Pattaya Red Light District girls are not in only one area or district as they are in many cities. That is to say that there is no one specific district for Red Light girls or boys, for that matter. Although, there is a ‘gay soi’ in Pattaya called Soi Cowboy (soi means lane). However, there are ladyboys among the hostesses in many bars, if not most.
Rather, Pattaya is organised, or even disorganised, around the theme of pleasure, and much of that has a sexual nature. I doubt that many of the Pattaya girls in the so-called ‘girly bars’ consider that they are actually working in the Thai sex tourism industry. Most would say that they are merely looking for a (rich – read foreign) husband.
Red Light Girls.
And you know what? I actually believe them. However, while waiting for Mr. Right to come along, Pattaya girls have to earn enough money to live. After all, they do not enjoy the privilege of social security in Thailand. Anyway, no one would expect a Western girl not to play the field in her search for a partner, so why do we get so indignant about young people from other continents?
It is hypocritical.
Pattaya Red Light District.
So, although you could say that the Pattaya Red Light District girls work or are mostly on or around the sea front, they are in almost every place that sells alcohol over a bar. However, even in places where they don’t have in-house hostesses, there are usually Pattaya girls and boys willing to show you the city, or go for a meal with you. This includes waitresses and the staff at hotels, restaurants and shops.
Much the same as in the West.
The main difference is that in Asia, the young are not quite as ageist as their Western counterparts.
Behind The Smile.
If you would like to read a book or series that features Pattaya Red Light district girls, the series Behind The Smile by Welsh author Owen Jones is excellent. Many expats living in Pattaya agree. The title of the first volume is Daddy’s Hobby, which is the name of the bar where Lek, a Pattaya bar girl, works. I’ll tell you no more 🙂
Read the first chapter of Daddy’s Hobby here on this blog at Megan Publishing Services:
Pattaya Beach Road is one of the most famous streets in Thailand. It is located on the eastern side of Pattaya Bay and The Gulf of Thailand.
Pattaya Beach Road
ป้ายบนพัทยาคมวินสตีเฟนต์ (Pattaya Beach Road in Thai) is a street in Pattaya, Chonburi Province, Thailand. The street runs along the shoreline of Pattaya Bay. It is famous for its many bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and hotels. In fact, the road has been dubbed “Pattaya’s most famous street” since it was built in the 1970s. However, Walking Street might fairly lay claim to that title too. In recent years, the area has become more popular with tourists than locals. Many people visit the area because of its golden sand and peaceful sea views, although also for its nightlife, shopping, and entertainment options.
However, some residents complain about noise pollution, litter, and crime.
The road has many nicknames, depending on where the visitor has come from. It has been known as “Pattaya’s Main Street” since it was first built. It is also called “First Road”, “The Strip”, “The Avenue”, and “The Boulevard”. Nevertheless, most people refer to it as “Pattaya Beach Road” or simply “Beach Road”. The road runs along the beach front for about 3.5 km from near The Dolphin Roundabout in the north to Walking Street in the south. This is the place where tourists come to enjoy the nightlife and shopping. There are plenty of bars, restaurants, clubs, and shops along the road. This is the area to investigate if you are looking for a hotel near a beach in Pattaya.
Why Is This Street So Popular?
Many people visit Pattaya because of its beautiful beaches. However, there are also other reasons why Beach Road is so popular. One reason is that it has a lot of entertainment options. While the area is ‘perfectly’ safe during daylight hours, the actual beach, and even the beach-side pavement is a no-go area at night. It has a reputation for male prostitution after dark and many men have experienced problems there.
Behind The Smile on Pattaya Beach Road
The Welsh author Owen Jones has written a very popular seven-part series called ‘Behind The Smile – The Story of Lek, A Bar Girl in Pattaya’, which features a bar just off Pattaya Beach Road and the girls who work in it. Many visitors praise the story for being true to life, and several Pattaya bar girls have thanked the author for portraying them honestly.
Click the link below to find out more about the series.
Daddy’s Hobby by Owen Jones is the first novel from this Welsh writer. It explores why so many girls work in Pattaya and how they fare. It is his best-selling book.
Daddy’s Hobby by Owen Jones is an insightful look at why tens of thousands of young women choose to enter the Pattaya sex tourism industry, and how many of them get on. They and other attractions bring more than a million tourists to Pattaya every year. Most of them are men with money looking for a good time.
Daddy’s Hobby by Owen Jones – Origins.
In the mid-to late Seventies, Owen Jones was working in the south Netherland’s city of s’Hertogenbosch (Den Bosch) in Noord Brabant. One day, a popular new bar opened up at the bottom of the street he lived in. It was a ‘Relax Bar’, a concept he didn’t understand, but he liked the sound of the music. One afternoon, he ventured inside. The bar was practically empty despite the fact that the landlord was very friendly and played lots of Heavy Metal, which was very popular at the time.
After a while he noticed a few scantily-clad young ladies looking at him from the darker recesses at the back of the room. When he went to the toilet, he was left in no doubt what a relax bar was. The owner/barman, whose name was Rick, I think, played the Meatloaf album ‘Like A Bat Out of Hell’ from cover to cover three or four times a day and sold marijuana, which had been decriminalised. This record more than any other brought the ‘house dancing girls’ out onto the floor.
The bar was called ‘Daddy’s Hobby’. I liked everything about it including the name, which I thought was very clever. Within a month or two, it was the busiest bar in the city. However, sadly, within a year, Rick had been murdered and his bar burned down. We all thought that it had to do with drugs.
Daddy’s Hobby by Owen Jones – Development.
In the early 2,000’s Owen Jones moved to Pattaya, and started going out with the cashier of the first bar he had a drink in. It put him in a ‘trusted position’ with ‘the girls’. Soon most of the thirty-odd girls who worked there were seeking his advice. Their favourite topic was how best to write saucy texts and emails to their ‘boyfriends’. Most of these had already returned home to their wives or girlfriends in Europe and elsewhere, but mostly the UK. That bar was a more flagrant example of Rick’s Daddy’s Hobby, but without the drugs.
After a few weeks, he had inadvertently collected many scraps of paper with translated messages on them. So, he sought the girls’ permission to write them into a book. No-one disapproved when he promised to use false names. It was funny, he said, because all the girls and most of the clients were already doing that anyway. Everybody was lying, especially the men. He recalls that he had never met so many navy SEALS, SAS, commandos, MI5 and CIA operatives in his life before. Not a one of them was a carpenter or civil servant, and they were all single, looking for a wife!!
There was no other name for the book than Daddy’s Hobby, subtitled Behind The Smile but for various reasons, it took him eight years to self-publish it.
Daddy’s Hobby by Owen Jones – Sequels.
Owen Jones used the name of Lek for his lead female character. She was also the life and soul of the bar, and didn’t mind the author using her real name. She too is sadly long dead. He used the Welsh name Craig for the main male, although there are many other dramatis personae in the novel. When he was writing the book, it was the Lek character that dictated to him in his head what he must write. He had already determined that the book should be 100,000 words long, but when he reached that level, it was clear that Lek hadn’t finished her story. So, Owen closed book one, published it, and started a sequel.
You may be wondering why it took eight years to bring Daddy’s Hobby to market, if it was being dictated.
“Well, when I looked at Craig’s character I could see too much of myself… I just was not prepared to share it at that point”, he says. “I nearly gave up several times, but Lek and I stuck with it and produced a result”.
He did not like the idea of calling the second volume Daddy’s Hobby 2, so he gave it the name of a significant chapter in volume one, An Exciting Future. It now needed a series title to bind them together and that became Behind The Smile. The books are frequently referred to as Behind The Smile.
Lek kept up the pressure for several more years until Behind The Smile consisted of seven volumes, of 720,000 words.
Daddy’s Hobby – the Future.
“Although the Lek in my head was the inspiration of the actual stories, encouragement came from elsewhere. It was also more important”, he says.
“My stepmother hated the book, and two of my three brothers have never mentioned any of my fifty-odd novels. However, one thought it was fantastic though, and asked me to write a sequel. I had also run a competition for a free copy. Coincidentally, the woman who won it was a student journalist, who wrote an encouraging review. I opened the door to Lek again, and started volume two.
“Suddenly, I started to receive encouragement from complete strangers all around the world. Unfortunately, I have still heard nothing from friends and family from my home town. It used to upset me a lot, until I learned that that was quite common in the UK. People seem to resent someone improving themselves”.
He claims to know three readers, who hadn’t read a book since leaving school – one of them being eighty-four! Two others have since written novels, and one has moved to Thailand to see it ‘for himself’! Many readers have sought him out for a drink when they are visiting Thailand, and others went to Spain and Wales to meet him.
Owen says that he hasn’t been back to Pattaya for several years. However, when he was last there tourists and expats knew of his books, and some had read them all. Its particularly affected him when a young Thai woman ran up to him, kissed him on the cheek, and said: “You’re the lovely man who writes nice things about Pattaya bar girls, aren’t you. Thank you very much”.
Every month, he sells several box sets of seven, who can only be going off reviews or recommendation.
Behind The Smile by Owen Jones – Narrations and Translations.
In these days of Covid, it has been difficult to find further inspiration for what he calls the Lek Series. Between 2016 and 2018, he and his Thai wife (that first girl, the cashier, that he met in Pattaya) lived in Andalucía, Spain. From 2018 to 2020, the tried living in Wales. However, Pritti Patel and the Tories made it too difficult for his wife to obtain a residency permit. He says that he will never forgive them for that.
However, while in Spain, Owen started to have his books translated and narrated. Principally in Spanish so that he could sell them to the local Spanish as well as the expats. He soon started to receive offers of collaboration from all over the world in fifteen languages. Since living back in Thailand, and he has been in lockdown in the village because of Covid-related travel restrictions. So, he has been concentrating on these narrations and translations. He now has more than one thousand books in thirty-eight languages registered in his name in the British Library.
“I still would prefer to be writing fresh material though”, he adds with a hint of sadness.
Beach Road Pattaya is by far the most famous Thai beach road and is the busiest road in the city of Pattaya as far as tourists, pedestrians and vehicles are concerned. It is also the most scenic because Beach Road in Pattaya runs literally the width of the pavement from the golden sand of the clean beach and only metres from the sparkling blue sea. This is the largest of the beaches in Pattaya.
Beach Road begins at the entrance to Walking Street in the south of the city and continues in a gentle curve for approximately 2.8 kilometres before heading east away from the beach at the Dusit Thani Hotel and continuing a few hundred metres towards the Dolphin Roundabout in the south-east.
Having expressed the dimensions of Beach Road in that way, the flow of the one-way traffic is towards Walking Street. This makes sense because the southern end is less busy, and the action tends to be at the northern, more densely populated area.
Travelling along Beach Road in Pattaya
This is far from being a problem though, because of the Baht Bus service. A Baht Bus is an open sided pickup. The majority of them are privately owned, but city licensed, and charge just ten Baht for any length journey, which means that you can travel from your isolated hotel in the south, the full length of Beach Road to Walking Street and only pay ten Baht.
When you want to return the other way, you take a side-street at right angles to the beach, walk to the end, where you will come to Second Road and the traffic flows in the opposite direction.
Beach Road and Second Road
Between Beach Road and Second Road, there run dozens of side-streets, called soi, which contain most of the bars, of which there are many and various kinds. The nightlife of this Pattaya beach is legendary the world over with all kinds of bars ranging from Starbucks and Planet Hollywood to girly bar discos. There are also fantastic restaurants, especially seafood ones, along the front mostly near the centre of Beach Road, which is around Soi 7.
If you want to get a flavour for this exciting beach in Thailand, try searching for: ‘Youtube Pattaya Beach Road’ and you will find many videos posted.
Beach Road Pattaya is a must-see for any visitor to the city, and a trip the full length of it on a Baht Bus is a must-do.
The Beginning – volume 7 in the series Behind The Smile
Behind The Smile – The Story of Lek, A Bar Girl in Pattaya
by Owen Jones
Review by Barry Boy
The Beginning is volume seven in the much-liked series Behind The Smile – The Story of Lek, A Bar Girl in Pattaya by Owen Jones.
Volume One in the series began when Lek was twenty-two and already working in Daddy’s Hobby in Pattaya, Volume Seven goes back to before she was even born – just before, to the days when her mother was young and working in the ‘na’ or rice fields.
Even nowadays, life as a Thai rice-farmer is hard, but for many, there is some mechanisation, but, then, in the early Seventies, it was mostly manual labour.
Pang and her husband, Maar, lived with Pang’s parents and worked their land. They all got on well, and worked for a better future for their family. One day, Pang announces that she is pregnant with their first child, and their lives change, as it always has done in all families around the world.
Lek has a happy childhood on the exterior, but she has her internal dialogue about her fears and insecurities. Ayr and Goong, her best friends, are there to help, but they drift apart for a while when Lek is forced to leave school at the age of twelve.
The stigma is to remain with her all her life.
The Beginning is written in the third person and the cover is apposite, being the same, except in title and colour, as the previous six. It is instantly recognisable in pink, being a diluted form of the colour of Volume One, which is red.
The Beginning: Behind The Smile -The Story of Lek, A Bar Girl in Pattaya (volume 7) will be published on December 26th, 2017 for $3.99, but the price will rice on January 1st to $4.99. However, you can pre-order it now for $2.99 at a discount of up to 45% and have it delivered to your device on Boxing Day, while you are recovering from a hectic Christmas Day.