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Apartments in centre and in precincts of Warsaw

4 October 2010

REAS categorizes residential projects as belonging to the apartments’ segment based on a number of criteria connected with the location and quality of both the units and the building or the complex of buildings. The price serves only as a supplementary criterion in the market segmentation.

The undisputed leader in the apartments’ segment, both in terms of the scale of supply and the level of sales prices, is Warsaw. According to REAS research conducted in Q2 2010, the apartments’ segment featured close to 7% of the market offering, i.e. slightly more than 1,000 residential units.

The crucial feature of the apartments’ segment is the location in a prestigious area of the capital city, most frequently in the proximity of public offices and embassies in the Downtown district or in the vicinity of attractive park areas and villa developments in Mokotów, Saska Kępa or the old Żoliborz district. In the case of locations in the outskirts of Warsaw, this refers to Konstancin-Jeziorna, the most prestigious suburban health-resort which has been attracting the Warsaw elites for years.

An apartment building ought to be distinguished by high standard of the outside finish; front elevation (stone, clinker brick), window woodwork using tropical timber or combing timber with aluminum, large glazed areas as well as high quality finish of common areas (natural stone, timber, brass, bronze or stainless steel). Apartment buildings ought to feature a reception area as well as a lobby for the guests, and provide consierge services, i.e. staff which takes care of the shopping or cleaning for the inhabitants. Moreover, the dwellers may have access to a swimming pool or a SPA. An apartment building should also be private (offering a maximum of 2-3 units per one floor), while the dwellings ought to offer an above-average ratio of floor area to the number of rooms in comparison with standard units, as well as large terraces, winter gardens or usable green roof space. The majority of the exposed apartments are located in the Downtown district, where it is possible to distinguish several groups of projects distinct in terms of the development character. On the one hand, these projects are renovated, historic tenement houses in the southern part of Downtown, such as: Rezydencja Wspólna, Wilcza 22, Piękna 44 or Mokotowska 59, whose prices range between PLN 13,000 – 34,000 per sq.m.

On the other hand, the apartment segment features also units in infill buildings constructed after the year 2000, such as: Rezydencja Piękna Nova (Southern Downtown), Restaura Górskiego, Rezydencja Foksal (Northern Downtown) and Nowe Powiśle (Powiśle district), whose sales prices are slightly higher, reaching the level of PLN 40,000 per sq.m.

The apartment offering in the city center includes also rather high detached buildings such as Grzybowska 4 in Northern Downtown, Trio in Muranów district and Platinum Towers in Wola district. These 18-24-storied buildings are priced between PLN 10,000 – 27,500 per sq.m. The fate of the suspended apartment project Złota 44, designed as a 55-storied building, has not been decided yet.

While the apartments in the city center are characterized by location in a busy and vibrant downtown urban tissue with access to various services, the attractiveness of apartment projects in multifamily buildings in the southern outskirts of Warsaw results from the resort and villa character of the city of Konstancin.

However, such projects constitute only 2% of the residential offering in the outskirts of the capital city and feature private projects such as Rezydencje Kamea and Konstancin Park in Konstancin, offering 130 - 150 sq.m. apartments priced between PLN 8,200 – 9,700 per sq.m. This situation is caused by the fact that buyers are searching for this type of apartments in the city center, while the suburban area is viewed predominantly as a location for a large mansion-type house with a garden which satisfies the residential needs and is a symbol of prestige and success. An example of such projects is Osiedle Konstancja right next to the American School or Oakland Park in Chyliczki, providing houses with floor area of 200 - 400 sq.m. whose prices range between PLN 2.2 – 4.1 mil.

Adam Bechciński