by Rhiannon Caldwell
Welcome Town is a new shopping complex just off Pattaya Klang Road, directly behind the Index Living Mall, a diverse shopping center with an array of products and services. Amongst these are a few bakeries that open as early as 9:00 am but mostly everything opens up around 11:00 am and then stays open until 9:00 or 10:00 in the evening. On Saturdays, and Sundays for special events there is also an outdoor market space available, as well as a stage for live performances.
The Hippie Festival was recently held at Welcome Town and the market made of bamboo tents, and the stage made of the same material was put to great use. The stalls here being able to accommodate many different types of items and with specialty vendors during such events.
A Pet a Long Way from Home
Some noteable unique businesses that reside in Welcome town are The Cat Cafe and The Party Shop. The Cat Cafe is a delightful cafe serving coffee, milk, and bakery items. What makes it special are the feline friends that you will meet inside. There are resident cats at the Cat Cafe that are friendly and socialized, and there are places for the furballs to play. If you are a perpetual traveller you know just how hard it is to have a pet. Just because we travel does not mean we don’t love animals. The Cat Cafe provides kitties for playing and petting to people that may not have any other opportunity to spend time with animals. Grab your favorite cuppa joe and pet a cat at the Cat Cafe.
Quick! Distract the Children!
The Party Shop relocated recently to Welcome Town. Here you will be able to find a wide variety of costumes and accessories for playing dress up, school productions, Halloween, costume parties and just for no reason at all. There are also party favors and little goodies.
Right next door is Kids Castle with an indoor, outdoor play area. Having these types of kid friendly activities venues make it easier when you are having to handle adult business, such as visiting the real estate agent Colliers International have a branch here. Or you might be renting a mailbox from Siam Secure Box Rental or looking at the latest CCTV for home security at the security camera shop.For those chores that have to be done but can take a lot of time, having entertainment options nearby can make those days so much easier.
If you have older kids, there is a also a place called Nads which is a gaming store, with accessories for video games and right next door to that is an internet cafe. Two more alternatives for killing time when you have the teenagers in tow and are trying to get things done.
For beach bunnies there is a fabulous little bathing suit shop where you can buy a custom suit by purchasing tops and bottoms separately. There are also cute beach accessories, cover ups etc. The colors in the shop just jump right out at you and the selection is vast. Purli Bikini is definitely on my list of places to check out when it’s time to buy another new bathing suit.
For motorcycle maniacs there is Road Runner Accessories. They sell endless accessories to modify big bikes like Ducati. Upgrade the exhaust, change the handlebars, or get a new set of wheels. Or simply check out the modded bikes they have in their showroom. From novice to expert these bikes will have something to impress anyone.
Health & Beauty
It is quite easy to make a day out of Welcome Town, If all the shopping just gets too much one can always go for a massage. Choose from either Thai, Foot, or Oil and pay only 200-300 baht. Her Massage is clean and the therapists are skilled. Nothing funny going on in this place just nice relaxing massage therapy.
Sis Style is a full service hair salon, offering everything from cut, and blowdry, to color and styling services. There is Mira Clinic for hair and skin, and Aman which is a place specializing in Clean Food, and Lean Food. That movement is running strong, high protien and vegetables and very low carbs.
There are a handful of places to grab a bite to eat. From bakeries with pies and croissants, to a Thai pub, or Japanese barbecue. There are quite a few choices. The Borbaimai Cafe & Bakery, Tres Bon Cafe, Loaf Bakery & Cafe, and of course the aforementioned Cat Cafe. For late night eats Koko Shabu BBQ, the Thai Pub, or Usagi Japanese food.
I saw some oddities that I did not investigate too deeply. Such as one shop was filled with bales of hay haphazardly stacked in what could have been some kind of order. The stage looks to have eroded underneath, not sure what that is about but I get the feeling there may be lights underneath. The little market stalls also provide late night food some nights of the week. They are tastefully done with uniform white roofs and bamboo framing with two teepee style tents near to the center.
Overall Welcome Town is friendly for families, couple, and singles, there is a little something for everyone there. There are quite a few things that are necessary mixed in with pure entertainment. The staff that I encountered had a pretty high level of English, and I was greeted with no Russian as I am sometimes mistaken for a Russian but when I answer back in Thai with a heavy American accent there is usually a laugh.