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Pattaya Classic Car Enthusiasts Drive Alfas to Hua Hin

The president of the Classic Car Friends Club of Pattaya got a rare opportunity to drive a restored, 43-year-old Alfa Romeo Giulia Super 500 kilometers to Hua Hin for a classic-car show last month.

The annual show’s tour began in Singapore August 25, moved through Malaysia and on to Thailand, taking drivers 3,200 km over five days.  The event this year was organized by Kelly Leong of AROC Malaysia and was supported by AROC Singapore.

Pattaya Classic Car Friends Club President (your scribe) and fellow motorists set off from home base on August 26 and arrived in Hua Hin the next day without any problems.  The three classic cars that made the trip worked perfectly and drivers experienced moderate traffic and good roads in Prachuap Khiri Khan Province’s main tourist city.

An hour after they arrived, the Malaysian and Singaporean Alfa Romeo drivers appeared after their 1,500 km drive.

Pattaya and Bangkok drivers gave all the “Alfistis” a warm welcome on behalf of the GTV and Giulia Society chapters.  Over the next two days, great events were arranged, including sightseeing tours in Hua Hin and its surroundings.

The participants also enjoyed a gala dinner and small ceremony where the “three nations drivers” were welcomed by the deputy mayor of Hua Hin, Monti Chupha, and his entourage.

The next morning two police officers escorted the cars on the trip to Prachuap Khiri Khan City.  All drivers were welcomed by Posit Kruawan, president of the provincial tourism association, at the San Lak Mean.

The next stop was the Royal Thai Air Force Wing 5 base and Ao Manao Bay for its famous view.  They then moved to the “Venice of Hua Hin,” with its many rivers and gondola rides.  The day ended with a meal at a waterfront seafood restaurant.

On August 28, the Alfas visited the Rajabakthi Park, a memorial to the past kings of Thailand.  From there, the Singapore and Malaysia drivers paid a visit to the home of group captain Piyawat Kunra­chat and were the recipients of wonderful hospitality, being given refreshments and souvenirs of local products.

The drivers began the trip back to their home countries and cities on August 29 and all will be eager to attend a repeat of this event in 2017.

Note: For more information about the Classic Car Friends Club of Pattaya, visit website:

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8 Picture Perfect Things To Do in Hua Hin

Amari Hua Hin’s Shoreline Beach Club


You got the beach poses down and the camels at Camel Republic have already been featured in your IG grid. Now, here are 8 more great pictures (and activities) in Hua Hin you probably haven’t tried yet.

Photo: Facebook / Vana Nava

Vana Nava Hua Hin is the latest attraction to float in. This enormous water park promises rides and thrills in a tropical jungle. There’s even a gigantic water fueled funnel that can fit the whole family. If you think a picture of you sliding down an epic, wet, rainforest trail is only a dream, think again.

Photo: Flickr / celebrityabc

The gentle falls and scenic pools at the Pala U Waterfall make the perfect Hua Hin day trip. Pack a lunch and sit on the rocks, or at least pose for some great pics. Remember to bring mosquito spray or better yet cover up in proper hiking gear – the rocks are sharp and those bugs are fierce. But it’s worth it to see the natural beauty, especially if you don’t mind some exercise getting there.

Spend an afternoon tasting local wine at Hua Hin Hills Winery. The screams of your angry boss will feel so far away when you’re standing in the wide open fields. And are those mountains?! The landscape is so inviting, you’ll have to capture it for all of FB to see. It’s a world away from Bangkok but with the occasional elephant passing through, this vineyard is distinctly Thai.

Photo: Flickr / Wei Jen Chang

Speaking of Thainess, make a stop at the Hua Hin Railway Station on your long weekend getaway. The impressive Royal Waiting Room will bring you back to the 1920’s when the station was built. Dress like a Gatsby and really feel the part. Better yet, make some cash by charging other tourists to take photos with you.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The beautiful Mrigadayavan Palace is another Thai landmark that will give even the most jaded Bangkok tourist pause. It was built as a summer home for royalty in 1924. Located within the royal camp grounds and surrounded by gardens and greenery, it makes for a perfect family outing – your mother will have you posing with flowers for hours. This is another place to stick with long sleeves and pants, this time out of respect for the royal family.

Photo: Flickr / Heiko S

The Cicada Market is Hua Hin’s newest element of hipster-fication. But we can’t complain. It’s a bustling outdoor market, set on a sprawling lawn with live music, bean bags and a generally chill atmosphere.

Photo: Flickr / Heiko S

Change it up from 2016 hipster market to 1920s shopping fair at Plearn Wan Vintage Village. Half historic site, half retail bazaar, this unique market will make you nostalgic for Thailand’s bygone era. Food, clothing and even an old school apothecary will provide the perfect souvenirs for your Bangkok friends stuck at work.

The Shoreline Beach Club by day.

Picture perfect accommodation will complete your Hua Hin getaway. At Amari Hua Hin on Khao Takiab Beach, the beauty is in the details, from the lofty blue and white lobby, to the ocean style pool, lush green gardens and beautiful Shoreline Beach Club. Surround yourself in a picturesque setting, and have the best of Hua Hin on your doorstep.

Click here for more information and to book your stay at Amari Hua Hin now.

The Shoreline Beach Club by night, with tables set for romantic candle lit dinners.

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B5bn Hua Hin mall in pipeline

Emporium branch slated for 2014

The Mall Group, the country’s second-largest retail chain, is forming an alliance with the Liptapanlop family to jointly develop a large-scale shopping and entertainment complex in Hua Hin next year.

A 50:50 joint venture will be soon set up by the Mall Group and Proud Group, which is now under the management of Proudputh, the daughter of veteran politician and chief adviser of Chart Pattana Puea Pandin Party Suwat Liptaponlop, to run the retail project.

The venture requires an investment of 5 billion baht to develop the retail project, which is located on a 20-rai plot on Phetkasem Road opposite Intercontinental Hua Hin Resort and close to Hua Hin Market Village.   Construction is scheduled to start by early next year and will be completed in 2014.

The Mall Hua Hin will be a mixed-use complex with retail space between 80,000-100,000 square metres. It will comprise The Mall department store, a retail plaza, a financial services area, entertainment anchors, international fashion brand name stores and a five-star hotel.

The Mall Hua Hin will be the eighth retail project under the Mall Group and the second provincial branch after the Mall Korat in Nakhon Ratchasima, which was opened several years ago.

A source in the retail industry said Hua Hin is an attractive market for investors. The charming resort town in Prachuap Khiri Khan province started booming in the past five years with new property developments from hotels, resort condominiums, hospitals and even theme amusement parks. Hua Hin had 2 million tourist arrivals last year and nearby Phetchaburi province had 4 million.

The community mall Hua Hin Market Village dominates the retail market, but other competitors include Tesco Lotus, Makro Food Service, Index Living and Chic Republic.

Apart from The Mall Hua Hin, the company also plans to open a second branch of The Emporium opposite the current location on Sukhumvit Road in 2014.

Apart from its own investment, The Mall Group has expanded to manage other retail projects, focusing on the Gourmet Market grocery stores. It operates Gourmet Markets for K Village on Rama IV Road, Terminal 21 at Asoke and The Promenade located next door to Fashion Island on Ram Intra Road.

In its latest move, the company won a bid to operate 2,700 square metres of commercial space at Don Mueang Airport. The company will spend 200 million baht to develop the ‘Wonder Food of Asia’ venue and expects to open its service on Oct 1.

For the full article, please visit

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Run for Hua Hin: Boosting tourism image

THAILAND – Run For Hua Hin is scheduled to take place on Sunday, October 9, 2016, starting at the True Arena in Hua Hin, Prachuap Khiri Khan Province, Thailand.

It is hoped the event will boost the image and confidence in Hua Hin as a tourism destination while also increasing visitors and revenue for the town.

The event is supported by major Thai sponsors such as Blu Port Resort Mall, True Corporation, Thai Life Insurance, MahaSamutr Development, Park 24 Project, Gems Gallery as well as Proud Real Estate, Vana Nava Hua Hin Water Park, and Intercontinental Hua Hin Resort.

Proud Real Estate, Mr. Suwat Liptapanlop, Chairman and former Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand, said: “Run For Hua Hin will be one of the biggest running events in Hua Hin with a target of 10,000 runners. The event will highlight Hua Hin as a key destination for tourism again, and will build confidence among Thai and foreign tourists and the tourism sector as a whole.

“The provincial governor himself is leading the organizing committee for this event. I would like to invite runners, athletes and tourists who love running to join the race then relax and enjoy the atmosphere of the town.

“Hua Hin is ready to welcome visitors and participants to join the run. Amateurs and professionals from Thailand and overseas can enter without any subscription fees. The run will create a fun, exciting atmosphere to help revive the travel business by welcoming everyone.”

Dr. Tawee Narissirikul, Prachuap Kiri Khan Governor, said: “The Half Marathon race is intended to stimulate the tourism industry in the province and build confidence among tourism operators.

“The event committee has been established from various agencies, in order to facilitate smooth operations and to ensure safety along the race route, which will be managed by the Royal Thai Police.

“We firmly believe that the Run For Hua Hin will help restore confidence and strengthen Hua Hin’s reputation as a top destination amongst local and international tourists.”

Ms. Proudputh Liptapanlop, Executive Director of Proud Real Estate, the leading property developer in Hua Hin, said: “We believe strongly in Hua Hin as a world-class destination for sporting events. There will be three categories: a Half Marathon covering a distance of 21 km, a Mini Marathon covering a distance of 10.5 km, and a Fun Run covering a distance of 5 km. The events are open to men and women of any age and the races start from 4.00 a.m. at True Arena Hua Hin.”

Run For Hua Hin Schedule:

Sunday, October 9, 2016
0400 – Register and receive event T-shirt
0500 – Half Marathon 21 km starts
0600 – Mini Marathon 10.5 km and Fun Run 5 km starts

Runners and spectators who are interested in joining Run For Hua Hin, can register online at or at True Arena Hua Hin, Prachuap Kiri Khan. Entry is free.

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Hua Hin Vintage Car Parade 2016

Each year, normally in December when the chances of rain are slight, this rally takes place between The Sofital Central Plaza, Bangkok and The Sofitel Central, Hua Hin.

Some 60 antique and classic cars make the 225km journey and after arriving in Hua Hin, rest up in town for the night before setting off on a parade around Hua Hin the next day that takes them to Klaikangwon Palace, via the railway station and back again.

This is quite a spectacle, reminiscent of The London to Brighton rally that takes place annually in the UK.

If you’re fond of old cars, then you are sure to appreciate the examples you will see, especially in such a foreign land. They are normally in pristine condition and include fine examples of E-Type Jaguars, Mercedes, Alfa Romeos, Fiats and many more.

Date: Dec 12th, 2015 – Dec 14th, 2015 (To Be Confirmed)

© 2006 Images copyright

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Phraya Nakhon Cave

An Amazing Temple Inside A Hidden Cave Near Hua Hin

The magnificent Phraya Nakhon Cave is one of the most mystical and mysterious landmarks of Thailand but only a few travellers get a chance to take a picture of it. The reason is simple: this gold and green pavilion is hidden inside a hard to reach cave and only a handful of dedicated visitors will do the effort to visit it. Those who do are rewarded with a stunning vision that looks like it’s straight out of an Indiana Jones movie.

Phraya Nakhon Cave is located in the Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park in Prachuap Khiri Khan province, a 45 minutes drive south of Hua Hin. First step to reach the cave is to drive to the small village of Bang Pu located by the beach, and from there decide if you’d rather rent a boat to take you around the cape to Laem Sala beach, or walk a 30 minutes trek above the hill leading to the same Laem Sala beach. Since the boat ride only costs 150 to 200 baht per person and considering that you still will have to climb 430 m of uneven and steep steps we recommend you save your energy and take this short ride to the cave. You can also combine a boat trip to the cave with Monkey Island, ask at the pier.

Once you’ve reached the beach you’ll notice a large rustic restaurant you’ll be more than happy to use on your way back. You will need to pay a National Park fee of 200 baht and a guide might be assigned to you as apparently you can’t go there without one, and don’t be surprised if your guide is a tiny 9 year old girl. From the bottom of the stairs it’s a serious climb, so unless you are fit and used to stair climbing go slowly and take your time: 430 meters seem to be a piece of cake on flat land but when climbing uneven slippery steps, it proves to be a complete different story.

Close to the top the path progressively eases then starts going down into the first cave. Don’t go imagining a dark scary pit; the sunlight cascades generously from the open ceiling of the first cave. This first cave looks beautiful with a natural stone bridge called ‘hell bridge’, but nothing prepares you to the surreal beauty of the second cave, the one you really came to see.

A short wooden path connects the two caves and finally it is there: since 1890, the Kuha Kharuehat pavilion stands gloriously in a ray of sunlight falling from a circular hole in the cave ceiling. If you are lucky to be the only visitor, the unusual silence adds to the majesty of the site… This pavilion stands on a hill surrounded by trees and vegetation. The pavilion was built at the end of the 19th century for the visit of King Chulalongkorn the Great (Rama V). Later, King Prajadhipok (Rama VII) and the present King of Thailand, King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) also visited the cave.

Once you have taken enough photos and your legs start to feel less shaky, it is time to go back. Walking down is less tiring in some way but beware of the slippery stones! Stop at the restaurant for some well needed refreshements or food. Note: We saw a very skinny dog in the cave, so if you read this, bring him a little something from your breakfast. We gave some money to the guides so they can buy some fried rice for the poor dog. Note also that the light is at it’s best before 11 am!

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Air Space Has Landed on the Runway in Khao Takiab and the Doors are Open

The glasshouse barn-like space with the full scale replica of the world’s first aircraft, the 1903 Wright Flyer hanging from the ceiling, sets the scene.

Air Space actually includes three ‘Space’s; The Café, The Restaurant, and The Outdoor Garden. The Café offers an all-day Western menu, including breakfast and coffee. The coffee bar features coffee beans from Chiang Mai, as well as a selection of nine distinctive coffee tastes including beans from Kenya, Honduras and Nicaragua. The signature coffee is “deconstructed latte,” served in champagne glasses. Customers are encouraged to take a shot of espresso, a small glass of warm milk, a glass of café latte, a glass of sparkling water and a bite of homemade pastry. The Restaurant offers seafood and Thai cuisine.

The must-try appetiser is “miang som o” (herbed pomelo salad with grilled shrimps on deep fried wild betel leaves). For main dishes, stir fried crab meat with herbs and paprika, deep fried sea bass topped with Thai style spicy sauce, and roasted duck with red curry and fresh fruits are highly recommended. Finishing off the meal with iced ladcheag in coconut milk with cantaloupe, black sticky rice, and homemade popped rice would be a nice way to sweeten the rest of the day. The Outdoor Garden offers a full bar list, including the Thai herbal drinks – “naree rumpueng” and “mah kratueb rong.”

Highlights include seven aviation-themed cocktails, including “steward” and “black box.” The Steward is a blend of whisky and fresh coconut water. The taste reflects the steward’s character; aggressively charming. The very first sip brings a strong taste of whisky, yet the after taste is soft, creamy, and freshly sweet from coconut water. A black box, as its name suggests is served in a black box. Order it next time you are at Air Space to reveal what is hidden inside. Live music is provided from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM on Monday to Thursday, and from 6:30 PM to 10:30 PM on Friday to Sunday.

For further information: Call 063-916-0999 or see,
Address: 12/399 Hua Dorn, Nong Kae (Khao Takiab)

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East-West ferry to run by 2020

The Hua Hin to Pattaya service is tipped to cut journey time by two-thirds.

The government’s proposed East-West Ferry Project to link the resort towns of Hua Hin in Prachuap Khiri Khan and Pattaya in Chon Buri province is expected to be up and running in four years.

It currently takes about five hours to drive between the resort towns. But when the ferry begins operation, estimated to be in 2020, travellers can expect to have their journey time shortened by about two-thirds, said Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Marine Office 3 chief Suriya Kopatta.

Mr Suriya said the Marine Department (MD) has hired a consultancy firm to conduct a feasibility study of the project. The study is due to be wrapped up by December this year.

The project will then be proposed to the Transport Ministry, which will then seek cabinet approval for a budget to construct ports for the project, Mr Suriya said.

The project, he said, would help shorten travel time between the lower Central Plains, covering Prachuap Khiri Khan and Phetchaburi, and the eastern provinces of Chon Buri, Chanthaburi, Rayong and Trat.

Pattaya is about 345km from Hua Hin by road, but only 105km across the Gulf of Thailand.

Mr Suriya said a modern ferry would be able to handle between 300-500 passengers and 30-60 vehicles on the trip, and would take only one-and-a-half hours to complete the journey.

The project is tipped to boost the economy, enhance the country’s competitiveness and reduce heavy road traffic during long holidays, he said.

The stretch of water in Pran Buri district is suitable for a ferry port, Mr Suriya said.

The port would be constructed on a 30-rai land plot just 37km from Hua Hin.

The department is developing plans for ferry ports on both sides of the Gulf of Thailand. Private firms will be hired to run the ferry service.

A privately-run ferry service from Pattaya to Hua Hin and Phetchaburi’s Cha-am has been offered in the past, but was not financially viable, causing the operator to stop service in 2011.

The service focused on serving tourists, not on cargo.

The government has plans to build a deep-sea port in Prachuap Khiri Khan to cater for cargo shipments, especially from Myanmar once the Thai-Myanmar Singkhon border pass becomes a permanent crossing.

A feasibility study on the port project is under way.

The ferry service and port project chime with the government’s 11th National Economic and Social Development Plan (2012-2016), which promotes the connectivity of various modes of transport to reduce freight and logistic costs, according to deputy Phetchaburi governor Kittibordee Pravit.

The cost of transporting goods by sea is lower than for rail or road freight services, the deputy governor said.

With one litre of fuel, just under 218 tonnes of goods can be transported by sea, 85.5 tonnes by rail and 26.5 tonnes by road.

Sea transport also ensures the effective use of fuel, reduces greenhouse gases and lowers road maintenance costs, Pol Lt Col Kittibordee said.

The projects would also be a boon to industry in Phetchaburi, which focuses on processed seafood for export, he added. Meanwhile, work is under way to study development strategies in the southern areas.

OTP chief Chaiwat Thongkhamkoon said the study will wrap up next month.

Nakarin Satthamnuwong, engineering lecturer at King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), said the study has initially found the development of the South’s coastal areas should involve new economic activities that thrive on tourism and farm product processing.

The development plan is to be divided into two phases.

In the first 10 years, starting next year, tourism revenue is expected to soar and account for 80% of the region’s income, with the rest stemming from other economic activities, such as food processing and fishing.

But following the first 10 years, tourism is expected to only account for only for half of the region’s revenue as new economic activity is promoted.

Based on the 2015-2022 transport infrastructure development plan in the South, two highways will be constructed.

One will stretch 83km from Songkhla to the Sadao border crossing, at a cost of 23.9 billion baht, and the other 5km from Kathu to Patong in Phuket, costing 10 billion baht.

As for water transport, cruise wharfs in Krabi and Surat Thani’s Koh Samui will be built at a total cost of 2.9 billion baht.

The second Songkhla deep-sea port, worth 13.9 billion baht, will be built, and Pak Bara port in Satun will be constructed at a cost of 17.7 billion baht.

For air transport, a 12.9-billion-baht upgrade of Phuket airport will be completed this year.

Nakhon Si Thammarat and Hat Yai airports will be next in line for expansion.

Based on current railway developments, a double track will connect Prachuap Khiri Khan to Chumphon, Chumphon to Surat Thani, Surat Thani-Hat Yai to Songkhla and Thung Pho (Surat Thani) to Thanun (Phangnga).

Korakot Tetiranon, secretary-general of Nakhon Si Thammarat Chamber of Commerce, said Nakhon Si Thammarat is the centre of the transport link between Surat Thani and Songkhla.

Activities concerning goods distribution and transport connections should be promoted in this area, he said.

“As Nakhon Si Thammarat is surrounded by provinces where the central authority would set aside a great deal of budget for investment, the OTP must ensure this group of provinces moves ahead in the same direction as the development plan in the South,” Mr Korakot said.

The private sector in the province is in the process of developing cargo distribution centres at a cost of 800 million baht, said Anucha Thanawut, chief of the Thung Song municipality’s public works department.