Thompson's home became a museum of Thai art after his disappearing in Malaysia in 1967. This is not a state or official museum, but many come to visit here, because of the precious Thai art that were collected over the years and were used to beautify his prestigious estate.
To this day, the secret of his disappearance remains unresolved. No one knows what happened to him, but it turned the man into a legend, gaining more and more momentum. This legend and the mystery of the disappearance of one of the pillars of the Thai industry increased the curiosity around it. Curiosity made the house he left behind in the capital of Thailand the most popular tourist attraction in the city.
Part of the public curiosity that led to the popularity of his home also stems from the mystery surrounding Thompson, who was a significant figure during his lifetime. He was a rich man, and there are rumors that before he settled in Bangkok back in World War II, he served as a soldier for Thailand, he was an American spy. After that war he came to Thailand as an American and then set up a silk manufacturing company named after himself. After turning to fashion houses in Europe to market the traditional silk he manufactured in his factories, the company was a great success, and retroactively led the restoration of the silk industry in the whole country. This success made Thompson a rich and influential man in the Thai kingdom.
This house was built by Jim Thompson, who had accumulated enough money to build a luxury home and add an amazing collection of Thai and Southeast Asian art, from rare porcelain from China to archaeological finds and artifacts from Thailand and neighboring countries such as Laos, Burma, (to which he traveled quite a bit to acquire interesting items).
The house stands on the banks of Klong Sen Sep, inside a beautiful traditional Thai garden surrounded by other ancient houses. In fact, there are six houses made of teak, all different sizes, from the 19th century. These were purchased by Thompson around Thailand, copied here and rebuilt in the garden of the house.
The entire complex and its various buildings were built with great respect for the Thai architectural tradition. Everything was done in Thompson's personal design and with his beautiful personal touches.