AFTER a big expansion and renovation that stretched for three and half years and cost 15 billion baht, the Queen Sirikit Convention Centre is now ready to reopen on September 12, Matichon newspaper said this evening (August 18).
The centre is now five times bigger with total area increasing from 65,000 sq. metres to 300,000 sq. metres, Mr. Sakchai Phatthapreechakul, managing director of NCC Management and Development Co. Ltd said.
This has been divided into 11,000 sq. metres for retail, capacity to hold 300 to 400 events a year and parking for 3,000 cars with the target being to serve 13 million people a year, up from 6 million previously.
It is expected that the swanky facility will drive the country’s economy through hosting MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions) tourism and other international events.
So far 160 events have been reserved for next year with 50 being held this year and the first two taking place during September 14-16.
The biggest event this year is the Asia-Paciﬁc Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings taking place during November 13-18 with leaders from 21 countries plus nine economic zones attending. All aspects of this important international event are being taken care of, particularly security.
The APEC meetings will also help boost the economy as there will be tens of thousands of participants.
Space rental rate has increased by 5-15% with old customers such as those holding book fairs and mobile phone expos having reserved 80% of the space. It is expected that income this year will be around 400-500 million baht and will increase to 2 billion baht in 2023.
Mr. Suthichai Bunditworaphum, the company’s deputy managing director, said while the event area is ready for the September 12 reopening there are still some limitations such as approximately 50% of the retail zone being ready for occupancy with these being in the area connected to the subway. Nevertheless 70-80% will be ready by the time APEC meetings start and all by next year.
While the food court still remains, the original 1,200 seats have been reduced to 600 with food prices to start at 50-60 baht. Parking fee has not been set with visitors allowed three hours of free parking till the end of the year.
The five-times bigger Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre is set to reopen on Sept. 12. Photos: Matichon