Pattaya, Thailand, Feb 15: A new Guinness World Record for the longest continuous kiss was set in this southern Thai town on Tuesday.
One determined Thai couple locked lips for 46 hours, 24 minutes and nine seconds to celebrate Valentine's Day in the southern beach resort town of Pattaya, emerging victorious and exhausted after a landmark "kissathon" that organisers claim marked the longest recorded smooch in history.
The previous record of just over 32 hours was set in 2009 by a couple in Germany, according to Guinness World Records, whose officials will have to verify the latest milestone for it to become official.
Fourteen mostly Thai couples entered the contest when it kicked off on Sunday morning at 6 a.m. local time (2300 GMT).
By Monday afternoon half had already beaten the record and were still puckering up on the white-marble corridor, an ocean side shopping mall.
Passing tourists gawked and smiled at the spectacle, snapping pictures with mobile phones.
Somporn Naksuetrong, the manager of Pattaya's Louis Tussaud's Waxworks museum, which organised the competition, said it was a proud day for Thailand.
He did not expect anyone to break the record and said it was "amazing" that seven couples apparently did.
The winner was announced before dawn on Tuesday: a Thai couple from Bangkok named Ekkachai and Laksana Tiranarat.
The pair won a diamond ring worth 50-thousand Thai Baht (1,606 US dollars), and a 100-thousand Baht (3,213 US dollar) cash prize.
According to the rules, the lovebirds' lips could not part at any time.
They were allowed to drink things like water, coffee, milk or juice - but only through straws while continuing to kiss.
They also had to remain embraced during bathroom breaks that were possible every three hours - accompanied by contest monitors.
The harshest rule: no sitting or sleeping.
One woman participating with her boyfriend fainted just half an hour after it began on Sunday.
Despite its reputation for having one of the biggest sex industries in the world, Thailand is still a conservative nation where kissing in public - even a small peck - is frowned upon.
Participants had to show proof they were either married or truly a couple - a letter from both parents or a marriage certificate was acceptable.
A Thai and international soundtrack that included tunes like Sixpence None The Richer's 1997 hit "Kiss Me" kept couples swaying two nights straight, some barefoot or striking yoga-like poses to keep awake.
Louis Tussaud's Waxworks - a Pattaya wax museum, is under the management of Ripley's World of Entertainment.
Representatives of Guinness World Records were not immediately available to comment, but Somporn said they were aware of the contest.
The couples who took part were mainly Thai and ranged in age from 21 to 51.
There was one German man with a Thai woman, and also a gay couple.
The official record for the longest kiss was clocked at 32 hours, seven minutes and 14 seconds long by Nikola Matovic and Kristina Reinhart in Germany in February 2009, according to Guinness. AP