Built in late 1800’s as part of the Borneo Company headquarters, 137 Pillars House is a beautiful teak wood building that has been carefully restored to reflect its 19th-century origins.
For the current owners of 137 Pillars House, what began as a peaceful respite to Chiang Mai, away from the frenetic life of Bangkok, eventually turned into looking for a second home, and then over time deciding the property they chose was so beautiful, had so much history and potential that it must be shared with the public.
“On the first day of our search for the land to build our holiday home, we met a very unusual real estate broker. She drove us around the city, regaling us with spooky stories and ancient tales about Chiang Mai. Then all of a sudden, she stopped and pointed out a piece of land. My eyes focused on a black wooden house on stilts that stood among the big old trees. That house was the most outstanding house I had ever seen.
As we researched this house over time, we learned the fascinating story behind it and the Borneo Trading Company that owned it at one time and we knew our family could share this slice of Thai history with the world.”
In Chiang Mai, the importance and wealth of a property owner was often measured by the size of their Lanna-style Thai houses, and in particular how many pillars (sao) the house had… the more the pillars, the more important you were. Impressed by the history and beauty of the house, visitors and journalists were always curious as to why the Borneo house did not have a name. So when a publisher wanted to write about “the house with the most number of pillars”, Jack Bain, the owner at the time, decided to count the number of pillars which numbered 137. An old map of the Wat Gate area also referred to house as “Baan 137 Sao”, which translates to 137 Pillars House. Thus the house came to be known as 137 Pillars House.
We are honoured to be included in prestigious international awards over the years. Below are some samples of our recent awards.