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Bangkok's Surge Of Branded Residences

09 Jan 2019

2019 will see a doubling in the number of branded residences in Bangkok, increasing from three to six projects. There will be 146 units at The Residences at Mandarin Oriental Bangkok, 335 units at the Four Seasons Private Residences Bangkok, and 133 units at the Banyan Tree Residences Riverside Bangkok completed this year, all of them located on the banks of the Chao Phraya River.

In 2011, The Residences at The St. Regis Bangkok became the first branded residence in Bangkok with 53 units, followed by 196 units at The Sukhothai Residences in the same year. Six years later in 2017, the 200-unit The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Bangkok was completed, raising the number of current existing branded residences to 449 units.

In 2019 and 2020, the number of luxury branded units will replicate threefold to over 1,300 units due to the completion of the three projects in 2019, followed by the 2020 completion of 231 units at The Residences at Sindhorn Kempinski Hotel Bangkok on Soi Langsuan.

One of the key selling points of a branded residence is the brand itself. Buyers believe that the brand underwrites the quality of the project and creates an impression that the brand owner has done the required due diligence before agreeing to allow a developer to use its brand name. Buyers also want the conventional hotel style, with the common area management of an international brand with concierge services. However, the brand itself is not an automatic guarantee of success. There needs to be the right combination of brand, location, design, and specifications. Once completed, the reputation will depend not just on the product itself, but also on the quality of service and experience created by it.

Some branded residences are located together with their hotel counterpart, which enables services not usually provided in a normal condominium; examples include: hotel facilities that can be used for personal concerns in addition to the residential facilities, a valet service that can park a resident’s car into the private parking lot, and restaurants that offer partner discounts or provide room service to residents.

Other examples of hotel services that are attractive for branded residences are the availability of concierge services, including a standby trainer at the gym ready to handle residents who may want to get exercise in. Branded residence staff can even prepare boxed food delivery with proper table settings, complete with hotel cutlery, or simply serve fruit, tea, coffee, and other beverages – all of which come at a cost as part of the higher common area fees, though on a pay-as-use basis.

Buyers are willing to pay premium prices above other high-end unbranded developments in similar locations because of perceived quality and level of service associated with branded residences, as well as the benefit of exclusivity since there will only be one development with that particular brand. After all, up-scale prices would mean that there is only a small group of high-net-worth individuals, a mixture of both Thai and non-Thai, who want and can afford this property type.

CBRE believes that there is demand for branded residences with low number of units for exclusivity, located in desirable location and with the presence of well-known hotel brand from a leading hotel operator.

An article written by Aaron Aemi Kuvanun, Senior Analyst at Research & Consulting, CBRE Thailand for Bangkok Post dated 9 January 2019.