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What seems like an age ago I was tasked with providing an article a month to a publication called Real Estate Magazine, a title I would go on to own and still do – at least in part, writes Dave Buckley.
It was probably a decade or maybe even as much as a dozen years ago.
I wanted a theme to my articles and settled on the idea of the Wow Factor. The then owner of the magazine put me in touch with several people who, he thought, would be able to point me in the right direction of properties with something special in Pattaya.
I knew what I was looking for … quality condos with great sea views, beautiful high-end pool villas, homes with kitchens you could cook and entertain in all the time, family-friendly, luxury homes with tropical gardens and a private pool … the list close to endless.
Among those I was introduced to was Cees Cuijpers, head of Town & Country then and RE/MAX Town & Country real estate brokers as is.
Cees proved a very accommodating guide (no pun intended). The first few hours I spent in his company helped to underline to me that Wows come in different shapes and sizes.
For example he showed me a condo development his company was involved in called The Residence down Jomtien way off Thepprasit Soi 17 after it joins Soi 9.
At the time it seemed to be in a remote location (major projects have now grown up all around it) and the building work was reasonably well advanced though it needed a lot of imagination on my part to appreciate what I was looking at. Knowing that Cees’s company was involved in the development of the project I did not wish to seem rude but with only grey walls to look at I felt obliged to ask: “What’s the Wow Factor here?”
I recall Cees saying with a smile: “This is one of the few condo blocks in Pattaya where the most expensive apartments will be on the ground floor.”
At the time it was fairly common for the ground floor of condo blocks to be taken up by small commercial offices, inexpensive food outlets or small studios. The expensive units were on the top floor – a situation that continues to this day and probably always will for the views
I must have looked blank. Cees continued: “The Wow factor here is that owners on the ground floor will be able to step straight off their balconies into the beautiful, communal pool.”
I saw his point. I should say that such an arrangement is no longer rare in the city. I can think of several balcony-to-pool set-ups now. But, yes, at the time, it was comparatively unusual.
I would go on to get to know The Residence pretty well. I attended its lavish project opening party in my official capacity with the magazine and what a difference it was compared to the bare shell I has seen earlier.
Later a friend, who, incidentally, had been introduced to me by Cees, would buy a step-into-the-pool ground floor apartment there off-plan. The friend allowed my family from England stay in the apartment for a fortnight’s holiday a couple of years back. The on-site gym was a winner with my youngest son. We lived the Wow lifestyle for a couple of weeks. And very nice it was, too.
Of course the search for new Wows is a never-ending process for developers and the good news for those seeking to invest in property in Pattaya is that each new project seeks to offer something special and new, putting buyers in a great position to benefit from their ingenuity.Wow Factor properties in Pattaya are still out there and Cees and his team of experts will delight in showing them to you. The Wow Factor Trail starts with a trip to their agency in Jomtien Complex. Tell them I suggested you drop in. (MAP)
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