Very stylish, wise not to get it done on a Wednesday
Apparently Thai's believe it is unlucky to have your hair cut on a Wednesday,
There's a massive building boom going on in Korat. It seems almost every week another development or condo is announced. Quite a bit of it is fuelled by buyers from Bangkok. And its not restricted to any particular area, although my personal preference on where to live is the area west of the city in the vicinity of the stadium and University - so west of the by-pass heading south to Pak Thong Chai and south of the Mittraphap Road (Highway 2).
Currently, I'm east of the City, in the Tambon of Hua Ta Lay. So if anyone knows the Tescos on the road from Korat heading to Chok Chai, I'm about 3-4 miles down the turning next to Tescos. Ironically, the nicest new house I've seen is 5 minutes away in a development called the 9th tree. Right house, wrong location.
So some time has been spent looking at houses on new developments, and latterly at land to buy and to build on. We have been offered 60 wai in just the area I like for an excellent price, but 60 wai just seems too small to me.
Anyway, I thought I'd show you some of the places available here. I have to say that the quality has improved leaps and bounds since I first looked years ago. But there is still massive differences on what's included - some have kitchen counters, cupboards and tiling, some throw in free aircon aand / or alarms, some make you offers there and then, some add nothing, just the bare shell. Generally, the bathrooms are well designed and all of a good standard.
The first few photos are of the house on the 9th tree, the rest are random offerings. I really like quite a few of the others as well!
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I laughed when I saw the next house, albeit in the right area. But eventually, I was persuaded to view them and although daft on the outside, they are absolutely superb on the inside. Not cheap though, About 3.5m - 5m. Keep meaning to go back and have another look - and take some photo's!
The next house was also in the right location -
Next are the 1st two show homes of a development yet to be advertised. It's near a large lake and they look kind of New England in style. Might need to check what stage these are at now?
I was very taken with the next house, despite the colour! It's off the by-pass not far from the cho-ho area of Korat. Very impressive spec.
All the rooms were very spacious and the balcony's were extensive and of a good size. This was the master bedroom, altough the décor in the show home is a bit naff, what you can't see is the large walk in wardrobe and en-suite with bath and separate shower.
Have to confess for having a soft spot for this place - price 3.7m (the one in the photo).
The next place was in a similar location, but yet to be built. To cut a long story short, we were offered a 3-bed house on a 68 wai plot, two minutes walk from the club house / swimming pool for 3.6m
We have also been offered 50 wai of land for 150,000 baht, which seems a steal, not to live in but to keep and sell on in a few years. It's just a bit further out west, but in an area that is expanding rapidly. We're going to look at the 60 wai this coming weekend.
I'll add to this stuff as more places are viewed, or as I find more photos!
I do like to visit the yamo memorial from time to time. It's by one of the Malls in any case - Klang Plaza, which has just been renovated. But at Yamo you can always get some nice people shots.
Saw this farang with what I assume is his step-son a little while back. I thought it was quite touching.
That was me back in 2005.
And talking of Malls in Korat for anyone planning on visiting or moving here. Currently the main mall is still.....the Mall. But this has just started rebuilding and although it will remain fully open, it is to be joined at the hip to a massive new extension, almost doubling it's size, scheduled for completion in January 2016.
Terminal 21 are planning a new shopping plaza almost opposite Big C, which should be starting soon. Incidentally, Terminal 21 is owned by the same people who own Land & Homes and they have also started a massive new housing development on the Mittraphap Road, as you approach Korat from the West. Finally, Central have announced plans for a new Mall in Korat, due for completion in January 2017.
Some very nice houses there. Are you going to be there permanently now?
Food! All sorts of grub....
Chef at work:
Pad Thai being prepped -
This was actually a lot nicer than it looked - it's steak by the way - and I had an extra portion of chips!
I'm feeling hungry now! Love eating in Thailand. Rarely eat in a 'proper' restaurant, haven't cooked at home once yet!
"haven't cooked at home once yet!"
Quite right, otherwise what's the point of having a wife ?
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Edit - just to add, what was the exit to the Mall is now closed, as that whole area is being built on, as is what was the empty plot next to the Mall.
Only found out that there was a race track here in Korat, when I was here for 2 months last year. I first noticed stables and then further enquiries revealed the race track. It's pretty central, just a little South at the entrance to the Army Base, which it belongs to - where else!
So we went on Sunday, although races are normally on a Saturday. it's 40 baht to get in and it's worth picking up a race card, as even though it's in Thai it's easy to follow, especially the form guide. Gambling is allowed and seems to be controlled by the equivalent of the Tote. The minimum bet is 100 baht and you can bet for a win or place. I'm sure illegal gambling takes place, but I guess you need to be in the know for that? We watched 4 races, we didn't bet on the first, the other half had her horse placed in the 2nd, and then I picked the winner in the next two! In between the two winning races, we had some food - there is a food court under the stand - and only decided to have a bet on the next race as it was due to start in a few minutes, glad I did as my 100 baht morphed into nearly 2000!
After, we had finished, we wandered into one of the stables, had a good chat with the owner and met one of Korat's entries into the Thai Derby, to be run in Bkk in January. Unlike the English Derby, it's for 4 year old's and I might risk a flutter on the horse we met - Star Princess.
The stalls from the top of the stand:
This was my first winner - No. 7 - just after the off and already in the lead and stayed there throughout. In all the races we watched, the race was one circuit of the track.
Getting ready for the photo-call! I learnt that 150,000 baht will buy you a decent horse. A bit cheaper than when I lived in Lambourn, where that would buy you half a leg at best!
The race card -
My winning tickets!
Thundering down the back straight!
Happy punters? The winning post is to the left of the track in the centre of the picture, by what are the posh stands, I guess? Might venture along there next time - there will be a next time!
The stables. This particular one is much more open than those in Lambourn, each with a ceiling fan, plenty of grass, hay, water and pellets for the horses to chew on, though it seems they're not ready for polo mints yet! I really got the impression the horses were well cared for -
Star Princess - friendly horse.
Meanwhile, the golfers, as ever, were oblivious to the goings on only a stones throw away!
Been just over a year since I was there last Caller, am going for a month in August next year so looking forward to seeing some changes, we are in Kham Thale So about 8 ish miles west of the centre.
Bloody hell just had a moan at the wife for not telling me about the race track
We have been in Korat many times and this is definitely on the agenda next time. Though I have a feeling it will end up with many friends and family tagging along and a big bar bill for yours truly .
Sometimes, there are sights that are difficult to deal with........
Interested in this house, it needs some work - a complete refurbishment, rooms extended and a new master bedroom built where the lower roof currently is! Need to buy it fist!
Lost my connection for a bit!
This place has lots of potential. It's on 80 wah, in a nice area on an estate where all the plots are sold, but only about 50% are built on. And it's build your own, which either the owners can do, or you do your own thing. There is also a sports club, gym, covered swimming pool and restaurant on site.
The houses vary from ultra modern to traditional wooden. This particular house was built about 11/12 years ago and has not really been lived in, apart from two short tenancies lasting about a month each. It's dry inside and just needs bringing up to date.
I have an idea to extend the rooms on the right - the front one forward, to the two pillars, fitting a sliding double door in the middle and also extend further to the side, which will also increase the size of the kitchen at the rear. The front room is designed as a bedroom but it maybe that area could be opened up as extra living space? Either way, it wouldn't be used as a bedroom in future. Extending to the side would also allow the stairs to be re-jigged, at the moment they run into the living room on the left. I would keep the large living room the same size, but will have extra space where the stairs are and again put sliding doors and new windows in.
Upstairs is currently the master bedroom and a small 2nd bedroom, I'd like to make these similar sizes and then create a wholly separate bathroom, from what is currently a bathroom with access from both bedrooms. A new master would be created for the whole length of the house, to include a walk in cloakroom, with the en-suite to the side or beyond - easy-peasy!
Anyone know a decent structural engineer and builders in Korat?
I'm a layman, so any (polite) feedback welcome - lol!
The current living room which runs the length of the house - sorry for blurred photo:
The room front left -
The kitchen at the rear -
The current master bedroom -
View from the master bedroom (through mozzie net)
Looks ok, what sort of price are the owners asking for it, whereabouts in Korat is it. We got offered 2 Rai of land for 1 million Baht somewhere along the road between the big garden centre west of Korat and the fossil museum. Didn't have a spare million though