LUXE Bangkok devotees will no doubt already be familiar with the Jim Thompson House Museum – a must-see destination for any visitor to Bangkok – but now they can combine their visit with a slew of new experiences at the brand new Jim Thompson Heritage Quarter.
Unveiled with a star-studded party and riveting fashion show in late November next to the Jim Thompson Art Center, the exciting new attractions include:
Museum About The Man
Get to know James Harrison Wilson Thompson (aka. Jim Thompson and the “Thai Silk King”) who’s credited for single-handedly revitalising the Thai silk industry in the 1950s and 1960s. Did you know? Jim Thompson first came to Thailand as an officer of the United States’ Office of Strategic Services (OSS) – the predecessor to the CIA – and mysteriously disappeared in 1967 in Malaysia after going for a walk in the Cameron Highlands. Was he kidnapped by communists, killed in a CIA mission or eaten by a tiger? To this date, nobody knows.
The Evolving World of Jim Thompson Textiles
This permanent exhibition unveils the story of the Thai Silk Company Limited after Thompson’s disappearance in 1967. Immerse yourself in the fabulous fabrics and textiles of Jim Thompson in all colours and patterns, from a wall of rainbow-coloured spools – the perfect spot for a photo, by the way – to interactive fabric panels that you can push for more information about the brand. This is a great way to see the brand’s evolution over the past 60 years, from handwoven silks to the flourishing world of Jim Thompson Home Furnishings.
Jim Thompson, A Thai Restaurant
Channelling Jim Thompson’s love for entertaining guests (which included Hollywood celebs, famous writers and diplomats that he wined and dined at his home), the new Jim Thompson restaurant at the Heritage Quarter serves elevated Thai favourites with a twist thanks to Spanish chef Pepe Dasí Jiménez.
Using locally sourced and seasonal ingreds, Chef Pepe has captured the pioneering spirit of Jim Thompson through his menu of vibrant Thai fusion dishes that takes you on a culinary journey and certainly packs a punch.
Some of our favourite dishes include the Kaow Phu Kao Talay (a Thai-style paella with Doi Tung pork, grilled Koh Lanta prawn, kaffir lime powder and Thai kale), Jim’s Favourite Chu Chee (crispy deep-fried fish in chu chee curry sauce with salted pineapple), and The OSS Adventures that celebrates Jim Thompson’s journey through Europe and Isan (a Thai-style tiramisu with banana Isan rum ice cream and Royal project coffee).
The OSS Room and Bar
A tearoom by day and swanky bar by night, the OSS Room and Bar is a stylish spot that overlooks the compound of Jim Thompson’s house, replete with an outdoor terrace along the klong (aka. canal) to watch the boats float on by. Indulge in sweet and savoury treats of the beautiful afternoon tea set crafted by the dedicated pastry team, and as dusk falls, raise your glass to an array of classic and signature cocktails shaken up by JT’s team of mixologists.
Jim’s Terrace & Silk Cafe
For lighter bites, head to Jim’s Terrace – an all-day, open-air cafe that sits on the second floor of The Iconic Store that serves Thai tapas with an extensive menu of drinks, or make a pit stop at the ground floor Silk Cafe for grab-and-go eats such as coffee, sandwiches and pastries.
The Moonlight Hall
Planning a big event? The newly renovated Moonlight Hall is perfect for weddings, banquets and meetings with its charming decor and state-of-the-art digital media technology.
The Iconic Store
Of course, don’t forget to stock up on Jim Thompson’s signature designs before you leave at The Iconic Store, where you’ll find a wide selection of timeless and elegant items – from shirts, dresses and fisherman pants to scarves, ties, make-up bags, cushion covers, travel bags and plenty more to accessorise.
Jim Thompson, the man, may have disappeared mysteriously, but his legacy lives on through his eponymous lifestyle brand – and with the launch of the new and iconic Jim Thompson Heritage Quarter in Bangkok. The brand continues to evolve and expand internationally with whispers of a Jim Thompson Hotel, dedicated homeware category (Maison Jim Thompson), and even a mini-series inspired by the life of JT himself in the pipeline. Watch this space…
Learn more or shop online at jimthompson.com
(All photos supplied by Jim Thompson.)