2 acres and a bungalow
Koh Tao, Thailand 2005-2009

When I arrived in Koh Tao in 2004, I fell in love with the island. I had always been looking for somewhere to build a little tropical style house so I decided to shop around for land on Koh Tao. In 2005 I found this great piece of property with ocean views on the south of the island. I only wanted half an acre, but the seller wouldn't split, so I bought it all with the intention of selling off plots later on. The road to the land was a pretty steep dirt road which would be undrivable through most of the rainy season. In 2006 I organized a meeting of all the landowners in the area and we all pitched some cash and paved a 1/2 mile stretch of road. This is how it works in Thailand.

In 2007 I decided to start building a house. Rather than start with a big project, I decided to start with a small bungalow so I could estimate how much would would be involved with building a big house. This bungalow would then be used to house my builders while they worked on the big house. I designed the bungalow completely by myself using some archictectural software. I illustrated load walls, roof, doors, electric, plumbing and all. It was quite neat to see something you've designed yourself (no matter how small) come to life. The bungalow got 90% done, but work stopped when I needed to leave on my trip to India because in Thailand unsupervised workers will do nothing while you're away. When I got back, my workers were on another job, and I never really finished the bungalow because by that time I estimated how long it would take to build a house and how much it would cost. I realized I'd be living on Koh Tao for another few years and it'd take all my money. So in the end I sold the land in 2009.

All photos below are taken on or from the land. Clicking images takes you to a larger view.