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Investors expected to buy over 20 Thai hotels valued over 15 billion baht this year

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There is an investment wave sweeping Phuket, and other popular holiday spots in Thailand, at the moment as the ownership landscape changes, mostly due losses made over the Covid-19 pandemic and opportunistic buyers and brands picking up bargains in the hotel market.

Over 20 hotels, valued at more than 15 billion baht are expected to be snapped up by both Thai and foreign investors this year. According to a Nation Thailand report, property consultants Colliers International Thailand have seen a surge in demand for Thai hotels in the first half of this year, in tourist destinations, particularly Phuket, Bangkok, Koh Samui, Chiang Mai and Pattaya.

Research and Communications director, Phattarachai Taweewong, says as things start to look up for the tourism sector, investors are keen to snap up older Thai hotels in need of renovation, upgrading, and rebranding. The property consultants expect to see more than 20 hotels sold, compared to 24 in 2021, and 7 in 2020.

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused more hotels to come to the market, as owners are left with no choice but to sell due to increasing operating costs and no liquidity. Prices last year were around 30% lower than market prices but are expected to be higher this year, as the tourism situation improves and foreign visitors return to the kingdom, with the Tourism Authority of Thailand enthusiastically expecting over 10 million tourists in 2022 by the end of year.

According to Colliers, Chinese investors are predominantly interested in hotels in Phuket and Chiang Mai, whereas American, Singaporean and Japanese investors are expressing interest in Bangkok hotels.

Thailand, and Phuket’s tourism mix, has substantially changed in the post-Covid era, with former international markets facing challenges that are keeping them away from Thailand in large numbers – long-haul flight costs, inflation, recession, and supply chain and staffing challenges in the aviation industry. China and Russia, both prominent visitors to Thailand before 2020, have their own challenges right now. China is not expected to open up much until at least late next year. Russia is being substantially locked out of international travel and may remain a small player in global travel for decades following their invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing sanctions.

Meanwhile the Indian market is fuelling the resurgence in travel to Thailand, through cheap and regular flights from major population bases in India, and its close proximity to Thailand. Same with Malaysian tourists, many crossing over the southern border for weekend visits to the southern provinces.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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