Thai Developer Raimon Land aims to retain its reign

Construction News
“Despite the work-from-home trend and staff reductions, office space demand among international firms is constant because they need social distancing.” — Korn Narongdej, CEO, Raimon Land

Thai Developer Raimon Land aims to retain its reign

Developer opts to solely focus on the luxury and super-luxury segments

SET-listed developer Raimon Land plans to focus on luxury and super-luxury property development and new economy businesses, with a goal to open One City Centre, a new grade A office building in Phloenchit, in the first half of 2023.

CEO Korn Narongdej said the company shifted the focus of its property development business to solely the luxury and super-luxury segments.

“After studying the company’s core values, we found they are luxury and super-luxury products,” said Mr Korn, who joined the company two years ago.

“We are the market leader in the luxury segment with units priced at 10 million baht and higher, so we want to maintain this brand positioning.”

From now on, 80% of the company’s residential development will be branded residences as demand is growing, with many luxury property buyers willing to pay a premium for this type of product, he said.

A digital rendition of One City Centre, a new grade A office tower in Phloenchit.

“Our first branded residence project is Rosewood Residences Kamala in Phuket, worth around 7 billion baht,” said Mr Korn.

“Both Phuket and Bangkok, which we will focus on, are global destinations that attract a lot of foreign property buyers, particularly in the high-end segment.”

Raimon Land is also keen to tap new economy businesses. One of them is data centres, which provide the infrastructure for the new economy, while demand from cloud consumption and e-commerce continues to grow.

The company announced in May this year its strategic partnership with US-based Nautilus Data Technologies to promote environmentally innovative, water-cooled data centres in Thailand as well as other key regional locations such as the Philippines.

“The cooling system reduces energy costs and eliminates water consumption, wastewater production and harmful refrigerants,” he said. “This partnership will allow us to provide sustainable, world-class data centre infrastructure and services in Thailand.”

The company’s first data centre project is scheduled to start development early next year.

“Recurring income from the project can help support our revenue, which fluctuated as we usually spend three to five years to complete the development of a condominium project,” said Mr Korn. “Next year, we will have a new source of recurring income from offices for rent.”

Raimon’s ambition is for its new project, One City Centre (OCC), a grade A office tower joint venture with Mitsubishi Estate, to become the new heart of Phloenchit.

Mitsubishi Estate is one of Japan’s largest developers. OCC was designed by world-class design consultancy Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (Thailand) Co, the team behind the design success of Dubai’s Burj Khalifa.

OCC has reimagined the world of office space with elements conducive to a productive working environment. It has been awarded the 2-star Fitwel rating from the US-based Center for Active Design for its outstanding building development to promote health and wellness through the built environment for the well-being of tenants and visitors.

It also has an occupant experience application, visitor management system, parking payment system, licence plate recognition system and turnstile featuring touchless access control.

To promote energy efficiency, the centre has efficient LED lighting and automated controls, as well as specially designed facades that include shade to optimise solar heat reduction and reduce overall solar loads.

Located on a six-rai plot opposite Central Embassy mall on Phloenchit Road with a direct access skywalk to Phloen Chit skytrain station, OCC has reserved three rai as a green area because it aims to be a new landmark in the district.

“Phloenchit is a prime location in the central business district,” he said. “Once completed, OCC will be the tallest building in this area and the tallest office-only tower in Thailand.”

The building is projected to have 61 storeys with a total lettable area of around 61,000 square metres, with a ceiling height of 3 metres. It can accommodate up to 879 cars and is fitted with electric vehicle charging bays.

With a 17m deep column free design, floor planning is flexible with an office floor plate of around 1,300 sq m per floor.

Some 35-40% of the space is being pre-leased by 15 companies, most of which are international businesses. The majority of these are financial institutions. The average monthly rental rate is 1,500 baht per sq m.

One of the building’s 15 early tenants is a firm that plans to relocate there in April 2023 to utilise around 2,500 sq m of space on the 37th and 38th floors. This space has been designed to promote talent, with features including hot desks, a recreation area and amenities for tenants and visitors.

“We target international companies,” said Mr Korn. “Despite the work-from-home trend and staff reductions, office space demand among international firms is constant because they need social distancing.”

In the last two months this year, he said the company plans to sign a contract with a Michelin guide-listed restaurant that expects to open a branch of its bar and restaurant in a 2,000 sq m space on the 61st floor and the building’s rooftop, with 360-degree views of the city.

“The rooftop bar and restaurant will be a new destination tourists should not miss in Bangkok,” said Mr Korn. “OCC will not only be a workplace, but also a place to enjoy green and retail spaces.”