Ruen Urai History
Welcome to Ruen Urai, a century-old traditional Thai house surviving amidst the hustle and bustle of Bangkok. This house erected on this site in the late 19th century during the reign of King Rama V, the same period as Queen Victoria, was said to belong to an herbal-medicine practitioner, possibly as his live-in apothecary. It was built in the central-plain style of golden teak wood; hence “Ruen Urai” or House of Gold was aptly named linking the house and its current owner.
Khun Urai Vitayakul, the proprietress of the Rose Hotel Bangkok, purchased the property adjacent to the hotel in late 1970s to live close to her workplace. But for nearly three decades, this house that came as part of the compound, mainly served as storage, with an exception of only a few lucky guests in the 70s and the 80s who got to sleep here when the hotel was overbooked.In 2006, the house was dismantled and all pieces shipped to Ayudhya,
a province north of Bangkok, for restoration. About a year later, reassembling process started and soon after, with wood panels back in place upstairs and the new terracotta roof and gable in Ayudhya style (high, sharp and angular) reattached, the house was completed to reveal its former glory.
Some of the columns, door and window panels are original, some are new. The house that was built almost on the ground level now rises up with a cement base underneath for stability. After putting in glass windows on three sides, lightings, air-conditioning system, and a brick wall, the low and dingy basement was transformed into a comfortable, light, and airy dining area.
With its settings and kitchen now perfected and on course with its heritage, Ruen Urai's cuisine is filled with herbs and spices that are full of both flavours and medicinal benefits. Our restaurant strives to bring you the finest delicacies of Thai gastronomy. We hope that you enjoy Ruen Urai's epicurean treasures as well as its pleasant atmosphere. We are very much looking forward to welcoming you back here again soon. And while you're waiting to experience our culinary delights, may we invite you to take your drink and walk around the house to get a glimpse of what life in Bangkok once was like, a century ago.
Ruen Urai, a century-old house in Bangkok’s centre