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Displayed prices are for multiple nights. Check the site for price per night. I see hostels starting at 200b/day and hotels from 500b/day on agoda.

Nightmarch - All hands not quite on deck

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All Hands Not Quite on Deck: The annual Cobra Gold military exercises have blasted off, or blown off -whatever your preferred explosive verb might be- and if it wasn’t for the platoons of terribly tumescent members of the United States armed forces then Fun Town would almost resemble a graveyard. Companies of men with close-cropped hair have been invading many of the local ogling dens and, on some nights, virtually denuding places as they pay bar fines and troop off into the night for a bit of infiltration with willing young damsels hopeful of extracting a few dollars out of the US military-industrial complex. If only Afghanistan and Iraq were this much fun.


Have a Few Drinks, Maybe Win a Bike: The hands-on management at the New Living Dolls 1 ogling den (Walking Street) have decided low season is a good time to conduct a prize promotion. Inside the entrance is a large motorbike worth about 57,000 baht, and this is the prize that awaits one lucky person when the promotion comes to an end on Sunday night 15 June. Imbibers at the den receive one numbered coupon for every 500 baht spent in the chrome pole palace. Staff are prohibited from entering the competition or having any coupons given to them by punters. So that people who might have gathered together a substantial collection of coupons but can’t attend the draw on 15 June aren’t disadvantaged, it is possible for them to nominate someone to collect the prize on their behalf should one of their numbers be drawn out. This nominee must be registered with the management at the den at least 24-hours prior to the prize draw.

Just Hand Over Your Money: A couple of friends recently decided to have a thirst-quencher in the Kittens ogling den (Pattayaland Soi 2). As most expats and regulars are probably aware, the den employs both ladies who are genetically female and ladies whose identification card refers to them as ‘Mr’. It’s usually not difficult to work out which is what, as the majority of the distaff brigade have produced one or more children at some point in the last two decades and the relief maps around their mid-riffs show contours even Google Earth would be proud to produce. The meat-and-two-veg (uncut) brigade are part of a trend in certain boozers and areas to cater to a perceived market for boys dressed up as girls, even though there is no evidence of an increase in the numbers of retired British politicians and Anglican vicars making Fun Town their abode.

The pair had three libations: one amber fluid, one liver waster, and one lady drink. The bill, they claim, totalled a whopping 730 baht. They couldn’t remember the precise breakdown of the libations, but suffice to say there are now two more people who won’t be returning to Kittens any time soon.

Play Misty for Me: The management of the new Misty’s ogling den (Soi 15, off Walking Street) that opened a couple of weeks ago have created a pretty good example the art. You can see the influences of the old Club Electric Blue as well as their other Walking Street property Beavers in the overall layout.

It’s a spacious den but designed with a central stage on which are 8-10 dancers and a bank of solid tables around the margins with another five or six girls cavorting about, all in various stages of limited apparel. Pink is the predominant colour: of the short skirts, tops and what always is the main attraction for most ogling den aficionados. The wet bar looks a bit like something out of the TV series Happy Days, to the extent I was expecting a waitress on roller skates to ask if I wanted fries with my soda-pop.

The upstairs section features ladies in fishnet stockings and, well not much else really. Although I think I’ve done myself a neck injury, I couldn’t help but keep my eyes drifting to the very fetching bodies of these exhibitionists.

Music is standard car alarm while thirst quenchers are priced at 65 baht for draught amber fluid, 95 baht for ly water, and 125 baht for house liver wasters. Bar fines for dancers are 600 baht while show girls are 800 baht but they can only go out for a maximum of two hours. There are about 50 dancers, most with pretty good bodies, although no genuine stunners from my own limited observation.

Misty’s have left a now empty shell at their original place in Pattayaland Soi 2, which is now down to just four ogling dens, from its high of nine a few years ago.

Not Much to See: Bargain-basement bin car alarm music at high decibels seems to be the main attraction in the long-established but decidedly tired-looking The Sea ogling den (Soi Diamond). Certainly the usual attraction, dancing damsels in limited attire, numbered only about 20 to 30 when I was in recently and, apart from four of these, I wouldn’t be in a hurry to see any of them in the cold light of day.

Draught amber is the preferred promotion, at 55 baht a glass, while bottled froth and ly water are 95 baht and house liver wasters 105 baht. If your change amounts to five baht or less it seems the serving wenches have decided your making a donation to their tip fund whether you like it or not. Give it a miss.

Still Strong After a Half Century: Lam Morrison always looks akin to one of those unshaven and unwashed recycling men pushing a metal cart before them down the narrow sois in the back streets of Pattaya with half a cigarette hanging from their lips but ever-ready to return a cheery grin from a passer-by with a broken-toothed smile. It’s a fragile look, but when Lam begins to caress an electric guitar he really can lay claim to being one of the great Thai exponents of the art, and he’s a showman to boot.

I mention this because I stayed up past my bedtime to catch a recent Lam Morrison performance at the Lam Morrison House of Rock (Soi Marina Plaza). He began with a magnificent rendition (probably performing it for the 87,429th time in the 50 years he’s been playing) of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’, the hit song from the positively ancient Wizard of Oz movie. What made it interesting was that while he was adding a few calluses to his fingers, the movie was being shown, with English subtitles, on the in-house TV monitor. None of us thought we were remotely near Kansas.

The band on stage prior to Lam was also excellent. They did material by Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Deep Purple and that ilk. A foreign guy who I presume to be a regular but who was sitting with some people having a drink came up on stage a couple of times and belted out some songs in a superb rock and roll voice, starting with AC/DC’s ‘TNT’ and sounding just like the late Bon Scott.

Morrison’s is a terrific place to listen to some really hard-core, grab your balls, rock and roll. Thirst-quenchers are reasonable for a live music joint with house liver wasters 130 baht and ly water 95 baht, and there are a small clutch of what might be claimed to be coyote dancers to add a little feminine flavour to the place.

Around and About: The Voodoo ogling den (Walking Street) has closed its doors as far as operating as a dancing palace is concerned. The beer boozer in front of it wasn’t open when I went past recently, although a few people were sitting about in chairs watching the passing parade. Around the corner in Soi 15 the Fun Room ogling den is closed, and so for the first time in a while the number of chrome pole palaces in and around Walking Street has dropped below 50. Just how many will be left come the end of September will be interesting to see.

Meanwhile, down in Soi Yamato, the Japanese noshery after which the soi takes its colloquial, if not its official, name, is up for sale after 20 years or so of serving sushi, tepanyaki and the like to the masses. In the same soi there is now yet another meat-and-two-veg-in-a-dress boozer called La Bamba (Spanish for ‘show us your knackers’), employing people of very tall stature and deep voices. Then again, the popularity, or otherwise, of these joints might be on the wane (should that be spelt ‘Wayne?’) as the Club 131 boozer is apparently up for sale.

Although it used to predominantly employ males who liked to dress up as females, the Malibu show boozer and noshery (Soi Post Office) was a wonderful place to go for a laugh, about as far removed from the slick Vegas-style gender-bender shows put on at Tiffany’s and Alcazar. Sadly, after what must be two decades of operations, the place has closed down. The land value, on the corner of Second Road, is enormous and simple economies of scale would mean it’s worth more than a mere show bar, even if the Tina Turner-lookalike act was one of the funniest in Fun Town.

At about 5:00PM on Wednesday 11 June the second of the three-match State of Origin rugby league ‘pitched battles’ will take place in Brisbane, and as usual the Boxing Roo beer boozer (Third Road, opposite Soi Lengkee), will be showing the action on TV and providing a free BBQ for punters, with Uncle Kenny keeping the tote for those interested in laying the odds. NSW deservedly won the first match 18-10 so the Queenslanders, on home turf, will be out for revenge. A pox on their house.

Piece of Pith: Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.



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