Take a look at Bangkok's first observation tower

BANGKOK will be getting its first observation tower which, when complete, will be the tallest of its kind in Southeast 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$138 million (RM578.3 million), 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 72 billion dollars," 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 be 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