Ascott’s Co-living Brand lyf Gains Momentum With Six New Properties Signed in Australia, China and The Philippines

Main Photo: The lyf Midtown Hangzhou, China

Date: July 2020

Locations and Names: lyf Malate Manila, lyf Shougang Park Beijing, lyf Midtown Hangzhou, lyf Zhangjiang Shanghai, lyf Dayanta Xi’an, lyf Collingwood Melbourne.

No. of Keys: 1,000+

Seller: TBA

Buyer: CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited continues to see strong demand for its co-living brand ‘lyf’, which caters to a growing segment of millennials who seek flexibility, value and enriching community experiences. Ascott is adding over 1,000 units across six new lyf properties secured in Melbourne, Australia; Beijing, Hangzhou, Shanghai and Xi’an, China; and Manila, the Philippines.

Amongst the six new properties, Ascott has secured contracts for lyf Malate Manila, its second lyf property in the Philippines and four new lyf properties across China – lyf Shougang Park Beijing, lyf Midtown Hangzhou, lyf Zhangjiang Shanghai and lyf Dayanta Xi’an. It has also secured its first lyf property in Australia, lyf Collingwood Melbourne.

Mr Kevin Goh, CapitaLand’s Chief Executive Officer for Lodging and Ascott’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Despite COVID-19 and challenges in the global hospitality industry, Ascott’s diverse portfolio of brands continues to be supported by a strong base of long-stay guests comprising locals, expatriates and corporates.

Our guests appreciate the comfort of our apartments where they can live and work. lyf is a hybrid lodging solution that combines the best of serviced residences, hotels and co-living apartments. It is designed for guests on long stay with the flexibility to take in short stay. The relevance and demand for co-living remains strong as demonstrated by the signing of these six new lyf co-living properties and the opening of our second lyf property in Bangkok. It is not only a strong testament to Ascott’s operational resilience, but also shows the confidence that property owners have on the unique positioning of our lyf co-living product.”

lyf Collingwood Melbourne is Ascott’s first lyf property in Australia, slated to open in 2022. The 105-unit lyf Collingwood Melbourne is nestled in the heart of Collingwood, one of Melbourne’s hippest neighbourhoods and home to many offices, galleries, cafes and shops.

lyf Collingwood Melbourne

Mr Goh added: “The value and demand for lyf is evident in the performance of our first operating lyf property, lyf Funan Singapore, where guests could stay with us safely and comfortably throughout the COVID-19 period. It achieved a robust average occupancy rate of 86% from April to June 2020. Many guests made lyf Funan Singapore their home away from home, extending their stays at the property. In May 2020, 95% of its guests were on long stay of between one and six months.

Ascott has already taken steps to enhance our operational strength, technical capabilities and service delivery in a post COVID-19 landscape. We will continue to evolve our lodging business and product offerings to cement Ascott’s position as a dominant lodging player and deliver more value for our guests and business partners.”

With the addition of six new lyf properties, Ascott has a total of 14 lyf properties with over 2,700 units. Thirteen of these properties are slated to be opened between 2020 and 2024 in Bangkok, Beijing, Cebu, Fukuoka, Hangzhou, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Melbourne, Shanghai, Singapore and Xi’an. Six lyf properties are expected to open in 2021.

They are lyf Farrer Park Singapore, lyf one-north Singapore, lyf Tenjin Fukuoka in Japan, lyf Raja Chulan Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, lyf Midtown Hangzhou and lyf Zhangjiang Shanghai in China. Besides expanding in these markets, Ascott is also looking out for opportunities to introduce lyf to key gateway cities in France, Germany, Indonesia, Netherlands, South Korea, United Kingdom and Vietnam.

Mr Joel Oei, Ascott’s Head of lyf brand, said: “During COVID-19, the safety and well-being of our guests remain our top priority. Our guests found a strong network of support within a close-knit community. Leveraging lyf’s strong social presence and technology capabilities, we took our community engagement activities online and conducted virtual tours and digital-first marketing campaigns to expand our reach.

Creatively designed and multi-functional living spaces at lyf offer more flexibility and efficiency for our guests, many of whom were expected to work remotely. lyf apartments can be easily adapted into private work suites with flexible tenures. lyf’s well-designed and colourful apartments provide a conducive and creative environment for work, while its spacious work and meeting areas coupled with amenities such as smart screens and high-speed WiFi can further aid productivity.”

the lyf bedroom look

lyf Malate Manila is Ascott’s second lyf property in Philippines and is slated to open in 2023. The 202-unit lyf Malate Manila is located in the heart of Malate, a financial and historical hotspot in Manila, and is surrounded by cafés and upscale restaurants. It is also a five-minute walk to Robinsons Place Manila, the largest shopping mall in Malate.

Ascott’s first lyf property in Thailand, lyf Sukhumvit 8 Bangkok, is set to open 31 July 2020 in one of the city’s trendiest shopping and entertainment hotspots. The 196-unit lyf Sukhumvit 8 Bangkok is surrounded by a plethora of cafes, bars and restaurants, and is within walking distance to one of the most popular shopping belts in Bangkok.
lyf Sukhumvit 8 Bangkok to open on 31 July 2020

THPT Comment: lyf is certainly a fresh looking from CapitaLand…and making great progress since the launch in 2019.

First Seen: CapitaLand press release

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