Pattaya-Jomtien restaurant takes over beach for private dining

Lung Sawai Restaurant regularly sets up tables and chairs for their customers on the beach in front of their restaurant on Jomtien Beach.

A Najomtien restaurant is in hot water after taking over the wide stretch of beach for outdoor dining.

Najomtien Mayor Rapeephan Rattanaliem, Sattahip Deputy District Chief Niwet Pungkusol and Najomtien police chief Pol. Col. Wattanachai Sangrit visited the Lung Sawai restaurant Feb. 4 to find nine banquet tables, each seating eight people, on the sand with table clothes and place settings.

The restaurant had no permission or license to take over the beach.
Restaurant manager Kanok Suraipetch said he got the idea to set up tables on the sand during a very low tide the previous day. He told the officials he didn’t think it would be a big deal.

Police and district officials told Kanok to clear off the beach and not do it again, but will not take any legal action because the bureaucrats didn’t actually know who has jurisdiction.

Rapeephan, on the job for nine months, thought the beach was under the control of the Marine Department. But department officials said they turned over jurisdiction to Najomtien after it completed rebuilding that section of beach last year. But Najomtien paper pushers couldn’t find the document giving them control.

Najomtien Mayor Rapeephan Rattanaliem (center) and her team inspect the beach area in front of Lung Sawai Restaurant, ordering them to remove the tables and chairs from the public area.