The last decade saw a rapid transformation of Pattaya and not only in terms of the types of condo for sale in Pattaya, leaving the decade a city almost unrecognisable from how it entered it. Who would have thought that back in 2010, we would be saying that Pattaya was a family-friendly resort town with the majority of people visiting the city, NOT coming mainly for the nightlife? Back in 2010, Pattaya had something of an infamous reputation closely associated with sleaze with the city often being described as “the home of the wanted and the unwanted”. How that has changed.
Changes in the Last Decade in Pattaya
While there have certainly been a few things that have been anticipated in terms of infrastructure but not delivered over the ten years, the high-speed rail link is a perfect example; these infrastructure improvements will be coming. In the past this was never said with confidence, instead said in hope than belief, as previous experience always pointed to failings. However, things are getting done. Yet another flood improvement system is being built on Pattaya Beach Road which, hopefully, we reduce if not cure the problem.
The previous decade ended rather disappointingly for many with tourist numbers not reaching anticipated levels. Western visitors were undoubtedly down, affected mostly by the strength of the Thai Baht and their own poorly performing currencies. Of course, many were still investing in Pattaya property but those buying for personal use reduced. Visa matters did little to help the situation, as was the case with other destinations becoming available. A combination of all these factors sadly saw several bars, restaurants and other shops aimed at the western market close.
The bright side of these changes are fantastic hot sales such as this beautiful studio in the much sought after condominium in Wongamat.
Pattaya’s Target Market
The Indian market is the next target market for both City Hall and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT). After declining numbers of Chinese visitors was decided to target pastures new, and the Indians were prime for picking. Many of those targeted are wealthy individuals, quite happy to spend their money in the city. Indeed, some of the nightclubs are only busy due to this group who are now viewed as “big spenders”. As money talks in any resort town or city, this market is now increasingly popular.
It is anticipated that as the Indian market swells, demand for Pattaya properties for sale will also increase. Naturally, this is something that pleases developers as well as those involved with Pattaya real estate. Condos for sale in Pattaya will presumably be the first option although others may prefer houses for sale in Pattaya.
Performance of the Thai Baht
The Thai Baht, which has been rapidly gaining in strength over the last four or five years now appears to have plateaued. It seems unrealistic to expect and significant falls in the immediate future, however, such strengthen seems unsustainable over the entirety of the next decade. There have been many calls for the government to devalue the currency, but equally as many outside tourist areas, who wish the currency to remain strong. What should happen is very much open to debate.
Infrastructure Improvements in the Next Decade in Pattaya
We have often said that for Pattaya to be really looked upon as being a world-class resort, its infrastructure needs to improve significantly. As we move forward into the 20s significant improvements are planned. The high-speed rail link will probably be the first of the major projects to be completed. The link will connect Don Muang, Suvarnabhumi and U-Tapao airports with several stations along the way including Pattaya. The ambitious plan is due to start operating in 2023.
There are also further extension plans for U-Tapao International Airport, after the already significant improvements that were made in the last five years. It will open up the city further to more tourists as well as business along the Eastern Seaboard. The extension and development of the airport will undoubtedly bring more visitors as well as long-term residents which will be a major boost.
Not far from Utapao this is a beautiful family house for sale!
Internet in Pattaya
Underground cables and high-speed internet are already available in some areas of Pattaya although it is far from universal. Over the forthcoming years, the plan is for all cables in Pattaya to be moved underground as well as high-speed internet, which provides the download and upload speeds claimed, being available to all. As anyone who lives or even visited the city will be aware, the replacement of overhead cables in itself will be a mammoth task, but will significantly improve reliability as well as being aesthetically pleasing as well as reducing fire risks.
Mass Transit in Pattaya
Other ideas that have been continually speculated about include other forms of mass transport systems to ease congestion in the inner-city areas. Trams, cable cars or a form of Sky Train along Beach Road have been suggested several times, but it has faced opposition from taxi and baht bus operators. However, it seems unlikely that they will be able to resist some form of mass transport for the entire decade so we will maybe seem some progress sooner rather than later.
Entertainment in Pattaya
Of course, it is hard to get away from the fact that Pattaya is an entertainment resort, and this is something that it does incredibly well. There has certainly been a move away from the “adult entertainment” industry, but some of the clubs and other forms of entertainment are hugely popular. An Entertainment Pier could be an option as a way of extending the entertainment areas around Walking Street and Bali Hai.
Dare we mention the perennial topic of casinos too? The topic has frequently been speculated with rumours some hotels already have casinos built and ready to open if the laws change. This decade may be the time that it happens, and if it does, it will inevitably transform the dynamics of the city almost overnight. Naturally, this is only speculation, but it seems hard to imagine that Thailand, in general, can resist demand forever.
Luxury 4 bedroom condo for sale in a beachfront village not far from speculated future casino area
Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC)
In connection with the point already raised above about the further extension to U-Tapao Airport, plans are already afoot to develop the Eastern Seaboard extending the area which will be known as the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC). The EEC will bring significant overseas investment, and U-Tapao is viewed as being central to plans to facilitate significant growth. The EEC is already in development and will create tens of thousands of jobs midway through the 20s.
In spite of some testing times in recent years, developer confidence has remained and even increased, during 2019. The new decade should be something that we all look forward to with lots of new and exciting things in prospect. Like previous decades, what is in store will be mostly unknown with many surprises along the way. No doubt when we look back in ten years we probably won’t be able to recognise Pattaya of today.