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Pine Tree

How Many More Malls?

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Just how many more 'high end' malls can Pattaya take? T21 may be a step too far, as the traffic issues at that end of the City are horrendous  most of the time and the mall appears to be not that popular mid week. How the shops are making any kind of profit is beyond me, but the City Fathers seems intent on saturating the City with ever more malls.  Will it stop any time soon?  

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Sometimes it's not about making a profit in a specific Mall, it can also be about developing Brand awareness as a result of being associated with other larger brand names sharing the same space. A popular store chain in say, Bangkok might not have anything like the exposure as others do in Pattaya. As Pattaya has perhaps a wider , or more diverse audience (International tourists) then putting a small outlet into a big Mall, negotiating a cheap rent for being one of the first there can carry your brand exposure to a massive audience, from there it's a case of using that as a springboard to maybe another market or to expanding into the area.

As long as there is a demand, there will be Malls. They're seen by the City as another reason to attract tourists from BKK. I can remember when Mike's Mall, Big C  and Royal Garden were the only 3 in Pattaya!.

 

 

Edited by Butch

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1 hour ago, Butch said:

As long as there is a demand, there will be Malls. They're seen by the City as another reason to attract tourists from BKK. I can remember when Mike's Mall, Big C  and Royal Garden were the only 3 in Pattaya!.

There is a point though, it did seem surprising that the 3 latest Malls were built in relatively quick succession around Pattaya, on top of one that didn't appear to be doing well at all. The Central Festival Beach Road, the perpetually vacant Harbor (just up the street from a large popular Mall), then T21. One gets a sense of copycat behaviour towards over supply, like bars and massage places. Or perhaps staking a land claim. Haven't been to two  of those for a spell, I just use Big-CX, but have popped into Harbor and am perplexed. 

I don't see road access to these places improving easily. T21 is nigh impossible for out of towners, as is Central,...or do the locals have a better sense of patience than me and actually like sitting in their cars?

So I don't see demand, certainly not now , more a sense of 'build it and they will come, if they can'.

Edited by jacko

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Similar experience in the UAE, where it seemed they just kept building more and more malls, each one “bigger” than all the others. A lot of them had very little foot traffic.

Malls are a declining business in Australia and US, with the shift to on-line shopping. Possibly places like Pattaya (and even Dubai with its “Dubai shopping Festival”) rely on the tourist dollar.

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7 hours ago, Butch said:

Sometimes it's not about making a profit in a specific Mall, it can also be about developing Brand awareness as a result of being associated with other larger brand names sharing the same space. A popular store chain in say, Bangkok might not have anything like the exposure as others do in Pattaya. As Pattaya has perhaps a wider , or more diverse audience (International tourists) then putting a small outlet into a big Mall, negotiating a cheap rent for being one of the first there can carry your brand exposure to a massive audience, from there it's a case of using that as a springboard to maybe another market or to expanding into the area.

As long as there is a demand, there will be Malls. They're seen by the City as another reason to attract tourists from BKK. I can remember when Mike's Mall, Big C  and Royal Garden were the only 3 in Pattaya!.

 

 

Yes, I get the brand recognition , but how many big brand shops get the foot fall, especially in Pattaya with its visitor demographic?   I don't think that I have set foot in a branded shop for many, many years and they always seem empty whenever I look in them here. So not sure that the branding argument is actually working in LOS, certainly not enough to justify the costs of maintaining mall outlets.  Looking at what has happened to  the older malls in Pattaya, I can't see them being sustainable.  

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16 hours ago, Pine Tree said:

Yes, I get the brand recognition , but how many big brand shops get the foot fall, especially in Pattaya with its visitor demographic?   I don't think that I have set foot in a branded shop for many, many years and they always seem empty whenever I look in them here. So not sure that the branding argument is actually working in LOS, certainly not enough to justify the costs of maintaining mall outlets.  Looking at what has happened to  the older malls in Pattaya, I can't see them being sustainable.  

I agree, probably not much foot fall, or not much in the grand scheme of things, but it is a strategy that many businesses use. The only "big name" brand I ever see busy is Starbucks, so I'm with you on that one 🙂, the branded stores are often empty or have attractive girls standing around looking less interested than the mannequins beside them!. However, saying that, that method of marketing does work, it works worldwide and it does work very well in SEA.

Maybe they see the visitor numbers into Pattaya and then surmise that building a Mall will automatically give them a share of that tourist spending?  - could be a reason one may say, but the equation is much more complicated than that.

 

Like Jacko said, Pattaya traffic is bad enough, it also gets visibly worse near a Mall, the infrastructure is stretched enough as it is.

For myself though, a Mall does offer a respite from the heat of the day, and also an occasional break in the afternoon away from the bars. I do enjoy sitting in Starbucks, drinking an Earl Grey via osmosis and reading all the papers and perhaps watching the news on my phone (something I rarely, if ever get to do when not on my hols).

Edited by Butch

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6 hours ago, Butch said:

For myself though, a Mall does offer a respite from the heat of the day, and also an occasional break in the afternoon away from the bars

Yes, for me they are a breathing and cooling opportunity, and to kill a few minutes en-route to a bar.... Central Festival is a cut through when I decide to go grab a bite at the Robin Hood, The Royal Garden has been a decade long opportunity to dry off my shirt when I spot the traffic mess, construction work, motorcycle-taxi blockage and crowds of deadly disease carrying tourists at the Beach Rd and Tai corner. It is supposed to be the entrance to Walking street but is rarely more than a meter wide. T21, once a year, I stay at the Thai Garden Resort and cut through there en-route to the Fireworks. 

Edited by jacko

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1 hour ago, jacko said:

Yes, for me they are a breathing and cooling opportunity, and to kill a few minutes en-route to a bar.... Central Festival is a cut through when I decide to go grab a bite at the Robin Hood, The Royal Garden has been a decade long opportunity to dry off my shirt when I spot the traffic mess, construction work, motorcycle-taxi blockage and crowds of deadly disease carrying tourists at the Beach Rd and Tai corner. It is supposed to be the entrance to Walking street but is rarely more than a meter wide. T21, once a year, I stay at the Thai Garden Resort and cut through there en-route to the Fireworks. 

I guess that because I live here now, so have my own house to chill and get out of the heat, the atrraction of a mall, any mall, is just not there anymore.  I avoid them whenever possible. 

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55 minutes ago, Pine Tree said:

I guess that because I live here now, so have my own house to chill and get out of the heat, the atrraction of a mall, any mall, is just not there anymore.  I avoid them whenever possible. 

Even here in the States I go to the malls very infrequently. 

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I visit the malls in pattaya mainly to eat at a restaurant or to watch a movie. 

In general all the malls have the same franchised restaurants and play the same movies.

So I mainly visit the one mall which is central festival due to it being the closest mall to the hotel I tend to stay at.

In all my visits to central festival I have only bought 1 shirt from the Calvin Klein store. 

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1 hour ago, tombon said:

I visit the malls in pattaya mainly to eat at a restaurant or to watch a movie. 

In general all the malls have the same franchised restaurants and play the same movies.

So I mainly visit the one mall which is central festival due to it being the closest mall to the hotel I tend to stay at.

In all my visits to central festival I have only bought 1 shirt from the Calvin Klein store. 

I like the Starbucks in Central, also the Coffee and ice cream place upstairs. I was in Starbucks when that farang killed himself there the other year.

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3 hours ago, Butch said:

I like the Starbucks in Central, also the Coffee and ice cream place upstairs. I was in Starbucks when that farang killed himself there the other year.

That Starbucks isn't that bad. But believe it or not I prefer the espresso ice coffee that they make in 7 eleven. Possibly a third of the price than Starbucks.

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Starbucks has to be a goldmine in Thailand (and Philippines) charge American prices but pay local wages, taxes and charges 

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9 hours ago, biggles said:

Starbucks has to be a goldmine in Thailand (and Philippines) charge American prices but pay local wages, taxes and charges 

A lot of American companies from burgers to pizza and a lot more. However, the last tax bill allowed American companies to repatriate foreign profit to the USA at 8% taxation. That is not a permanent arrangement. I am not sure when (or already?) this expires but when it does, money again will be held offshore and may only help stockholders and corporate overseas operations. This is not just related to US businesses in Thailand, of course.

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On 1/26/2020 at 7:48 PM, tombon said:

That Starbucks isn't that bad. But believe it or not I prefer the espresso ice coffee that they make in 7 eleven. Possibly a third of the price than Starbucks.

Now you're talking! My guilty pleasure is an Iced coffee and Hot dog from 7/11, I am ashamed to admit...

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On 1/24/2020 at 8:01 PM, jacko said:

There is a point though, it did seem surprising that the 3 latest Malls were built in relatively quick succession around Pattaya, on top of one that didn't appear to be doing well at all. The Central Festival Beach Road, the perpetually vacant Harbor (just up the street from a large popular Mall), then T21. 

Didn't Central Marina appear between Harbor and T21? 

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33 minutes ago, Bazle said:

Didn't Central Marina appear between Harbor and T21? 

Perhaps, I struggle to remember. Malls isn't high on my list of tourist attractions. Harbor is likely more popular with me as you hardly have to go into town.  I used to use the Laem Chabang one a bit but seem to have lost interest. 

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I wonder if there is any other city in the world of Pattaya's population and geographic size that has so many square meters devoted to retail sales?  I don't just mean shopping centers,  but all sorts of stores and other outlets, from stalls through malls. Massive over-establishment in the retail, real estate and hospitality (hotel, restaurant, bar) sectors is causing huge problems for businesses in  Pattaya.

Here's a list of shopping malls in Pattaya.  I'm sure it's not complete: La Galleria, PHHP Business Center, TOSCANO Shopping Mall, The Bay Pattaya, King Power Pattaya, Outlet Mall Pattaya, The Harbor Pattaya, The Avenue, Royal Garden, Terminal 21, Central Marina, Central Festival, Tukcom, Mike's Mall

Can anyone argue that enough potential customers visit Pattaya to support all of them?  It's the same with go go and beer bars.  The number of bars that have opened is hugely out of proportion with the number of tourists and resident ex-pats who are likely to be customers.  The result is enormous over-supply in relation to demand.

Evil

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1 hour ago, Evil Penevil said:

I wonder if there is any other city in the world of Pattaya's population and geographic size that has so many square meters devoted to retail sales?

And any spare bits that soon will be.....

Even the space meant for people and parking in the Malls themselves, end up in the hands of yet more retailers!.

The parking space in front of the 7-11 , becomes a plastic crap stall and noodle soup vendor, and soon a few more sqm acquired for tables and chairs.... theres' a spot, put a cocktail VW van on it! Pedestrians pah! Only country I can think of where they  build a market over an active railway line.

Edited by jacko

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