Pattaya has shut down tourist attraction Sukhawadee House after its operator ignored earlier demands to demolish a staircase encroaching on public property.
Deputy Mayor Vichien Pongpanit brought public works and other city workers to the ostentatious Sukhumvit Road mansion July 12 where they erected a sign informing visitors the attraction will be closed until its many encroachment problems are resolved.
Officials gave its owner Panya Chotitawan, the head of poultry giant Saha Farms, 45 days to comply or the city would do the demolition itself and bill Panya.
In January, 11 of Sukhawadee House’s 80 rai of land were deemed to be public land, including landfill reclaimed from the sea. The land included gardens and salas and was encircled by a fence as well as the takeover of a waterfront footpath where tour buses were allowed to park.
Until this month, Sukhawadee management had cooperated with the city and was allowed to operate normally. However, on July 5, Pattaya officials discovered a staircase had been built that encroached on a public footpath. In addition, the mansion had laid down artificial grass and put out tables and chairs.
They also determined that a large building near the area exceeded the boundaries of the tourist attraction’s property line.
Managers said in early July that they would remove all the newly found encroachments, but Vichien said it was just lip service and nothing had been started a week later. Out of patience, he ordered the attraction shut until remedial action is taken.