with some degree of pride, I can vouch that I have never been within 30 km of Pattaya. (las vegas for sex tourists)
Some of the small villages I spend time in, the locals will point out the nice houses 'This one win lottery, this one make big money pattaya, this one marry swede man, this one have 7 fiance who send money'.
It's like Florida. They assume if you live there you have gone to Disneyworld, and go there often for lunch.
I'm afraid to go there because I assume as soon as a older white guy crosses into the city limits, he is assaulted, and drugged by a ladyboy, robbed, and wakes up married to the ladyboys 300 pound mother, who has a herd of sick water buffalo back in Isaan. Isaan is the poorer Northeast 1/3 of thailand that is primarily agricultural, but has a very distinct culture. (Which due to poverty supplies a lot of the professional ladies in Pattaya)
I skip the middleman and just spend my time in Isaan with divorced grandmothers.