Updated: Oct 11
Streets running parallel to each other with alphabets commonly found in Telok Kurau
It is widely known in Singapore - the East region has always been cited as a sought-after area to live in. What’s not to like when there’s sun, sand and sea… food (and heritage!) all packed into one neat packet (or region!).
Today we take a look at a hidden gem… Telok Kurau. Sleepy as it may seem, this residential enclave is nicely tucked between Joo Chiat with its strips of cafes and bespoke boutiques, and Siglap known for its landed enclave with streets named after operas.
Because the roads in Telok Kurau are neatly organized with mostly alphabetically named parallel or perpendicular streets, many residents call it the Pleasantville of Singapore (kinda reminds me of Melbourne’s well-organised gridlike streets too).
Tracing back to a bit of history, ‘Telok kurau’, a Malay word which means “mango fish bay” – telok means “bay” and kurau is “mango fish”. In the 1980s before kampongs were phased out, there was a Malay village known as Telok Kurau located on East Coast Road.
The lorongs, or streets, of Telok Kurau are labeled in alphabetical order: Lorong G, Lorong H, Lorong K, Lorong L etc, intersected with smaller roads like Jalan Baiduri and St Patrick’s Road.
Gridlike streets gives Telok Kurau the boon of easy navigation
Somehow town-planning for this estate has been bestowed with such neatness which is uncharacteristic of old estates.
The houses are mostly oriented in the preferred North-South facing which captures the trade winds making houses in these areas naturally cool.
Under the URA masterplan, the area is cited as a 2-storey mixed landed zoning, hence you will also see low-rise condominiums and apartments sprouting along the streets of Telok Kurau, such as Parc Elegance and Blu Coral.
The charm of this area has been attributed to the presence of unimposing buildings: a mix of modest bungalows, terrace and semi-detached houses as well as low-rise apartments that exist among the myriad of cafes, coffeeshops and small businesses.
Despite the thriving development in nearby Katong, the Telok Kurau area has managed to retain its old world charm.
Since the 1990s, new housing projects have altered the landscape of Telok Kurau - low-rise buildings still dominate the landscape whilst semi-detached houses and terrace houses have sprung up. They constitute a notable feature in the changing landscape of Telok Kurau.
Next, let’s take a look at the key highlights of this eastie landed enclave:
Recent Market Prices for Landed enclave
Landed home prices in Telok Kurau have always been deemed to be more affordable compared to other parts of the East due to its mixed landed zoning so it may be a good starting point for those who desire to upgrade from an apartment to landed living.
As of writing, in Q2 2023, Singapore’s landed homes saw its first decline (around 3.4%) after 9 consecutive quarters of growth while inventory has dropped by 13% compared to the first quarter of this year.
In this quarter, 5 terraces were sold at around $4.64m with an avg $1,978psf. A 22.7% growth in psf was seen compared to Q1.
Credit: Huttons Landed Divsion's 2023 Q2 Landed Market Analysis
While a semi-detached with land size of 3,808sf was sold at $5.8m (avg $1,523). There was no detached house sold in Q2 but a sale was made for Q1 at $10.65m with $1,174psf.
Interestingly, the number of houses sold in Telok Kurau had increased by 25% in Q2 compared to Q1. It is the only segment in the East that saw a growth in volume compared to the other areas like Katong, Joo Chiat and Siglap.
This could be attributed to the lower priced houses in this enclave which may be more preferred by buyers in the current tighter economic climate with high interest rates.
For more specific data of the East region, please feel free to reach out to us for your home selling analysis so we can pull out a comparative matrix for your home.
Park and Siglap Park Connector
One of the most charming spots that probably make residents of Telok Kurau choose this tranquil area to live in is Telok Kurau Park.
Telok Kurau Park - a place for fun, play and relaxation for the local residents
Upon visiting the park on a weekday evening just before sunset, to my pleasant surprise, the sprawling park was teeming with a myriad of bustling activities from all age groups - kids with mini helmets biking (and chasing their little buddy friends), couples brisk walking away, dog lovers lounging with their paw mates on the park bench, intermingled with an elderly folk doing taiqi :D
Thrown into this avid park scene, I realised I was witnessing a magical moment of urban living at dusk time - where neighbours unwind collectively in a shared space, expending a leisure activity they enjoy - be it by themselves alone or with their loved ones.
There are also multiple exercise corners spread throughout the park equipped with different kinds of bars and even a community garden in which the local residents have grown edible greens.
This delightful green space runs along the well-used Siglap Park Connector which seems to be a main lifeline for the residents.
It forms the pathway for those taking the train from Tanah Merah to their abodes and for beach lovers a delightful est. 30mins walk/jog path to the East Coast Park.
The well-used Siglap Park Connector is a daily pathway for local residents to exercise or commute
For families with school going kids, the area offers a great selection - there’s the popular St. Stephen’s Scl, Haig Girls School, CHIJ (Katong), Tao Nan Primary School and Maha Bodhi School. All within a proximity of 1 to 2 km.
Easties who schooled and grew up in the area will also be familiar with the Lasallian St. Patrick’s School (or more commonly referred to as St. Pat’s) as well as CHIJ Katong Convent and may have a nostalgic preference for their kids to be schooled there as well.
For tiny tots, there’s Sparkletots funded by Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) and Odyssey Preschool that provides a global teaching curriculum for parents to choose from.
The Yards offers a place of great heritage with arts, dance and drama activities for the young and old.
And it isn't all academic at Telok Kurau, pop by the rustic The Yards or Telok Kurau Studios, both offering open studio visits, artist talks, and workshops. It currently houses over 20 artists studios in Singapore and is an arts housing project of the National Arts Council.
When you’re in need of an afternoon coffee or casual dine-out, this sleepy enclave is dotted with eateries that embody neighbourly vibes.
From the pet-friendly, The Garden Slug Family Restaurant, that serves rustic meals, the popular Eastside Collective promoting communal living, and The Brewing Ground for cafe goers (their truffle fries are a must-try!) tucked inside Telok Kurau Studios.
Floral-themed Nico Cafe is one of the insta-worthy cafes you'll stumble upon in Telok Kurau!
Or drop by the hidden coffee brand from Melbourne, Naked Espresso, tucked along a cool back lane in Joo Chiat Place.
For local coffeeshops, at the top end of Telok Kurau Road, you can satiate your local craving with Hai Kee Soy Sauce Chicken Rice at Kim San Leng Coffeeshop.
Or wander down to The Bullion Hawker Bar where nighters hang out at the far end closer to St. Patrick’s Road, here you can find charcoal cooked Hokkien Prawn Mee Noodles, Satays and a Zi Char store. Just a walk slightly further out, you’ll also find the famous Beach Road Prawn Noodle House where long queues are often spotted on weekend mornings.
Yearning for more cafe hopping? Head over to Joo Chiat, by crossing over the major thoroughfare, Still Road, and you will find yourself nestled in a thriving strip of trendy cafes, bespoke cafes, lifestyle shops and trendy workout studios.
Still Road, the main thoroughfare that divides Joo Chiat area and Telok Kurau
With the revamped i12 Katong and Parkway Parade mall as the main serving malls for residents living in this part of East Coast vicinity, shopping is also easy with local shops and supermarkets dotted along Joo Chiat and Upper East Coast Road
For landed homeowners, driving is the norm for residents, however, if public transportation is required for the younger or elderly folks, there are lots of buses that run along Telok Kurau Road to the nearby MRT stations, Kembangan and Eunos.
Taking Lorong J as the somewhat middle point of Telok Kurau road, the Eunos MRT station is est. 0.87km away while Kembangan MRT station is around 0.93km and the upcoming Marine Terrace station (TEL line) is 1.09km.
Notably, there’s the Parkway East Hospital which has served the East community for apparently 80 years. It has changed name several times over the decades, including being endearingly known as East Shore Hospital for over ten years (this I remembered vividly as my auntie used to live in a terrace in the area around the 2010s).
Living in the area one will discover the odd laundromat, random healthcare shop, gourmet deli or a bike shop all located in one strip where they may become your go-to for a quick pick-me-up or a place to run to fix a stubborn stain on your business suit.
Dotted along Telok Kurau are strips of shops offering useful amenities and services
Landed Home Consultation
If you’re planning to sell or rent your property in this area, please feel free to contact us for a detailed price analysis market consultation.