Travel supremo picks Hua Hin
After pursuing the nomadic career path of a senior travel executive, Peter de Jong has waited until he is semi-retired before building his first home, every detail of which he has specified to create ‘the perfect bachelor pad’.
The geometric Japanese-style villa is customised to what de Jong describes as ‘an ambitious lifestyle‘. High ceilings and acres of window ensure tremendous light and space, as well as room for a grand piano.
The home is located with equal care at the luxury Baan Ing Phu development outside Hua Hin.
‘When I saw the land I liked the hills and the constant breeze,’ he says.
‘At the time there was nothing here. It was pure luck that the Black Mountains golf course was then built, which created the perfect backdrop.’
Baan Ing Phu‘s other neighbour – a Buddhist monastery’s meditation grounds – reflects the tranquility of the surroundings.
But the project also offers the conspicuous advantage of its proximity to Bangkok, which is just two hours away on the recently completed six-lane highway.
‘I don’t want to spend even more time in airports than I already do,’ says de Jong, who is a senior partner of the travel industry consultancy Travel and Tourism Strategies Inc.
Another appeal was the development’s exceptionally international profile. Unlike many developments in Thailand that overwhelmingly attract a single nationality, Baan Ing Phu has created a genuinely diverse community.
‘It’s very international and by having upscale houses in sizeable plots the neighbourhood stays private,’ he says.
Having travelled and worked across Europe, the Americas and Southeast Asia, the ex-CEO of the Pacific Asia Travel Association, was in no doubts on the fundamental choice of making his base in Thailand.
‘Apart from the cost and value being very favourable, this is a culture that takes pride in service. When I travel to Europe or America I am struck even on entering the plane by the difference in attitude,’ he says.