ON THE full moon of the 12th month of the Thai lunar calendar, the Chao Phraya River glows bright with thousands of flickering candlelight on krathongs bearing offerings for the river spirits. Loi Krathong (translates as “to float a basket”) is one of the Thailand’s most celebrated festivals.
The krathongs appear one night in a year. But recently three krathongs were created permanently to “float” by the River of Kings. These, however, are the modern interpretations. Imagine these krathongs made of glass placed side by side by the famed river.
IconSiam is Bangkok’s newest riverside luxury attraction. Yes, ANOTHER luxury complex. Bangkok loves to build them. But there’s more to it than what it’s popularly known for. It’s a mixed-used development and more than a luxury shopping mall. It has dining, entertainment and residential spaces as well. It is said to be the biggest commercial property project to date in Thailand with more than 100 dining options and 7,000 Thai and international brands filling eight floors.
The destination is best reached via the riverboats. It gives that Venetian feel to the experience. Here’s what to expect from the multi-billion-baht development.
1. Two shopping malls have three-quarters of a million square-meters of retail space.
From the riverside, you get a glimpse of ICONLUXE’s grandeur. An all-glass façade that resembles three krathongs glowing from within at night. Gucci, Cartier, Hermes and the Apple store (the first in Thailand) stands in the forefront sharing the 300-meter stretch. Inside are other luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Dior and more.
2. SookSiam, located at the basement level of IconSiam, the complex’s main section is surprising. The floating market is eye-catching and yes, you can shop for food. It’s part of a village with shop houses that showcases the best of Thailand’s provinces. Feast on the different flavors of the nation and buy handicrafts, too.
3. On two floors on the higher levels is ICONCRAFT. This is where you’ll find a curated presentation of high quality Thai craft. Furniture, home wares and even art, you can take home a piece of Thailand’s exquisite artistry to fill you home.
4. The River Park. The area in the complex that allows the locals and guests access to the river for activities. The 10,000 square meter public space had Southeast Asia's largest multimedia water feature.
5. The IconSiam Heritage Museum. A place to present artifacts from Thailand’s different eras and other global touring exhibitions. The museum is a joint venture with The Fine Arts Department of the Ministry of Culture of Thailand and due to open in July this year.
6. Art is not confined in the museum but across the expanse of the complex. You can spot the creations of more than 100 Thai and international artists at every turn.
7. Movies, concerts, conferences? No problem. The complex has the Icon Cineconic, an IMAX movie cinema, and the True ICON Hall, due to open in July, is a 3,000-seat auditorium and exhibition hall.
8. World-class dining experience. Restaurants across the complex will have a 3-Michelin star restaurant and other famous restaurants.
9. The first and/or the biggest shops of world famous brands are in this complex. The first Takashimaya—a well-known Japanese department store, Aisa’s largest Adidas Original store, the first Apple store in Thailand,
10. Want to live nearby? You’re covered. IconSiam has two world-class residential condominium buildings, the 72-floor Magnolias Waterfront Residences, and 52-floor The Residences at Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, the first of its brand in Southeast Asia. The latter has 146 super luxury units and if you have $2.58 million to spare, you’ll snag a two-bedroom unit by the River of Kings.
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