Chinese and Russian Investors Drive Phuket Property Market

Property consultancy Knight Frank Thailand reports that Chinese investors are actively purchasing condominiums, villas, shophouses, and durian farms in Phuket in order to meet the demands of Chinese tourists.

Consultant’s managing director, Nattha Kahapana, said that Chinese and Russian homebuyers are driving up demand in the Phuket real estate market.

“Russians are buying real estate in Phuket to live. They intend to buy immediately as they want to start moving in right away,” he added. “More Chinese investors are expected to come to buy 7-8 months after the flow of tourists.”

Mr. Nattha claimed Chinese investors like all types of real estate, including condominiums, villas, shophouses, and even durian orchards, but Russian buyers are only interested in pool villas.

He said that they intended to take Chinese visitors to durian plantations while renting out condominiums and villas to them.

“Our office in Phuket was located near Laguna, in two adjacent, 3•5-storey shophouses that we bought many years ago for 14 million baht,” Mr. Nattha stated.

“Recently, a Chinese investor snapped up the neighbouring units, totaling 47 shophouses including ours. We sold them for 50 million baht.”

He also said that the investor had asked Knight Frank to help him find a 200-rai durian plantation to buy so that he could start a durian tour business for Chinese tourists.

Frank Khan, who is the executive director and head of residential, has reported that the Bangkok rental apartment market with rents exceeding 50,000 baht per month in areas ranging from Ploenchit to Ekamai has resumed during the first quarter of 2023.

“The occupancy of apartments in this location recovered to 40% from 10% during the pandemic,” he said.

“Many multinational companies and their executives are coming back, particularly expatriates from Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Malaysia.”

This is a positive indicator for the rental market for the remainder of the year since Thai investors who delayed purchasing condo units during the epidemic are expected to resume their desire for luxury condominiums in inner-city areas, said Mr. Khan.

“The condo market in the second half of 2023 will have strong growth, with the key drivers the general election and a new cabinet likely named by the third quarter,” he added.

The condo market in three sites – Wireless Road, Lang Suan, and Ekamai showed strong demand for both new and used condos in the first quarter of 2023.

Knight Frank claimed that the increase in overseas purchasers was one of the main factors driving up demand.