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One of Southeast Asia’s leading property personalities John Birt has passed away.
Birt was best known for his extended time in Koh Samui where he led the real estate firm SVH (Samui Villas & Homes).
For more than a decade I often called in on John when visiting the island and never tired of his views on the market and rich historical context.
He is best remembered as one of those legendary expatriates who came East and never left.
A graduate of the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst in the UK, he served in the Gurkha Brigade for over a dozen years in India, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Nepal amongst other postings.
In the 1980’s he took to property and joined what was Richard Ellis International Property (now CBRE) and in 1988 came to Thailand and formed the Bangkok office of First Pacific Davies.
From 1996 onward he started his own firm and advised a number of pioneering developments in Koh Samui. From 2001 onwards he headed up SVH and become and well known authority on island property.
John was a throwback to an earlier age and can best be described as an Old World gentleman with a great sense of New World storytelling and keen personality.
His cremation will take place on Sunday May 29th in Koh Samui at the Bophut Tha Ram Wat. For more details contact Khun Pai by email at [email protected]