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Boutique hotels in Patong appeal for help

PHUKET: Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam was in Patong yesterday (July 12) to hear firsthand how more than 200 small hotels that were not allowed to legally open had been seized in foreclosure motions for failure to pay loans.

By The Phuket News

Wednesday 13 July 2022, 11:16AM

Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu was in Phuket in his capacity as President of Office of the Public Sector Development Commission (OPDC). He was joined by Assoc Prof Waraporn Samkoset, Chairperson of the OPDC sub-committee assigned to evaluate the promotion and development of high-quality tourism in Patong.

The officials were met by a group of about 80 small hotel operators led by Manosit Jangjob, Acting President of the Phuket Boutique Accommodation Consortium (BAC).

The group met at the parking lot behind Krung Thai Bank in Patong, then moved to show the Deputy Prime Minister some of the hotels that had been foreclosed.

The group pointed out that small hotel operators were still suffering under the current economic conditions, and had been since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020.

“As a result, at least 200 small hotels in Patong were subject to confiscation cases and sold at auction,” Mr Manosit said.

“Therefore, he would like the government to help. We request a waiver to allow the opening of the [small] hotels and help to resolve the problematic law, which has been demanded for a long time because we are in a lot of trouble with the hotels forced to close due to COVID,” he added.

The Phuket consortium of boutique hotel operators in August last year filed a formal request pleading for the government to extend the amnesty to upgrade their hotels in order to be registered under the Hotels Act.

Many small hotels fail to legally qualify to register as hotels under the definition under the Hotels Act due to the building requirements.

The amnesty, initially brought into effect by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) in 2016 was extended four years ago, and finally expired on Aug 18, 2021.

“As a result, there are no tourists, no income, and unlicensed hotels have to be closed, resulting in no money to pay the bank,” Mr Moanosit said.

“Potential investors don’t want to take over the hotels because some people who have had their assets seized still have to pay their debts,” he added.

“Let the government have mercy on us, not just be conducive to large hotels,” Mr Manosit said.

The issue had been presented to the relevant agencies many times, Mr Manosit added.

Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu said he was aware of the situation and confirmed that he had received specific information from many small hotel operators in the same situation.

“Therefore, I would like to urgently take care of this matter, because now there are quite a number of business operators who have already been affected. The subcommittee is processing dozens of other submissions, of which all information has been requested and received in order to summarise and present to the Prime Minister as the next step,” he said.

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Kurt | 16 July 2022 - 00:22:25

@Omarion, good you come out with information what enlighten matters from a different angle/perspective.

omarion | 15 July 2022 - 20:46:39

To all you armchair detectives who keep commenting nonsense on every single post; an establishment can be registered as a guesthouse if it doesn’t meet hotel standards. None of them are illegal. They are just not “hotels”. They are insured. They pay taxes. They don’t need to have fire escapes. 
Please stop commenting on things you don’t know anything about…

Kurt | 15 July 2022 - 15:53:14

@Burt ( are you a real Sir?).  You are right with your suggestions, However, many 3,4 star hotels not answer your suggested requirements. Take a look about electric wiring in hotels. Tourists died even in fault wirered star hotel pools. All over there is no Phuket Government safety handling. It is all having luck for the tourist. Even not falling to death from balconies.

Sir Burr | 15 July 2022 - 13:11:51

Building requirements? Aren't they obvious?
A sprinkler system. A fire-escape route that is unhindered and unblocked.
Non-flammable materials used in constructions (doors) and insulation.

@kurt. You never fail to manage to build a complete house with only three bricks
You can't just buy any old building, put beds in every room and then call it a hotel.

Kurt | 15 July 2022 - 10:47:49

I can't free myself of the thought that yelling 'building requirements' is used as a tool to reduce the number of smaller hotels on Phuket, simply because there are to many hotels. In the past 'building requirements' were never a problem, probably during these time small hotels were able to produce brown envelopes. Now the bigger hotels want lesser small hotels. Just a sanation...

Kurt | 15 July 2022 - 09:39:05

And what are these building requirements? Now it looks like despite not answering these requirement, so being unsafe (?), these hotels were many years illegal operating with Govrnment blessing, because they were/are operating. So, from Government side was no tourist safety thinking?

Pooliekev | 14 July 2022 - 20:43:22

Surely not!! Kurt missed the point? I'm shocked!

Kurt | 14 July 2022 - 19:55:01

@Nasa, before Covid time started, there were more illegal than legal small hotels. But Phuket Governor and other officials did ensure us that they were going after it and make them legal asap. Did Phuket Government not do that? Or,... didn't close them permanent as they were violating the law and not taking chance to become legal? The Thai legal and illegal mix up matters at end always walk de...

Sir Burr | 14 July 2022 - 16:03:43

@Kurt, yet again, you seem to have missed the point.
These places are closed because they CANNOT become registered hotels. That's why they're closed.
Buying one does not consist of buying a hotel and it clearly says in the article that the reason that they can't change classification is building structural issues.
Please pay attention instead of rushing away to be the first poster t...

CaptainJack69 | 14 July 2022 - 15:50:04

They had 4 years to sort this out before Covid came along.

Nasa12 | 14 July 2022 - 09:41:53

So it’s a least 200++ illegal hotels only in paying, whit no insurance, fire drills, no taxes ++. Only scamming, how can this happen. How many illegal hotels are the in Phuket? Only in like Rawai are about 70 % illegal and illegal buildings. Think it’s better the army coming back and make a bigger cleaning up this time. 

Timothy | 14 July 2022 - 09:29:33

Are they all licenced hotels? Do they pay taxes? 

Kurt | 13 July 2022 - 17:52:08

Yeah, if you can't re-open and earn money, than you can't pay back your loans/debt. Perhaps that is wat a number of 'investers' just want. Getting a hotel for almost a 'bank price'. Government should step in, after all hoteliers are in this position because of Government Covid regulations.


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