A passion for architecture and a hobby of collecting artistic items inspired the retired middle-aged American, Jim Thompson to design his villa in Thailand where he lived till 1967 when he mysteriously disappeared.
A collaboration of western and eastern cultures
Behind the magnificent red exterior that appears to be hidden behind the leafy trees in the area is a rather decorative vestibule that has a Thai ring to it right before Jim Thompson’s highlight which is where East-meets-West layout that is seen throughout the house. The 17th-century pieces of art are prominently illuminated with the unique lighting system.
The exquisite collection of art and antiques
Stepping into space upstairs, you will come to notice the beautiful wall-hangings that Jim Thompson obtained from temples he visited. These wall-hangings tell the story of Lord Buddhas’ many lives and how he reached enlightenment. Near the entrance of the dining room is a sandstone statue of Buddha. In the dining room lies a table designed with two Chinese Mahjong tables put together and the table is all set with the delicate white and blue porcelain dinner set.
The unique living room by the water
The living room was set up between the dining area and the personal quarters. The living room was constructed with the wooden house Thompson brought out from the Muslim community of Ban Krua. The ceiling is 4 meters high while the windows were expertly converted by Jim Thompson into a display area where he placed two wooden Burmese guardian spirits that were gifted to him by the Thai government.
While the house is oozing with Thai culture, there are certain areas which are quite non-traditional in Thai houses. For example, the staircase and bathroom are indoors unlike the local Thai houses which have them built outside. Jim Thompson had a master skill of mixing cultures to come up with structures that were unrivalled. Tourists accommodated at a Siam hotel in Bangkok such as the luxury hotel Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel are drawn to this amazing must-visit piece of culture.
Roland Lefevre is a travel writer who specializes in creating features on leisure as well as business travel destinations across the globe. Google+