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Phuket born Pavions Hotels and Resorts has inked a deal for a 96-villa luxury resort in El Nido, Palawan, Philippines.

The mixed use property will offer one and two bedroom villas and a twenty over-water villas with private pools.

A series of hotel branded properties are being sold from USD250-500,000.

An opening is expected in early 2022.

Pavilions also has a mixed use resort under development in Niseko Japan.

Asia’s leading alpine real estate market, Niseko looks set to enter a new property cycle as the main indicator being its once-lofty condominium demand eases off the accelerator. The gold standard of the marketplace for the past five years has been centered firmly in Hirafu, but fast appreciating property prices, scarcity of sites and a mounting inventory of incoming supply is pushing developers to other nearby ski-oriented locations.

The effect of the push outwards from Hirafu is being felt in nearby areas such as Higashiyama – Niseko Village, Annupuri, Hanazono, and Moiwa, given lower underlying land values in these locations.  C9 Hotelworks research has revealed mounting transaction volumes in residential land and land and house packages in projects such as Hanaridge, Odin Hills and Hanacreek.

Taking a step back and evaluating the property cycle, the new set of land buyers represent an increase in speculation-oriented investors versus the traditional lifestyle buyers who in the past have been end-users. This again points to a maturation of the real estate market and a possible reset.

Another prime observation of C9 Hotelworks newly released Niseko Property Review is the emergence of a growing number of international hotel brands including the highly-successful Park Hyatt Hotel and Residences Hanazono, and upcoming projects led by luxury mainstays Aman and Ritz-Carlton.

Despite the ongoing entry of larger global chains, a reality-check surfaced recently when the Hyatt House in Hirfu was reflagged to the Thai group Chatrium highlighting the unique skill set required of operators of mixed-use hotel residences. This is a stark reminder that Niseko is vastly different from a traditional resort marketplace and that condominium-type hospitality products are inherently more complex to operate versus single-owner hotels.

Looking forward, given the broader market focus on resort-grade properties and increasing shift towards rental yields as the sector grows, tourism fundamentals are expected to play a key role. A new 20-year Kutchan Town Urban Planning Masterplan process is underway that will weigh heavily on the area’s future development.

Taking a view of the all-important airlift factor, regional direct flights to Sapporo’s New Chitose airport pre-crisis have risen sharply, this remains an important barometer for real estate in the future.

There is potential disruption of routes to Thailand, Hong Kong and other Asian gateways which have in the past induced demand to Niseko’s property sector. It’s likely a retraction in the region’s airline industry will mute many leisure-driven destinations.

Another key dynamic is the continued upward pressure on construction rates.  While the build-up to the Olympics and speculation on massive integrated-resort casino projects is the backdrop amidst escalating cost, there is little reason to believe a significant downwards adjustment will come into play, thus keeping intense pressure points on developer’s margins.

Our view of Niseko remains positive in the long-term and that market values will hold given unique fundamental of the relatively small size of buyer debt and discretionary nature of the property holdings. That said, the sheer cost of development may restrain investors from undertaking significant integrated developments and year-round resorts, which is what is needed to take the destination into the next stage of its evolution. Ultimately, Niseko has to create a more balanced support infrastructure and the time to do that is now.

Download and read C9 Hotelworks Niseko, Japan Property Review

A special one day online property sale from The Thaiger powered by real estate portal FazWaz.com will be held on Thursday 18th June.

The flash sale has exclusive properties across Thailand, with discounts up to 50% off.

The 24-hour time period will commence on the 18th at 12 pm and run through 12 pm on the 19th Bangkok time.

Given the current economic crisis, many listed Thai developers are looking to accelerate sales of properties in order to fuel sagging cash flow.

Register for the event

When I was six years old, my world ended with the abrupt start of first grade in school. I recall the traumatic experience and sharp departure of my pre-school lifestyle into the new dark world of a disciplinary regime. Gone was breakfast at leisure, endless hours of TV and the luxury of time.

As it turned out, after two totally dark days and a final refusal to go to school on day three, my parents grudging gave into my staunch demands to stay home for another year and I won a twelve-month reprieve. Regrettably, I ended up losing my childhood best friend Ronnie Mitchell as he stayed the course in school. That said, the one grade degree of separation was just too much for the friendship. Despite the fact that my academic career went from bad to worse, and ended up in a final red card many years later, the lesson learned was a lifestyle choice is the most important one after all. It’s defining, highly personal and aspirational. Enter luxury into the subject line.

As we swoosh many decades forward to the present days of the pandemic, what continues to be clear is that health and wellness is now trending everywhere we turn. But, it’s a with a big B, and the reality is the crisis is just a foot on the accelerator of a larger change that has been evident everywhere in our lives over the past few years.

For hotels and the swinging hospitality set, health and wellness have been relegated to a mystic compartmentalized back into the box modus operandi, at a time when travelers are trying to escape the box.  Small isolated areas for gyms, fitness, spa treatment and wellness are disconnected from the broader brand ideologies that shout out local, artisanal, experiential and other blah blah blah. Wellness is like being from Tasmania. Hoteliers have come to worship at the feet of a false god of what they think is important or just copy the other guys, because they seem to know what they are doing. Guess again, hotel groups just don’t get wellness or health.

But, as we start to exit from Covid-19, the reality is that now they have to. My biggest issue with this process is not simply looking at what people want. Henry Ford once said “if I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” As most of us know, Ford was an automobile pioneer.  Move onto the Apple smartphone phenomenon. Got it?

What is exciting about health and wellness is it has a chance to create a new script for hospitality. Luxury is dominated by discretionary spending as anyone who wears an Apple watch and counts steps, can tell you. It’s an obsessive, engaging pursuit of lifestyle. Post-crisis, forget the champagne and Rimowa rush, I want to invest heavily in myself, my life and my health.

In terms of what’s changing, human values are being altered to a health and wellness lifestyle that doesn’t end when the travel begins. It’s about space, engagement, programing and investing in yourself not just into a pish posh bling ring. Today, health and wellness are indeed the new luxury and for hotels, this is a blessing and a curse. which will be defined entirely outside the spa and gym. It is indeed time to wake up and smell the future.

To sum it all up, when I’m asked about hospitality health and wellness in the future, my answer is that it’s about flesh and blood, not bricks and mortar.

It’s clear that Thailand’s real estate sector is expected to undergo a megashift as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and search for the new norm. That said, one of the country’s leading PropTech groups FazWaz says the crisis has only accelerated dynamic charges to the sector that have been bubbling to the surface over the past two years.

Speaking about the new real estate marketplace, “big data and virtual seamless transactions are recurring trends whose time has come” says FazWaz CEO Brennan Campbell. The current crisis has created a great wall between property buyers and sellers can easily be demolished through a complete overhaul of the legacy brokerage transaction process.

FazWaz, who are a PropTech start-up under Thailand’s BOI (Board of Investment) technology development platform has methodically pursued an enhanced big data platform by focusing on creating a forward-looking property transaction model.

Over the next few months the next domino to fall is a new FazWaz product using online data to create dynamic property valuation, which can be used by financial institutions, developers and prospective buyers in obtaining real-time appraisals.

Commenting on the new business model Campbell comments “reality bites, the old method of real estate valuation in Thailand that requires an arduous paper chase, walking around neighborhoods staring at ‘for sale signs’ and looking back versus looking forward makes zero sense.”

Big data allows FazWaz to understand dynamic demonstrated trends 24/7 and uses algorithms can predict future values. One of the best examples of a shifting market is Thailand’s current property maturation cycle where lines are blurring between primary and secondary sales and in fact both weigh heavily on valuation. A recent FazWaz deep dive into the Phuket real estate sector showed a market value of properties for sale in excess of THB100 billion.

Lessons learned in the current crisis, that is moving away from traditional brokerage has prospective buyers taking virtual tours of property (VR) instead of going to model show units. VDR (virtual data room) is also becoming a new standard in the transaction process. It has been accelerated into the due diligence process by sheer necessity. Add in the use of big data for AVM (automated valuation model) property valuations is clearly a more accurate methodology given emerging market volatility.

As Thailand’s property sector goes into reopening mode and the long journey towards recovery Campbell weighs in with “the new path is one that the industry has not been on before, big data doesn’t sleep, nor do disruptors to the sector. Ultimately PropTech will change the sector in ways you cannot even imagine today.”

Following the creation of the Four Seasons Tented Camp and Elephant Sanctuary in Thailand and his own Bensley Collection – Shinta Mani Wild luxury tented camp in Cambodia, Bill Bensley is currently designing his most ambitious and innovative wildlife conservation concept to date – Worldwild China or as it’s affectionately become known – The (Luxury) Human Zoo.

This exciting “Animals First” concept will prioritize animal welfare while developing unique conservation conscious learning experience for guests and visitors.  For the animals it will be place for Respect, Refuge and Rehabilitation while for humans, it is being created for Education, Excitement and Experiences.

Set in 2000 acres in Wuchuan in southern China’s Guangdong province, the wildlife sanctuary and reserve will have 7 luxury hotels with a total of 2000 rooms, scheduled to open in 2022.  Worldwild will touch on everything that Bensley is deeply passionate about; sustainability, conservation, wildlife protection, education and unique design.

Following the creation of the Four Seasons Tented Camp and Elephant Sanctuary in Thailand and his own Bensley Collection – Shinta Mani Wild luxury tented camp in Cambodia, Bill Bensley is currently designing his most ambitious and innovative wildlife conservation concept to date – Worldwild China or as it’s affectionately become known – The (Luxury) Human Zoo.

This up close and personal talk will feature a 30-minute insight into how Bensley is reinventing hotel design. There will be a special Q and A session as part of the program.

Speakers

Bill Bensley, Director, Bensley

BENSLEY, is a small atelier of youthful energetic architects, interior designers, artists and landscape architects that know no limits.

Bill Barnett, Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks

One of the most authoritative voices in the hospitality and leisure real estate sectors in Asia Pacific.

Moderator

David Johnson, CEO, Delivering Asia Communications

Heads Asia’s leading hospitality PR company. Based in Bangkok, DAC specialises in strategic communications, media relations and digital marketing across every Asian marketplace.

LIVE WEBINAR: Tuesday 26th May, 2pm-2:45pm Bangkok Time

Register

Phuket’s economy heavily relies on tourism. In 2019, the accommodation and food services sectors made up nearly 50% to its total GPP. Due to the negative impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on tourism, the critical economic questions facing the island remain: is it too big to fail, and is it time to diversify industries?

With over 80,000 registered accommodation keys in Phuket, restoring overseas travel is a lever towards injecting cash flow into the tourism sector and stabilizing businesses.

Looking beyond tourism, other key demand generators such as international schools and hospitals, real estate and the marine industry are key contributors to the island’s economic profile and have the opportunity to tap broader demand.

Some of the key demand sector metrics in the report are –

  • Foreign Phuket province work permits, not related to construction tally 9,835
  • Over 4,000 international school students
  • A primary and secondary real estate sector valued at over THB100 billion

Phuket’s economy for the remainder of year will rely primarily on the resilience of its tourism industry. In the longer term, the island’s immediate need of a comprehensive tourism master plan is a recurring challenge that must be addressed. A rise in public private partnerships over the next two to three years is expected, which possibly could be tapped to fund infrastructure development

C9 Hotelworks Phuket Economic Overview 2020

Asia now accounts for a third of hotel branded residences globally, which are in the market according to C9 Hotelworks latest research.  Over the next five years there will be an addition to inventory of 79 developments with over 16,130 units in the upscale through luxury tiers.  

In the region, Thailand is the leading market for pipeline projects, with over 4,700 units or 29% of incoming supply.  Coming second and third are the Philippines and Vietnam. Looking at locations, 42% are in the fast-emerging urban sector, with 58% being more traditional resort or leisure based.

Ranking hotel operators in the upscale to luxury tiers who are flocking to the sector in order to spur development deals, Marriott tops the list followed by ACCOR, Dusit, Hyatt, Shangri-La, IHG and Wyndham. Other prominent operators included Rosewood and Minor. 

Our expectation for Asia’s real estate sector that is currently disrupted by the COVID-19 crisis is that a China-led recovery will positively impact branded residences, given a high level of activity by Chinese developers and buyers in the market.

To download and read the full report click Asia Hotel Brand Residences Update 2020.

 

Thailand’s Montara Hospitality Group has unveiled plans for a THB6 billion (USD200 million) wellness community in Phuket named Tri Vananda.

The development includes 298 villas and a state of the art wellness hotel on a land area of approximately 580 rai just northwest of Thalang.

Amenities include an organic farm, meditation center, health and diagnostic center and sports club.

Bangkok-based designers Habita are the architects with P49 doing interiors.

Residential sales are set to launch mid-year.

Tri Vananda is targeting LEED certification and will make extensive use of solar technology.

Montara Hospitality is best known for the ultra-luxury Trisara Resort and Michelin star-rated PRU restaurant.