Billed not so much as a prospective housing solution but rather an opportunity to experience a “New Destination of Living”, The Shine exemplifies excellence in both name and specification. Completed in the last quarter of 2013 by distinguished real estate company The Empire Chiang Mai and now home to a mixed demographic of local and foreign residents, this shining example of a luxury condominium development showcases a stunning modern-contemporary design style with a superlative standard of interior appointment at the same time as being enviably positioned amid Chiang Mai’s commercial and financial heartland.
Vying with the Royal Lanna Hotel and The Astra condo for supremacy of the Chang Klan Road skyline, the 15-storey stature of The Shine dwarfs most other architectural constructions in the city’s Central Business District. Set back from the main drag so as to minimise any traffic noise and with doorstep access to the dual-level ’@curve’ community mall, adjoining 7-Eleven convenience store and, more or less facing which, the Central Chiang Mai Memorial Hospital, The Shine lies but a short 15 or so minute walk from the illustrious and pulsating Night Bazaar. Among the oldest and most iconic of after-dark shopping, dining and entertainment venues in all of Thailand and a latter-day legacy of early Yunnanese merchants who plied ancient trading routes between China and Myanmar, the area is home to an almost dizzying sprawl of near-countless open-air and indoor restaurants (including Chiang Mai’s very first McDonalds!), food courts, purpose-built shopping pavilions, travel and tour agencies, Thai massage parlours, bars and street market vendors hawking virtually every product imaginable. From there, the eastern boundary of the ’Old City’, the traditional heart of Chiang Mai, is situated just moments away. En route to the Night Bazaar from The Shine stands Pantip Plaza, Northern Thailand’s largest IT and electronics mall now also featuring a sizeable Big C supermarket, opposite which is the newly launched nightly flea market, Le Dta’wan. On account of its historic origins, the Chang Klan neighbourhood is inhabited by a fascinating diversity of ethnic minority groups –Tai Yai (Burmese Shan) and Cin Haw (Chinese Muslims) in particular- with their cultural influence manifest in the mosques, hilltribe farmers’ markets and halal eateries abundant in the area. For more progressive retail therapy, CentralFestival, Central Airport Plaza and Promenada Resort malls are all easily reachable –as are a variety of other locations throughout the city- from The Shine by riding their respective complimentary shuttle bus which departs several times every day from the nearby Empress Hotel.
Continually supervising the barriered main entrance to The Shine are a two-man squad of duly attired G4S-supplied security professionals in addition to the presence of CCTV cameras fitted in all common areas of the property and keycard-controlled admission to the single building and, via the double lifts (elevators), to individual condo units; for extra comfort of mind, the juristic office –beside the sofa-adorned central lobby- is staffed daily between the hours of 9AM and 6PM. Off-street parking allocation is, by most standards, especially generous with the initial four floors of the condominium supporting covered car bays enough for around 60% of the overall residential capacity together with an ample complement of sheltered spaces designated for motorbikes and floor-mounted racks for push bicycles. On-site leisure facilities and practical amenities at The Shine are predictably outstanding. Spread over the entirety of the fifth floor is a reading corner, meeting room and a handful of coin-operated self-service washing machines; the level above boasts a substantially proportioned and particularly striking outdoor saltwater swimming pool with integrated jacuzzi, a poolside sun deck and collection of padded wooden loungers while just beyond the water’s edge is the “Health Club” comprising a respectably sized and fully-equipped gym flanking which are separate-sex sauna rooms. Assuming part of the penultimate floor of the building is the densely planted and wonderfully secluded rooftop “Sky Garden”, a positively idyllic setting in which to kick back while savouring the breathtaking views over the surrounding cityscape, broad stretches of the Mae Ping River and imposing forested peaks of the Thanon Thong Chai mountain range. WiFi is freely available in all shared areas of The Shine and residents can, at their own expense, organise installation of a private home broadband connection care of any of the city’s Internet Service Providers.
Occupying floors six to 15, all 108 fully furnished and air-conditioned residential units at The Shine exist in either of 1 or 2 bedroom arrangements and offer superior (from 33 to 70 sq m) or deluxe (from 49 to 58 sq m) rooms, miracle suites (from 69 to 73 sq m) or, the condominium’s crowning glory and quite possibly Chiang Mai’s finest, presidential suites. Claiming the best part of the uppermost two floors and, so exclusive, limited to just half a dozen units, the duplex penthouses accommodate a capacious 135 sq m to a stately 220 sq m of optimally laid out habitable space and benefit from an expansive glass-walled private terrace commanding a far-reaching and spectacular outlook in a northerly or westerly direction; sparing no expense and unlikely to disappoint even the most discerning character, each presidential suite is exceptionally presented in either an “Elegant Silver” or a “Luxury Gold” decorative theme, outfitted with bespoke furniture, premium quality fixtures and fittings, one or more outsized whirlpool hot tubs, solid teak wood flooring and proudly flaunts prestigious brand name appliances from the likes of Smeg and equally regarded bathroom fittings such as those from Toto.
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