Russian tourists to Pattaya, many from Siberia, are helping to change the image of Pattaya, according to Trade Travel Gazette Asia.
‘Pattaya has been morphing into a cosmopolitan city along the coast, with a new crop of lifestyle attractions – think water parks, trick-eye museums and zipline canopy tours – offering a wider selection of things to do, not just for single males but also for families, couples and groups of friends,’ said the publication today.
‘International and Thai hotel brands like Mövenpick, Renaissance and X2 have sprung up in recent years.’
The changing tourist market has seen an influx of Russian tourists ‘many of whom come as families with kids in tow’.
‘It is this family-friendly image of Pattaya that TAT (Tourisism Authority of Thailand) and the local trade want visitors to associate the place as.’
‘It’s no longer fair to associate Pattaya as just a sex tourism destination. The ‘nasty’ image is no longer apt,’ said Pathira Nakngam Riley, director of sales & marketing at InterContinental Pattaya Resort.
He pointed to the massive infrastructure improvements that have been poured into Pattaya, stepping up the pace of gentrification in the inner city and attracting a wider demographics.
‘We cannot change the history of Pattaya but we can certainly change travellers’ impressions of the city.’
TTG concludes: ‘Granted that the unsavoury part of Pattaya still exists, but most visitors won’t see it unless they specifically go looking for it, just like in most cities in the world.’
‘On the streets nowadays, visitors are more likely to see Chinese, Indian and Russian tourists.’
They are seen as generally coming with families and buying into the new image for Pattaya. – SiberianTimes.