Why are older buildings rapidly gaining popularity in Bangkok?

Bangkok is very much still a developing city with ongoing huge infrastructure projects driving investment and developers are still racing to add to the growing residential skyline. With so many new projects for the consumer to consider now, curiously there is becoming an increasing gap between two distinct markets.

The new-build market has been turbo-charged particularly over the last 10 years driven by strong foreign demand, prices often speculative and emphasis on increasing exuberant facilities by big-brand developers. Unit sizes for new projects have settled to a typical 35 sqm for 1 bed and 50 sqm for 2 beds. 

Investors are promised a level of yield and capital gain for off-plan projects, prices of which are usually pinned by developers in order for the investor to receive an attractive ROI. 

There is a widespread understanding that the market is now slowing and prices are leveling off. Rental prices are often condo-specific, but until the project is finished there is always a risk even a basic level of return can be met.

‘Old’ is a relative term, but they have typically considered the projects built between 1980-2000 which often feature full concrete cladding & large balconies. They have an established history of yield expectation, capital grows & real demand. The popularity of these older units is usually based on the activeness of the owner’s committee to renovate and make ongoing changes, the condition of the unit itself & location. 

Unit sizes typically start 50 sqm+ for 1 bed and 100 sqm+ for 2 beds. Comparative sizes in today’s new-build market are solely available in the ‘Super luxury’ category. 

The dilemma faced by those looking to buy: larger older unit city-center location at a much lower PSM or new build, smaller unit at a high PSM on the city peripherals. 

For those assessing the full market range, there are absolutely options with long-term growth and real, performing yields for the taking.

Lake Avenue Case Study: Lake Avenue is a freehold condominium project, located on a small quiet Soi Yagsoisammitr within Sukhumvit soi 16. Construction of Lake Avenue was completed in 1985 and comprises of a single building split over adjoining towers, having 29 floors and includes only 160 units, one & two bedrooms, and a penthouse. It features 4 elevators plus a service lift for minimal waiting time.


Sukhumvit soi 16 is located within the Asoke area, dubbed the Times Square of Bangkok, conveniently situated as a center point between the 3 CBD areas of Sukhumvit, Silom/Sathorn, and Rama 9. 

The south Sukhumvit sois enjoy a quieter living standard compared to the north sois and benefits as being the first south soi in Asoke closest to the Benjakitti Park. 

The project is within a 500m or about 9 minutes walk from the Asoke BTS/MRT interchange, with motorbike taxis 10m from the project costing only 10 THB to the exchange tower entrance to BTS Asoke. You can easily reach Sukhumvit (east or west), Rama 4, or Phrom Phong from soi 16 without the inconvenience of any one-way road systems.

Benjakitti Park & Extension

Benjakitti Park is one of Bangkok’s biggest city parks, it is centered around the expansive Lake Ratchada, with dedicated bicycle and jogging tracks encircling the whole park. You’ll also find playgrounds, skate ramps, a central pavilion with fountains, and an impressive half-circle courtyard that’s popular for picnics in Benjakitti Park.

There’s an expansion currently under construction that will cover an area of 450 Rai and could be completed by early 2022, dubbed the Benjakitti Forest Park. This along with the rebuilt Queen Sirikit Convention center establishes this area as one of Bangkok’s premium green spaces.

Established community: 

On Soi 16 there’s a brief lunchtime bustle of street vendors and rotating stalls at the market for nearby office workers, featuring classic Thai dishes for those looking for an authentic and cheap lunch.

The area is perfectly suited for families, with numerous amenities on your doorstep: Foodland, 7/11, Family Mart, Terminal 21 Shopping Mall, Big C, Tesco Lotus, and numerous restaurants on soi 16 itself. Locals can find a new hidden garden space called the ‘Pocket Park’ featuring artisan craft stalls & an independent coffee shop looking for a little escape. Why Lake Avenue?

Lake Avenue on average offers the lowest price per/sqm in soi 16, compared with both other older buildings and the pending new launches currently awaiting EIA, the price difference is about 1/3rd. The 1 bed/2 bath units start at a comfortable 76 – 100 sqm with the 2 bed/2 bath starts at 128 sqm, with the high tower featuring only 4 units per floor. 

The building has a combination of units in original condition for those who are looking to renovate and potentially to change the layout to your preferred design and renovated units that offer quality, space & still come in at a cheaper price than most other options in the area. 

There’s an active secondary market with always a limited supply, there’s a consistent long-term demand in the building with a discernable pricing history, therefore making it more reliable to assess any risk associated with an investment.

Source: Thailand Property Q42020

The typical demographic at Lake Avenue usually consist of professional city workers & small families, looking primarily for a quiet street, in a city central location with plenty of space. There is a mixture of nationalities found in Lake Avenue but usually consists mostly of Thai & Western owners. Families with young kids have plenty of green space to enjoy in this friendly neighborhood.

The walls are made of solid concrete so no noise can be heard between neighbors, something which is becoming increasingly an issue with new buildings using cheap materials.

The building comes with an excellent local reputation for its active residence committee, with owners involved in the ongoing upkeep and long-term maintenance, as evidenced by its recent full re-painting and window sealing. 

Facilities at Lake Avenue include 4 elevators, 3 floors of basement parking, 24-hours security, CCTV, swimming pool, gym & snooker room.

More photos from Lake Avenue:

If you’re interested in getting more information on Lake Avenue Condominium, feel free to contact our local agents at Lazudi. 

How to arrange a viewing: 

Call: +66 95 924-2968

Line @: @lazudi

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Alex Blencowe
Lazudi Consultant & Market Commentator