Cheng, chief executive officer of Hong Kong real estate company New World Development and founder of K11 Group and C Ventures, is ready to unveil 11 Skies, a 3.8 million-square-foot retail, dining, entertainment and office location that cost 20 billion Hong Kong dollars, or $2.57 billion at current exchange.
New World Development said the complex will be delivered in phases from 2022 to 2025.
Asked by WWD about the impact of COVID-19 on the property development, the company said it hopes a vaccine will be largely available by the scheduled time of the opening. It also stressed that the spread of the virus is under control in the Greater Bay Area.
Operated by K11 Group, the new space is located within Skycity, next to Hong Kong International Airport, which logged 71.5 million passengers in 2019, although these figures have dropped significantly in 2020 due to COVID-19-related travel bans. According to provisional data provided by the airport authority, Hong Kong International Airport has so far served 8.66 million passengers in 2020.
New World Development said in addition to the 10 million tourists yearly, it expects to capitalize on residents of the Greater Bay Area, giving the new destination access to roughly 72 million people.
The mega-complex — also close to other high-traffic landmarks including the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge and the Tuen Mun-Chek Lap Kok Link — is to include 800 shops and more than 120 dining destinations across 2.66 million square feet. It will also house office space and an indoor entertainment center.
“11 Skies will be a game-changer for Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area. It is the first project that comprehensively combines retail, dining, entertainment together with wellness and wealth management in one complete ecosystem for people in Hong Kong, Greater Bay Area and the rest of the world,” commented Cheng.
To be sure, the complex is to welcome a range of wealth management and wellness services including Bank of China, Citibank, Standard Chartered, FTLife Insurance and Trinity Health Enterprise to provide services for local customers and tourists. These and other firms in the insurance and asset management, as well as in the medical and wellness sectors, will occupy three office towers covering 570,000 square feet that will bow in 2022. They are designed to reflect the K11 Atelier concept, a network of purpose-driven workplaces.
“11 Skies will create thousands of job opportunities as well as give birth to new business opportunities in key sectors, which can leverage the unique connectivity, ultimately providing a new impetus for the long-term growth,” Cheng added.
The indoor entertainment center will include KidZania, an immersive, role-play learning experience that allows children aged one to 14 to explore a scaled indoor city space and test different professions. This space will see the light in 2023 as the 28th location of its kind globally.
Xavier López Ancona, ceo and founder of KidZania, praised the expertise of New World Development and K11 as a fundamental asset for such a partnership, which will “create an outstanding growth potential for our concept in this area. We look forward to sharing our playful and experiential learning model with kids in Hong Kong and from around the world.”
In addition, 11 Skies will feature SkyTrack, an indoor and outdoor karting track with electric-powered karts and AR-enabled interactive control systems.
New World Development said the complex will also house a flying theater, spaces for digital multimedia performances and educational experiences.
Cheng’s New World Development secured the lot for the development in 2018 only days after unveiling Victoria Dockside, one of Hong Kong’s largest property developments on the city’s Kowloon waterfront promenade, spanning 3 million square feet with a $2.6 billion price tag.
The new location is part of the company’s commitment to the Greater Bay Area. Last August, New World Development revealed it was investing 10 billion Hong Kong dollars, or $1.28 billion at current exchange, to develop the Prince Bay project as the largest harbor front cultural-retail destination in Shenzhen, China.
The Prince Bay project, which is scheduled for completion by stages starting from 2024, is poised to house a K11 Art Mall, a Discovery Park family and education destination and a multipurpose art and cultural space.