At first glance a US$250 million condo, villa and resort development might seem just the type of thing to put Koh Chang on the luxury property map. Let’s see if it is. I’ll update this page with the progress of the mega development.
What is Aquarius Residences?
Aquarius Residences is the dream of a travel and hospitality firm ‘Aquarius International Hospitality Development’ which in turn is owned by Norcal Venture Capital Group Limited, under the leadership of their CEO, Edward Chi. They have a 5 year plan to transform a corner of Koh Chang, near Bangbao, into a luxury travel destination for high net worth individuals.
It will be a huge development. The three areas of the project are: Hotel & Resort – 93,800 sqm, Residences and Resort – 47,020 sqm, Private Residential area – 92,800 sqm. However, the developers have an ambitious plan to have the first of the three phases completed by late 2022.
A ground breaking ceremony was held on 10 June 2019. In early 2020 land was cleared and initial construction work began. Sales for a spectacular collection of luxury pool villas and condominium residences began in late October 2020.
The Villas and Condos
The development will comprise 23 Pool Villa Residences. This includes seven One-Bedroom Ocean Cliff Pool Villas (223 sqm, starting from 43 Million Baht), five One-Bedroom Ocean Duplex Pool Villas (293 sqm, starting from 41 Million Baht), eight Two-Bedroom Ocean Cliff Pool Villas (448 to 485 sqm, starting from 58 Million Baht), and three stunning Three-Bedroom Ocean Cliff Pool Villas (861 sqm, starting from 100 Million Baht)
The 99 Condominium Residences are set within seven low-rise (three-storey) buildings. These comprise 31 Studios (57 sqm, starting from 8 Million Baht), 40 One-Bedroom Residences (71 sqm, starting from 9 Million Baht), and 28 Two-Bedroom Residences (62 sqm, starting from 9 Million Baht).
At the centre of the development is a Clubhouse that features an infinity pool, fitness centre, sauna and steam room, along with 10 restaurants, coffee shops and retail outlets, a kid’s club and a supermarket.
Pricing information isn’t provided on the developers site or in sales brochures. However it is mentioned in an article on the REM Thailand site. A post on the developer’s Line App page in March 2021 gave the price for a Two-Bedroom Ocean Cliff Pool Villa as being from US$2.4 Million = 76 Million Baht.
So the pricing seems ambitious / optimistic to say the least. Especially given the location and lack of views or beach.
The Chedi Aquarius Koh Chang Resort
Aquarius Residences & Resort, Koh Chang will also feature a 200-key luxury resort ‘The Chedi Aquarius Koh Chang’. This will be managed by GHM, a Singaporean hospitality company, under their ‘Chedi’ brand of luxury resorts. It will also house an all-day restaurant, a cliff-edge restaurant, rooftop bar, spa, infinity pool with pool bar, and conference facilities – all overlooking the Gulf of Thailand.
AQ Privilege Beach Club & Residences, Koh Man Nai
In addition to the large swathe of land in southwestern Koh Chang the developers have also bought Koh Man Nai island, off Kai Bae beach. Most of the island is protected but there is some land which can be owned privately and developed. This island will be the site of AQ Privilege Beach Club & Residences. A truly exclusive private island destination featuring four Presidential Suite Villas, a private marina, beach club, infinity pool and water sports.
My thoughts . . .
I can’t see this getting built (as currently envisaged) in the 4 year time frame given by the developers. (The scheduled opening for the residences and resort is in 2024.) If you are thinking of buying, maybe wait a few years and then purchase a completed unit.
Bear in mind, Koh Chang’s two other large housing & condominium projects, Siam Royal View and Tranquility Bay Residence aren’t complete yet. SRV began in 2004. TBR in 2006. Both have completed homes and condos for sale well below prices at Aquarius.
There are various other reasons too. In brief, these include the location; pricing; property market – not just on Koh Chang but in Thailand at present and infrastructure on the island.
Additionally, it’s always well worth doing some due diligence and researching any developer online. Especially if you are considering buying off plan. For example, Google and look at any previous projects they may have been involved in. Any red flags or a clean past track record? Also check their Facebook page. Look for ‘real’ posts from the site showing progress, etc : Facebook.com/AquariusResidences/
Also follow the progress on the timeline below. I’ll add photos from the site and snippets of news.
Aquarius Residences Timeline
Clearing and construction begins.
Sales launched. Sales office in Bangna, Bangkok opened
Construction work on the Marketing Suites & Show Villas is underway.
Good progress. Show villas in the first photo and Sales office in the second pic.
Construction of the Show villas and Sales office is expected to be completed in April / May
The Sales office and show villas are now complete. The office / showroom looks very nice.
The villa exteriors are rather unimaginative. So, it’ll be interesting to see how the interior looks when it is fitted out and furnished. One design feature of the villas that might not be to everyone’s taste is having to go outside to get from the bedroom to the living room or kitchen.
There’s also a PDF sales brochure with floorplans and more details which can viewed or downloaded here
It seems plans have changed. Initially Phase 1 was the villa and condo development. Followed by a resort ‘ The Chedi Koh Chang’, followed by more villas. However in a Facebook post yesterday, the developer stated : The first phase, known as The Chedi Aquarius, is feature villas, cluster and man-made lagoons, included 6 outlets F&B, full functions of convention and relaxing with 6 spa villas.
The architect’s website has 2023 as the completion date for the resort. Which is optimistic, given construction is yet to begin.