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With the success of its Utsav brand of retirement resorts in northern parts of the country, Ashiana Housing Ltd is now taking the concept down south. The real estate company has identified around seven locations in South India for setting up retirement homes after a survey and will start operations in four places soon. “We will start with Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kochi and move to other locations like Coimbatore, Mysore, Vizag later,’’ Mr Ankur Gupta, executive director, told ET.

At present, Ashiana Housing has Utsav retirement resorts at Bhiwadi, Jaipur and Lavasa with over 750 functional apartments. The company is targeting ten locations by 2013 and a total of 1300 units by 2013 with an outlay in the range of Rs 75 to 100 crore. Apart from South India, the company is looking at Mumbai, Pune and Kolkata as well. Mr Gupta said the company is in discussion with local land bankers and developers for joint ventures in key locations in South India. The size of the projects would range from 10 acres to 30 acres. “We will bring in our expertise in construction and post maintenance in the construction,’’ he said.

The resorts have been designed keeping in mind the requirements of the senior citizens and have facilities for social, medical, spiritual activities and recreation. To make life easier for old people there are emergency switches at different places, big sized switches in red colour, inbuilt night lamp, anti skid tiles and bathrooms equipped with arthritis friendly handles, Mr Gupta points out.Ashiana Housing, which also does regular housing projects, has completed 90 lakh sq ft in the last 30 years. Almost 55 to 60 % of its total projects, in fact, belong to the regular housing category while the rest is accounted by the retirement resorts, which was started by the company around six years ago. In the next 2 to 3 years, the company wants 50 % of its projects in the Utsav category.The company is expecting an investment in the range of Rs 350 to 400 crore in the real estate sector in the next five years as the prices have stabilized and the realty sector is looking up. It has targeted Rs 250 crore turnover in the current year with increased thrust on the housing sector.

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