Peace Corps
Thai 27
Tearing down the Siam Intercontinental Hotel 2002

September 6, 2002

September 9, 2002

September 13, 2002

September 17, 2002
The famous peaked roof of the Siam Intercontinental Hotel being dismantled. Among the comments: "obscene," "appalling," and "how can they be doing this when Thailand still does not have an art museum?"

September 26, 2002

September 26, 2002 - Demolished!
The roofing tiles have been pulled up and stacked on the famous roof of the Siam Intercontinental. Thai Obayashi Corporation Ltd. is doing the demolition.

September 27, 2002

September 30, 2002

September 27, 2002

October 3, 2002

October 7, 2002

October 3, 2002

October 14, 2002

October 15, 2002

October 15, 2002

October 18, 2002

October 21, 2002

October 21, 2002

October 25, 2002

'Hi-so' party for the launch of the Paragon - August 17, 2002

The area in front of the Siam Intercontinental Hotel hosted a huge water and light show to inaugurate the construction of the Siam Paragon. All the usual suspects were there touting how great the elegant project will be. After a quote by Supaluck Umpujh that the Paragon will be a "world-class destination because we will offer only the best to customers," William Heinecke (an American who grew up in Thailand and took Thai citizenship to head a conglomerate here) explained that the Paragon would have outlets such as Burger King, The Pizza Company, and Dairy Queen! The Paragon sounds like just another big shopping center. However, the business community is excited because the management team that developed and runs the successful (and elegant) Emporium also is behind the Paragon.

The closure of the Siam Intercontinental Hotel has gone on with barely a whisper of protest. There was a sole sorrowful reader comment at the bottom of the Nation article ("It is very sad to see the destruction of Siam Hotel for the new shopping center that will only add to the pollution and congestion of Bangkok."). 2B was told by several sources about the fear of public protest over the removal of such a well-known landmark. However, no one seemed to care. 2B was asked by the Siam Intercontinental whether our webpage on the hotel would be "complimentary" before they would give us the hotel's press hit.

There are already huge billboards advertising Paragon around town. We have also noted from photos of models in the press that the Paragon will be built right up against the road (about as close as Siam Center is?) with a short bridge to the Skytrain . Whatever happened to setback?

Never again - photo from June, 2002 showing the famous hotel roof lit up for the last time.
The Baiyoke II, Amari Watergate, and Grand Diamond buildings can be seen in the background.

June 30, 2002 - Last day at the pool

Siam Inter-Continental to be Demolished - The Bangkok Post, March 9, 2001
The Post reports that the 35-year old Siam Inter-Continental will be torn down early next year (This is the hotel next to Siam Center and across from Siam Square--the Siam Square Skytrain stations sits in front of it). "The 50-rai plot is owned by HM Private Property and the company has leased the land for 35 years. It has extended the contract for another 25 years." The new project would include a five-star hotel, an auditorium, "cultural and interactive museum, library and Thai heritage centre" and be completed in three and a half years. International marketing research firm Taylor Nelson Sofres is making the feasibility study.


Landmark to be torn down - The Bangkok Post, June 30, 2002
Khunying Chodchoy Sophonpanich, the hotel's first public relations manager when it opened in 1966, went through a baptism of fire. The hotel's design was controversial and drew great flak. ``People were really angry at the design, which was inspired by a royal hat,'' she said. ``The controversy made the hotel very hard to promote.''

Hotel closes doors at 36 - The Bangkok Post, June 30, 2002
When it was opened in June 1966, many people believed the design, said to resemble a hat worn by an early King of Ratansakosin, was inappropriate. The late M.R. Kukrit Pramoj thought building the hotel in the likeness of a royal accessory was scandalous.

Some reports state that the hotel is fully booked until its last day. The Bangkok Post reports that no date has been set for demolition (we wonder if it will be made public before the building is torn down). The article also mentions the new shopping center will include a "museum" and ...the company will auction nearly 5,000 items including furniture and amenities from the 400 guest rooms, on July 10-11 at the hotel near Siam Square....