Shrouded in controversy and accompanied by an on-going battle with Jersey Planning, the £350 million Castle Quay waterfront regeneration project has now most definitely become a reality. With the launch this month, and over 1,1000 people interested in the housing possibilities, the ambitious scheme looks as though finally, nothing can stand in its way.
The site between the Radisson Hotel and Harbour Reach apartments, as originally designed by Eric Kuhne (the man behind Bluewater), was to have a central tower 15 storeys high, built to stand out on the skyline, reminiscent of a ship?s sail in its form. This perhaps was one of Dandara?s most challenging aspects of this project and with resistance from both the public and the States, it was firmly denied. In regards to Jersey?s ever-evolving infrastructure, this eager design was probably just a step too far.
The first phases of the scheme however, were designed as two blocks, Le Capelain and Millais House, providing over 350 new homes with a large shared rooftop garden, new restaurants, leisure, shopping, boutique offices and entertainment facilities. With a maximum of 6 storeys, this is the phase that is realistically going to completely transform the reclaimed land as we know it. It is still a ?big deal? in terms of Jersey though. Even looking at the architect?s impressions, it is hard to comprehend such a glamorous project of this International scale on our relatively small island.
Even the marketing suite is somewhat of a striking piece of contemporary design. With a glass covered roof and façade looking out onto the Marina, a ultra-modern life size model of the development revolves in the centre by the control of a touch-screen. With a better idea of where your potential property is located, upstairs in the suite there are two life-size apartments for you to view (1 & 2 bedroom), complete with television and a wardrobe full of clothes. Bearing in mind the average price of a 3 bedroom house in Jersey is now around £470,000, the prices at Castle Quay are affordable. >>>>
The 2 bedrooms offer substantial room, underground parking and a large balcony, whilst the 1 bedroom apartments offer comfortable living, with a smaller balcony, more suited for buy-to-lets or young professionals looking for a foot on the property ladder. A concierge service similar to that in 5* hotels will be available taking the concept of apartment living to a whole New York level.
With the integrated mix, a new concept of living is set to brace the Island. Think continental Europe meets the sea ? Monaco if you like. Plenty of alfresco dinning on your doorstep, sipping a cappuccino, looking over the castle and marina promenade whilst you do your shopping. A lively atmosphere in the day and night, even the possibility of food being delivered to your door upstairs ? will anyone ever want to leave Castle Quay? >>
>> And with prestigious chef Marco Pierre White being invited to work with the locals in Jersey to develop eating venues within the development, a guaranteed high level of cuisine is due to be set.
It?s all well and good providing people with fabulous new apartments in a prime location, job opportunities and an array of entertainment, but will the blend of deep-rooted local families, affluent professionals and young guns of Jersey buy into this new style of living? And will it fit in with our unique character? Only time will tell. Completion of Le Capelain is estimated for autumn/winter 2011, with Millais House 6 to 9 months later.
We can already see the huge shift of town moving towards the waterfront, and with the Liberty Wharf bridging the gap, who knows what the future will hold. If you?re considering a move, get down to the marketing suite (the entrance is left before the Radisson car park) and experience Castle Quay youself.