Sixty6 Gulberg Setting New Standards
Sixty6 Gulberg Setting New Standards
I started Imlaak as a way forward – a new way of looking at things, inspired by technological advances in global markets. I wanted a realty company that cared about its customers for now AND the future; a truly holistic approach where we can help in every aspect of realty from consultation, investment opportunities, portfolio management to developing infrastructures for the future. I was never here to make a ‘short-term buck’ but here to develop a long-term vision of a modern realty investment company.
The basic fault most developers make is to develop a building or society based on the interests of the investors and end up neglecting end users. They miss the point entirely, a building or society must be designed for end-users whilst keeping the interests of the investors.
Sixty6 is a natural progression of Pakistan’s future. We only need to look at global trends and other areas where urban land is at a premium: Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, India, Asia, Turkey, and Australia. High-rise building is the future.
But we need a well-designed and future-proof building which will appreciate and not diminish our customer’s investment returns. Therefore, the only logical approach was to become involved in the design from its inception.
The quest was not easy, we needed to plan an extraordinary building on an expensive piece of land worth 65-70 crores, while keeping the prices in check, to make it investor-friendly.
The answer was to reduce developers’ profits rather than making compromises on the building design. Sixty6 was born: an investment opportunity for today’s market but with long-term goals.
Whilst planning, the focus was not about making money by selling every square feet possible as per LDA laws, rather Sixty6 is designed around practicality and end-user requirements while making it future safe.
Setting new standards
Sixty6 Gulberg is not an ordinary building, it is by far the best in design among all other such buildings being developed in Lahore. The basis of this design is built upon the years of feedback we have received from end-users. Let us have a look at some key design elements of the building:
- G +14 Structure with 2 x basements for car parking standing tall at 200 feet.
- G +2 serves as independent commercial units.
- 2nd and parts of the 3rd floor are dedicated to various amenities including:
- Drivers and maid accommodation for 32 people.
- World-class gym
- Sauna and spa
- Daycare centre
- Kids play area
- First aid facility
- Executive and meeting lounge
- Events hall
- Floors 4th till 10th are one-bed fully furnished hotel apartments at 10% guaranteed rental returns.
- The 11th and 12th floors are purely residential 2-bed apartments.
- The 13th and 14th floors constitute 6 x lofts of 3 and 4-bed apartments.
- The infinity pool on the 14th floor.
- Rooftop garden.
What sets Sixty6 Gulberg apart from others?
What sets us apart is the attention to the details, the features everyone wants to have yet we can not find them anywhere else. The problem is that in buildings spread over 4 to 8 kanals, developers do not get enough space to play with. Selling every square feet possible is the goal in the areas as expensive as Gulberg. Sixty6 has changed all of that because we believe that a building should last the test of time with a focus on practicality rather than common practice.
The first true hotel apartment building
Yes, you heard it right, Sixty6 Gulberg is a true hotel apartment building. Every apartment is an independent fully furnished unit and comes with its own kitchen and appliances. Do not confuse it with hotel rooms, which can not be used independently and are much cheaper to furnish and equip in comparison to a fully operational one bed apartment suite.
Passages and car ramps
In our experience, a 13 feet passage and one single ramp as per LDA by-laws can get quite congested, especially for bigger vehicles. This is exactly why we have sacrificed expensive land on the ground and offered 18 feet passages on both sides with separate ramps for entry and exit vehicles to ensure a smooth flow at all times.
Independent commercial units
Instead of a mall, we have two separate and totally independent commercial units on each side of the building with their own independent lifts. This ensures that residents never face the trouble of passing through the entire mall or using the same lifts. In addition, these areas are reserved only for fine dining or luxury retail. Although this resulted in a lot of ‘wasted’ area on the ground floor which could have been sold at a very high price, it clearly represents the effort of the developer and its long-term goals.
Private grand lobby and entrance for residents
Between both the commercial units, a 24 feet wide private grand lobby and entrance, make certain that tenants and residents always get a red carpet welcome when entering the building.
6 x lifts for ease and privacy of all owners
In order to ensure that we always highlight the best features of each segment of the building, we have a total of 6 lifts in the building:
2 x lifts serve the 2 independent commercial units and are located outside the building to ensure that commercial activity is kept separate from the hotel and serviced apartments.
4 x lifts for serviced and hotel apartments out of which 2 are dedicated for residential floors11th till 14th or other owners. The other 2 lifts will serve 3rd till 10th floor for hotel apartments and short-term tenants.
This was our biggest challenge and personally, I feel we have succeeded in offering the best floor layout plan in the market as of today. Every floor has 6 corridors and not more than 3 apartments open in any single corridor. In order to offer the most privacy, doors from each apartment that open in corridors are kept at a distance from others. Each floor has 4 x windows to allow sunlight to enter.
Spacious Apartment layouts
Special attention to detail has been given to the layout of each apartment. All apartments in the building are corners and every apartment enjoys the beautiful views of Lahore city. This adds to the impression of generous proportions between 556 to 644 sqft (as I personally felt that a one-bed apartment below 500 sqft is more like a studio than a suite). In addition, all apartments come with a reasonable sized balcony and terrace which is suitable for seating 3 to 4 persons.
Ownership and possession
Another feature that sets it apart from hotel rooms, is that you can have physical possession and ownership of your apartment. This means you can rent it out yourself on short-term or long-term tenancy with full control. Hotel rooms lack a kitchen and lounge and thus can not be independently rented out practically, even if you get physical possession.
Luxury lofts with a common swimming pool
The 13th and 14th floors consist of 6 x 3 – 4 bed lofts along with a common infinity pool on the 14th floor. This is no doubt my favorite feature in the entire building is having a pool on your floor and is an added luxury very few enjoy. The roof above lofts is actually a common 6000 sqft plus roof garden. Again, for the loft owners, this is much more convenient.
Electronic vehicle charging stations
Another important consideration was making Sixty6 stand the test of time. If you are designing a building that is going to last decades then you must make it future proof. Prestige car manufacturers are leading the way with electric cars so we have a range of electric charging points already installed.
Fiber to the home
Internet is getting faster and it may well be a long time before we can all experience 5G in Pakistan. Therefore in order to meet your need for speed, every apartment comes with a built-in fiber to the home (FTTH) connection.
A highly practical handy feature for expats and those visiting occasionally. No more carrying around heavy luggage, you can just put your stuff in bags and lock them up until you want to visit again. Meanwhile, your apartment can safely be rented out and your belongings remain safe in the locker.
A daycare center and kids play areas
Imagine yourself on a holiday, where you wish to spend some time alone with your partner, want to go out shopping or visit the parlour. Sixty6 Gulberg has all that you need to keep your toddlers and teenagers occupied while you can relax and do more with life.
Right now, few buildings fall in the category of Sixty6 Gulberg, but as more and more developers jump onto the bandwagon, the competition is going to get tougher. The real test begins when all these buildings become operational in 3 to 4 years. My years of experience in international and national markets has taught me one thing: that after 4 years, not all of those buildings, especially those that cut corners and put profits before people, will meet the same standard of success. The defining factor will be very simple, where would you like to live or spend your holidays?
Capt (Retd) Shahnawaz Yaqub Bhatti
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