From its early beginnings as a 5th-century Lawa walled city through the recent boom in residential and commercial design, the temple-studded city of Chiang Mai has become an inspiration for architects and designers. Nestled in a mountain valley in Thailands far north, Chiang Mai has long been a haven for artists and artisans who have taken inspiration from Burmese, Chinese, northern Thai, Shan, Thai Lu, hill-tribe and European sources, then fused them into a uniquely Chiang Mai art and culture. This cross-fertilisation of ideas owes much to the citys history as a vital midway point for mule caravan routes between China and the Gulf of Martaban; even with the demise of the caravan trade it has remained a major supplier of arts and crafts to the world.
Today, the citys historic uniqueness of style merges with post-modernism and functionalism to respond to contemporary urban needs while maintaining a distinctly Chiang Mai identity. With more than 300 stunning colour photographs and clear, concise text, Chiang Mai Style captures the essence of the city's eclectic yet distinctive architectural style. This book celebrates the architecture, interiors and crafts of Thailands second largest city. From the vernacular architecture of the traditional Lanna style to chic residences to luxurious hotels and spas, the essence of this fascinating city is revealed.