The birth of a wellness eden
A holistic approach to the creation of a true wellness real estate
Wellness real estate is an emerging industry that recognises today’s immense health challenges. It represents a shift that explicitly puts people’s wellness at the centre of the conception, design, creation and redevelopment of homes and neighbourhoods.
Despite the growing need and demand for wellness real estate, to date there is no comprehensive development that takes a holistic approach to the creation of such a township – that is until the advent of KL Wellness City.
And as the concept of KL Wellness City aligns with Malaysia’s position as the leading global destination of choice for healthcare tourists and the goals of the Malaysian Healthcare Travel Industry Blueprint 2021-2025 to elevate medical tourism in the country, this RM11bil township has already all the signs of a winning development.
“Malaysia’s medical care is among the best in Southeast Asia and has gained the reputation of being one of the most preferred medical tourism destinations in the region as healthcare services in Malaysia are competitively affordable and of high standards.
“Compared to Singapore, Malaysia’s medical cost is 75% more affordable for the same treatment and about 50% of the doctors are from Malaysia, while we are 10% more affordable than Thailand,” said KL Wellness City managing director Datuk Dr Colin Lee.
Spanning over 26 acres, the township’s future-centric outlook is reflected in its sustainability credentials, which are enhanced through careful planning and management to address social, environmental and economic impacts.
Targeted to be completed in 10 years, KL Wellness City will redefine the way Malaysians and international patients receive treatment, in a sustainable township complemented by a full suite of offerings across the health, medical, fitness and wellness pillars, said Lee.
Designed to integrate medical care with general healthcare, preventive care and fitness, he said the township was carefully planned for all occupants to be able to live a healthy and balanced lifestyle, combining the built environment with nature, green spaces, convenience, safety, and opportunities to cultivate good and healthy habits.
Built to the specifications of GBI certification guidelines, KL Wellness City’s long term green credentials are further supported by Building Information Modelling up to the highest level of asset management, to enjoy a high level of operational efficiency during construction and long-term operation.
“KL Wellness City is a comprehensive, fully integrated and interconnected ecosystem that blends medical care, healthcare, wellness and fitness into a purpose-built hub, touted as the first in Southeast Asia.
“I believe that in the spirit of health and wellness, and beyond that, fitness, if people can come to a place where not only their healthcare and medical needs are treated but they can be rejuvenated, where their wellness and health is maximised, they can come to a place and stay for a short programme, for a week or a month. For instance, they can come here as a 60-year-old, and leave feeling like 45,” said Lee.
Putting the health, medical, fitness and wellness pillars together, this city is made possible thanks to the accumulated experience of KL Wellness City’s capable team.
“As the first healthcare and wellness city in Southeast Asia, KL Wellness City is set to offer an impeccable experience for everyone seeking a more efficient and pleasant patient journey through its 360-degree ecosystem,” said Lee.
Throughout KL Wellness City, the integrated township has been carefully planned for all occupants to be able to live a healthy and balanced lifestyle combining the built environment with nature, green spaces, convenience, safety and opportunities to cultivate good and healthy habits, he said.
“Our wellness suites are designed to cater to growing demand, creating a new and unique opportunity for owner’s occupancy, step-down care, healthcare traveller accommodation or even short-term stay.
“With comprehensive commercial and retail infrastructure and amenities, the building design maximises natural light and ventilation along with an abundance of green landscaping – offering a high occupant-to-nature ratio with as much as three to four square metres of greenery per household,” he said.
“We all know—personally, intuitively, and from reports from analysts and researchers—that the pandemic completely transformed the concept, function and value of the home. It became our everything and during this long crisis, more people have questioned where and how they want to live, what they want in a home and community and the answer, in a word, is more wellness,” Lee added.
In a nutshell, people wanted more safety, more nature and greater sustainability with space and serenity to work, and more purpose, meaning and true community, he said.
But there is more to KL Wellness City as a forward-thinking establishment. The unseen portions include attracting the various medical experts to be a part of the fledgling city not just to offer treatments but to be a centre of research and development as well.
Lee pointed out that there were many Malaysians in the medical line who have made a name for themselves, but in other countries where they were given the opportunities to grow and branch out into the areas they excelled in.
“Why can’t this be offered here?” he asked. KL Wellness City will also serve as an incubation where medical breakthroughs can be nurtured, and thereby reduce the nation’s brain drain where the medical industry is concerned.
“KL Wellness City is taking great efforts to provide the platform to incentivise R&D and clinical studies and with that, to attract Malaysia’s talent pool to return,” said Lee.