Despite a very busy schedule – after all his resort’s flagship event Kata Rocks Superyachts Rendezvous is just days away – the man behind one of the most successful hospitality projects in Phuket shares not just the origins of his own success, but his vision for the future of our island. Meet Infinite luxury founder & CEO Richard Pope.
How did you first get involved in property development?
Richard Pope: I started out at 24 years old with an engineering degree and lots of ambition. Eventually, I was able to do my own developments focused mainly in Notting Hill in London. I still have several properties there. I first came to Phuket for the King’s Cup Regatta in 2006. Then one of my trips to Phuket in 2007, I inspected the Kata Rocks site and knew as a developer I needed to buy straight away. It checked all the right boxes: oceanfront, west facing for sunsets, perfect slope, huge rocks placed like ornaments in front of a resort that looks out at the majestic Koh Phu Phi island.
What makes Kata Rocks so special?
RP: I think Kata Rocks stands out for many reasons: Prime oceanfront site, all Sky Pool Villas with private infinity pools, great sea views, 460 sqm penthouses, outstanding resort facilities and signature Thai hospitality. Since its inception, Kata Rocks has won more international property awards than any other single development in the world including the title ‘Best Apartment in the World’ at the London finals beating entries from 110 countries. Since then we’ve won over 50 international property and hospitality awards.
What was the inspiration for the Kata Rocks Superyacht Rendezvous?
RP: We now have a truly iconic resort with this amazing futuristic superyacht inspired design with its wraparound glass and louvres. The Kata Rocks Superyacht Rendezvous (KRSR) brings together Kata Rocks villa owners, superyacht owners and those interested in yachting and luxury lifestyle, industry professionals plus international lifestyle, luxury travel and yachting media. Now in its second year, the KRSR has firmly established Phuket as the new superyacht hotspot and elevated the destination’s image. Together this attracts more discerning travellers to the island who are willing to pay for the best things in life.
What is your vision for Infinite Luxury? Are you considering any other projects?
RP: Infinite Luxury has ambitions to be a global management company specializing in luxury hotel management and property development of both real estate and hotels. Being a 100% private and independent company, we have the flexibility to meet and exceed the demands and expectations of our clients, investors, co-developers and brands. We are very proud of the great team we have in Phuket, including in-house design, project and construction management and resort management teams. Kata Rocks stands out as the signature development for Infinite Luxury, and we intend to seek similar projects worldwide that offer the space of a luxury villa and the service of a five-star hotel.
What do you believe is the future of Phuket?
RP: Phuket’s future looks very bright as it is based on sound fundamentals being the key holiday island in Asia, located within a 5-hour flight of half the population of the world, having a consistent 30-degree climate throughout the year, great beaches, amazing food, the best spas and friendly people. There is still room for further improvement, however, in both tourism and the local infrastructure development needed to attract and retain high-end travellers but that is happening with the road improvement scheme in particular. Events like the KRSR also play an important role in elevating what Phuket has to offer and it’s beginning to give the island the glamour that one comes to expect from the French Riviera or the Caribbean whilst maintaining its Thai charm and cultural heritage.
Learn more on Katarocks.com