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Evil Penevil

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About Evil Penevil

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  1. Evil Penevil

    Mixed News on Chinese Tourists

    The mangoes and sticky rice did get coverage in the mainland media. Wednesday, January 23, 2019 Editions Global Edition China Edition Africa Edition Europe Edition Asia & Pacific عربي Chinese(GB) Chinese(Big5) Français 日本語 русский Español 한국어 Deutsch Português North America Thailand invites Chinese tourists to record-breaking sticky rice mango feast Source: Xinhua| 2019-01-21 08:40:19|Editor: zh BANGKOK, Jan. 21 (Xinhua) -- Some 10,000 Chinese tourists have been invited to a feast in Thailand that has broken the Guinness World Record for the biggest sticky rice mango banquet ever, as a way to win tourists from China back. The dessert, featuring 6,000 mangoes and 15 tonnes of sticky rice was announced the world biggest one in an event themed "We Care About You" near Bangkok. The feast was held on Sunday by the tourism panel of the National Legislative Assembly and was coordinated by the Association of Thai Travel Agents. Chinese tourists were invited to enjoy the most famous Thai dessert along with Thai food and fruits as well as Thai-Chinese performances. Organizers said they want to build up a good image of Thai hospitality through this event. "Considering there was a sharp drop of Chinese tourists to Thailand, we've been making an effort to improve the country's safety standards, expecting to restore the confidence of tourists from China and let them know Thailand care about them." said Pichit Kuandachakupt, chairman of the committee of religion, art, culture and tourism of the National Legislative Assembly Chinese arrivals, which were booming in early 2018, were stunted by a deadly ferry sinking in July 2018 which killed 47 Chinese tourists. Although yearly arrivals of Chinese tourists for 2018 exceeded a historic milestone of 10 million in December, monthly arrivals were lower than that during the same period last year. Thailand have exceeded the waiver on the on-arrival-visa fee for 20 countries and regions including China, the kingdom's biggest tourism contributor that accounts more than a quarter of its international arrivals.
  2. Evil Penevil

    Mixed News on Chinese Tourists

    I don't know what happened with the links in the first post, but fixed both and updated the one about the free meal. Evil
  3. Evil Penevil

    Mixed News on Chinese Tourists

    Some interesting articles that lend support to both sides of the "Pattaya is doomed" debate. It depends on your perspective. The headline's inclusive of the phrase " out of the box" is more insightful than the article's author may realize. Top News To seek new highs, Thailand tourism looks to ‘out of the box’ attractions By Xinyi Liang-Pholsena / Posted on 22 January, 2019 11:32 With some 37 million and growing international arrivals into Thailand, industry players are now pondering what else is needed to raise the country’s competitive edge in the tourism game and remain a desired destination, especially as neighbours such as Vietnam are also emerging as strong contenders on the regional travel landscape. What will be much needed will be “out of the box” thinking and “bold” leadership, urged prominent business leaders at Thailand Tourism Forum (TTF) in Bangkok yesterday. For a country that has no lack of cultural and natural attractions, what’s needed for Thailand now are a more vibrant entertainment sector as well as more iconic attractions and events to bolster tourism spending and make the country the “playground of Asia”, stressed Supaluck Umpujh, chairwoman of The Mall Group. For too long, Thailand was perceived as a “backpacker’s paradise” and a “value for money” destination, which resulted in low tourism revenue for the country, Supaluck posited. “People (used to) buy cameras in Singapore, but take photos in Thai temples,” she remarked. “They eat, they stay but they don’t spend; (the expenditure) doesn’t correspond with numbers (into the country).” The Thai retail queen asserted that the arrival of luxury shopping and entertainment complexes such as The Emporium, Siam Paragon and The EmQuartier – which are owned by The Mall Group – has since changed the face of Bangkok’s Siam district and lower Sukhumvit Road into prime investment areas for real estate and hotels alike. Looking ahead, she also wants Thailand to move past the “low entertainment” the country is known for, into one that encompasses family and immersive fun for everyone. The mega developments that The Mall Group has in the pipeline could possibly redefine the business, retail and entertainment scene in Bangkok, said Supaluck. The Mall Group has recently entered into a joint venture with AEG, the US-based sports and live entertainment company, to pump more than 10 billion baht (US$315 million) into two new world-class arenas, EM Live and Bangkok Arena, that are will anchor two new entertainment districts in the Bangna district when they open by 4Q2022. Such mega developments also present future investment opportunities for hoteliers. “Sticking near a resort or whatever that excites” will be key considerations as hoteliers “think of different different ways” in hotel development, remarked Clarence Tan, managing director South-east Asia & Korea at InterContinental Hotels Group. For instance, Holiday Inn Resort Vana Nava Hua Hin, which opened four years after the water park was in operation, has helped to open new segment for families for Hua Hin, Tan added. Said IHG’s head of resorts in Thailand & Indonesia, Shantha de Silva: “It was uncharted territories when we went in to work with a water park, which became a strong attraction on its own in Thailand. The brands went well together to drive tourism into Hua Hin, which is reflected in Hua Hin’s performance.” Tan added: “People used to go to resorts for sun, sand and sea. And then there’s shopping, which I don’t disagree. Another ‘s’ came up today, which is sustainability. And then you add the sixth one, which is sports and entertainment; these will be safe spots to invest in.” Stephan Roemer, CEO of Diethelm Travel Group, sees merit in the development of such attractions in Thailand, especially if they help to better position the country in attracting the luxury or family market segments. However, Thailand clearly is still struggling with the current number of arrivals, so Romer hopes that infrastructure and capacity issues are something the Thai government would address. As well, real improvements in Thailand’s outdated railway network as well as mass transit lines in key cities like Bangkok will also help the country create new scenic routes and better value for experiences, said Nikhom Jensiriratanakorn, director, Horwath HTL. Meanwhile, Rahul Mittal, director at Cistri (Urbus), sees “a natural asset” in Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River and urges both the public and private sectors to come together to regenerate and develop the the city’s iconic feature and its surrounds. Source: https://www.ttgasia.com/2019/01/22/to-seek-new-highs-thailand-tourism-looks-to-out-of-the-box-attractions/ Two others as well: Chinese travellers increasingly drawn to beach vacations Thailand extends temporary VOA fee waiver It's very clear the Thai authorities are continuing to make a play for Chinese and Indian tourists as they, plus Russians, are the biggest potential groups of new visitors to Thailand. Whether that will leave Pattaya dead or rejuvenate it remains to be seen. But to adapt Bob Dylan's The Times They Are A-Changin’ to the present day and circumstances : Come punters and mongers Throughout Thailand And don’t criticize What you can’t understand Developments in Pattaya Are beyond your command Your old road is rapidly agin’ Please get out of the new one if you can’t lend your hand For the times they are a-changin’ The line it is drawn The curse it is cast The slow one now Will later be fast As the present now Will later be past The order is rapidly fadin’ And the first one now will later be last For the times they are a-changin’ Evil
  4. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    I'm a big fan of Taco Taco, but I haven't been back too many times since they moved to Soi 9 off Pattaya Klang, simply because the old location, a stall in the Soi Buakhao night market, was more convenient for me. No doubt, though, that the new enclosed, air-conditioned restaurant is a far more comfortable place to have a meal than a fold-up table in front of the old stall. The menu has expanded considerably, too. I went back yesterday to try the Taco Tuesday special: And a tempting pic from Taco Taco's Facebook page: The following tacos cost 60 baht each all day Tuesday and you can mix and match as you please: You can also choose hard-shell corn tortillas or soft wheat tortillas. I picked column B and had the conchinita pibil and chicken tinga in corn tortillas and the smoky beef on a wheat tortilla. The order came with three in-house-made sauces: the iconic Mexican pico de gallo (aka salsa fresca or salsa mexicana); habanero chili hot sauce (fiery hot ) and pineapple salsa. The pork, chicken and beef in the tacos had been slow-cooked with Mexican spices. The cook didn't skimp on the chili content and the chicken tinga and smoky beef had quite a kick without the hot sauce. The conchinita pibil was a bit milder with a sweet-sour flavor to the pork. It's based on a traditional pork dish from the Yucatán Peninsula and is a favorite of mine. I hope Taco Taco spins off conchinita pibil into a main dish and not just a taco filling. The meal cost 180 baht for the three tortillas and 20 baht for a bottle of water. Bottom line: Since Dave's Cantina closed, these are the best tacos in Pattaya. They aren't the biggest, but definitely the best tasting. Some other taco variations on offer on the regular menu. Taco Taco also has weekly specials and this week it's three-bean chili con carne with rice and nachos: Evil
  5. Same for me. I'm not cut out to be a salesman, either. Evil
  6. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    The chef is Italian, at least that is what I've been told. Cacio e pepe is tricky to make and I doubt anyone but an Italian chef would try it. Evil
  7. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    Il Peccatore ("The Sinner') is an Italian restaurant that's been open since mid-November on Soi Lengkee, about half way between Soi Buakhao and 3rd Road. I read that the owner named it Il Peccatore because Pattaya is a city of sinners. It features indoor and outdoor dining areas, with the enclosed area strictly non-smoking. The indoor area had about 15 diners when I arrived and I didn't want to get intrusive with my camera, so I only took pictures of the bar area. I had been meaning to try Il Peccatore for awhile, but never got around to it until last night. Il Peccatore posts its daily specials on its Facebook page and yesterday's special really caught my eye: paccheri cacio e pepe. Il Peccatore Paccheri is large tubular pasta and cacio e pepe translates as "cheese and pepper." The cheese is pecorino romano, a very salty type made from sheep's milk. Cacio e pepe is one of the oldest dishes in Italian cuisine, dating back to shepherds in Roman times. It's a simple dish, consisting of only a few ingredients, namely cheese, pasta and pepper. Modern variations often add extra virgin olive oil to give the sauce a shine. Since the 1950s, cacio e pepe has become a staple in Rome's restaurants and has more recently become popular outside Italy. In 2016, it was named by a New York City magazine as the year's "trendiest dish." I haven't seen it before on a menu in Pattaya, so I was eager to try it. I wasn't disappointed. The sauce was excellent and coated the fresh pasta as it should. I thought it could do with a bit more pepper and ground more on the pasta from the miniature pepper mill on the condiment tray. A basket of fresh bread preceded the pasta. After the meal. the waitress offered me a complimentary glass of chilled limoncello as a digestif. Nice touch! I really like limoncello. I was happy with the meal. The portion wasn't large, but the paccheri was very filling and adequate for me. Considering the meal was based on fresh pasta and pecorino romano and included bread and limoncello, I thought it was value for money at 270 baht. I know there are restaurants where you can get bigger plates of spaghetti for half the price, but a mound of dry pasta with canned sauce is a long way from paccheri cacio e pepe. The service was fast and friendly. The waitress I had spoke good English, which isn't always the case in Pattaya restaurants. The owner (or perhaps manager) greeted me both on my way in and out. I didn't study the menu, but there seemed to be a wide range of Italian dishes, including pizza. I noticed another diner had taken the other special, the grilled T-bone steak for 490 baht, and I almost regretted my decision to go with the pasta. The steak looked large and thick and the gentleman ate it with gusto. Il Peccatore's daily specials follow a pattern of fresh pasta dishes under 300 baht and a meat dish (beef, lamb, pork, duck) under 500 baht. The meat dishes aren't necessarily Italian, such as roast beef with roasted potatoes and T-bone steak. I'll include some photos of the daily special lists from Il Peccatore's FB page at the end of this post. From what I overhead of the other guests' table conversation, almost all were Italian. That's a decent comment on the quality of the food. Bottom line: I'll definitely go back for another taste of Italy and maybe the steak and roast lamb as well. Evil
  8. Evil Penevil

    Premium Lane at BKK - Latest Rules

    When I came through immigration (with a premium pass) about midnight a month ago, it was chaotic. The main "feeder snake" to the control officers was full, so people were spilling over to the premium lanes because there weren't so many people there. Most of them didn't have premium passes and Thai officials were kicking them out of the lines. The officials didn't ask for boarding passes; as long as you had a new-style pass you were OK. I guess they have tightened the routine a bit since then. Evil
  9. Evil Penevil

    what are your best airport photos and from windows

    Pull-out from a gate at Heathrow ... Before Christmas at Frankfurt Airport ... On the ground at Zurich Airport ... A few from Swampy ...
  10. Evil Penevil

    what are your best airport photos and from windows

    Chicago O'Hare in the tunnel connecting two terminals. Evil
  11. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    for the clarification! Evil
  12. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    I've had Nueng's pies in the past and they are good, but I fully acknowledge I have limited experience of UK-style meat pies. She's located on the Darksideand used to delivery, but I can't see any mention of delivery on her FB page. All the pics come from that page.
  13. Evil Penevil

    Under 300 Baht ... And Good

    says I. I just read the following on Facebook: I'll try to find out if it's finito or he is just moving to a new location. He has moved several times in the past. Evil