Golden Mile Complex a 'reminder of home' for Muay Thai icon Nong-O Gaiyanghadao
Nong-O Gaiyanghadao, a four-time Lumpinee Stadium Muay Thai World Champion in the local community, feels a strong connection to Golden Mile Complex.
In fact, the 46-year-old icon on Beach Road is a strong reminder of home for many Thai nationals.
Known as “Little Thailand” by many, Golden Mile Complex houses a variety of shops, eateries, and supermarkets emblematic of Thai culture.
The unique identity of Golden Mile can be felt in the sights and sounds around the complex, as members of the Thai community frequently congregate at popular bars and restaurants.
As a Muay Thai instructor teaching at Evolve MMA, Golden Mile Complex has become a home away from home for Nong-O.
“Golden Mile Complex is a special place for the Thai community in Singapore because it reminds us of home,” says the 32-year-old, who will be challenging for the inaugural ONE Muay Thai Bantamweight World Title at ONE: Clash Of Legends on Feb 16.
“We can get all our favorite Thai food and converse in Thai with the people there."
Golden Mile Complex is one of the few places in Singapore where patrons can get to experience Thai culture, like buying Thai products, eating authentic Thai food, and listening to Thai music.
For Nong-O, the variety of shops has turned Golden Mile Complex into his personal shopping haven.
“I usually buy food and ingredients from all the food shops there, and take it back home,” he says.
“I especially enjoy the Thai desserts!”
Recently, a successful en-bloc vote was called on the building. Since being put up for sale last October, the fate of Golden Mile Complex is still in limbo.
Many have speculated that Golden Mile Complex could be seeing a new makeover as part of a redevelopment effort on Beach Road.
Nong-O welcomes the idea of redevelopment albeit with one condition.
The Thai prefers the building to retain its tenants, which embody the Thai spirit that he and many of his countrymen have grown accustomed to.
“What makes Golden Mile Complex special are all the people and stores there,” he explains.
“So if the building will get redeveloped, but the tenants stay the same, then rebuilding it will be a good idea.”
There is no doubt many of those tenants will watch ONE: CLASH OF LEGENDS next weekend to see if Nong-O can defeat Han Zi Hao in the main event to claim the ONE Muay Thai Bantamweight World Title.