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Northern “gold rush” to build resorts   2010-03-23 - VietNamNet/VNE

The resort real estate market in the north that kicked-off in mid-2009 has heated up as many big investors in Hanoi have rushed to  invest in this virtual gold mine.


The Cai Gia-Cat Ba project invested by Vinaconex ITC

Big real estate investors once ran to the central region, especially to Ninh Thuan, Da Nang and Hoi An, to build villas and resorts. Now they are eyeing the northern region.


Many resort projects in Ba Vi (a suburb district in Hanoi), Luong Son (a district in Hoa Binh province) and Cat Ba in Hai Phong have been built, initiating a new wave of investment in the area.


Vinaconex ITC is now building the 172 hectare Cai Gia-Cat Ba resort project in Hai Phong. This huge project has total investment capital of up to one billion dollars, comprising six resort areas and 1000 ecological villas. Some 5-star hotels and service areas will be completed by 2012 and will feature entertainment, international conferences, and shopping centres.


In April 2010, Archi Land Vietnam will break ground on the Lam Son resort project in Hoa Binh, which covers 66 hectares. The project, capitalized at 12 million dollars, will include 100 hotel rooms, 100 separate resorts and 120 4-star ecological villas.


Besides, real estate developers have also talked about The Grand Arena Hill project invested by Gia Tue Investment Company which includes one 4-star hotel and 40 villas in Ba Vi district, The Queen Villas project, also in Ba Vi, invested by Hai Linh TOuirsm and Trade Company.


Real estate analysts believe that the northern resort real estate market has potential and has not been fully exploited. Tran Ngoc Quang, General Director of Vinaconex ITC, noted that the market will have a completely new face in five years, so, to prepare, projects must be carried out now.


According to Nguyen Thanh Trung, Director of Archi Land Vietnam, there are few resorts in the north, therefore now is the right time for investors to jump in.


A survey by CBRE, a real estate service provider, shows that 80 percent of the resort apartment and villa buyers in Da Nang and HCM City come from Hanoi. “This means that demand for villas and resort apartments by Hanoians is very big. If investors can grab the opportunity, the northern resort real estate market will heat up more,” Trung remarked.


According to Trung, southern and central region resort apartments and villas sell at $800,000-1 million, but northern prices are around $300,000 each. The softer price will especially attract clients.


According to the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, some 430,000 tourists came to Vietnam in January 2010, while the figure was 450,000 in February. In 2010, Vietnam hopes to attract 6.5 million foreign tourists. The high numbers of tourists will prompt investors to pour money in tourist real estate.


Real estate agents predict that Hai Phong, Ba Vi and Hoa Binh will be a major destination for investors in tourist resorts. One plan in Hai Phong, will filter sea water to make Do Son sea water as pure as Nha Trang’s.  They will use this to build a warm-water swimming pool with a glass arch, so that people still can swim in the winter and overlook the sea.


Under the plan to develop Hanoi by 2030, Hanoi will have a “green corridor” alongside the Day, Tich and Ca Lo Rivers. Lang-Hoa Lac Road, Highway No. 32 and the beltline highway will create a perfect transportation system to make the central city and suburban areas closer. These plans will bring even more opportunities in the northern real estate resort market.

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