Re Branding Pattaya - From Sexpat Tourism to World Class Sports Destination
Pattaya “aka” Sin City is currently going through a major transformation. For many years Pattaya has had the unscrupulous reputation for attracting the man going through a midlife crisis, or the man going wife shopping. Pattaya has a huge number of Go Go bars, and streets such as Walking Street and the world famous Soi 6.
As the visitors coming to Pattaya are changing, so are the goals of Pattaya as a future tourist destination. The current Mayor has been in power for seven years and has been working on an initiative to turn Pattaya into a family friendly world class sports destination. Evidence of this transformation is beginning to pop up throughout the city in the form of green projects to beautify the city and in bringing more events to the city.
One has but to drive down Sukhumvit Road to witness Pattaya’s transformation. In January the underground tunnel project broke ground. In addition to the tunnel, a gorgeous green park is planned to replace the current road. The idea is to add greenery while alleviating traffic. Phratamnak Hill is going through a two year project as well with the end goal being an eco friendly tourist destination with landscaped parks, and picnic areas filled with butterflies, flora and fauna, and beautiful works of art such as sculpture.
Pattaya is on the national agenda and is receiving support from the Ministry of Tourism and Sports. To increase the draw for sporting events a new sports events complex will begin construction later in 2015. This new venue will provide grounds for extreme sports such as BMX, and skateboarding competitions.
The beginning of 2015 has already seen tennis tournaments with international stars, Professional and Amateur golfing tournaments, The Thai Invitational International Boxing Tournament, and later in the year Pattaya will host the King’s Cup Jet Ski World Cup Grand Prix. There have been two bicycle races this year so far to raise awareness for alternate transportation and the importance of staying healthy. Ocean Marina Yacht club is hosting it’s 11th annual Top of the Gulf Regatta this year and reports that they are tailoring this years events around feedback from previous years.
Pattaya has been very proactive in the National Beach Clean up initiative with plans to rebuild some of the receding coastline in both Pattaya and Jomtien Beaches. There are also grassroots beach clean ups popping up lead by social groups and businesses who want a cleaner greener Pattaya.
Pattaya is currently on the path to becoming a family friendly tourist destination with an emphasis on sports and ecotourism.