The leather bound books form a limited edition of not more than 50, often only 20 books per edition. They are hand bound and – upon request – autographed by the author.
Since the 1990s – from edition to edition – this book has grown into the richest collection of historical material ever published about The Oriental in Bangkok.
When Thailand was still Siam – in the mid of the 19th century – a rest house for foreign seafarers was established on the banks of the Menam river. It was to become one of the greatest hotels in the world: The Oriental.
The Oriental – so many stories, so many tales. What’s the secret behind this composition? This book tells it all.
From famous guests to PR strategies and management tactics. From Joseph Conrad, the captain with only one sea-going command in his life, who drank in the bar to Nijinsky who danced in the ballroom. Somerset Maugham suffered from malaria in his suite: ‘I was almost evicted from The Oriental because the manager did not want me to ruin her business by dying in one of her rooms.’ Noël Coward treasured the memories of his favourite cocktail venue: ‘There is a terrace overlooking the swift river where we have drinks every evening.’
Jim Thompson, the silk king, owned it; the late Peter Ustinov loved it, Barbara Cartland has a suite named in her honour; Michael Jackson hid from the press there. The queens of the screen stayed at the hotel, the Queen of England enjoyed it and Her Majesty, the Queen of Thailand, is a beloved faithful regular visitor.
Gavin Young: ‘This is a truly gripping, thoroughly researched and well written story of one of the greatest hotels in the world.’