It is something that most of will have noticed as we travel around Pattaya, developer confidence and the confidence of hoteliers remains high regardless of whatever others may be feeling or witnessing. While we always believe that these major players in Pattaya have their finger on the pulse, can Pattaya sustain the number of new hotels that are being built?
New Hotels Coming, But Older Hotels Were Under Occupied
In the last three months and the forthcoming twelve months, it is anticipated that seven new hotels will open in Pattaya including COSI Pattaya Naklua Beach and Citadines North Pattaya. With large amounts of land cleared in the areas, mainly due to the closure of older, under-occupied hotels, more hotels are set to follow. However, the key is that these hotels were under-occupied with some unverified reports claiming that occupancy in the Loma Resort was as low as 25% through the twelve months before closure.
Tourist Numbers Down
In an article in thethaiger.com, Damrongkiat Phinitkarn, the Secretary for Entertainment Industry and Tourism Association of Pattaya claimed that tourist was down by between “20 and 30%” during the 2019 low season compared with the previous year. Assuming that these figures are correct, a significant increase in the number of quality hotel rooms available seems a little unnecessary, never mind unsustainable.
There has been a significant decrease in the number of Chinese tourists visiting Pattaya in 2019, the target market for many hotels. It has been caused by events in other parts of the country such as the tourist boat sinking in Phuket and an Immigration officer assaulting a Chinese tourist as he entered the country at Don Muang Airport. The positive was that the number of Chinese Free Independent Travellers” (FIT) has increased during the year.
Nice 2 bedrooms unit in a beachfront development very popular with Bangkokian week-enders.
The Tourist Authority of Thailand (TAT) and City Hall have now chosen to target the Indian market, which will undoubtedly help to increase occupancy levels in hotels. However, targeting tour groups alone is potentially a high-risk strategy and maybe equally as badly hit if there is any adverse publicity about Pattaya circulated in India. Although the Indian tourists are now viewed as bigger spenders, many are unlikely to favour the new four and five star hotels that are being developed.
Thailand and Pattaya, in particular, has tried to improve its image on the world stage and there has been a heavy emphasis on “quality over quantity” of tourists coming to Pattaya. On the one hand, this justifies the construction of the new, more upmarket hotels to target “more sophisticated” tourists, but are there the numbers to explain it? It would seem more appropriate that if more hotels were required, they covered different market segments as one of Pattaya’s strengths is catering for everyone.
Optimism For The Future
While we should keep faith that the hoteliers know what we are doing, even the most optimistic must be scratching their heads about how these luxury hotel rooms are going to be filled. We are all sure that Pattaya has a bright future, but are significant changes expected in the next twelve months with the Thai Baht as strong as it is? It seems hard to imagine.
Spacious one bedroom condo to buy or rent in this resort-style project