The Artist’s house, known locally as Baan Silapin, is a traditional, old Thai canal house hidden amongst the outskirts of Bangkok city. The building itself proves difficult to find amongst the crammed Thai khlongs; this, combined with it’s unacknowledged status in guides and magazines, makes the artist’s house all the more a unique, unspoilt hangout to visit in Bangkok.
If you’re looking for some authentic Thai entertainment off the beaten track in Bangkok, then the Artist’s House is a must visit. Once you’ve navigated your way through the quiet local alleys along the river, you won’t be disappointed by this quirky, rustic wooden building. The Artist’s House has something for everyone: daily Thai puppet shows, an art gallery, souvenir & book shop and a beautiful canal side coffee shop.
Hanging Out At The Artist’s House
The atmosphere of the Artist’s House is perhaps it’s most striking feature. The rickety building shows a unique character and creative ambience with it’s intricate decorations of cheerful lanterns, hanging plants, overflowing bookshelves and charming works of art. With large, open patio doors overlooking the tranquil canal, visitors can sit and enjoy an iced tea while sitting at the water’s edge, feeding the fish next to the unusual statues.
Thai Puppet Shows At The Artist’s House
The building consists of a larger theatre area which leads out to an enclosed back garden, complete with it’s own 600 year old Chedi. This is where guests gather to watch traditional Thai puppet shows in the afternoons. The Artist’s House puppet shows usually start at 2pm, however they are not guaranteed to perform everyday as have been known to be booked at other venues elsewhere around Bangkok city.
Keep walking along the canal boardwalks past the theatre room, and you’ll come across the shop and cafe area of the Artist’s House. Here they have a selection of art and culture books, postcards, Thai masks, jewellery and art prints for sale – this is really useful for buying souvenirs for people back home. Prices are very reasonable and there are some very unique items for sale.
The Artist’s House Art Gallery
Head up the creaky old stairs from here, and you’ll find a photography & art gallery overlooking the canal. As well as having beautiful pieces of art to admire, it also has beautiful views over the quiet canal houses and ancient Chedi in the garden.
Once you’ve had time to explore the unique interior of the old house, you can enjoy a peaceful cup of coffee on the seating downstairs or outside on the boardwalk by the river side. The menu is rather modest in choice, however at 25 baht for a cup of coffee and with peaceful surroundings like these, who’s complaining?
How to get to the Artist’s House Bangkok
From my own experience, many taxi drivers don’t seem to know any of the nearby landmark’s and main roads nearby the Artist’s House in Bangkok. However, the best way that I have found to get there, is to take the BTS to Talat Phlu station and catch a taxi from there.
If you can’t get anyone to take you to Baan Silapin (which is quite likely, but worth a try), then ask the taxi driver to take you to ‘Jaran Sanitwong Saam’ (written: Charan Sanitwong 3) instead – they should know this road at least. It’s about a 10-15 minute walk from the bottom of this road, so it’s best to try and get him to drive you all the way to the end of Charan Sanitwong 3 road. However if not, you can catch a songtaew to the end of the road for 5 baht.
Once you’ve reached the end of the road you’ll notice what looks like a dead end and a 7/11 store on the right hand side. Keep walking past the 7/11 and you’ll notice a small path which leads to a bridge across a canal. You should be able to see a temple ahead , to the right of the bridge on the other side of the canal – this is Kuhasawan Temple. If you look to the left, you should be able to make out a little red statue up ahead – that’s the Artist’s House.
Now, cross the bridge and walk along the canal walkway to the left – the opposite direction of the temple. Keep walking all the way along, past the little shops along the wooden boardwalk until you get all the way to the end. The locals are very friendly and can point you in the right direction if you get lost.