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Posted: 16 Dec 2010 | 9:41 am
A few weeks ago we started to receive a series of phone calls and messages from investors and industry types inquiring about the sale of two prominent Phuket island hotels.
Both are well known 5-star hotels owned by significant listed hospitality firms. Tracking back the information led us to the website ThailandHotelsForSale.com
Looking at the site "Thailand Hotels For Sale" there are a number of well known Phuket, Bangkok and other hotels in the country shown. Going to the Phuket section was an entry with a full set of pictures of the Sheraton Grande Laguna Phuket in Bangtao priced at THB5.7 billion and then Le Meriden Karon for THB6.7 billion. While no name was listed, there were full sets of photographs explicitly identifying the hotel, accompanied by location and details.
Two quick calls to the Thai listed Laguna Hotels and Resorts and HPL in Singapore who are the respective owners confirmed these properties are not on the market.
Going over the listings there are a number of other familiar hotels which have also been confirmed are not for sale.
Listed on the website are no contact details and only a reference to a company called First-One Property. Only a automated response form is available for interested parties.
Doing a search on the company came up with affiliated sites First-One Media and Marketing and First-One Thailand Property Network. Again only email addresses and no offices shown or telephone numbers. Another link came to www.backpackthailand.com which is listed under First-One Media and uses links for Google ads and booking links. Here Krabi and Aonang domains are listed for sale.
It's been tedious explaining to the host of callers that a selection of these iconic hotel properties are indeed not for sale. Many responded that these 'fishing expeditions' by strategic internet companies tarnished the image of the island and Thai property industry.
There remain a large number of reputable internationally affiliated and local real estate agencies here which act with integrity and professionalism so we'd encourage potential investor's to do their homework, make informed decisions and as always seek experienced advice.
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