In a bid to honour Nigeria's late former finance minister, Festus Okotie-Ebo, a real estate development company, Brookstone Property Limited has concluded arrangements to build a N5 billion residential apartment.
Speaking at the ground breaking ceremony in Lagos, the Managing Partner, Brookstone Property, Joseph Orji, said the move was born out of the desire to build something spectacular in honour of the late minister. Named Okotie-Eboh Overlook Condominium, he said the company plans to complete the project in record time.
According to him, "The second reason was the fact that the site was a unique opportunity, the site is between Ikoyi golf course to the north and the Lagos Polo Club to the south that is why it is called the Over look. As we designed the project, we wanted the building, effectively the units to have maximum views to both the golf course and the polo club.
"That was one of our key reasons because of you look at residential buildings in Lagos you will see the reason why you would invest in this as against others. When you want to buy a house you look at different things, are you looking at concrete or something that has unique views? It is up to you."
He added, "Before we started this project we sat down and said what is lacking in the market, we looked at supply and demand analysis. Yes there are residential apartments in Lagos, but most of them have the British and European feel. But Nigerians are all over the world. We felt an American apartment is not well represented in the Nigerian market that was why we developed the condominium concept in Nigeria.
"The condominiums have an American feel, what I mean buy that is for instance you see a rooftop terrace. Very few residential buildings have that. We felt that making out a leisure space will actually bring value to the tenants. Also we have optional open floors, what that does for you is that it makes your space look bigger and make your living room flow to the kitchen.
"Most Nigerian apartment buildings tends to have utility spaces on the exterior because of the historical parishes that we have, if there is no power you want natural light or natural ventilation. What we have done is to give our customers natural light without power."
On the company's pedigree, he said the company had delivered a number of landmark projects significantly larger than this one.
He said the company played a key role in the development of the $400 million Landmark Village in Lagos.
"We have finished the first phase; we are now in the second phase that has apartments, retail, office, hotel and a lot of leisure. We delivered the event distribution centre owned by the Lagos Business School; we delivered a residential project in Elegushi. We do residential buildings, office, industrial, retail and we are working on one hospitality project right now.
"We are a true commercial real estate development company, we have delivered projects significantly bigger than this and we are simply leveraging our past experience to deliver the project as well. We finance our project using three mechanisms, one is internal equity. We also raise money from investors, people who don't necessarily want space or apartments but simply want a yield. We also raise money through off plan, sails residential or renting space to commercial tenants, "he said.