More than forty years ago, I attended a boarding school in the United States and remained there for tertiary education, obtaining two professional degrees and working during the summers at a well-known environmental and outdoor education camp. During that whole period I visited my family only three times. However, I realized there were also positive aspects as well of attending outstanding boarding schools and universities abroad. Growing up while attending these institutions was like being a member of various communities devoted, not just to the betterment of the individual, but also of society in general.
What I am today is the result of maturing in those communities devoted to living and learning. I wanted my own children to have the same opportunity. But I also wanted them not to have the wrenching experience of being denied physical closeness to their family. At this point I began to envision a community for living and learning for the entire family that provided a healthy lifestyle and opportunities for continuing education.
At the time I was just completing my condominium and marina project in Bangkok. This development was probably the largest for the city at that time. It followed several highly-successful hotel projects in Phuket, starting the island toward its present international renown. The time then was the early nineties. Tridhos Three-Generation School Village became my next project. It would be located near Chiang Mai City. This comprehensive community for three thousand people would be built entirely at once. The finest school possible would be its core. Residential apartments for teachers, parents and grandparents would surround the school. All the amenities of a thriving village were included in the planning. Construction of Tridhos Three-Generation School Village began. Unfortunately, the 1997 economic depression descended over Asia just as we were about to open and construction needed to be delayed for a number of years.
In 2001, I re-launched the project, at first with the aim of creating an international school of the highest academic standards possible. Once this goal had been achieved, the vision of a community of families would be revived. It has been almost a decade since then. Prem Tinsulanonda International School is now a fully accredited IB World school and recognized as one of the finest boarding schools in the region. Students attend from all over Thailand and from more than thirty countries. The finest educators and professional coaches are employed at the school ensuring an education well-regarded throughout the world.
I feel that it is time to get back on my original track, but now my vision has expanded. The goal now is not a village but a city for living and lifelong learning. It will be a green and global city that is sustainable and that can serve as a model for others. Over the past few years Prem has grown, with many new amenities. These include tennis, golf, football and cricket academies, an organic farm and cooking school, and rental apartments for families. Plans for a conference/ training center with hotel-type accommodation are quite advanced and the project is to be managed by the Villa Royale, my hotel in Phuket. A spa, as well as centers devoted to yoga, physical health, mental and spiritual well-being, is being developed.
I have also been able to purchase more land around the campus. Of this, eighty rai on the western perimeter of the Traidhos Three-Generation Community for Learning are being devoted to a residential community of individual houses and condominiums. Premburi was launched a year ago and now a number of families have purchased homes and are living on-site. The eighty-rai plot is only the first of several future phases that will see Premburi grow into a truly green and global city for sustainable living and lifelong learning.
As a developer, I have had long list of successful real estate projects in Phuket, Hua Hin and Bangkok. I have never felt more certain that the time is right for such a project as Premburi for Chiang Mai. Being part of a green and global city with an exciting wealth of amenities is a great investment for you and your children. As part of Premburi, you will be entering a life-style that is green and global, that is full of opportunities to gain new skills and knowledge that are physically and spiritually healthy, that treads lightly on the earth and is sustainable. Living at Premburi your objective in life ultimately will be more spiritual than material.
ML Tri Devakul
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