Author Topic: Wang Nam Khiao Boom Time  (Read 991 times)


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Wang Nam Khiao Boom Time
« on: January 18, 2011, 07:47:48 PM »
Boom time for resorts, homestay operators in ozone-rich Wang Nam Khiao

By Somluck Srimalee
The Nation
Wang Nam Khiao, Nakhon Ratchasima

Seven years on from opening Villa Khao PhaengMa, Pradchai Suthanaporn says Wang Nam Khiao district has become a new tourist destination for both foreigners and locals, with his project alone enjoying an occupancy rate of 70 per cent a year.

Land prices in the district have increased dramatically over the past three years and are now in the range of Bt500,000 to Bt850,000 per rai (Bt3.125 million to Bt5.3 million per hectare), compared with Bt50,000Bt100,000 per rai previously.

Pradchai, the owner and managing director of Villa Khao PhaengMa, said the number of homestay operators lining up to open in the district is a good indication of strong tourism demand.

Situated in Nakhon Ratchasima province in the Northeast, Wang Nam Khiao is said to be the seventh ozone richest location in the world.

Pradchai said the location had started to become really popular three years ago. Since the boom began, the villa has increased its occupancy from an average of 60 per cent to 70 per cent a year. During the high season, which runs from October to February, the rate is between 80 and 100 per cent for the 33unit property.

More than 70 per cent of its custom is generated by word of mouth and the Internet, 20 per cent is from travel agents and the remainder are walk in customers.

The property's rates start at Bt2,200 per night for deluxe and more than Bt10,000 per night for three bedroom villas.

Pradchai added that the number of new resorts springing up in Wang Nam Khiao had risen from two to five a year. Most of the properties are developed by both local and Bangkok investors. Pradchai himself hails from Bangkok.

"Wang Nam Khiao is a destination for small and medium sized hospitality businesses rather than the large hotel chains, because the chains do not wish to invest in land title deeds," he said.

Pradchai added that he had initially invested Bt10 million in building the first three villas on his 18 rai. The property has since grown to 33 units.

According to a survey by The Nation last week, the number of homestays in Wang Nam Khiao district now exceeds 50, most of which each have five to 10 units.

The Nation