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Palaces & Mansions of Bangkok Thailand
Bangkok's heritage is reflected in its palaces and mansions, architecturally inspiring and a fascinating insight into Thailand's rich culture.
The Grand Palace
Built in 1782 - and for 150 years the home of the Thai King, the Royal court and the administrative seat of government - the Grand Palace of Bangkok is a grand old dame indeed, that continues to have visitors in awe with its beautiful architecture and intricate detail, all of which is a proud salute to the creativity and craftsmanship of Thai people.
Suan Pakkad Palace
A place to find visions of Thailand you thought long since vanished in Bangkok. Its name means 'cabbage patch', in reference to when the land was nothing more than that. Today, however, it's much as it has been for over 50 years: a well-tended tropical garden with serene ponds surrounding eight traditional Thai houses, each of which brims to overflowing with fine arts, antiquities and oddities belonging to Prince and Princess Chumbhot.
A general and provincial governor named Taksin was crowned King. He built Wangderm palace to mark the establishment of the new capital in Thonburi. Located on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River near Wat Arun (The Temple of Dawn), it occupies a site once of great strategic importance, behind the Wichayen Fort and other fortifications that guarded access to the Kingdom's port.
Located on Ratchawithi Road behind the National Assembly, Vimanmek Royal Mansion is the world's largest building made entirely of golden teak. Removed from Ko Sichang in Chonburi province, it was rebuilt in the Dusit Palace in 1900 by the command of King Rama V. It was recently renovated by HM Queen Sirikit, and made into a museum paying homage to the late King.
Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall
Impressive two-storey white marble palace sits at the end of Dusit's long, wide Royal Plaza, a leafy ceremonial boulevard that's often the focus of regal pomp and ceremony during royal celebrations. Ordered by King Rama V in 1907 and finished in the reign of King Rama VI, its neo-classical Renaissance architecture - particularly its central dome - dominate the scene just as Italian architects Mario Tamango and Annibale Rigotti intended. Following the 1932 coup it housed the first Thai parliament, but today its ornate interiors serve as a prestigious locale in which to court visiting dignitaries, hold state council meetings and royal occasions.
This is His Majesty King Bhumibol and Queen Sirikit's official residence. Constructed by King Rama VI and formerly King Chulalongkorn's summer home, its one-square kilometre grounds include several artificial lakes and are bordered by Italian-designed walls and a prominent moat. At each corner is a fountain adorned with late Baroque figures drawn from mythology, evidence of the cultivated taste of Thailand's rulers.
Newly-restored and open once again to the public, Ladawan Palace, on Ratchasima Road, was built in 1907 as a gift from King Rama V to his son Prince Yugala Bidhamabara. With large verdant gardens and wide ventilating corridors and windows, it flaunts his penchant for European living concepts at the time. Also known as the Red Palace due its crimson outer walls, it is a two-storey brick and stone building with four-storey watchtower. Designed in the style of Victorian and Italian villas by Italian architect G. Bruno, many Western architectural techniques such as arches, pilasters, rustication and wall bearings are in evidence.
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