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Buy 2/Get 1 Thailand Tour Special | The Antiques Diva

Thailand Is On Sale! The Antiques Diva Buy 2 Get 1 Free Tour Special

The best way to battle the end of summer blues… is to book a Winter holiday tour with The Antiques Diva® & Co! 

Buy 2/Get 1 Free Thailand Tour Special 

  • Book a 2 Day Chiang Mai Thailand Antiques Buying Tour, Get a 1 Day Bangkok Antiques Buying Tour FREE
  • Travel: November 2017 – February 2018

Book a 2-day private, custom Chiang Mai Thailand tour with our expert Diva Guide, and we’ll provide you with a full 1-day Bangkok tour! 
Bangkok and its better-looking sister to the north Chiang Mai, are treasure chests of exotic antiques that tempt even the most well-traveled shopper. In the Bright Light Big City of Bangkok, you find a wealth of inventory from various time periods the reflecting cultures of Thailand and its surrounding countries. In Chiang Mai, you enter the ancient kingdom of Lanna – which traditionally is a crossroads for trade routes through the Golden Triangle into Laos, Burma, China and beyond. Our Thailand Antiques Tour Guide will custom plan an Asian antiques buying tour for you whether you’re looking to purchase antique furniture, textiles, decorative accessories, handicrafts and artisanal creations or architectural salvage. We will also help maximize your time and money by translating and negotiating on your behalf, and finally, liaise you with an international shipper. 

Book A Tour with The Antiques Diva & Co

Mention THAILANDSPECIAL when booking your trip

 

Angela Somwalya Asia Antiques DivaYour Thailand Antiques Diva Guide, Chief Asian Diva Guide Angela Somwaiya, has lived in Thailand over 20 years and has one of the most highly respected antiques shops in Bangkok, Paul’s Antiques, and over 20 years expertise sourcing Asian antiques. In fact, Angela takes you to the many antique stores where she personally has been sourcing for her store. As one of the leading experts in Southeast Asian antiques, Angela’s design eye understands how to create a modern global mix with Asian and European antiques and art. Angela is an expert guide to sourcing Asian bespoke furniture makers using reclaimed teak, and how to up-cyle and repurpose found items.

 

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

Antiques warehouse, Chiang Mai, Thailand 

 

Chiang Mai Antiques Tour
Available 7 days a week
One to Three Day Tour

The Chiang Mai region is ideal for trade clients because it is home to the best wholesale antiques sources in South East Asia with the most variety of inventory from Thailand as well as from neighboring countries. In part this is because of the historical traditions and geographical positioning in what has traditionally been called the Golden Triangle where the borders of 3 countries meet – Myanmar, Laos and Thailand. Lanna culture has distinctiveness from the rest of Thailand. It was an independent kingdom for years, and you can see Indian and Chinese influences. It has distinctive architecture that incorporates hand carved woods and stylistic motifs. While Chiang Mai is Thailand’s second largest city and has all the modern amenities of a modern city, the culture of the people is still reminiscent of the countryside where you find a slower pace of life, more personal interaction, and people are more patient and kind. There is also an influence of the hill-tribe culture in the region, which creates product variety because the hill-tribe handicrafts are different than the city and royal cultures. From antique furniture and decorative accessories to architectural salvage and beyond, Chiang Mai is a magical place to source a variety of Asian antiques. Whether you’re looking to source small amulets or entire rice barns for architectural salvage, our Chiang Mai Antiques Buying Tour has a lot to offer. As always, on tour our Thailand Antiques Tours Guide will translate, negotiate, and liaise you with an international shipper.

Bangkok | Thailand Tour Special | The Antiques Diva

Wat Arun, Bangkok, Thailand

 

Bangkok Antiques Tour
Available 7 days a week
One to Three Day Tour 

All roads lead to Bangkok. Being the major city of South East Asia, all antiques wind their way through this city – so you will find antiques from the rest of Thailand as well as Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Indonesia, India, and even China. While you will certainly have the opportunity to purchase classic Asian antiques such as Buddha statues, Bangkok offers so much more. Ornate architectural salvage from temples and Thai homes as well as garden antiques such as Spirit Houses, benches, lanterns, and other pieces can be found in abundance. When it comes to furniture, our Guide will take you to hidden sources where you’ll see Rattanakosin Period antique furniture, scripture cabinets, traditional Thai beds and tables, cabinets, mirrors, and Chinese furniture. For those who love decorative accessories, shop for red lacquer containers, betel boxes, hill-tribe weathered baskets, sturdy pottery, brass and wood carvings, and opium weights and tools. You’ll also find textiles, costumes, amulets, gems, and Thai jewelry, as well as antique handicrafts from the many villages surrounding Bangkok. On our Thailand antiques tours we will translate and negotiate on your behalf, maximizing your time and money. We also liaise you with a shipper to get your purchases home.

 

WATCH: Antiques Sourcing at Bangkok Chatuchak Market with Toma Clark Haines of The Antiques Diva & Co

 

 

Chatuchak Market – Bangkok’s JJ Market Shopping Tour
Available Saturday & Sunday
Limited Availability Mid-Week Upon Request
Full Day Tour

Everyone knows the Paris Flea Market is the place to shop for antiques in Europe… In Asia the equivalent is Bangkok’s Chatuchak Market (aka the JJ Market). It’s massive and sprawling… and the best bits are hidden. Most tourists arrive amidst the tourist tack or get lost in the maze that sells literally everything from pets to candles to t-shirts. The lucky ones find their way to the housewares and decorative accessories – even the reproduction antiques – but to get to the true antiques, off the main soi’s, tucked away in alleyways you need an expert’s hand and that’s where we come in. Our Thailand Antiques Tours Diva Guides not only know the vendors, but they know the hidden antique warehouses, they know the fakes from the genuine pieces and they know how to avoid the heat – escaping occasionally from the brutal heat into AC and when and where to rehydrate with a fresh coconut. They even know the best loos. Shopping the JJ Market without The Antiques Diva & Co simply put is a waste of your time. We save you money by bargaining on your behalf – remember in Thailand negotiation is an art. And as we know the market like the back of our hand, we save you energy by helping you avoid both sensory overload and frustrating dead ends. What To Buy? Everything, but our favorites include Thai Wooden Carvings, Burmese Antique Teak Furniture, Buddhist Manuscript boxes, Handwoven Hill Tribe Baskets, Theater Chairs, Shophouse Display Furniture, Antique Textiles and Art Prints, Architectural Remnants, Vintage Garden Furniture, Khmer Stone Carving, Retro Accessories and billions of Buddha heads (both tourist market reproductions as well as original period pieces). And while these aren’t antique we love them – Thai and Chinese silk and silk lanterns and lighting galore. Not to mention jewelry – both new and old – as well as fusion fashion. And let’s not forget fabulous lunch. In Thailand it’s all about the food – the Thai eat ALL DAY LONG, so you won’t turn a corner without another opportunity to feed your mouth. And of course we know where the best bites are. Our guide meets you at your hotel and whisks you away to the market so you avoid getting lost in the crowds – taking you directly to the area of the market you’re most interested in seeing.

Discover more Antiques Diva Thailand and Asia tours here.

 

For more information about our Thailand Tour Special
and to book your private, custom Thailand tour

contact toma@antiquesdiva.com 

Let your senses be thrilled – your Thailand antiques buying tour is guaranteed to offer surprising finds! And we will make sure you stay fresh and refueled, and ready to experience everything Chiang Mai and Bangkok have to offer!

Kop khun kha, 

Toma Clark Haines – The Antiques Diva 

 

 

Chaing Mai Thailand Temple

Chiang Mai: Entry to Asia’s Golden Triangle

The Golden Triangle: Thailand, Myanmar and Laos   

Chiang Mai Antiques sourcing with Toma Clark Haines The Antiques DivaPhotos by Marisa Marchitelli

Let me let you in on an Antiques Diva® secret… Chiang Mai is the ideal place to antiques shop for trade clients – antique dealers, interior designers, hoteliers, developers etc –  because it is home to the most number of wholesale antiques sources, and antiques warehouses in South East Asia.  Here you’ll find the most variety of inventory from Thailand as well as from neighboring countries. In part this is because of the historical traditions and geographical positioning in what has traditionally been called the Golden Triangle where the borders of 3 countries meet – Myanmar, Laos and Thailand. Lanna culture has distinctiveness from the rest of Thailand. It was an independent kingdom for years, and you can see Indian and Chinese influences.

The distinctive local architecture incorporates hand carved woods and stylistic motifs – and with architectural salvage one of the top items found in the regions antique warehouses you have the opportunity to literally take a piece of Chiang Mai home with you! One of my favorite antique warehouses actually sells ENTIRE rice barns which can be dismantled and sent across the pond and rebuilt in your hometown!

Chiang Mai - Antiques sourcing with Toma Clark Haines The Antiques Diva

Sourcing architectural salvage in Chiang Mai: rice barns can be dismantled and shipped directly to you.

While Chiang Mai is Thailand’s second largest city and has all the modern amenities of a modern city, the culture of the people is still reminiscent of the countryside where you find a slower pace of life, more personal interaction, and people are more patient and kind. There is also an influence of the hill-tribe culture in the region, which creates product variety because the hill-tribe handicrafts are different than the city and royal cultures. From antique furniture and decorative accessories to architectural salvage and beyond, Lanna culture has distinctiveness from the rest of Thailand.

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

Sourcing Asian antiques in Chiang Mai warehouses on an Antiques Diva tour. 

It was an independent kingdom for years, and you can see Indian and Chinese influences. It has distinctive architecture that incorporates hand carved woods and stylistic motifs. Chiang Mai is a magical place to source a variety of Asian antiques.

lead Asia Antiques Diva Guide Angela Somwaiya

Lead Asia Antiques Diva Guide Angela Somwaiya, owner of Paul’s Antiques in Bangkok. 

Shopping in Chiang Mai

Only a quick 1-hour flight from Bangkok, we recommend you fly Thai Airways over one of the budget airlinesWhile the price difference is minimal, the services is hands down better than Air Asia. And while I’m not going to give away any of our antiques sources I will tell you that even if you only go for shopping the traditional handicrafts you’re in shoppers heaven! Hit San Kamphaeng Road or handicraft highway to find pottery, stoneware, silverware, lacquerware, paperware, sculptures, jewelry, wood carvings and silk products. The umbrella factory is my favorite stop on this stretch!

My friend Carla Stolper, founder of 
CFMichaels, lives in Bangkok and travels regularly to Chiang Mai. She explains, “Local artisans circle the city while vintage and antique shops dot the landscape. Side-of-the-road vendors are overflowing in architectural remnants and furniture. Day and night bazaars sell it all alongside live music and endless food venues.”
Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

Shopping in Chiang Mai on an Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tour to Thailand.

Book A Tour with The Antiques Diva & CoWhether you’re looking to source small amulets or entire rice barns for architectural salvage, our Chiang Mai Antiques Buying Tour has a lot to offer. As always, on tour our Thailand Antiques Tours Guide will translate, negotiate, and liaise you with an international shipper.

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tour to Chiang Mai, Thailand.

The Antiques Diva & Co offers 4 private Thailand antique tours, each one customized for you, and we can combine with other Asian country itineraries – ideal when booked in conjunction with our Bangkok tour – and create private antiques buying and design inspiration tours to meet our all your sourcing needs.

Marble Sitting Buddha Statue in front of Antique Thai Painting Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

Marble sitting Buddha statue in front of antique Thai painting.

Our Online Asia Antiques Course

Do you want to learn more about how to buy Asian antiques? I have collaborated with Antiques Diva Asia Guide Angela and MyAntiqueSchool to create the first online Asia antiques course! During the unique and collaborative online course we take you on a journey through South East Asian antiques using on-location video lectures filmed at Paul’s Antiques and other exclusive locations in Bangkok. The subjects are then discussed and debated in the online classroom, with weekly assignments evaluated by Angela. Course subjects covered include colonial era furniture, Burmese teak, lacquerware, hill tribe furniture, hill-tribe baskets, temple relics, architectural items and Buddha statues.

For more information about our Asian antiques course, visit http://www.my-antique-school.com.

Book A Tour with The Antiques Diva & CoSawatdee,

Toma – The Antiques Diva

 

 

Antiques Diva Asia Antiques Sourcing Tours Thailand- Chiang Mai

Introducing Antiques Diva Thailand Antique Tours

Thailand Antique Tours with The Antiques Diva

Wat Po Thai Temple Thailand Antique Tours with The Antiques Diva & Co2016 was a whirlwind year as I immersed myself in Asian culture by moving to Asia for several months to research and finalize our Asia antique sourcing services. My home base was Thailand. Whether you’re spending one night in Bangkok or visiting its better-looking sister to the north Chiang Mai, exotic antiques tempt even the most well-traveled shopper. In the Bright Light Big City of Bangkok you find a wealth of inventory from various time periods the reflecting cultures of Thailand and its surrounding countries. In Chiang Mai you enter the ancient kingdom of Lanna – which traditionally is a crossroads for trade routes through the Golden Triangle into Laos, Burma, China and beyond. Our Thailand Antiques Tours Guides will custom plan an Asian antiques buying tour for you whether you’re looking to purchase antique furniture, textiles, decorative accessories, handicrafts and artisanal creations or architectural salvage. We will also help maximize your time and money by translating and negotiating on your behalf, and liaising you with an international shipper to get your purchases home.

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

The Antiques Diva™ & Co offers custom antiques buying tours for tourists and trade professionals to 14 countries in Europe and Asia. Whether you’re looking to buy one specific piece or fill an entire container, our personal shopping antique buying guides share their vast knowledge of secret sources to take you to all the right places. You can now book an Asian antique buying tour with The Antiques Diva to Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia – along with our repertoire in 8 European countries.

Angela Somwalya Asia Antiques DivaChief Asian Diva Guide Angela Somwaiya has one of the most highly respected antiques shops in Bangkok, Paul’s Antiques, and over 20 years expertise sourcing Asian antiques. In fact, Angela is taking you to the many antique stores where she personally has been sourcing for her store. As one of the leading experts in Southeast Asian antiques, Angela’s design eye understands how to create a modern global mix with Asian and European antiques and art. Angela is an expert guide to sourcing Asian bespoke furniture makers using reclaimed teak, and how to up-cyle and repurpose found items.

Having lived in Thailand over 20 years, Angela delivers insider knowledge on buying and sourcing antiques in Asia. Angela collects antique textiles and jewelry, and has extensive knowledge on the subject as well as one of the best private textile collections in Thailand! Angela loves to share her passion and knowledge of Asia!

Handwoven Baskets on Antqiue Asian Furniture Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang MaiThe Antiques Diva & Co offers 4 private Thailand antique tours, custom Thailand combined with other Asian country itineraries are designed to meet our client’s needs:

  • Bangkok Antiques Tour
    Available 7 days a week
    One to Three Day Tour
    Ornate architectural salvage from temples and Thai homes as well as garden antiques such as Spirit Houses, benches, lanterns and other pieces can be found in abundance. When it comes to furniture, our Guide will take you to hidden sources where you’ll see Rattanakosin Period antique furniture, scripture cabinets, traditional Thai beds and tables, cabinets, mirrors, and Chinese furniture. For those who love decorative accessories, shop for red lacquer containers, betel boxes, hill-tribe weathered baskets, sturdy pottery, brass and wood carvings, and opium weights and tools. You’ll also find textiles, costumes, amulets, gems, and Thai jewelry, as well as antique handicrafts from the many villages surrounding Bangkok.
  • Chatuchak Market – Bangkok’s JJ Market Shopping Tour
    Available Saturday & Sunday
    Limited Availability Mid-Week Upon Request
    Full Day Tour
    Shopping the JJ Market without The Antiques Diva & Co simply put is a waste of your time. What To Buy? Everything, but our favorites include Thai Wooden Carvings, Burmese Antique Teak Furniture, Buddhist Manuscript boxes, Handwoven Hill Tribe Baskets, Theater Chairs, Shophouse Display Furniture, Antique Textiles and Art Prints, Architectural Remnants, Vintage Garden Furniture, Khmer Stone Carving, Retro Accessories and billions of Buddha heads (both tourist market reproductions as well as original period pieces). And while these aren’t antique we love them – Thai and Chinese silk and silk lanterns and lighting galore. Not to mention jewelry – both new and old – as well as fusion fashion.
  • Ayutthaya Antiques Tour
    Available Monday to Friday
    One-Day Tour
    The former capital of Siam, visit private houses and secret warehouses and hidden lanes in Ayutthaya stacked with architectural salvage. Go home inspired by an ancient culture long vanished. Similar to Louis 16th in France gaining his design inspiration from his visit to Pompeii, Ayuttaya allows you the opportunity to re-imagine the heritage left behind.
  • Chiang Mai Antiques Tour
    Available 7 days a week
    One to Three Day Tour
    From antique furniture and decorative accessories to architectural salvage and beyond, Chiang Mai is a magical place to source a variety of Asian antiques. Whether you’re looking to source small amulets or entire rice barns for architectural salvage, our Chiang Mai Antiques Buying Tour has a lot to offer.

Antiques Diva Asia Buying Tours Thailand: Chiang Mai

In addition, The Antiques Diva & Co offers Asian antique sourcing services for when your schedule does not allow Asian antique buying trips.

tip: To learn more about how to buy Asian antiques
Angela and I have an online course at MyAntiqueSchool: the 1st global course on how to buy antiques in Asia 

 

In my own home, I’m incorporating more Asian antiques with the European antiques I’ve long collected, and find they juxtapose beautifully with my distinctly modern home and art. I was beyond thrilled when my shipment from Asia arrived and I was able to mix in my new Asian antiques!

Mixing European and Asian Antiques with The Antiques Diva To book an Asia Antiques Buying Tour contact toma@antiquesdiva.com

Sawatdee,

Toma – The Antiques Diva

Shopping in Chiang Mai

Dear Diva Readers,

I’m delighted that my friend Carla of CF Michaels is Guest Blogging again today giving a few tips on shopping in Chiang Mai. I’m currently in Thailand on vacation and her travel shopping tips have been invaluable for me so it’s a pleasure to share her tips with you. Carla is an American who has lived around the world from Berlin to Bangkok and wherever she goes she seeks out chicness to sell in her online global boutique.

carla stopler in thailand

When I told Carla I was traveling to Chiang Main in Northern Thailand she dipped into her little black book to share her tips! She writes: “If you travel all the way to Thailand you really shouldn’t miss the Northern city of Chiang Mai, an inexpensive hour flight from Bangkok. Traditional handicrafts and works from extraordinary local artisans encircle the city. Independent vintage and antique shops dot the landscape. Side-of-the-road vendors are overflowing in architectural remnants and furniture. Day and night bazaars sell it all alongside live music and endless food venues.

carla in chiang mai

You can hire a taxi/driver for the day at a very reasonable rate, right from the airport – they’re waiting for you and know just where to take you, but being specific about what you are interested in will help you make the best of your time.

new-car-1024x480 chiang mai

 

chiang mai

Perhaps the best place to go is the San Kampaeng District – Hwy 106 – also known as the Handicraft Highway. Famous for silk and umbrella factories there is literally shopping at every corner! Although you literally could fly from Bangkok in the morning, shop all day, and return on an evening flight, if you have the time, lodging choices are top-notch… My favorite place to stay is the Four Seasons Chiang Mai which is out of town a bit but worth the additional taxi ride!

four seasons in chiang mai

 

chiang mai2

Shopper’s Tips – Learning the local lingo!

Certain words are pronounced differently in Thailand based on your gender.

For example:

Sa-wat-dee-kah = Hello (Females)

Sa-wat-dee-kop = Hello (Males)

Kop khun kah = Thank You (Females)

Kop khun kop = Thank You (Males)

More importantly, and same for both:

Tao rai = How much is it?

Paeng = Expensive!

1977479_742900215750692_849519436_n

Buddhas … Reverence for Buddha is a defining aspect of Thai culture. In an effort to safeguard historical and spiritual treasures there are specific laws regulating their export out of Thailand. It is important to know that any Buddha image over 12cm (5 in) cannot be taken out of the country without approval from the Fine Arts Department / Ministry of Culture. Shop owners should have legitimate pieces tagged and can provide or assist with certificates.

chiang mai shopping

Discount… While many vendors do not speak English, they all know and use the word “DISCOUNT.” Be reasonable, but feel free to use it too indiscriminately – everything is negotiable.

Morning Price… Thai merchants believe a sale before noon will bring them good luck & good fortune for the day, so they almost always will offer you a “Morning Price.” If they don’t, be sure to ask for it.

10014696_746530385387675_7080561747728103518_n

Attitude … Thais are extremely friendly, gracious and hospitable and like for you to be happy. However they don’t respond well to loud, aggressive, impatient behavior – having an attitude will get you nowhere. There’s a reason it’s called The Land of Smiles. So smile, a lot!

On that note – Cheese!
The Antiques Diva® & FriendsCF MICHAELS GLOBAL BOUTIQUE

 

Antiquing in Bangkok

Dear Diva Readers,

This August for summer holiday I’m leaving Europe behind and heading to Asia! And since I was traveling abroad in Thailand I sought out advice from one of the most savvy people I know asking Carla Stopler CEO of the E-commerce boutique CF Michaels to guest blog! Carla’s guest blog proves the New York Times commentary correct, “To travel across Bangkok is to see several worlds at once…infused with the Thai village traditions of hospitality and graciousness.”

Guest Blog – Antiquing in Bangkok by CF Michaels E Boutique

bangkok photo1

I’m always at risk of wandering madly off topic when I first attempt to set the stage and sum up the vibe of living in Southeast Asia. The cultural landscape here colors everything you do in such a distinct way that I always feel compelled – it almost seems essential. Fortunately for all of us I have no problem staying on point when the point is shopping, and the scene here is like no other. It stands to reason that ancient cultures have a lot of interesting things hanging around, and from high-end showrooms to street markets to back-alley shops and village crossroads, Thailand is rich with treasures and curiosities.

bangkok 2nd photo insert after sentence from high-end showrooms to street markets to back-alley shops and village crossroads, Thailand is rich with treasures and curiosities.

bangkok 3 insert immediately after photo 2

Antique and vintage venues are peppered throughout this urban sprawl. But without doubt the most internationally recognized shopping spot in Bangkok, with the largest mix of new, vintage, antique and everything including the sink, is the Chatuchak Weekend Market.

bangkok4 Chatuchak Weekend Market

By most accounts this market encompasses nearly 35 acres, with 27 sections and 15,000+ vendors selling items in roughly 11 categories. You can find everything from framed formaldehyde insects to jewelry to crystal chandeliers, wrapping paper to vintage clothes, aromatherapy and gongs, dishes and glasses and cutlery to Buddhas and wooden boats, doorknobs and oil paintings to baskets and antique chests, to, well, live pythons. To say it’s an assault on the senses is selling it short. More importantly, it’s a marvelous place to see a true cross-section of daily Thai culture – a must for the global shopping bucket list.

(Design industry icons Vicente Wolf and John Robshaw are fans – I’m always on the lookout.)

bangkok photo5 insert after Vincent Wolf sentence

bangkok photo6 insert immediately after 5

Shopper’s Tip: Chatuchuk is officially open on Saturdays and Sundays, but most shops in the market are open for business by 10 – 11:00am on Fridays. You’ll have about 50% less crowd to navigate through. Additionally, you can find gems hidden in nooks and crannies on most any soi surrounding the market (“soi” is the Thai word for “street”).

bangkok 7 insert after shoppers tip and explanation on soi

A significant amount of the antique furniture you find on the market in Bangkok actually comes from 18th-19th century China, as well as Myanmar (Burma), Tibet and occasionally India. What they do brilliantly here is repurposing – the piece as a whole may be relatively new construction, but most if not all of the typically teak parts are old.

Teak has been a protected national resource in Thailand for about 25 years and harvesting is prohibited. Trees that produce the resin used to make lacquer are also indigenous to SE Asia, so you see it widely used in the refinishing process.

bangkok 8 insert after teak explation

But here’s an important note to keep in mind when antiquing in Thailand: This is a massive international tourist market, and coupled with the on-going, ever-growing interest in the traditional styles and cultural and spiritual symbols of the Far East, it’s also the land of extraordinary reproductions in both quantity and quality. Authenticity can be a tricky area.

An antiques dealer here shared with me a tip that made identifying a particular piece of furniture seem far less intimidating. He said if you have a table made from a very large, single slab of wood, no visible joiners, common sense tells us it had to have been cut from a very large tree. And we of course know, the larger the tree, the older the tree. I filed that one away…

All that said, legitimate pieces are plentiful here, but if you’re a stickler for provenance and pedigree, if you don’t speak the language, and if you’re not an expert in identifying the real deal, your best bet is to shop the higher-end showrooms where you can communicate with informed dealers.

CF Michael’s Bangkok Antiquing Recommendations include:

OP Place

River City Antiques and Auction House

Silom Galleria

These three resources in particular are multi-story complexes housing vendors specializing in Southeast Asian antiquities and Asian art, sculpture, furniture, porcelains and ceramics, jewelry, textiles, carpets and more. In addition to their reserve of collectibles, a couple fun notes:

OP Place happens to hold court next door to the uber luxurious Mandarin Oriental, Thailand’s oldest hotel, which happens to be home to the most luscious cocktail in the world, the Thai Noon – having one on the riverside terrace is a cool way to beat the Thai heat!

The Mandarin and OP Place, as well as River City Antiques, are also perched on the edge of the Chao Praya River and can be accessed by boat, taking the whole shopping experience up a notch.

And Silom Galleria shares the street with various antique and collectibles shops and other shopping stops, as well as numerous custom tailors and reams of Thai silk (here I could rapidly spiral off topic).

Another trusted resource showcasing a beautifully curated collection of antique Tibetan and Chinese furniture, art and décor is Amantee. Formerly located outside the city in traditional Thai-style houses surrounded by a lush Zen garden, their new location sits in Bangkok proper. A couple things are particularly lovely about Amantee: 1) the owner, who loves to talk antiques and chat about origin and history, 2) its French café and bakery – nothing like a fresh baguette and fine wine to elevate a shopping day.

BIG thanks to The Antiques Diva for the opportunity to share a small snapshot of our current side of the globe! You can find more design and travel, where to follow us, and our E-commerce boutique at www.cfmichaels.com. All images CFMichaels.

Pop kan mai – See You Later!

Carla @ CF Michaels for The Antiques Diva & Co

Travel Tuesday: The Antiques Diva’s Favorite Places

Dear Diva Readers,

When being interviewed one of the questions I am most frequently asked is “If you had to choose one favorite place in the world, where would it be (and why)?” Such a tough question, but there are things I love about each place I travel.

As an American who has lived in Europe nearly 14 years (5 in Paris, 4 in Amsterdam and currently reside in Berlin) I have to say Europe is my playground.  As the owner of Europe’s largest antiques touring company I travel in 7 or 8 countries each month.  Waking up I never know which language to greet the day!  Saint Augustine said, The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”  If that’s true my life is a well-read novel… to choose only one favorite place feels quite simply an impossibility.

Top Travel Destinations, Paris, New York, Tuscany, Oklahoma, Thailand, Asia, The Antiques Diva, Toma Clark Haines Interviews

Top Travel Destinations, Paris, New York, Tuscany, Oklahoma, Thailand, Asia, The Antiques Diva, Toma Clark Haines Interviews

I love different places for different reasons. I grew up in Oklahoma  – and I love the serenity of slipping a saddle on a horse and riding across the salt plains.  In Paris I slip into my European life like someone else does their favorite little black dress.  I was born for Paris and it is here I feel most at home.  I dream in French.

new yorker hotel, Top Travel Destinations, Paris, New York, Tuscany, Oklahoma, Thailand, Asia, The Antiques Diva, Toma Clark Haines Interviews

tuscany, Top Travel Destinations, Paris, New York, Tuscany, Oklahoma, Thailand, Asia, The Antiques Diva, Toma Clark Haines Interviews

And I love New York. The excitement. The lights. The feeling that I’m in the center of the world that’s really just a small town where everyone seems to know everyone else. Meanwhile Tuscany takes me out of the city and reminds me of my country girl roots.

Top Travel Destinations, Paris, New York, Tuscany, Oklahoma, Thailand, Asia, The Antiques Diva, Toma Clark Haines Interviews

But to escape from reality I go to Asia which feels like a mysterious wonderland so foreign, pushing me out of my comfort zone and out of my own skin.  My husband and I area heading back to Thailand for our big vacation this year to go elephant trekking in the Golden Triangle and shopping in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.  (Note: Watch this space – with the help of some of our locally-based Thai design and antiques industry friends we’ll be sharing some shopping tips this summer on Where to Antique and Shop in Thailand).

All said and done, at the end of the day, it would be impossible to choose one favorite place.  There are too many pages in the book of life to read.

Happy Traveling,

The Antiques Diva®

Book a Tour

1:1 custom antique buying tours in 8 European, 6 Asian countries and America, 7 days a week, 365 days a year

The Antiques Diva & Co offers custom planned Antiques Buying Tours for tourists and trade professionals. Whether you’re looking to buy one specific piece or wanting to fill an entire container, our personal shopping antique buying guides share their vast knowledge of secret sources to take you to all the right places.

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