Mallika is the retro-city reflecting the past Siamese lifestyle in the Chao Phraya River Basin. During the reign of King Chulalongkorn, Rama V (1873-1910 A.D.), the people’s way of life in 1905 A.D. was plentifully changed. The most pronounced was the abolition of slavery. When freed, these former Siamese slaves had to live and earn a living by themselves without control and supports from their noblemen and masters anymore. They had to live a life of self-sufficiency, self-reliant, and in harmony with all other Siamese people. These changing patterns of lifestyle are the cornerstone of today Thai people.
Saphan Han (Turnable bridge)
Named by its shape. In the past, it was a single sheet of wood laid across the canal. One end tied tightly to the bank, the other let loose. This way, it can be moved (or turned) allowing boats to pass through. In the reign of King Rama IV, it was rebuilt as with steel frame and wooden floor. Until, King Rama V changed it to the Venice’s Rialto or Florence s Ponte Vecchio style which is a wide arch bridge with small shops on both sides, leaving the space in the middle for passersby. His Majesty loved visiting this bridge to buy imported dried fruits such as dried plum.
Ancient Market Zone
In R.E.124, there were several market zones that were considered famous and modern for the era. They are Prange (Intersection) zone, divided into three sections (Prange Nara, Prange Phuthorn, and Prange Sappasart), Yaowarat zone and Bangrak zone.
The Prange Nara Road Zone, the road name comes from the name of HRH Prince Narathipprapanpong whose name at birth was HRH Prince Worawanasakorn, the origin of the royal family surname Worawan Na Ayutthaya. He was a son of King Mongkut (King Rama IV) and the Royal Concubine Kean. He served in the Department of Treasury as the deputy chief. He resided at the palace where his father, the King, built on Tanao road. Its territory connected to the Palace of HRH Prince Thaweethawalai. While residing at this palace, he built the first theater in Thailand called Pridalai Theater. At that time, it was assumed that he requested to build a road cutting through the middle of his palace, and built two commercial building blocks. Thus, people call the street by the name of the palace s owner, "Prange Nara Road"
It was simulated from the prison tower which was built to create an elevated observation point for supervising and preventing prisoner escapes. It is nowadays used as a scenery point of the Mallika city.
It is a detached house for commoner. People living in this type of house were mostly proletariats whose duty was to produce basic living needs such as farming for rice, vegetable and other plantation, weaving, and clothing; all the common occupations of this social class. This type of house in the Mallika shows commoners ways of life in R.E.124.
Reuan Khaha Bodi
It is for the rich. Inside Reuan Khahabodi displays lifestyle of ruling class, including various activities such as fruit & vegetable craving, flower & banana leaf decoration, and etc. All products are actually used and sold in the Mallika city. In the area of Reaun Khahabodi, there is its supplement part, “Reuan Krua”, Traditional Thai Kitchen to provide food for all residents and guests.
Includes rice production house, barn house, and preparing kitchen. It shows the process of rice winnowing, rice milling, rice pounding, and rice cooking by using a large frying pan. In that period, the cooks/housekeepers had to cook food and dessert for many servants and guests by using a charcoal stove.
Reuan Pae Floating House
During that time, the most common mean to transport was by the river. Shop houses, thus, located on the river banks. There were also Ruen Pae or floating houses for trading or as cafe. Tonghoo, the most modern cafe of the era with its imported coffee beans, used its Ruen Pae to accommodate travelers. Its food earned the reputation as the King s favorite. Mallika city displays the King s dishes to demonstrate the simplicity and deliciousness of the true Thai food.
It was used by the rich as a visitor reception. Wealthy Thai people could include high ranking officers or rich merchants. To own Thai traditional dance team to perform for their important visitors was also a popular idea among noblemen then. Mallika City has the largest Reuan Hmoo in Thailand. It displays the living condition of these traditional Thai dancing team; their activities during day and night. When visitors come for dinner, the show is on; the food is served, authentically and neatly displayed with ancient wisdom. We will see some old dishes such as Gangbuan, a thick soup with herbs and entrails.
Mallika, by Thai dictionary, means Jasmine. There are more than a hundred species of jasmine in Thailand that are unknown to newer generations. Mallika city, then, built a jasmine garden collecting various kinds of jasmine for your eyes and noses.