Currently a museum and one of the famous traveling destinations in Thailand, the Jim Thompson House was the residence and silk weaving factory of Jim Thompson, an American Businessman in Thailand. The house turned into museum is a complex combination of various traditional Thai structures. The structures were collected from across the Thailand in between 1950s to 1960s and still are the largest collection in entire Thailand. A very large collection of arts of Buddhist and secular forms has been collected from different countries including Cambodia, Laos, Burma and Thailand.
History of Jim Thompson House (Bangkok):
Jim Thompson was a businessman of silk. For his business purposes, he frequently had to travel in different neighboring lands, and thus he gathered a large number Buddhist and secular arts. He majorly gathered different Southeast Asian art collections. Among his collections, most of them belonged to Laos, Cambodia and Burma. He built a new home to exhibit his arts in 1958 and his residing house was one of the antiques in Thailand, which was completed in 1959. The house is located beside a canal and his weaving also continued in the house. Although many of the houses were moved from the canal path, the Jim Thompson house is still there. Currently the Jim Thompson House needs an admission fee to visit. The house architectures are still the same is it was during Thompson’s living period. Visitors are to follow a guide to visit the house.
Most of the features of the Jim Thompson House is a mixture of Western and Thai architecture. There is some service quarters and currently being used as museum display to show the 30 years long collection of Mr. Thompson. They contain the collections of Mr. Thompson. Mr. Thompson was disappeared in 1967 at a jungle in Malaysia and ever returned. The Jim Thompson villa is made of the very best teakwood and was transported to Bangkok.
At present, The James H. W. Thompson Foundation runs the Jim Thompson House. The Jim Thompson House has been built in such a way that those are easily detachable and easy to carry to places. When the house pieces were brought at the current location, Mr. Thompson could not assemble them rightly and then he had to seek carpenters from the previous location to reorganize the six antique teakwood villas.
What will we see?
Inside the house is a small but well-curated collection of objets, like temple wall hangings that depict the life of Buddha, repurposed mahjong tables in the dining room, an elegant standing Buddha, and a fine display of porcelain. Known for more than just its art, the house was a legendary spot for high-society parties—Thompson has often been compared to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Gatsby.
Travel Guide information of Jim Thompson House (Bangkok):
The Jim Thompson House is located in Bangkok, Thailand. It is convenient to reach the villa. One can use car, sky train, and taxi or tuk tuk. Since the house in on the center of Bangkok, you are to hire a taxi cab service and gave direction to the driver about the Jim Thompson house, and you are there within a short ride. It is also convenient to ride on the BTS skytrain and the House is just opposite to the National Stadium.
Some Tips when you visit on Jim Thompson House (Bangkok):
Always join the 30-minute tour guide service to the museum to see all the attractive arts and collections and know about Mr. Thompson at his former house. Do not forget to take a walk at the gardens and outsides of the house for fresh air. You can also use the bar restaurants there to have some refreshment.
Culture & Customs of Jim Thompson House (Bangkok):
The house is made of teakwood and was used for the weaving of silks. Shoes, mobile phones and cameras are not allowed inside the Jim Thompson house. Put off your shoes at the designated space outside the building. Lighting and interior decoration of the Jim Thompson House is excellent and attracts attention most. The floors and ceilings are classic and exhibits the exquisite taste of Mr. Thompson. Both the dining room and table decorations are brought from China.
Transport/ Getting Around in Jim Thompson House (Bangkok):
Jim Thompson House is located at 6 Soi Kasemsan 2, Rama I road. A quiet narrow lane from Rama I road leads to the house. Either wait for the free electric shuttle cart or take a 5 minute walk.
Easiest way to get there is by metered taxi or BTS Sky Train. Exit at BTS Station National Stadium.
The house opens daily from 9 am until 6 pm.
Entrance fee is 150 Thai Baht including a guided tour.
Students under 22 years pay 100 Baht, id is required.
Handbags and other personal belongings must be stored in the lockers before start of the tour.