Tough times Thailand 2019 on two fronts, first we have Thai immigration making it more difficult for expats to live in this wonderful country, secondly the exchange rate for Thai Baht to the Aussie dollar (and other currencies) is hitting rock bottom.
The following 2 charts will highlight the situation.
This is not a travel blog, it is part of my personal photo history.
This photo blog covers from July 1st to December 31, for the first 6 months of 2019 please go to THIS LINK.
Australian $ to Thai Baht
In 2012 there was 33 Baht to the dollar, today it’s 21.
Australian term deposit rates
In 2012 they were over 5%, today it’s a miserable 1.5%.
Having said all that life is still very good in Thailand
Just ask my good friend Hamish, he hasn’t a care in the world. 🙂
Most afternoons I tear myself away from the computer & enjoy an afternoon coffee.
A small tip for a little lady
I often give this nice lady a B20 tip when I see her of a morning sweeping the road at Terminal 21, it’s just under $1 AUD. She gets so excited you would think it’s 200. 🙂 I’m guessing they don’t get paid too much.
Love watching the storms roll in
So exciting when the storms roll in over Pattaya Bay.
There’s nothing like a September sunset.
I was sipping a red wine at the Holiday Inn watching this magnificent sunset.
Beachfront restaurant Pattaya is aptly named Surf & Turf & is rated number 100 out of 1187 restaurants in Pattaya. For far better food photographs than in this post just check out THIS LINK for my previous Surf & Turf photo blog.
On the beach next door to the Long Beach Garden Hotel.
Beachfront restaurant Pattaya
A fairly ordinary front entrance.
Air conditioned inside section
It’s much nicer inside which you can clearly see.
Catering for the smokers
The further away from me the better. 🙂
Inside in the aircon.
Especially during the day the front area beside the beach is the most popular part of the restaurant.
Another outdoor area
There is quite a number of different sections in this popular Beachfront restaurant Pattaya.
This is the beachside section
No aircon but they have plenty of fans & there is usually a beautiful breeze coming off the ocean.
An unusual dish
My friend ordered snapper, as you can see the portion was rather small & there was a skewer of beef with it.
Pattaya coffee shop review from my perspective. These are the venues where I choose to spend my time and money. 🙂
The photo above is the Coffee Club at Markland on Beach Rd, this in fact was opening day on 31-8-2018.
Coffee Club Eggs Benedict.
Good quality food & coffee but far too expensive. For instance the equivalent of a Starbucks tall latte is B146 or $6.97 AUD, at Starbucks you pay B115 or $5.50 AUD. Even though they have a branch in my condo building I generally walk 200 meters to the Holiday Inn where I only pay B113.
The staff here are very friendly & the food & coffee is excellent. The large coffee is B150 which is what you would expect for a 5 star hotel. However as I’m a member of the Hi Club I get a 25% discount which brings the cost down to B113.
Bon Cafe import coffee machines from many countries around the world for including Italy, Switzerland, Spain, the United States of America, and other countries to satisfy their various types of customers.
Around 5 days a week I am at Central Marina or the Bay in Beach Road. The lovely girls put a candle in my croissant for my birthday. 🙂
My Starbucks breakfast of choice
Accompanied by a tall latte of course. Starbucks sell 4 BILLION cups annually. Which (divided by 365 days) means that roughly 10,958,904 cups sold daily between ALL Starbucks locations. So we are talking about 388 cups of espresso and/or coffee drinks daily on average per store globally.
This is Boonthavorn
Surprisingly they have the best value coffee in Pattaya. They are on Sukhumvit Rd,see the map below.
Just inside the front entrance on the left.
Top quality coffee for only B30, or $1.40 AUD.
Many thanks for visiting my Pattaya coffee shop review photo blog.
Starbucks Pattaya every morning is a perfect start to my day. Not just the excellent coffee, the friendly smiling staff always put me in a positive mood. Above is the branch at The Bay on Beach Road Pattaya between Soi 5 & Soi 6.
The Bay Beach Road
Let’s go to Starbucks & stare at our phones. 🙂
Opening day at the Bay
September 22 2015.
My breakfast of choice.
Ham & cheese croissant with a tall latte. B240 or $7.8 USD
There are two Starbucks at Central Festival
That makes 4 within 10 minutes walk from my condo.
Inside Central Festival branch
Quite an attractive fit out.
A birthday candle for me. 🙂
As I mentioned earlier the smiles on girls are a really nice start for the day.
Sometimes they run out of croissants.
So I settle for a sandwich. 🙂
Starbucks Pattaya every morning
Every 12 coffee is free if you have a Starbucks card so I often take one home for later.
Thanks for visiting my Starbucks Pattaya every morning photo blog.
Marathon 50th Birthday Weekend for Hamish Elton seemed more like a competition based on “survival of the fittest” 🙂 You suddenly realise you are a popular guy when 35 people fly in from overseas to help you celebrate. Thirty three came from Australia & two from America.
Celebrations started on Tuesday
People began arriving on Monday July 15 & warm up celebrations began on Tuesday. Many stayed at the Birds & Bees Resort situated on the beach between Pattaya & Jomtien. For an excellent room rate just book through THIS LINK.
The photo above is at the famous restaurant located in the hotel called “Cabbages & Condoms”, rated by TripAdvisor #78 of 1,182 Restaurants in Pattaya.
Marathon 50th Birthday Weekend
Dressed in condoms
Condoms, what condoms, I don’t see any condoms. 🙂
Luxury boat cruise Friday July 19
I use the term luxury rather loosely as you can see from the photo, although nobody wants to admit it, I think it was a frustrating event. They finally left 3 hours late before realising they didn’t have a tender, after picking it up from the mooring they found it didn’t have a rope to tow it with so they tied it to the side of the ferry. Add to this there were various problems when trying to tie up at Koh Larn Jetty.
All I can say is I am so happy I decided not to take the trip.
Greg Clee in full swing, prefers to be known as Greg “Storming Jack” Dawson.
Who invited Elton John?
Well, no party is complete without :The Crocodile Rock”. 🙂
The legend goes to work.
In case any of you have not heard, Harlan Goldstein was a successful chef and Hong Kong celebrity before moving to Pattaya. In 2012, Gold by Harlan Goldstein received its first Michelin star, his Pattaya restaurant serves comfort food from all around the world, which is influenced by his 38 years traveling the world as a chef. TripAdvisor rating is #89 of 1,182 Restaurants in Pattaya.
Until next time.
Thanks Hamish & May for organizing a week to remember. Just as an after thought, there was another marathon beside Hamish’s birthday, you guessed it, the actual Pattaya marathon kicked off at 2 am on July 21st, Hamish’s birthday.
MYTT Hotel Pattaya Thailand is part of the A-One hotel group & is located in Soi 3. I watched the whole construction process from my condo in Markland one street away in Soi 1.
As you can clearly see it’s a stunning foyer.
The view from my condo
I’m on the 20th floor of Markland in Soi one & the MYTT is in Soi two.
Here is the building site.
It was quite a radical change to Soi 2.
The Kitch restaurant
Many people may find the name is a rather poor choice, here is the meaning courtesy of Google; “Kitsch is art that’s garish, nostalgic, and very low-brow. Some people who love the aesthetics of souvenir culture think kitsch is really cool, while others think it’s in very poor taste. Kitsch is a German word that’s been adopted into English, meaning“worthless, trashy art,” or the quality of that art.”
Swish may have been a better name.
Kitch may be short for kitchen, but it’s pronounced the same as kitsch. Swish means impressively smart and fashionable, which the restaurant certainly is. 🙂
The following is from their website; Seafood Buffet Dinner Promotion • 2,500 THB per person includes unlimited Lobster(serve half of the Lobster at once). Not include a beverage. • 3,000 THB per person includes unlimited Lobster (serve half of the Lobster at once) and also beverage (Alcohol included) Special discount for you to add Line @:MYTTHOTEL or check on Facebook. Please kindly contact MYTT Hotel Pattaya Thailand directly to get the special discount.
Sky Bar on the 19th floor
A nice atmosphere with a great view, far too expensive for my budget however. A Singha beer is B220 or $9.80 AUD. Most of the beer bars in Pattaya sell it between B65 & B85.
At last they have a “special”.
They invite you to join them every Friday for 99 Be Mine – where 99 Baht gets you a glass of wine, a pint of beer or 3 in 1 Tapas.
Small intimate bar
Two DJs were playing fairly loud music, as they do in Thailand. 🙂
Final feast Mantra Pattaya Sunday brunch with friends, I have so many memories of great moments in the last 12 years at this wonderful restaurant. This photo blog features many of the long lunches dating back to 2007.
We are going to miss the fabulous food.
Alaskan crab & oysters from France have always been my favourite at the Mantra Sunday brunch. Having said that I must admit the quality has been going down slightly in the last 2 or 3 years. I apologize for this criticism just their standards were always so high I guess they were hard to maintain.
The seafood section.
I would always ask to be seated near the seafood & sushi. 🙂
Final feast Mantra Pattaya, lets not forget the cold Sake. 🙂
Included in the price of the buffet, so I would always take full advantage of this special.
My friend from Sydney Roland Bonnici.
Roland loves dining out & the Mantra was his favourite Pattaya restaurant. This visit was a week before it closed on February 10 2019.
From the Chinese kitchen.
Pork Belly, roast pork & duck, delicious.
A favourite dish
From the Chinese wok the beef & onion creation just melts in your mouth.
The Mantra featured 7 different kitchens.
Lets look at previous years, 2007 Trevor & Nui.
Trevor hails from Western Australia & spends lots of time in Pattaya.
This was 2008.
Nick Partridge from the Gold Coast & his lovely lady Sharron have been Mantra fans since the beginning.
Big group in 2010
At the back is Trevor & his son Cameron + xxx, then myself, my brother Warren, Nok & Phil Avalon, & at the front we have Greg Johnston & Herbie Pastor.
Big birthday with lots of friends.
No better place to celebrate than the Mantra.
Beautiful Benjamas Sitthi
Ben now works at the Avani Hotel adjacent to Royal Gardens.
Before Ben there was Amy
Amy really knew how to make you feel welcome.
Another birthday in 2009.
I remember this one very well, my great Phil Thomson from Australia bought his 21 yo son Michael to Pattaya as part of his introduction to life in the fast lane. 🙂
Another super Sunday.
On the left is my brother Warren & Bill Austin & Joan Baptiste from Wiltshire in England.
Xmas with Yaowaluck Bumrungthum aka Kartoon
For Xmas day lunch the Mantra was always our choice.
How could we forget Pothole aka John Martin.
We call him Pothole Bin Ladin the mouse of Markland. A flashback to Potholes birthday, aka John David Martin, at the Mantra in 2013 when love was sweet.
Allan & Vicki Chiswick from Sydney.
Laem Chabang Their cruise ship spent 24 hours at Laem Chabang so they hightailed to the Mantra. 🙂
Putting on the Ritz
Finally here are some of the glamorous Mantra girls putting on the Ritz.
Check out three previous Mantra photo blogs here. Number one,
Italian food Beach Rd Pattaya at Trattoria Pizzeria Toscana is a delightful experience. TripAdvisor obviously agree with a rating of 45 out of 1,111 Restaurants in Pattaya. Owner & chef Luca Marchetti is originally from Pracchiola, a tiny village in the mountains to the north of Tuscany.
Flashback to 2006
The original restaurant was on the block where the Holiday Inn is now situated.
Here’s to old times in 2006
The restaurant was much smaller & more intimate, in fact I preferred the atmosphere to the current location which seats over 700 people.
Pizza with parma ham.
Definitely one of my favourites.
Fettuccine is absolutely delicious.
Of course they serve every kind of pasta & pizza imaginable.
Memories of 2012
Dinner & red wine with Irina from Ukraine.
Take your pick
It all looks so good, Toscana’s menu is huge.
There are several sections of the restaurant
This is my preferred area to dine.
What a fearsome sight this is.
The big fellow Luca with a knife in his hand should be avoided at all cost. 🙂
Lots of stock in the cold room.
Luca operates his own organic and sustainable farm not far from Pattaya where he grows his own vegetables, rears free-range chickens, rabbits, ducks, pigeons, guinea fowl, wild boar, goats, sheep, pigs and cows. No processed food, no growth hormones, no chemicals, no problem. 🙂
Notice the anchovies on the side, delicious.
The boys from Oz in 2014
Lenny, yours truly & my brother Warren. Sadly we lost Lenny early 2016 after losing a battle with cancer, RIP.
Toscana has recently opened a new seafood section in the front garden.
Lots of wine, mainly ITALIAN.
Quite a few wines available y the glass.
A very friendly waitress in 2014.
As you can see I’m not a person who misses a photo opportunity. 🙂
Dinner with friends January 2019
From the left we have May, Alex, Hamish & Gary.
Beef carpaccio tasted as good as it looked.
May chose the Baby Clams aka Pippies.
This is the same dish she had on New Years Eve.
Thanks for visiting my Italian food Beach Rd Pattaya photo blog.
Good Indian Food Pattaya located in 2nd Rd just opposite the Royal Gardens shopping mall. I don’t often patronize Indian restaurants however the food at Zaika was very good so in future I will make an effort to visit other similar places.
Fairly mundane decor
In fact the upholstery on the booths looks like it needs a good shampoo. Otherwise it’s comfortable & compact.
Lets check out the food.
I ordered a chicken curry not too spicy.
Good Indian Food Pattaya
Lets take a closer look at the Good Indian Food Pattaya. The curry was excellent and the long grain rice exceptional.
These two photos I borrowed from TripAdvisor to let you see a couple more food samples.
Fish Tikka with Jasmine rice
TripAdvisor rating is #27 of 1,091Places to Eat in Pattaya which seems a rather high rating, hard for me to judge after only one visit.
Located on 2nd Rd
Right opposite the Royal Gardens shopping mall. Their phone number is 038 488 958.
These prices are very low indeed.
They have a very busy home delivery service.
A huge selection
I certainly will be using the home delivery service.
Thanks for visiting my Good Indian Food Pattaya photo blog.
Pattaya Seafood Festival 2018 was a noisy affair as usual. There is a bandstand on the beach which blasts very ordinary music until the early hours of the morning. My condo is on the 20th floor 400 meters away & the sound hits me full blast even with the door closed. 🙂
Beach Road Pattaya
One of the bigger kitchens along Beach Road.
Prawns, crab & shell fish
A good variety & freshly cooked.
Big variety of meat including crocodile. 🙂
I’m surprised there is no snake or buffalo. 🙂
Pattaya Seafood Festival 2018
One of the many stalls lined along Beach Road.
Here is my favourite shot
A typical spontaneous Thai smile, no wonder we love living here.
Time for a mango shake
Another huge benefit of living in Thailand, the mangoes are wonderful.
OK, I’m confused…..
I have no idea what these bamboo tubes are for.
Busy ladies here on Beach Road
The festival runs for 5 nights and really draws the crowds.
This is the view from Horizons the amazing rooftop bar. A great five star hotel located opposte the beach & above the Central Festival shopping mall. Just book through THIS LINK for an excellent room rate.