Bangkok and Pattaya Edging ever closer
As land prices surge in the capital and travel between the City of Angels and its Eastern Seaboard resort becomes easier because of ever-improving roads, it’s become quite apparent that both Bangkok and Pattaya are moving ever closer, especially in business-to-business terms.
The devastating floods of 2011 resulted in a surge of interest from Bangkok-based residents in the relatively dry environs of Pattaya, both as a safe haven away from the rising floodwaters but also as a potential place for extending their business interests or just creating a home away from home.
Equally, Pattaya-based businesses have realised there is a growing synergy between the resort city and Bangkok and that ‘traffic’, for want of a more appropriate term, is as strong going to the north as it is coming south of the capital.
Several Pattaya-based property developers, including Tudor Group, Heights Holdings, Powerhouse Development Co., Ltd., The Sands and Elegance, have recognised the genuinely strong interest emanating from Bangkok and they have been quick to look into exploiting that interest in terms of selling property to Bangkok-based residents, both Thai (of course) and expat.
They have recognised the great business potential of Pattaya as an attraction to Bangkok-based people, but they are also seeing the attractions of the capital itself as a place to hold special events.
One prime example of the importance placed on Bangkok and the connections therein, is the highly successful Movers & Shakers charity networking organisation. Established by one of Pattaya’s prominent businessmen, Cees Cuijpers, the Movers & Shakers events are held regularly in Bangkok and are attended by a very large number of both Bangkok and Pattaya-based business people.
These events allow for the Pattaya-based business operators to make valuable contacts within the Bangkok-based business community, thereby providing further synergies between the two cities.
It wasn’t so long ago that Pattaya’s seamier reputation made it almost a place to avoid for Bangkokians. Now, as more and more Bangkok-based developers, major supermarket and department store chains, and home improvement and furniture companies move into Pattaya, the two cities have drawn so much closer.
The heavy rains and potential for further flooding in Bangkok this year have strengthened the links with Pattaya, especially for Thais in Bangkok.
The past couple of years have seen Bangkok-based Thai people purchasing homes and condos in Pattaya and Jomtien. Many of these are just used as safe boltholes away from any flooding in Bangkok, or as weekend retreats. Nonetheless, this has led to interaction between Pattaya-based businesses and the Bangkok visitors. This, in turn, has led to just as many Pattaya-based people making their way into Bangkok for weekends or even to consider starting in business in the capital.
While travel from Pattaya to Bangkok is relatively easy and cheap, the reverse is not quite the case. From Pattaya it is possible to take a bus to Ekkamai and then use the extremely efficient BTS and MRT systems to get around for any business within the central business district of Bangkok.
For Bangkok-based business people, it still remains necessary in most cases to drive down to Pattaya for anything business-related. Even so, the trip can take less than two hours and is on excellent highways that exit right into the centre of Pattaya.
The quality of the road network into Pattaya and the ease of the transport system around central Bangkok means the potential for business people in both cities to work ever closely together gets better with each passing year.