with Living Gems, one of Australia's most respected operators in the retirement homes sector, will give the group a notable footprint in the business. The sector is among the fastest-growing real estate sectors in Australia."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 20, 2016, with the headline 'Thakral in tie-up to build Aussie retirement resorts'. Print Edition | Subscribe