Sunday, December 14, 2008

Colonial Kampot

Construction of the original Governor's Mansion in Kampot began in 1889
The French colonial administration established a residence or administrative center and colonial resort at Kampot in 1885 and lots of evidence of their time in Kampot remains today. I didn't have time to conduct a full inventory of Kampot's colonial heritage but did have a window of opportunity to whizz around with a motodup to snap a few pictures for posterity. The first two-storey brick shophouses built in Kampot appeared along the riverbank in 1901 and that saw a boom in housing and shops within the town. The Chinese were also prominent in Kampot, even before the French established their presence. Kampot's colonial appearance is akin to that to be found in Battambang, Kompong Cham and Kratie and adds a touch of flair to otherwise characterless town centers.
A restored colonial mansion now used by the Red Cross in Kampot
This two-storey townhouse was built in 1951
This colonial beauty, now in disrepair, is part of the Kampot Prison
A splash of clour makes a difference to Kampot's side streets
This ochre-coloured shuttered building has seen better days
Many of Kampot's side-streets look like this with grand columns and shuttered windows
Some of the shophouses along the riverfront need some love & attention
And this is what they look like when they are cared for

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Blogger Jeff Massnick said...

As a developer, I would love to renovate a few of the riverfront commercial parcels in Kampot. The problem is, these sellers are so far out of touch from reality, I feel sad for them.
Take for example the delapodated, uninhabitable chinese shop house you show in your series with the old 'wagon wheel' out front: Asking price for this 'dog with fleas' is USD$375,000.00. The story gets much worse. To properly renovate (not hippy renovate) would be USD$50,000.00, for a total investment of USD$425,000.00
For any prudent investor to garner a modest return, would require monthly renturn of USD$4,300.00. But guess what - renovated - one would be lucky command USD$1000.00 per-month.
I know you are not a developer Andy,but I wanted you to know why so many Kampot buildings look like crap.

December 16, 2008 5:39 PM  
Blogger Andy Brouwer said...

Thanks for your views Jeff, very interesting. I'm definitely not a developer but yes it sounds like people have lost their senses when it comes to property prices along the south coast corridor.

December 16, 2008 9:48 PM  
Blogger Andy Brouwer said...

Jeff, I've just realised we met at the opening night of Where Elephants Weep. Some nice photos on your blog by the way.

December 16, 2008 10:07 PM  

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