Central Festival Shopping Mall is the flagship shopping destination in Pattaya and is constantly popular with a varied mix of tourists and locals who flock there for the international brand clothing, varied eating options and all-weather entertainment, such as a cinema, bowling and children’s arcade. With a beachfront location and glass-paneled façade, Central Festival feels miles away from the cheap trinkets and polyester ‘Bad Boys Go To Pattaya’ T-shirts found in the stalls surrounding the mall on either side. Opened in 2009, the modern, ocean-facing design gives visitors a panoramic view of Pattaya Bay, which is an eye-catching backdrop to an afternoon’s shopping.
Filling the entire block from Beach Road to 2nd Road in Central Pattaya between Soi 9 and 10 (which it shares with the Hilton International Hotel) , the range of fashion in Central Festival is unsurpassed in Pattaya with Calvin Klein, Esprit, French Connection and Armani Exchange – to name a few – all having their latest season’s designs on sale. Beyond these brand labels, there are a range of stores offering clothing and accessories at different price ranges, as well as a department store occupying the entirety of this five storey shopping mall with a 10-screen cinema and bowling alley placed on two further floors on top.
Royal Garden Plaza was the originator of the ‘entertainment mall’ concept in Pattaya, bringing together family attractions and activities, a selection of restaurants, and international brand shopping, and it is still a blast of fresh, air-conditioned air to the beach city’s shopping scene. Occupying the full block between Beach Road and 2nd Road in Central Pattaya, the mall can be accessed from either side, but for the most impressive facade, go to the 2nd Road entrance and walk underneath the eye-catching mock airplane that is half hanging out of the upper floors of the shopping center. The plane belongs to Ripley’s Believe It or Not, a museum of oddball finds, unique curios and a central attraction at the mall.
There is an impressive range of shops covering all four floors of Royal Garden Plaza, with something for all the family. Fashionistas will enjoy the latest trends found in Esprit, Guess, and Jaspal (a popular Thai brand), while a large Super Sport outlet is stocked with a range of sporting goods and beachwear. Swarovski keeps the ladies happy with a constantly updated selection of jewelry and Jim Thompson Factory Sales Outlet is a popular shop for picking up finely crafted silk items such as scarves, bags, clothes, and pillowcases which make great souvenirs of your trip to Thailand. Many booths along the ground floor walkways have been rented by real estate agents who are trying to sell condos and timeshare options to sunburnt shoppers but they aren’t usually intrusive.
Mike Shopping Mall is synonymous with great value basics such as swim suits and printed tees, alongside some classic (some might say predictable) souvenirs: Buddha images, carved elephants and fairy lights. There is also an OTOP Section (One Tambon, One Product) where regional handicrafts and snacks can be found. Tourists flock here thanks to cheap prices, almost continual sales and the powerful air conditioning that certainly makes for a more pleasurable shopping experience during the hottest months.
The mall occupies the entire block between Pattaya Beach Road and Pattaya 2nd Road and can be accessed from either side. Mike Shopping Mall is between Soi 11 and Soi 12.
While fashion and souvenirs are by far the most popular items on offer at Mike Shopping Mall, there is in fact a wide range of items on sale, including technology and home furnishings. Built over five floors, it is similar to the famous MBK Shopping Mall in Bangkok, with stall after stall piled high with items. Remember in malls such as this it is perfectly acceptable to haggle for a better price, but be aware that for savings of over 20% you might be expected to buy three or more items. On the top floor of Mike Shopping Mall there is an excellent value food court that serves some quick and easy dishes such as noodle soup and papaya salad for around 50 baht.
Mike Shopping Mall is busy late into the night and has a market vibe, with friendly store owners and a very cosmopolitan feel. Be careful when buying brand name products as they may or may not be genuine, but for a few everyday items – and especially to pick up some inexpensive souvenirs – there’s nowhere better in Pattaya.
The Avenue Shopping Mall is a popular alternative to the larger indoor malls found in Pattaya, with a modern, open-air design, some great value factory outlet stores and range of entertainment options. Pattaya Avenue is most accurately described as a lifestyle mall because of its blend of shops on the lower floors with bars, restaurants, a bowling alley and a cinema complex higher up. Located in Central Pattaya on 2nd Road, it’s easy to find behind Mike’s Shopping Mall and a short walk from Royal Garden City.
Instead of being enclosed, Pattaya Avenue is built around a central water fountain and on the ground floor you’ll find a number of factory outlet stores selling, among others, sporting goods and designer sunglasses. Both Adidas and Reebok have outlets here where it’s possible to find goods up to 70% off their recommended retail price. Villa Market, a high-end supermarket, is also found on the ground floor and stocks a range of international products along with Thai staples
The dining options are numerous at Pattaya Avenue with a whole range of international franchises, including two pizza restaurants and an Oishi Buffet, which for 500 baht offers unlimited Japanese fare like fresh sushi, sashimi, teppanyaki steak and crispy tempura. It’s very popular and a great option for anyone looking for a big, tasty feed. There are also several casual bars offering evening dining over a few cold beers. Our favourite has to be Car Park on the second floor, designed with British touches like classic Minis and London subway signs; a great place to chill out with a few friends and polish off a tower of Singha.
Terminal 21, inspired by the essence of travelling, the airport-themed mall features multiple countries within its build, while its exterior is complemented with a real-life airplane and a manmade beach.
The shopping mall offers a haven for shoppers with over 250 retailers lined on every level, each representing a different destination.
Here you can expect various replicas of world-famous architecture from the Eiffel Tower on the ground floor to the Leaning Tower of Pisa on the first level.
Within a day, you will be able to journey through the likes of Tokyo, Italy, San Francisco, Hollywood and Paris, while classic airport signposts and those dressed in airport attire greet you.
While its concept is amazing as a standalone attraction, the experience is elevated through its offerings as well. Thus, here is a quick guide to Terminal 21 Pattaya for those who would like to take a break from the seaside shores and explore the world for a few hours.