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The Family Is Looking At Buying A Hotel. Need Advice.

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Hi G, thanks for your comments.

The room price that I quoted was from a couple of small hotels near me. One of them charges 3000 baht per night and is already fully booked for every week in the high season. (I know this is true because I i used to eat in this hotel last high season ...)

The other hotel has fewer facilities that ours and charges 5,000 baht per night. It also has many guests.

There is certainly a market for cheaper (and more expensive hotels). The nack is identifying your potential customers and understanding what they want from a hotel and how much they will pay for this etc.

Re the building costs, we are about 80% completed, with no major over-runs on cost so far, (which is actually quite a surprise...)


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One staff at 5-8,000 a month, should be able to keep those 10 rooms tidy... So, in essence you're talking about making about 3.5 - 4 M a year on an initial investment of about 3 M baht?

I must admit, haven't got much insight into hotel business, but that calculation sounds way too optimistic to hold water.

I invested a small amount of money in a biz for the wife's family. In a little less than 3 months had made back all the capital investment + 25%. The business can't keep up with the demand so I've forked over more capital to expand. If things go well I will expand to a MUCH larger market and I expect to gross between 3-6,000 USD per month.

There are ways to make money in Thailand. I was skeptical but after a year of living here you just gotta find the right path and go for it. Simon43 has a lot of experience in Thailand. I think he will do very well in Phuket. I've never been to Phuket but will probably make it down there someday and hope to stay at his hotel. I like the smaller hotel operations like this; there is one in Udon Thani with 10 rooms and the staff are great....it's cool to see the same people year after year makes it a more personal experience. I'm renting a house now but still drop by from time to time to visit and share a cup of coffee.

Simon, can I have the President suite LOL?

Steve LDB :o

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I know Simon will pull it off. But don't forget he was in the bar business before, has a Thai wife and a lot of experience under his belt.

I remember from reading posts that Simon first planned something on Samui looked around and then decided to go to Phuket.

Maybe changing the idea of this hotel business and the way it should look many times depending on the surroundings and other hotel in the neighbourhood, and the targeting of different types of tourist changing every time.

Now how would someone with no Thai relatives and no experience in Thailand like the OP do that. I think by first making a few mistakes before getting it right. And those mistakes can be very costly.

I suggest to the OP to do things in the right order. First research your visa options, then the workpermit problem. Then the Thai shareholders problem, the location problem, the buying of the land problem, the building problem, the fitting out problem, the insurance problem, the employee problem, the bookkeeping problem, the maintenance problem, etc... All these 'problems' can be very big without experience in Thailand. If you live here and have business experience some of those problems are easily solved, other will always be difficult.

Once you are here for a while and study those problems, and do a lot of research about prices and possibilites those problems can change into oppertunities. When you have no experience then you will be unable to recognize them.

Of course it is not impossible, but like businesses in every country, the ones who prepare and have some cash for bridging unfortunate times are the ones that will grow into a successful business.

My Parents will basically only be there to relax and enjoy their pension (and be the majority shareholder/owner).

Majority is Thai owned. And why not have the parents relax and enjoy their pension here without all the hassle a Thai business will bring.

Edited by Khun Jean
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Khun Jean is right. I have lived in LoS for a few years, speak/read/write reasonable Thai, have a 'decent' Thai wife etc etc.

BUT . . I have made mistakes in the early days and lost a few million baht in the process. Yes, I owned 2 bars in BKK. But one I lost money on because the rent was too high for the location. The other is doing ok. I also had a coffee shop and lost money on that!!

So, I'm actually a bit of a loser :o But I have been lucky that I had another UK business which was making money, so I could afford to take the risk..

You need to ask yourself if you can afford to take such a risk. Maybe you will be lucky first time and get a profitable business. Or maybe you will be 'stung' by some unscrupulous person, or just misread your market, and lose the lot!

Take care


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