Army Chief: Sun Loungers and Umbrellas On Surin Beach, You Can Bring Your Own!
The Commander of the Royal Thai Army regiment based in Phuket has confirmed that all tourists, expats and Thais can take their own beach chairs and umbrellas to use at any place on Surin Beach.
The news comes after MaAnn Samran, Chief of the Cherng Talay Tambon Administration Organisation (OrBorTor), announced earlier this week that vendors at Surin Beach had until next Monday, May 1, to remove all rental umbrellas and beach chairs from the sand.
In his explanation for the deadline, Mr MaAnn on Monday said, “On March 13, 36 beach operators came with reporters and requested for a ‘10% zone’ to be established at Surin Beach. I have already informed them that Surin Beach is a ‘royal majesty honour beach’ (sic), so no such zone is allowed.”
To this, Col Santi Sakuntanark, Commander of the 25th Infantry Regiment, based in Phuket, told The Phuket News yesterday, “Because Surin Beach is a ‘royal majesty honour beach’, everyone can be on the beach – all tourists, expats and Thais can take their umbrellas and sun loungers to Surin Beach. This is allowed.
Although the right to enjoy the beach extended to everyone, Col Santi drew the line at beach vendors. “There must not be any beach operation or any kind of rental service action on Surin Beach at all,” he said. Col Santi also said that he had spoken with Mr MaAnn on Tuesday to explain this to him.
“Army officers will patrol the beach to catch any vendors renting out umbrellas and sun loungers. These vendors will be handed over to Cherng Talay officials to be fined for breach of municipal regulations,” Col Santi added. “The last time we did this, we caught 10 vendors working illegally on Surin Beach,” he noted.
The vendors have been given fair warning, Col Santi pointed out. “They have until May 1. They will have no excuse after then,” he said.