Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Jim Thompson House, Bangkok (Thailand)

The history of Jim Thompson is quite a interesting one and made me want to visit his compound even more. Jim Thompson was a former American CIA agent that fell in love with Thailand and settled down in Bangkok after the war. His interest in Thai textiles resulted in his involvement in the traditional Thai silk industry which at that time was slowly becoming a dying art. By reinvigorating the Thai silk industry by sending samples to fashion houses around the world, Thompson was able to save the industry and create a market for such beautiful textiles. During his time in Thailand he collected several traditional Thai teak houses which he had deconstructed from the country side in efforts to save them and then rebuilt in his housing compound in Bangkok. During a vacation in Malaysia Thompson mysteriously disappeared, never to be seen or heard from again. His housing compound has since been preserve and had been oped up to the public.

For those interested in visiting the Jim Thompson House, made sure you prepare in advanced or expect to wait around for a bit because tours of the teak homes are done at scheduled tour times. We had to wait 45 minutes for our tour time and simply didn't have the time to wait around so we got a refund back on our ticket. You are still able to view the compound, you just can't go inside the houses. The compound has a gift shop selling beautiful silks as well as a restaurant.