Chiang Mai has developed from a spiritual and administrative center to become a divers bustling city. Where the architectural landscape was dominated by rural wooden houses, temples, and palaces it now boasts a more modern skyline. Chiang Mai real estate has a rich diversity of every kind of property available. Read our introduction to Chiang Mai real estate to learn more.
Traditional Chiang Mai real estate
In 1296 King Mengrai set about building the walled city of Chiang Mai. It literally means New City. It also refers to it being a walled city. The walls of the old city are referenced in much of the architecture of Chiang Mai including in modern times. The Wall on Huay Kaew Road and Nimman One both take inspiration from the old walls of Mengrai’s city.
Chiang Mai was not built for commerce or for residential use. Instead, it was much more a place of spirituality. Today the central area is dominated by the golden spires of around 117 Buddhist temples. They feature ornate tiered roofs decorated with serpents and guardian statues. Many of the more substantial buildings in the area include references to the architectural features of these temples.
The other traditional buildings we find dotted around the area are made from wood. Usually, teak wood able to withstand the punishing weather of torrential rain and hot sunshine. These wooden buildings are often built on stilts or pillars. The more substantial ones are known for the number of pillars used. For example, the 137 Pillars House built in the late 1800’s and now a luxury hotel.
Not many modern buildings use wood and bricks exclusively in their construction, but many have features acknowledging the historical Lanna style.
One such is the intricately carved cross-shaped decoration added to the gable ends of traditional wooden style houses. They are known as Ka-Lae sometimes spelt Galae or Galare. Their origins are uncertain, but they are a unique feature Lanna architecture.
High Rise comes to Chiang Mai
In the second half of the 20th Century many high-rise buildings were built. Many of these are condominium blocks ranging from modest to very high value luxury apartments. Indeed, many of the present population choose condominium living. Shared facilities such as swimming pools and the convenience of central locations make them popular. Foreigners are not allowed to own land in Thailand, so condominiums are a great option for many. Some of the top end luxury apartments cost many millions of Thai baht.
The Ring Road Developments
Recent Chiang Mai real estate development has been dominated by the easy access made possible by the outer ring road developments. These superhighways mean you can now get from one side of the city to the other in a matter of minutes. Much of the available real estate is to be found in the moo baans that spread along these superhighways.
Moo Baans come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some have large luxury homes with their own pools and large gardens. Others are more modest buildings but share a communal pool. The Moo Baans are usually secure within a surrounding wall and have manned gateways. They are seen as secure and comfortable accommodations. There are many fine opportunities to purchase great value homes here.
Both around the city and further afield in the mountains there are some world class luxury villa style homes. These are amongst the finest homes you will find anywhere in the world. Many of them use the superb local craftsmanship that has created the finest temples and palaces in the area. Many have infinity edge pools, lakes, and parklands with stunning views to the surrounding mountains. Many of these homes are also built in the style of the ancient palaces of Thailand where each room is a separate pavilion. These pavilions are joined by covered walkways and often surround a pool.
Hotels and Resorts
Since around 2015 Chiang Mai has gradually developed as a transport hub. This resulted in many direct flights to and from international destinations. One of those is China. This easy access bought many new visitors to Chiang Mai. There has therefore been a huge growth in hotels and resorts to cater to this influx. Indeed, many of them became investors setting up their own hotels and resorts.
You will find every level of tourist accommodation available. Even though things are on hold during the coronavirus pandemic, purchasing and selling in the hospitality sector is a growth area in Chiang Mai real estate.
Chiang Mai real estate – Commercial properties
Other commercial opportunities exist. One of the most common building types are the shophouses. Much as their title suggests these buildings have space for commercial activity on the ground floor but residential accommodation above.
They are certainly not only used as shops. Everything from art galleries to quite industrial workshops can be found in the array of different styles of shophouses. They are found in every area as well. There are rows of them in the old city or the new commercial areas nearer the river. Further afield there are mini commercial estates running all along the superhighway ring roads.
These shophouses represent exceptional value and their varied use makes them a popular choice.
More substantial commercial properties include office blocks and larger industrial factories and workshops. Whilst there is not really any heavy industry in the area there are many service industries that cater for the ever-increasing population.
Chiang Mai real estate conclusion
Whilst this introduction to Chiang Mai real estate is not a comprehensive overview it should make the reader aware that there is a huge variety of property available here. Are you an entrepreneur looking for a new business venture? Maybe you are looking for a new forever home. Either way Lanna Property can introduce you to a wide variety of properties.
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