Koh Samui resort seeks to lure Hong Kong buyers

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 02 November, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 02 November, 2011, 12:00am


Undaunted by the devastating floods inundating large regions of Thailand, developers will market a resort villa development on the Thai island of Koh Samui to wealthy Hong Kong buyers this weekend.

Amburaya Hotels & Resorts and Istithmar World will make their debut in the Hong Kong market from Friday to Monday, offering 12 villas for sale at their The Residences development at W Retreat Koh Samui at prices starting from HK$16.3 million.

Richard Skene, director of sales and marketing for the resort, said the floods had mainly affected central Thailand and had no impact on Koh Samui.

'There are now direct flights from Hong Kong to Koh Samui, so if there are concerns about flooding in Bangkok, it is not an issue,' he added.

Koh Samui, Thailand's third-largest island after Phuket and Koh Chang, was one of the southern islands that suffered from smaller-scale flooding caused by heavy rains in March. The developers were coming to Hong Kong to market the resort because local investors were among the biggest buyers of property in Thailand and were also relatively wealthy, said Skene.

In a Thailand market report, property consultant CBRE Thailand said the current flooding would have an impact across the board on all property sectors, but would vary in degree and extent. In the short term, business was likely to slow as people would be busy solving problems associated with the floods, it said.

Overall, the flooding will result in changes in demand patterns in the residential sector in terms of preferred locations and product. In terms of location, the Bangkok central business district, which includes Lumpini, Silom, Sathorn and Sukhumvit, would be preferred areas, while other locations would be assessed after the flooding was over, it said. 'Demand for high-rise condominiums is likely to rise as people may want to buy them to use as a second home in the city centre,' it said in the report.

The sector likely to be most hit by the flooding would be industrial property, said CBRE. 'At present, it is difficult to predict how long the recovery process will take, but in the short term the impact is severe, with widespread disruption in the manufacturing and distribution chain. The recovery process will be strongly underpinned by the government's effectiveness in implementing supporting measures, as well as the individual industrial estate operators' measures to bring factories back into operation,' the report said.