Phuket authorities have confirmed that the White Lagoon restaurant at the Patong Bay Hill Hotel has been found guilty of violating coronavirus restrictions and closed for 15 days after an overnight party on April 16 by Bangkok lawyer and political activist Sittdra Biabang.
According to police report No. 2727/2565, the White Lagoon restaurant was found guilty of violating 11 a.m.
The facility was also found to be in violation of Articles 56 and 38 of the Law on Hotels, as it was violating public order with loud noise. For this violation, a fine of 20-100 thousand baht is provided.
Thirdly, the hotel was found to be hookah smoke, the free movement of which is prohibited in Thailand by order of the Consumer Protection Council no. 9/2015 of 18 January 2015. This violation also entails a fine.
Finally, the police report states that the “managers of the facilities” admitted their guilt but did not report the violations themselves, which implies a separate fine.
Closing command The White Lagoon for 15 days went into effect on April 22nd.
Mr Biabangkerd posted an audio video on his page at Facebook on Saturday 16 April. The three-minute video begins with a metropolitan lawyer sitting in a car saying he is in Patong and showing the time on his phone – 2:17 a.m. In the background you can clearly hear the music from the hotel building, whose name the gentleman shows. The man and his companions then walk into the hotel’s common areas, including the pool area where people relax, loud music is played and a DJ works on the remote control. At one point, a man in a security suit tells the lawyer that filming is not allowed in the hotel, but the recording continues (although the cut is visible).
In his post, Mr. Biabangkerd explained that the parties to Patong Bay Hill Resort Hotel The locals complained, so he decided to see everything with his own eyes. After visiting the hotel, he said he did not believe Patong police were unaware of the breach.
“What will we do if there is a new outbreak? COVID-19? Why does the Phuket provincial police chief turn a blind eye to this and allow nightclubs to operate outside of their scheduled hours and violate coronavirus protection measures? “As far as I know, in addition, the institution does not have a license yet,” he added.
Mr Biabangkerd uploaded the video to Facebook on the morning of April 16th. The video quickly gained traction, reactions and comments, and the same night an offline response followed – about 50 hotel staff went to Bangla Road to answer the lawyer. The participants of the action, which started at around 23:00, managed to prepare self-made posters in one day with phrases such as “We are hungry” and “We do not want to be unemployed”.
As part of a backlash against Patong police, an internal investigation was launched, during which the head of the department, Colonel Sujin Nilabadi, and his deputies were taken to the central police station in Phuket province. This was announced by Lieutenant General Surachet Hakpan, Assistant Chief of Police of Thailand, who arrived on the island on April 17 and is now gradually returning to high-profile cases.
At the same time, in the defense of Patong Bay hill HThe hotel was hosted by a prominent Patong businessman, Pisona Group President and son of former Prichawud Mayor “Prab” Kissin. In conversation with Phuket News made the same point with protesters from the entertainment industry and the governor of Phuket. The businessman reminded that for two years Patong was literally fighting for survival and for the people from the entertainment sector, every opportunity to earn a living is now fundamentally important. He pointed out that in this case we are talking about 400 employees who were given the opportunity to work and bring money home receiving guests.
Mr Kissin also noted that he had questions about the motives behind the complaint Patong Bay Hill Resort and White lagoons. He stated that he does not rule out that this could be done for someone’s business interests.
“Either it was the locals themselves or a specific group of people behind those who complained.” the businessman asked.
The businessman also doubted that the hotel was really bothering anyone with noise at night, as the nearest houses were about 200-300 meters away from it, “and the sound should not have spread more than 80-100 meters”.
At the same time, Mr. Kissin stressed that companies are ready to make any necessary changes in their work and called for a sincere and impartial examination of the situation.