Towering pride of Sentul East

The Star, 30 March 2022

ICONIC, sustainable, accessible and exquisite are the epitomes of The Fennel at Sentul East, Kuala Lumpur — winner of the prestigious Malaysia Property Award (High Rise) 2021.

Designed to pamper your senses and enliven your soul, prestige knows no bound at this landmark destination by renowned YTL Land & Development Berhad.

Spectacular by architectural standards, The Fennel is characterised by four soaring 38-storey towers rising from a lushly landscaped five-storey car park podium, interrupted at random only by sky terraces with pockets of green.

Nestled in pairs, each tower is connected by a suspended Olympic-length salt-water swimming pool flowing from block to block, and features a full façade of gleaming glass to cut a striking figure through the city skyline.

All 916 condominium units enjoy panoramic vistas of KLCC down south, scenic mountain ranges further up north or lavish pool and garden views. Every home is designed with floor-to-ceiling window and lanai that connects the indoors to the outdoors, creating light-filled spaces that are both functional and welcoming.

Internal spaces flow seamlessly into one another, while every detail is planned to meet the needs of modern families. With built-ups of 1,186sq ft to 2,927sq ft, the layouts range from 2+1 bedrooms to expansive four-bedroom units, penthouses and dual-key residences. 

The Fennel achieved not only a distinctive aesthetic, rendering it an iconic landmark for KL city, but the development also incorporates sustainable elements to create an immersive living experience.

Residents get to enjoy a seamless connection to nature through the unique repertoire of pocket gardens, open lawns and water features as well as a host of lifestyle amenities and child-friendly spaces.

Most unprecedented are the two Olympic-length (50m) salt-water swimming pools suspended dramatically over the two majestic
arrival courts. 

Other facilities include two clubhouses, two fully equipped gymnasiums, two cabanas, two wading pools, function rooms, children’s playground, sunken gardens and a park on the ground floor.

Sentul is easily accessible via four rail lines: KTM Komuter, two LRT train lines and an upcoming MRT line with five stations located in strategic locations.

There are three dedicated highways — Duta-Segambut Highway, Damansara-Ulu Kelang Expressway (DUKE) and Sentul Link — to link
Sentul to the rest of Greater KL. 

YTL Land director Yeoh Pei Teeng said The Fennel’s completion in 2017 presented an opportunity for a new generation of upwardly mobile home buyers drawn by its architecture and design, to enjoy its lifestyle offerings and the excellent
public infrastructure in the vicinity.

“Delivering an iconic towering landmark not only stimulates the urban renewal of Sentul, but also establishes a new property benchmark for high-rise residential design in this part of the city.”

Masterful sculptures

Standing tall like polished sentinels with its unique tilting structures, The Fennel is a beacon of style that captures the spirit of the city influx.

By pushing new benchmarks in design, the project rightfully claimed its place as the newest architectural symbol of Sentul
East’s high-rise residential architecture. 

The Fennel aims to attract potential buyers of young families and individuals in their 30s to 40s with the additional lure of lush tropical surroundings to satisfy modern aspirations for a serene escape from the bustle of city living.

The search for the architectural form began from an interpretation of the site, a flat open field, inspired by the soft billowing ‘lalang’ that grew wild here. The seductive movements of the grass in the wind are captured in the elegant profile of The Fennel. 

The distinct zigzag form of the towers is a major feature of the structural design. The innovative idea is that form and function will attain a unique synergy, whereby the form of the towers is also expressing the structural function of the building.

With this one-of-its-kind building form, a total working height of over 150m and with all four towers clad in aluminium frames and fins, the facade work was a complex and challenging element of the overall works.

Due to the dynamic form of the towers, conventional construction methods had to be rethought and improvised as they could not fully deliver the desired outcomes.

The skewing of the towers became obstacles for the vertical transportation and installation of building materials, hence prevented normal methods of hoisting, delivery and installation.

The use of innovative construction techniques, BIM (Building Information Management) and IBS (Industrialised Building
System) resulted in tremendous improvements in design coordination, project and construction management.

This was especially critical as the unconventional design of The Fennel required a different set of extensive planning, construction techniques and methodology.

“Although we faced unprecedented challenges, our team remained committed to continually find solutions and seek improvements
to achieve the highest level of quality and efficiency in all aspects of design, planning and construction,” said Yeoh.

She added that the success of The Fennel signified an incredible achievement of exemplary teamwork and this would continue to
inspire the YTL Land team with bolder visions moving forward, where design is undoubtedly the driving force to push the boundaries of future residential and commercial architecture.

Urban renewal of Sentul

The vision for the urban renewal of Sentul is to give a new lease of life to the 294-acre ageing historical railway site left behind by rapid developments in other parts of KL city.

Adorned with old world charm and heritage, this rich setting provided the perfect inspiration for  YTL Land to embark on an urban renewal master plan.

Today, Sentul comprising Sentul East and Sentul West, has evolved into a vibrant mixed-use new destination for the younger generation under the overarching Sentul Masterplan.

Where others saw uncertainties and risks in venturing into Sentul, this historical railway town was seen by the developer as a unique opportunity for renewal, and to use existing under-utilised land and infrastructure to deliver quality urban housing to a growing urban population.

The Sentul Masterplan with its long-term strategic vision is the catalyst for the ongoing transformation of Sentul, which is optimally placed to provide urban housing next to neighbourhood conveniences, major health facilities and transport corridors.

Yeoh said the completion of The Fennel had cemented YTL Land’s commitment to infuse Sentul East with new zest and dynamism.
“The striking zigzag form of the four residential towers meandering gracefully through the urban context of Sentul East leverages on the strong connections of design and innovation in transforming a century-old town into a new destination for young urbanites. 

“The urban renewal of Sentul is a journey of learning as we progress from earlier renewal initiatives and continue to reinforce the values that shape the environment for the betterment and well-being of our communities.

“The goals are holistic as its future sustainability has always been the focus of its growth through physical, environmental,
cultural and economic renewal.” 

Sentul’s strategic location within a 5km radius of KLCC, KL Sentral and Tun Razak Exchange delivers unrivalled connectivity within Greater KL with a highly developed integrated highway network and confluence of four rail lines.

With an expanding integrated rail transit network, the vision is to establish Sentul as a transit-oriented development based on principles of sustainable urban living.

The social and physical integration between each new residential and commercial development and the site context is key, as the aim of the master plan is to invigorate Sentul and infuse new components but without sacrificing its history, culture and urban fabric. 

“Sentul has been evolving in phases and is now a thriving live, work and play community with landmarks like The Fennel and
The Capers in Sentul East.

“Over in Sentul West, we have also set new benchmarks in restoration and adaptive reuse of heritage buildings, facilities integration and sustainability such as Sentul Depot, a lifestyle destination for events and F&B, as well as Sentul Works, a new-age contemporary heritage office within a tranquil park setting.

“To pursue a new urbanism and stimulate urban revival, our goal is to create a sustainable, living environment where the community gets to enjoy a healthy and active urban lifestyle,” said Yeoh.