Located at the very heart of Bangkok, this neighbourhood doesn’t officially go by the name “Siam”, but has long been referred to as such by locals and tourists alike. A large area in Siam is part of the Thai Royal Family’s estate and Sra Pathum Palace, while the rest is packed full of malls and markets that it make it a shopper’s heaven.
The word ‘Siam’ immediately resonates with shopping, home to Bangkok’s largest shopping mall at Central World, the designer brand name stores at Siam Paragon, the IT stores of Digital Gateway, and the market atmosphere of Siam Square’s 500+ shops. There’s also a few exclusive shops at the smaller Erawan and Gaysorn malls, together with the budget-friendly destination of Amarin Plaza. Aside from its commercial interests, Siam is also home to the elegant white temple of Wat Pathum Wanaram, the Erawan Hindu Shrine, and just a short walk from the traditional Thai architectural collection at Jim Thompson’s House.
Siam is a major transport hub in Bangkok, with BTS Siam being the main interchange station for the Skytrain. From the station, travellers can easily access the surrounding shopping malls by pedestrian walkways, while the Siam neighbourhood is connected to the adjacent shopping district of Ratchaprasong by a number of footbridges.
It was King Mongkut who built the first palace in what is now known as Siam during the mid-19th century, before the Sra Pathum Palace was built in the early 20th century. The adjacent land was leased to the Siam Intercontinental Hotel, with the Royal Highness unveiling the foundation stone in 1964 and the hotel becoming the first of many structures to eventually bear the name “Siam”.