Bangkok will be getting its first observation tower which, when completed, will be the tallest of its kind in South-East Asia.

Set to measure 459m high, the tower will stand on the banks of the Chao Phraya River and rank as sixth tallest in the world.

With a price tag of US$138mil (RM578.22mil), it’s hoped the Bangkok Observation Tower will become a major tourist attraction for the city.

Designed to evoke a burning candle, the tower symbolises the annual practice of lighting candles on the birthday of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej and wishing for national prosperity.

The space inside the tower will be used as an educational platform to promote Thailand’s history and cultural heritage.

Profits will go towards community and charitable projects.

“There were 32.6 million visitors to Thailand in 2016 who, together, spent almost US$72bil (RM304bil),” said Ittirith Kinglake, president of the Tourism Council of Thailand, in a statement.

“In 2020, the number of visitors to Thailand is expected to increase to 41.5 million visitors. Tourism has consistently been one of our country’s most important revenue sources and accounts for 17.7% of GDP. The tower will act as a significant tourism driver for the country.”

The tower is expected to be completed in 2019. – AFP Relaxnews