P H U K E T    H E R I T A G E

Lestari Heritage of Phuket Town | Architecture | Streetscape | Thalang Road | China Inn |
| Pithak Chinpracha House Museum | Phuket Thai Hua School Museum | Art in the City
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Heritage of Phuket Town
Text & photographs by Khoo Salma Nasution
Asian Public Intellectual (API) Fellow, Nippon Foundation

Famed as beach resort, Phuket in Thailand also has an old town on the other side of the island. The old quarter of Phuket city, formerly called ‘Tongkah’, is the home of the Baba community, a cultural community of mixed Thai-Chinese heritage.

The townscape of old Phuket is unique in Thailand, and rather resembles that found in the former British Straits Settlements, particularly Penang. Since the 1990s, the people of Phuket have spearheaded several initiatives to showcase their cultural built heritage.

The historic centre of Phuket town is sited between the low hills and the bay of Tongkah.

As Tongkah started out as a mining town, all land in the vicinity was formerly mined and worked over until exhausted of its tin deposits.

The historic centre of Phuket was designated as a conservation area under the Environment Act 1992. Drawing reproduced by courtesy of City Hall. Click here for map.

Thalang Road in the old town was formerly the most important trading street in Phuket. Encouraged by university groups and the authorities, the local community has started a ‘main street’ movement. Yellow flags on Thalang Road herald Phuket’s famous Nine Emperor Gods festival.

From 1998, the Old Phuket Town Festival has been held annually. From September to November 2005, the ‘Walking Street’ or ‘Street of Culture’ weekend bazaar will attract activities and crowds to the old town.

In 2003, the Old Phuket Town Foundation was formed with the objective of revitalizing the historic areas of Phuket town. The Old Phuket Foundation logo is that of a five-footway.

An important objective of the Old Phuket Town Foundation is to restore the public character of the five-footway.

The federal, provincial and city governments have undertaken conservation projects on public buildings. For example, the old Phuket Post & Telegraphic Office has been converted into the Phuket Philatelic Museum (bottom right).

Phuket Provincial Hall (top right), a pubic building erected in the 1910s, is located in the administrative quarter. It was gazetted by the Fine Arts Department in 1977 and was the first building in Phuket to receive a national conservation award.

The police station with clock tower (bottom left) stands across the road from the Chartered Bank, at the corner of Phuket Road and Phangnga Road. They were built in the early 1900s, when Phuket developed from a small frontier mining town into a more secure and respectable town. The police station is now earmarked by City Hall for an urban heritage museum.

The City Hall plans to restore No. 63 Thalang Road (top right - second house from right) into a small museum for educational purposes.


A Brief History Of Phuket Thailand

Phuket from pre-historic times up until the present day. (10 min video). © 2009 YouTube, LLC

 

Phuket's Old Town Movement

History
Architectural Heritage
The Phuket Shophouse
Urban Conservation
Old Phuket Foundation

The Halal Festival In Kamala

Click here for full story
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Remembering Princess Mahsuri

Click here for full story of the tragic princess from Phuket, and her descendants

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  Architecture
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Streetscape
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Thalang Road
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China Inn
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Pithak Chinpracha
House Museum

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Phuket Thai Hua
School Museum

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Art in the City

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 LESTARIHERITAGE OF PHUKET TOWN | ARCHITECTURE | STREETSCAPE | THALANG ROAD | CHINA INN | PITHAK CHINPRACHA HOUSE MUSEUM |
| PHUKET THAI HUA SCHOOL MUSEUM | ART IN THE CITY | 
THE HALAL FESTIVAL IN KAMALA | REMEMBERING PRINCESS MASHURI |


Contact Us | Disclaimer | Acknowledgements | © 2005 Lestari Heritage Network

A project by Lestari Heritage Network
incorporating the Asia & West Pacific Network for Urban Conservation (AWPNUC)