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Patong Tower apartments up for auction

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Patong Tower apartments up for auction | Thaiger

PATONG: Eighty apartments in the tallest building by far in Phuket, Patong Tower, will come under the auctioneer’s hammer on December 12, some 13 years after planning permission for the 32-story block on Thaweewong Rd was first given.

Siripong Chechang, chief of the Public Works Department of Patong Municipality, today addressed concerns by some potential buyers that the building was constructed illegally.

It was pointed out by some residents of Patong that the building is far higher than the limit set in a 1992 ruling by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MNRE), which prohibits buildings more than 12 meters in height within 30m of the high-tide mark.

K. Siripong said, however, that Patong Tower does not break the rule because planning approval for it was granted in 1991 – the year before the ruling came into force.

“The MNRE law was passed in 1992 but planning permission for Patong Tower was granted in 1991, before restrictions were imposed in Phuket,” he said.

“[Patong Municipality] had the responsibility to ensure that this building was built according to the original plans, specifically that it did not exceed its original stated height,” he added.

Explaining the long gap between planning permission being granted for Patong Tower and the auction of apartments, 13 years later, Benjaporn Panya-Ngarm, customer service supervisor for the new owners, Divine Property and Development Co, said that the property had for years been classed as a non-performing loan, or NPL.

“The original developer borrowed funds from Siam Commercial Bank and some [unnamed] foreign banks but was unable to repay on schedule and [the Tower] was declared an NPL. Divine Development and Property bought it from the banks this year.”

The auction is due to take place on Sunday, December 12, in the Aroonrat Hall of the Patong Resort Hotel.

Prospective buyers of the 80 units must deposit 100,000 baht to enter the bidding.

“We believe that this is the first auction of its kind in Patong,” said K. Panya. “There will be no minimum bid and the auction will be clean,” he promised.

 

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