It is always nice to come across hidden treasures in Bangkok. Tourist attractions without the tourists, and places of historical merit that give a glimpse to what Bangkok once looked like. The M.R. Kukrit Heritage Home should be on everyone’s list as a must visit, as it is a lovely tranquil spot with some classic architecture.Kukrit House — Photo courtesy of Dave Stamboulis
Mom Rajawongse (M.R.) Kukrit Pramoj was born in 1911, and grew up in the Grand Palace during the final years of the absolute monarchy, as his father was a prince and Brigadier General. Not only was M.R. Kukrit well versed in being a royal Thai, but he went to the United Kingdom when he was 15, and did his secondary education and then honors degree at Oxford University before returning home. Kukrit became a university lecturer and then became a writer as well as the owner of the Siam Rath newspaper, the top opinion journal of the time. He was a copious writer of prose, poetry, short stories, and made many scholarly contributions to texts on modern Buddhism and Thai culture. Kukrit was not only an artist. This man of many talents set up the first political party in Thailand in 1945, and then in 1975, he served as Prime Minister, prior to the military coup and uprisings of 1976.
Kukrit House — Photo courtesy of Dave StamboulisHe built his heritage home from five traditional Thai houses in Ayutthaya which were completely dismantled, transported, and reassembled on the present site in Bangkok. The homes show off classical Thai architecture, featuring an open ground floor, lush Khmer style gardens, a lotus pond, and sculptured miniature mai dat trees, which are similar to Japanese bonsai.
Today the heritage home is both a museum as well as a welcome respite from the chaos and heat of Bangkok.