31 Aug 2023
Thiranant Kornsritipa, Executive Vice President, Retail Business Development, Frasers Property Thailand
After a long day of lectures and assignments, a group of weary students make their way to C asean Samyan CO-OP, a community space in Samyan Mitrtown next to Chulalongkorn University. The vibrancy of the bustling shopping complex revives them instantly.
Making a beeline for the mall’s social media content dressing room, the youths are soon having fun dressing up and making TikTok videos with the hashtag #SamyanMitrtown. More than just a shopping centre, Samyan Mitrtown is a community hub – just as Thiranant Kornsritipa envisioned it to be.
Frasers Property Thailand’s Executive Vice President of Retail Business Development firmly believes that placemaking is essential for creating a sense of community in its projects. More specifically, she said placemaking involves “creating quality of places in terms of safety, accessibility, connectivity, comfort and a welcoming environment.”
In line with its Purpose - Inspiring experiences, creating places for good. - Frasers Property Thailand has been working to create community-centric spaces that connect people and enable them to enjoy memorable experiences together.
Thiranant sees placemaking as a key differentiating factor between a typical project and one that meets the needs of potential customers. This vision motivates her to create inspiring spaces that address the changing yet diverse needs of the community.
Samyan Mitrtown is a perfect showcase of Frasers Property’s placemaking endeavours. Located in the heart of Bangkok, the mixed-use project was launched in 2019 consisting of a 31-storey tower, a 33-storey residential tower with 516 residential units and 112 hotel rooms along with a 6-storey retail mall that features over 200 stores offering a wide range of dining options.
Designed to provide accessibility and spaces that meet the day-to-day needs of people in Thailand’s busiest city, the project strives to live up to its name – “mitr” means “friend” in Thai. The spaces cater to a variety of activities besides shopping, and it is these community-centric spaces that set Samyan Mitrtown apart.
The project, said Thiranant, will “support the community to attain inclusive growth and preserve the identity of the Sam Yan neighbourhood that has co-existed with Bangkok until today”.
One feature that supports this dream is C asean Samyan CO-OP, a co-learning space community hub that facilitates social interaction and community events. The 24/7 space also provides a myriad of services and spaces such as free Wi-Fi, charging stations, meeting rooms and amphitheatre room.
Samyan Mitrtown, Bangkok, Thailand
Youths utilising the Amphitheatre at C asean Samyan CO-OP for their revision and studies
For added commuter convenience and safety, Samyan Mitrtown also boasts a 120m-long underground tunnel connecting the shopping complex to the Sam Yan MRT Station on the blue line. The tunnel has a uniquely brutalist interior, complete with a partially see-through glass floor which reveals the tunnel’s structure beneath. Passers-by can also pause to admire the seasonal interactive digital displays that adorn the tunnel.
C asean Samyan CO-OP is developed by Frasers Property Thailand with Kbank, a Thai bank, as a strategic partner. Frasers Property also worked with Saturday School Foundation, a non-profit organisation, to provide educational content such as enrichment classes at the hub.
The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration is another partner that helped organise the “Hello Hapre (Hawker)” activity, where small-scale vendors who do not have a place to sell their goods can set up shop within dedicated outdoor space in the shopping complex.
Focus Zone, C asean Samyan CO-OP
Samyan Mitrtown installed a rainbow path as a celebration of diversity and equality
All these joint efforts are a testament to Frasers Property Thailand's commitment to creating partnerships that benefit the community.
“Creating beneficial spaces through placemaking doesn’t have to be a solo effort,” said Thiranant. “Instead, we should invite partners to join us so that the spaces we create can have maximum benefits.”
Nestled in the heart of Rama IV’s business district as well as Bangkok’s education zone, Samyan Mitrtown has flourished into an inclusive communal space.
Returning to the idea of “mitr”, Thiranant reiterated Frasers Property’s commitment to going “beyond a shopping mall”, emphasising its role as “the heart of the community”. Core to this is ensuring it adapts to evolving tastes and trends.
“Spaces must be flexible, quick to adjust and accommodate different functions – being multi-purpose to allow for sales, music events and community activities, keeping up with rapidly change online-offline lifestyle trends,” said Thiranant. “It’s a source of pride to receive positive feedback for providing spaces and services to the public.”