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Chuwit in Phuket calls out Tourism Ministry on Patong nightlife hours

PHUKET: Outspoken and controversial former MP Chuwit Kamolvisit in a Facebook Live broadcast across the internet this week called on the Tourism and Sports Ministry to “Wake up and promote” Phuket’s Bangla Rd in Patong and to allow late-night trading on the popular nightlife street.

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By Tanyaluk Sakoot

Friday 10 March 2017, 02:54PM


Chuwit Kamolvisit (right) speaks to a foreign bar owner on Bangla Rd, highlighting that the the heart of Patong's nightlife is a hotbed for foreign tourists, not thais. Screengrab: Facebook / ChuvitIamBack

Chuwit Kamolvisit (right) speaks to a foreign bar owner on Bangla Rd, highlighting that the the heart of Patong's nightlife is a hotbed for foreign tourists, not thais. Screengrab: Facebook / ChuvitIamBack

Mr Chuwit, who before his entry into politics was the country’s biggest massage parlour kingpin, called for the Tourism Ministry to allow bars and nightclubs to remain open until 4am.

“Ministry of Tourism and Sports: Wake up and promote!” Mr Chuwit said in the live broadcast as he paraded along Bangla Rd, joined by Patong Entertainment Business Association (PEBA) President Weerawit Krueasombut and Preechawude “Prab” Keesin, Head of the Pisona Group of companies.

“You must think about this. As I walk around here on Bangla Rd, most of the people are foreign tourists, not Thais. There are no students and no schools in the area that you need to worry about,” he said.

“No tourists go to sleep early on their holidays. They sleep in late and wake up late. Think about it,” he added.

Asked by Mr Chuwit how much revenue the Patong nightlife generated in general business, Mr Prab responded, “About B100 million.”

Mr Weerawit added, “The general businesses that benefit from this trade include pubs, bars and other entertainment venues as well as tuk-tuks and taxis, and restaurants”

“See, you (the MoTS) must promote Bangla Rd. It is a tourism area. Let’s show tourists what there is to see on the colourful and jolly street of Bangla Rd, Patong,” Mr Chuwit told his Facebook audience.

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Since the video was posted on Tuesday, it has already had more than 43,600 views. (See video here.)

Mr Chiwit then asked several bar owners, including one Frenchman and an Australian, who their main clientele were, to which both responded, “Most are just foreigners.”

Mr Weerawit told The Phuket News, “I am glad that Chuwit visited Bangla Rd. He is a person who really understands the real situation on Bangla Rd – and he understands that here should close at 4 am, not 1am.”

Phuket Governor Chockchai Dejamornthan made the request to allow night venues to close at 4am official with a letter to the Prime minister’s Office dispatched on Feb 15. (See story here.)

Mr Weerawit noted that the PEBA was still waiting for a reply to the formal request sent by Governor Chockchai.

“This request will be presented to the Cabinet and we are still waiting for a reply from Tourism and Sports Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul,” he said.

 

 

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BenPendejo | 14 March 2017 - 22:44:02

Actually Eagle, Pendejo is mainly used in Mexico, although other Spanish speaking countries know what it is.  And OK you guys... I'll relent on the 1:00 time, although 1-1:30 is stop drink time in the US...can't speak for Canada or Europe.  Frankly, I don't give care what time they close as I don't go there or drive around at that time.  Still can't stand these punk thug busine...

BenPendejo | 12 March 2017 - 16:10:28

What a bunch of self-serving buffoons these guys are.  None of these greedy crooks should be speaking of what tourists want, because they are clueless about everything outside their expertise of vice and fleecing farangs.  Mr Chuwit, Weerawit Krueasombut and Preechawude “Prab” Keesin are nothing more than wealthy, greedy thugs that care about nothing other than themselves.  Stop serving drinks...

Bangla Insider | 12 March 2017 - 00:55:34

I think the cabinet has already approved late night opening on the Bangla Road. Last night the bars closed at 2am and the nightclubs at 4am or later. Well done to Tourism and Sports Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul and Phuket Governor Chockchai Dejamornthan for the fast action.

Foot | 10 March 2017 - 22:22:00

A change to embrace the tourism is finally coming.

Johs | 10 March 2017 - 17:33:20

“No tourists go to sleep early on their holidays". Tourists visiting bangla Rd. late don't  go to sleep early, sounds more correct. 

However there are many tourists, who visit Patong for other purposes and most of them want to sleep early. 

So the wise Solomon's solution should be - do the partying in party zones and make it possible to sleep in residential zones.

With othe...

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