Sunset Way: The peaceful enclave

18 December 1988

Lim Keng Peng, nicknamed Ah Huat, became Singapore’s most wanted criminal in 1988 when he shot dead Detective Goh Ah Khia at Upper Serangoon Road. He was gunned down at a coffee shop at Sunset Way by a submachine gun used by the police, ending a manhunt that lasted 30 months.

Quoted from remembersingapore.wordpress.com

That was an anecdote told to me by one of the shop owners when I visited Sunset Way estate, and he remembered it like it happened yesterday.

MapAbout Sunset Way

Located in District 21, Sunset Way estate is made up of a cluster of HDB flats and a larger area of 999-years or Freehold private properties. There is only 1 way in & out of this estate, and that’s via Sunset Way along Clementi road.

To me, it’s an estate that stays very much visibly hidden, because hordes of road users traverse Clementi Road everyday, going to school, work or head off to Holland Village via Ulu Pandan rd, but not many knows what actually lies deep inside the neighbourhood. The only group of people familiar with this estate are perhaps pet-owners living in the West for there is a large community of pet-related services here.

A bus-stop sits conveniently near the junction of Sunset Way, and the nearest MRT (Dover / Clementi) is a 10-minutes bus ride away.

Welcoming Visitors: Blk 101 – 118

Sunset estate 1Aerial view of the HDB estate flanking Sunset Way

As a small cluster of HDB flats, most of the blocks here are made up of Executive Maisonette (EM) units, which translates to a lower density of residents spread over the estate. I think that came from an era in Singapore where population wasn’t yet a burgeoning problem and housing was built with more space between people to provide comfort. Personally, those fir-like trees really help to beautify the neighbourhood!

Sunset shops 1The entrance to Sunset Way estate at Blk 109

Sunset shops 3Shops that have been here for decades and still serving the residents

Sunset shops 2Clean estate with classy design at the town central

Sunset shops 4The food court where the Most Wanted man was caught years ago!

A new Scent in the hood

I chanced upon this new cafe in Sunset estate while walking around. Situated at corner of Blk 109, I was pleased to find that this was a branch of Drips cafe in Tiong Bahru. The outdoor seating was sparse, perhaps due to the lack of space but the coffee was excellent in keeping me going on my exploration. The gentleman at the counter told me they offered baking classes too but are currently on hold till the Christmas season is over.  As a new coffee place for residents, I’m sure business is booming!

Drips 3Drips Cafe branching out from their flagship store in Tiong Bahru

Drips 2A bright & beautiful cafe to jazz up the neighbourhood

Drips 1 Lovely pastries which I shall try next time!

Venturing Inwards: More secrets ahead

Sunset EstateThe private estate further into Sunset Way

Sunset estate 2A view of Sunset Walk

Clementi ArcadeClementi Arcade with Cold Storage supermarket & other amenities

Sunset RailwayThe defunct iconic Railway bridge at Sunset Way

From the parking lot at the back of Clementi Arcade, I could easily see the railway bridge rusting away into oblivion. This bridge has always been a favourite spot for wedding couples’ bridal shoot until the authorities closed it off to public recently. Residents around the area frequent Clementi Arcade for the Cold Storage supermarket, Daily Scoop ice cream parlour and of course the quintessential Learning Schools & Classes.

Pick of the Day: Freesia Woods

Freesia woodsFreesia Woods condominium in the background

historical prices 2For my property pick in Sunset estate, it was a tough choice because I have always liked EM flats and those found here are really good in terms of location and accessibility to transport & amenities. I am, however, going with Freesia Woods. The first and simplest reason I choose Freesia Woods is that it’s a stone’s throw from Clementi Arcade. While Clementi Park Condominium is a huge project in this estate and also quite popular with home hunters, I find it too far from the amenities.

Within Freesia Woods, the swimming pool is lengthy and the low height (5 Storeys) of the whole project gives a cosy feel to the environment. Furthermore, the units come with Marble and Timber finishings so I guess if I’m getting it for my own stay it will be worth the buy. Completed in 2003, this project is just 10 years old so chances of it being sold en-bloc are not high as of now, but the prospects are still inviting. Having Freehold tenure and a large land size, I take a good bet on Freesia Woods.

As for the prices, I find it comforting that Freehold properties can still be found transacting below $1,400 psf. Given the location, it may not be exactly city-fringe but being close enough is good. Oh, as for bus service 589 outside the condo, there seems to be only 1 trip on weekdays at 8:00am and it goes all the way to Fullerton Rd.

Finding peace in the Tranquility around

Sunset bridgeThe pedestrian bridge adjoining Sunset Way estate & Clementi estate

Sunset RambutansRambutans in the estate!

Sunset HDB 2Residents in the area like to run along Sungei Ulu Pandan

Sunset HDB 1Frontal view of Blk 101 Sunset Way

Afterthoughts

All in all, Sunset Way has always enticed me with its unostentatious charm. It hasn’t been caught up in the ‘New Launch’ furore over the past few years, it doesn’t have any towering skyscraper condominium nor boasts of any mega-mall, but it doesn’t quite fall into the dingy end of the spectrum either. Perhaps its community only wishes it to remain this way, undisturbed, and continue to watch the world go by each day.

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Categories: District 21

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