Lobbying hard for the private party to be permitted on a public beach – something that Patong Mayor Pian Keesin had opposed – the chairman of Sydictive Element Co, Dr Vorachart Petnunthawong, explained that the party will occupy only about one tenth of the beach, an area stretching from the end of Bangla Rd for about 800 metres to the south.
There will be 500 security officers, included 40 men from the Royal Thai Navy and 20 scuba divers to rescue anyone who gets into trouble in the water.
The temporary wall around the event will include a barrier to keep partygoers from going out into the sea (and gatecrashers from coming in). There will be a single entrance, equipped with a scanner to prevent anyone from bringing weapons to the party.
Apart from the beach party area, two small barges will be moored close to the huge floating stage, and reserved for VIP guests only. He refused to give names but V/Gov Somkiat said in the meeting that they would include some powerful political figures and members of royalty from overseas.
The floating stage itself is 70 meters long and 30 meters wide, so large that the organisers have invited the editors of the Guinness Book of World Records to measure it for inclusion in the book as the world’s largest.
Dr Vorachart also said that Sydictive representative have already negotiated with retailers and business operators in the area and they are pleased to join the party by selling their products inside the party.
A jet-ski operator told The Phuket News earlier in the day that he had been paid B30,000 to compensate for loss of business while the party walls block the beach.
Deputy Mayor Chairat Sukban pointed out that there are normally 50,000 to 100,000 coming to Patong Beach for the New Year countdown. He urged the Sydictive organisers to manage things in a way that will take these people’s convenience and safety into account.
He also asked the organisers to consider them to think about having see-through fence around the party or some kind of fence which makes people feel comfortable to walk around because basically, Patong municipality has the policy to give free concert to people.
Pol Sub Lt Pornchai Pomyukon told the Sydictive representatives that though all the unnamed VIP guests need privacy, police should be informed at least two days before the event who they are and where they are staying, so that effective security arrangements can be made for them.
No representatives of beer company ThaiBev, which has sponsored free New Year parties on Patong Beach, were at the meeting. That party will not happen this year. At the meeting it was announced that space could be made for ThaiBev to sell its products inside the party.
No one from ThaiBev could be reached for comment today.
V/Gov Somkiat asked at the end of the meeting, “Are there any more questions? Any more problems?” There was no response.