A view in Bang Saray, a tambon in Sattahip district, Chon Buri province. The area has emerged as a new hotspot for commercial property development. (Photo by Pongpet Mekloy)
Pattaya has been a focal point for development historically. In the past decade, the resort town's more popular areas such as Wong Amat, Phra Tamnak, Jomtien and Na Jomtien were developed heavily for the condominium market.
With limited beachfront land along these beaches, leading developers are looking further down the coastline in areas between Bang Saray and Sattahip.
The shift in development to the south coincides with the government's plans to develop the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC), which further increases the opportunity for the area's potential for future growth and expansion.
In 2018, Pattaya was the 18th most-visited city in the world, attracting 8.67 million international travellers, according to the MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index 2018. This makes the city more popular than Bali and creates a powerful focal point for the EEC region.
Pattaya is well situated between Bangkok and the EEC, being only a two-hour drive from Bangkok, and is the nearest resort location from Bangkok, which means it will always be an ideal location for weekend getaways.
Due to the increasing density of Pattaya, many are expanding their attention further out from downtown Pattaya to previously overlooked beach areas such as Bang Saray.
As a result, these areas are attracting rising numbers of visitors and businesses. Considering potential investment, we believe there are good fundamental factors to support future growth in the value of land and property around the Bang Saray and U-Tapao area.
We have seen new developments completed in the area to enhance both short-term vacations and long-term relocation. New hotels such as the Renaissance Pattaya have shown exceptional performance with an 80% occupancy rate.
"A number of other five-star branded hotels are also planned to be built in the area. Quality residential developments such as Sunplay Bangsaray and new golf courses have been developed in the area as well,"
Traditional tourist spots and family activities such as wineries and Big Buddha Mountain are now being supplemented with modern family attractions such as branded water parks, a theme park, world-renowned golf courses and a growing selection of food and beverage destinations.
In addition, international schools with famous names like Rugby and St. Andrews, along with private hospitals and sports clubs, are making the growing area a destination for relocation, retirement, and expatriate leasing market.
We think the area around Na Jomtien and Bang Saray up to U-Tapao will grow as an upmarket location for Pattaya with several large-scale developments being planned.
Furthermore, EEC has received and continues to get heavy government investment as a hub for industrial, trade, tourism, and commercial sectors. The incentives for establishing businesses, combined with the area's scenery and climate, have set a good foundation for creating strong demand for new accommodation along this stretch of coast as industry draws workers.
In recent years, the area's accessibility has been enhanced through infrastructure projects. The expansion of U-Tapao airport has created a dedicated EEC air hub that now welcomes international flights from key feeder markets including China, Russia and even the UK, and considerable expansion is being planned in the future.
Other ground transportation developments are also making the area far more accessible. New expressway developments are going to make driving far more convenient as commuters can bypass the busy downtown areas of Pattaya.
The planned High-Speed Rail Link connecting U-Tapao with Bangkok and its two airports — Don Mueang and Suvarnabhumi — will further streamline connectivity, creating almost seamless access throughout the EEC when it comes into service in 2023.
The combination of industrial growth, the development of efficient transportation infrastructure, as well as the area's natural beauty and host of attractions, gives this area a high potential for future growth.
We are observing that the area is growing as an upmarket hub and believe that, due to these factors, this area provides many opportunities for developers to cater to rising demand in a variety of market segments such as hotels, residential homes, retirement communities, and retail centres and for the investors to start looking for investment opportunities.
Aliwassa Pathnadabutr is managing director of CBRE Thailand. She can be reached at email@example.com Facebook: CBREThailand LinkedIn: CBRE Thailand LINE@: CBRE Thailand Twitter: @CBREThailand and website: www.cbre.co.th