Bangkok Gets New Luxury Mixed-Use Buildings

Major developers are showing confidence in Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand. An array of mixed-use projects has started to shape the skyline of Asia’s City of Angels.

Bangkok, Thailand—Major developers are showing confidence in Bangkok, the capital city of Thailand. An array of mixed-use projects has started to shape the skyline of Asia’s City of Angels. Despite the optimism shown by the developers, A.T. Kearney and The Chicago Council on Global Affairs are not as confident that the city has what it takes to fully capitalize on future globalization trends. In their joint study, 2012 Global Cities Index and Emerging Cities Outlook, Asian cities show a large potential for growth because they are the most likely to improve in global influence. Bangkok, however, has dropped from the number 22 position it occupied in 2008 to 43 in the A.T. Kearney Global Cities Index, with a 1.93 rating on a scale from 0 to 10. Bangkok is also the most likely to stagnate in the short-term, having a 4.9 rating in strengths and 3.6 in vulnerabilities, as per the Emerging Cities Outlook.

The most recent vote of confidence about new Bangkok development came from Siam Commercial Bank, which approved a THB5.4 billion (approximately $171 million) loan to Pace Development Corporation Public Co. Ltd. for the construction of the city’s tallest building. The MahaNakhon is aiming to be the most significant complex of contemporary architecture and urban design in Thailand. The mixed-use 77-story high-rise complex will feature 194 Ritz-Carlton branded luxury residences, a 150-room boutique hotel and approximately 10,000 square meters (around 107,000 square feet) of retail space. Designed by German architect Ole Scheeren, partner of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture, the THB19 billion (approximately $600 million) project will have a huge impact on the visual skyline of the city, with its unique, pixelated and quasi-spiral carved design.

The city also has two additional mixed-use mega-projects in the pipeline: Magnolia Quality Development Corporation Limited is planning the luxury mixed-use Ratchadamri Boulevard, which will bring the first Waldorf Astoria hotel to Southeast Asia, and another 16,000-square-meter (172,000 square feet) mixed-use development that is estimated to cost around $1.1 billion.