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Michelin launches first guide to Bangkok

Thailand, a country renowned for its cuisine, has never had one of its cities featured in a Michelin Guide. That will change later this year, when a Michelin Guide to Bangkok is published. The city is already famous for its street food vendors, but tourism officials hope that publication of the guide will bring increased visitors to the city’s restaurants.

Michelin launches first guide to Bangkok

Thailand is famous around the world for its cuisine, particularly the city of Bangkok, which is known for its thriving street food scene. The city hopes to build its reputation as a culinary destination even more, with particularly focus on its more permanent, upscale restaurants. Because of a collaboration between the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and Michelin, the city will soon have its own Michelin Guide for the first time ever.

Lionel Dantiacq, the President and Managing Director (East Asia and Australia) of the Michelin Group, said that:

“Bangkok is one of the world’s culinary capitals, offering amazing cuisine, from fine dining from renowned international chefs to small family-owned eateries. The kingdom’s food also has a long, rich heritage which enhances the pleasure of tourists travelling.”

The Michelin Guide is known throughout the world for its rankings of the best-of-the-best hotels and restaurants. Publishers anticipate a release date for the Bangkok edition by the end of the year. The book will be published in both English and Thai and will be available both in print and online.

At the same time that Bangkok hopes to improve the reputations of its restaurant scene, the city is also working to improve its policies with regard to street food vendors. The Thai government recently announced strict new measures to clean up Thailand’s streets, and this includes the removal of street food vendors. Wanlop Suwandee, a chief government advisor, stated that:

“There will be no let-up in this operation. Every street vendor will have to move out.”

Thailand’s tourism minister has reportedly stepped in to reverse the complete erasure of the city’s street food vendors.

A statement released by TAT stated that:

“There is no outright ban on the sale of street food. In fact, the (Bangkok Metropolitan Administration {BMA}) appreciates that food vendors are a vital part of the city’s identity and helped Bangkok be listed by CNN as one of the 23 best cities in the world for street food.”

Although the future of street food vendors is still uncertain, there is no question that the new Michelin Guide will benefit the city’s restaurants. TAT estimates that food spending among visitors will increase by 10 percent as a result of the Guide. 

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