2023 BEST


by Asia Architecture and Design Awards

Company name: STUDIO NAGOMI

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Project: Once Upon A Time Boutique Home

Designer: Chrannuth Wongwiangrose

Manufacturer: Protego, SCG, Maerim Ceramic, Cecrete, Baan Chang Thong Community, Ban Pak Khlong Community

Stakeholder/Owner: Naddhaprom Wongwiangrose

Studio Nagomi, a distinguished architecture and design firm, has captured the essence of cultural significance with their masterpiece - the Once Upon a Time Boutique Hotel, nestled in the heart of Chiang Mai's old city area. This unique project is a testament to their dedication, presenting a seamless fusion of traditional Thai-Lanna architecture and colonial design elements that promise guests a warm and inviting experience.

The Once Upon a Time Boutique Hotel features House No.1, a 68 sq.m. wooden structure that embodies the Huan Pae wooden house characteristic, dating back to the reign of King Rama V. This type of architecture has historically served as department stores and residences, fostering trade and connections between Thai-Lanna locals and foreigners.

The design of the hotel is centered around creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere, reminiscent of staying at a friend's home. The user-friendly reception area is designed as a living and dining room with a built-in kitchen, showcasing the Thai-Lanna house style with a traditional fireplace (Mae-Tao-Fai) on the patio, where fresh food is prepared every morning. This allows visitors to experience true Thai-Lanna hospitality firsthand.

The interior of the hotel rooms follows the traditional Thai-Lanna house concept, with designated resting areas and elevated floor levels resembling Tern, creating semi-private spaces. The rooms are adorned with hand-woven mats and long side windows, providing ana airy and warm ambiance. The living rooms feature sloping walls that follow the roof's steepness, allowing for warm and soothing indirect light, perfect for relaxation.

An interesting aspect of the Once Upon a Time Boutique Hotel is its integration into the historic commercial district of Chiang Mai. Studio Nagomi has thoughtfully designed the building to prioritize accessibility, with an open and casual space, while maintaining privacy with an Orange jasmine fence that adds a year-round fresh fragrance to the surroundings.

The hotel's design seamlessly incorporates Thai-Lanna carpentry, influenced by Western colonial architecture, evident in the wooden mullions, teak louvre windows, and shutters with cast iron railings. These design elements allow for ample light and ventilation while preserving the cozy ambiance of Asian architecture.

The transformation of the intersection corner where the hotel is located has revitalized the entire area. Previously used by criminals as an escape route, the humble building design has turned it into a friendly and inviting space. As a result, the district has experienced a surge in business development, with local shops and restaurants improving and expanding their businesses. The government's support in providing additional services, such as lighting and traffic signals, has further enhanced the area's safety and attractiveness.

Inside the hotel lobby, guests are welcomed by a 100-year-old Jamjuree wood table, adding a touch of history and elegance. The lobby area is designed to provide natural ventilation and surrounded by trees to maintain a pleasant temperature. Privacy is ensured with barrier doors, limiting access to the hotel's private area and reducing noise and temperature fluctuations.

The hotel's commitment to sustainability is evident in the use of fiberglass insulation, which is eco-friendly and allows for the creation of a Thai-Lanna-style attic bedroom with a slanted ceiling, ideal for a guest lounge and living area. Traditional joinery techniques are employed in the shutters and sliding windows, showcasing the dedication to preserving Thai-Lanna heritage.

Studio Nagomi's Once Upon a Time Boutique Hotel stands as a testament to their meticulous approach to architecture and interior design. The blend of Thai-Lanna and colonial elements offers guests a unique and unforgettable experience, where the warmth of traditional hospitality meets the comfort of a modern boutique hotel.

Visitors to Chiang Mai now have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the rich cultural significance of the area while enjoying the comfort and luxury of Once Upon a Time Boutique Hotel. Studio Nagomi's visionary project is a true testament to the harmonious fusion of architecture and design, setting a new standard for boutique hotels in Thailand and beyond.

Take a virtual journey into the enchanting world of Once Upon A Time Boutique Home: