Siam Square Bangkok, like the city it is situated in, is a place filled with contrasting vibes. In essence, it's the epicenter of all things cool, a place where fashions are both sculpted and surfaced. Many regard Siam Square to be the beating heart of Bangkok and they are not wrong. Home to some of the most visited attractions, restaurants and shopping centers in the city, Siam Square Bangkok is pulsating with life throughout the year, come rain or sun.
The Square gathers some of Bangkok’s best malls in a single location. Siam Paragon, Siam Shopping One, MBK and Central World are some of the biggest names in Thailand, and form the fitting location for high-street shopping. Despite the complexes, however, Siam Square itself is a sort of open-air shopping center with a creative vibe. There are endless alleyways of makeshift stalls and open markets to explore, each promising its own range of quirky goods.
Siam Square is an excellent dining location as well. With a mix of street food stalls and high end restaurants, the Square doles out global cuisines throughout the day. There are some attractions to be seen and explored in the vicinity, such as the revered Erawan Shrine or the Jim Thompson Art Museum.
If nothing else, Siam Square Bangkok is renowned for its exquisite shopping experience. For starters, the Square is home to some of the biggest malls in the city. However, the Square is ideal for thrift shoppers as well, with several independent stores and market booths selling their own share of clothes, jewelry and other fun items. Dining and nightlife at Siam is another one of its most exciting highlights, with the Square home to some of the best pubs, cafes, restaurants and rooftop bars in all of Bangkok.
Shopping is, without a doubt, the most popular activity in Siam Square. A maze of shops, cafés, and market booths selling a wide range of clothing, this is where fashionistas get a true flavor of Bangkok style. The neighborhood is a partnership of world acclaimed high-end companies and individual traders, true to Bangkok's integrated layout, and the price range runs the gamut. Siam Paragon, the city's crown gem, completes the strip of malls that begins at MBK and runs around the perimeter of the square. With a plethora of prominent brands having flagship stores within, Bangkok earns its stripes as an international fashion hotspot.
To describe Siam Square eating in one word, 'eclectic' comes to mind. The streets are lined with culinary options ranging from traditional Thai street cuisine to international specialities, as well as light sandwiches and pastries. Siam Discovery and Siam Paragon have an outstanding selection of restaurants and cafes, but don't overlook Siam Square, which has a variety of cafés, patisseries, and street food hawkers competing with the current food trends. Siam's concentration of 5-star hotels offers some of the city's most exquisite meals in unrivaled surroundings for luxury dining. It also features a fair share of rooftop bars and restaurants.
Siam's nightlife isn't very vibrant, but it's enough for a night out. Many upmarket bars are located within the hotels around Siam Square and are frequented by tourists as well as Bangkok residents. Every night, live musicians perform at Hard Rock Café, offering a delightful ambience. Silom, 10 minutes away by Skytrain, is home to the majority of the city's infamous nightlife, while Sukhumvit is home to many of the top clubs.
Siam Square One is a seven-story shopping mall located in Siam Square, directly across the street from Siam Paragon Mall. This mall, which is one of the best in the city for fashionable clothes, also features digital technology retailers and a vast space on the top floors allocated for restaurants and cafés. Siam Square One is known for its competitive prices, and offers one of the most affordable shopping experiences in Bangkok. The mall has several eateries dishing out cuisines such as Japanese, Thai and Korean. The Sky Hall and Roof Garden on the top level blends Thai traditional events with an urban garden with views of metropolitan Bangkok.
The first buildings in Siam Square were built on property owned by Chulalongkorn University in the second part of the 1960s. Then teeming with wooden houses and slum neighborhoods, the Square was evacuated to make way for the new constructions. These initiatives were designed to generate rental money for the institution. The Southeast Asia Company was the first to build an open-air retail mall in this location. The original structure, designed by Associated Professor Lert Urasayanan and engineered by Professor Rachot Kanchanawanit, was built in 1962 and completed in 1963.
Because it is located in Pathum Wan District, the area was formerly known as Pathum Wan Square. However, Kobchai Sosothikul, the founder of Seacon Development Co. and the project's owner at the time, thought the name was too short and renamed it Siam Square after the entire country, Siam being Thailand's previous name.
Initially, the neighborhood featured only regular stores, but as the focus shifted to more and more brand stores, more investors were drawn to create hotels, restaurants, and retail malls. As a result of this development, the neighboring areas began to yearn for a connection to Siam Square. The building of an air-conditioned bridge, or a Skybridge, that connects various retail complexes to Siam Square through an air route, was undertaken to achieve this purpose. The Square is still owned by Chulalongkorn and is maintained by the University Property Management Office, or Chula Property. The area around Siam Square is now regarded highly exclusive and serves as the focal point of downtown Bangkok.
Justifiably one of the busiest parts of Bangkok, Siam Square is home to some of the city’s biggest and most visited attractions. To begin with, the Square is home to a great many multi-level shopping complexes, including Siam Paragon, MBK Mall and Central World Plaza. Cultural attractions here are many as well, with the Jim Thompson Museum or Erawan Shrines being just two prime examples.
One of the most popular visits in Siam Square, Madame tussauds museum offers the perfect spot for a family day out. The Bangkok rendition of the Museum contains more than 70 lifelike wax models of celebrities, historical leaders, sportspeople and more. The figurines are divided into several themed sections according to categories like: Historical Leaders, Influential Figures, Pop and Rock Musicians, Movie Stars, Famous Scientists and Artists and so on. The Museum offers a great photoshop, and also has its very own 5D movie on the Ice Age.
The Jim Thompson House is a museum that houses the art collection of 'The Silk King' J.H. Thompson, an American businessman and architect who also designed and owned the museum. After moving to Bangkok in 1948, Thompson gathered a significant collection of ancient Buddhist sculptures and traditional Thai paintings depicting the life of Buddha and the narrative of Vessantara Jataka, attracted by the complexity of their craftsmanship and expression. He gathered secular art not just from Thailand, but also from Burma, Cambodia, and Laos, and made frequent buying visits to those countries. Today, the Museum conducts guided tours daily, showcasing all that Thompson had collected in his life, and is among the most revered attractions in Siam Square.
Siam Paragon is one of Bangkok's most renowned shopping malls, with a variety of international high-end apparel labels, Southeast Asia's largest aquarium, a 16-screen Cineplex, and a diverse range of international cuisine. Designer stores such as Hermes, Louis Vuitton, and Prada are packed in excellent spots around the main escalators, each contending for attention with extravagant window displays, as you enter through the spectacular glass-and-steel atrium. If you're worried about shops that don't have price tags on their items, go to the top level, where the high-end high-street stores are located. The third and the fourth floors are stocked with IT stores and restaurants, while the fifth floor is home to an Imax theater and a bowling alley.
MBK Center is Bangkok's most famous retail mall, popular with both visitors and residents and bustling with activity on a daily basis. There are 2,000 stores on eight levels, selling everything from apparel, fashion accessories, purses, leather goods, and luggage to gadgets and furniture. If you get hungry, the mall features two food courts with a wide variety of options. The entertainment complex on the top level includes a multi-screen theater, karaoke, a computer gaming arcade, and a variety of eateries. A 3D Trick Art Museum is also located at MBK and great for a family visit.
Bangkok’s largest shopping mall, Central World Plaza, looms large by the Siam Square. The mall is home to some of the biggest flagship outlets in the city, including but not limited to Apple, SuperSports, Toys R Us, and Isetan. Central World is perhaps best known for its outdoor plaza, which is the largest outdoor event space in downtown Bangkok. The Plaza conducts several big parties throughout the year, such as the New Year’s Bash, and offers a splendid light and sound fountain show as well. Central World houses plenty of entertainment options as well, such as an ice skating rink, a Thailand Knowledge Park and an SF World Cineplex.
Erawan Temple is a renowned Hindu shrine in Bangkok's central area, and one of the most revered spots near Siam Square. Throughout the day, you'll observe throngs paying their homage to a gold sculpture of the 4-faced Brahma God, Than Tao Mahaprom, by bringing flowers and incense sticks. Brahma deity Than Tao Mahaprom is recognised for his benevolence, mercy, sympathy, and fairness. Incense sticks, garlands, fresh fruits, and teakwood elephants are among the ceremonial offerings made by people from all over the world. Several times a day, Erawan Shrine features exquisite Thai classical dance performances, as well as boisterous lion dances on special occasions.
Essential Information - Location: At the Phayathai Road and Rama I Road junction.
Timings: there is no specific time for the square, but the area is most lively between 11am-9pm, when the majority of the attractions are open.
How to Reach:
By MRT: Siam Square is best visited on an MRT. The Siam Station stops just by the Square, although it’s pretty close to Chit Lom or National Station BTS as well. Take the North South Line to reach the Siam Square.
By Bus: Being located right at the center of Bangkok, most of the city’s major bus routes cross the area. In fact, five roads along the Square line have bus stops of their own. The best and direct bus route is 962 to reach Siam Square.
By Skywalk: A long pedestrian skywalk connects all points between Chit Lom Station and National BTS station, making it easier to walk across while sightseeing.
Who owns Siam Square Bangkok?
In terms of ownership, Siam Square Bangkok still belongs to the Chulalongkorn University on Rama Road. In fact, the Square initially came into being to make new constructions that would generate more funding for the University.
Where can I watch Live Muay Thai Match in Siam Square Bangkok?
The MBK Fight Night is a weekly event where Muay Thai fights are held each wednesday night. Muay Thai is a special form of Thai martial art, which combines boxing with clinching techniques. The fights take place right outside the MBK Mall, from 06.00 PM each Wednesday.
What makes Siam Square Bangkok so famous?
Often dubbed as the Fifth Avenue of Bangkok, Siam Square is the city’s biggest and most thriving shopping destination. Although there are plenty of multi-level malls to choose from here, the Square itself is teeming with a number of open stalls and market-like shophouses selling clothing, jewelry, artwork and much more. A variety of eateries and food stalls add to the lively atmosphere of the place.
How many shopping malls are there in Siam Square Bangkok?
There are around six shopping malls located at and in the vicinity of Siam Square Bangkok: Siam Paragon, Siam Square One, Siam Center, Siam Discovery, MBK Center, and Center Point Siam
What is the best time to visit Siam Square Bangkok?
The best time to visit Siam Square Bangkok would be the late evening hours. Mornings in Bangkok can often be hot and clammy, hampering the experience of exploring the markets in the Square. Besides, the Square appears twice as beautiful when bathed in the twinkling evening lights.