Andrew Stocks: Redefining Retirement Living in Thailand

Andrew Stocks

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Andrew Stocks, founder and owner of Sunshine International, Thailand’s leading retirement hotels brand, offers luxury residences primarily to expatriates. His journey to success began in his youth. Raised in a hotel family, he lived most of his childhood in a Marriott, experiencing firsthand the inner workings of the hospitality industry. Surrounded by thousands of guests, Andrew developed a passion for people and service. He aspired to fulfill their needs and create heartfelt moments.

His love for interacting with guests overshadowed his academic pursuits. He rarely attended school, prioritizing guest interactions over formal education. “I really hated school, but I would love to be with the guest,” Andrew admits.

To test the market, Andrew launched a small retirement residence in Hua Hin. The project’s rapid success confirmed his market understanding. This early win paved the way for Sunshine International, now a leading brand for Thailand’s retirement hotels and residences.

Sunshine International: Redefining Luxury Retirement Living

House and Estate Company Ltd. began 25 years ago developing land for expatriate communities. Initially, British clients sought pool villas for their sunny escapes. Today, the company has transformed into Sunshine International, a luxury brand for retirees.

Sunshine International offers retirees the option to rent or purchase a home with comprehensive hotel-style services like room service, housekeeping, and concierge. Residents enjoy access to on-site amenities, including fitness centers, a spa, and 24-hour concierge support. But, the most valued service, providing peace of mind, is the 24/7 on-site medical staff. Many find this immediate access to medical care a significant advantage.

Sunshine International caters primarily to retirees from Switzerland, Germany, Australia, America, and Britain. These countries grapple with either high healthcare costs or declining service quality. The prospect of forced relocation to impersonal, expensive care homes in their twilight years is a growing concern for many. In Thailand, caregiving comes naturally. The Thai people possess genuine care and a dedication to service, offering a stark contrast.

Inside Andrew Stock’s Daily Routine

Andrew wakes up each morning and tackles his overnight emails and messages before enjoying his morning coffee around 6:30 AM. A firm believer in keeping his mind and body sharp, he follows this with a swim and exercise routine. Breakfast is typically a healthy bowl of fresh fruit and rolled oats.

At 8:00 AM, Andrew arrives at the office for a meeting with his Chief Brand Officer to discuss daily tasks. Inspections are a highlight of his day – he walks through every property he owns with a keen eye for healthy, vibrant gardens free of brown patches.

His lunchtime typically involves a healthy meal, often shared with guests. The afternoon finds Andrew strategizing for the future, exploring avenues for brand growth, and overseeing the company’s marketing efforts, including advertising campaigns he manages in 26 countries worldwide.

In the late afternoon, Andrew takes a breather with a coffee break, followed by a few hours of work from the comfort of his home. Evenings typically find him at his restaurant, catching up with guests or hosting early dinners for business associates.

Prioritizing a good sleep for optimal focus the next day, Andrew aims to be home and in bed by 8:00 PM. His weekends often involve flights or drives to destinations like Phuket, Bangkok, Pattaya, or Chiang Mai.

Building Resilience during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic threw Andrew his toughest career challenge. Thailand’s closure to tourists threatened his business. On the other hand, mounting salary bills and millions in losses added significant stress and uncertainty. Andrew, however, chose to keep all his staff, understanding their value in these difficult times.

Despite the challenges, Andrew remained optimistic. He viewed the lockdown as a chance to increase advertising efforts. “We knew,” he said, “that when Thailand reopened, people would see our ads and visit.” Besides advertising, Andrew used uplifting messages and humor to boost morale and build a sense of community. This strategy kept Sunshine International in the minds of potential customers stuck at home.

Sunshine International’s Leadership Philosophy: Empowering Growth

Andrew deeply appreciates his team at Sunshine International. He fosters engagement and instills a service-oriented culture. “True hospitality,” he emphasizes, “comes from genuine care and love, expressed through small acts of kindness.” As an incentive, Andrew awards bonuses for each property sold under the Sunshine International brand.

Promoting personal growth is equally important to Andrew. He advises his team on saving money, purchasing homes, and investing in their futures. Andrew recognizes that a supportive environment fuels innovation and creativity. By valuing his team and encouraging their development, Andrew fosters a culture where new ideas flourish, and employees feel empowered.

APAC Transformation: Unity & Innovation

Andrew believes unity and collaboration are the catalysts for significant change in the APAC region. “Only when we are united can we truly transform this region,” he emphasizes. Strong partnerships will allow APAC to showcase its commitment to tackling issues like corruption and improving safety standards across member countries. By prioritizing these improvements, Andrew believes Thailand can solidify its position as the world’s leading retirement destination.

Passion-Driven Excellence

Andrew loves his job so much that it feels like a hobby to him. The passion he has for his work keeps him energized and excited. He travels weekly, staying in five-star hotels, meeting new people, and finding new opportunities.

He enjoys visiting other hotels. It helps him learn new things and improve upon his own brand’s services. This drive for improvement fuels his dedication to perfection. Despite his busy schedule, Andrew keeps a healthy work-life balance by blending his love for hospitality into his daily routine. As he says, “I just love what I do, so I feel happy and healthy every day.”

Andrew’s Call to APAC Leaders

Andrew issues a call to action for APAC leaders, urging them to lead with heart. “Don’t overlook the small things,” he emphasizes. Prioritizing improvements like a cleaner, safer infrastructure, and reliable public transportation is crucial. Additionally, Andrew underscores the importance of road safety initiatives.

Ultimately, he stresses the power of compassion. “A touch of heart,” he concludes, “will be remembered forever.”


“Work with your heart. Don’t overlook the small things.”

Also Read: Top 10 Business Leaders in Asia Pacific, 2024

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