A chic boutique hideaway in bustling Chiang Mai.
If you’re looking for a taste of Thailand that isn’t quite so westernised, you’ll find it at 137 Pillar House. Set in lush gardens with an enormous garden wall in a quiet corner of Chiang Mai, it’s a short tuk-tuk ride away from the city centre, and a world away from the hustle and bustle.
137 Pillar House has a curious history. Once the base of the teak-exporting East Borneo Company, its name comes from the old Thai tradition of pillars being a mark of wealth and privilege. Seeing that the house originally had no name, a visiting journalist decided to count the pillars, and 137 Pillar House was born.
Today, it’s a boutique hotel, where you’ll find chic high-ceilinged suites and enormous four-poster beds, spacious wooden verandas, outdoor showers and plunge pools, and elegant interior design. You can take breakfast in the intricate wood-carved dining room, afternoon tea in the tropical gardens, and sip stiff cocktails in Jack Bain’s bar, where teak walls and hand-carved ceilings evoke the hotel’s 19th century roots.