137 Pillars House

137 Pillars House

Top of the range

More on Chiang Mai

Within the Chiang Mai city limits, hugely popular 137 Pillars House is about as plush as it gets. We visited during one of the quietest periods of the year, and all 30 rooms were full. If you do fancy a splurge, 137 is one of the few spots that warrants it, but make sure you book well ahead.

Travelfish says:

The resort has a slightly unusual location in a clutch of suburban streets behind Wat Ket on the eastern bank of the Ping approximately on the same level as Worarot Market. It's not too convenient for in-town sites but if you can afford to stay here, you can afford a tuk tuk. As with the Anantara, 137 Pillars is built around a venerable old historical building, yet here they’ve made it a central feature and attempted to blend in new constructions around it rather than have it sticking out like a sore thumb. The building in question is a 130-year-old-plus teak-stilt mansion (yes, there are 137 teak stilts or pillars). We were assured it was built by the family of a certain famous 19th century English governess going by the name of Anna.

Plush. : Mark Ord.
Plush. Photo: Mark Ord

The family were apparently involved in the teak trade and a path where elephants dragged logs down to the Ping has also been preserved in the gardens. They also have a small museum underneath the teak mansion—which now serves as bar, gym and restaurant area—displaying objects unearthed during restoration work.

The resort is set in lush gardens and they’ve thankfully kept a lot of the mature trees that used to grace the mansion’s garden. Rooms are split between a series of two-storey villas, each of which contains four rooms—two up and two down. All were occupied when we visited but peeking through windows they looked as plush and well-appointed as the price tag would suggest. Decor is naturally Lanna style, with plenty of wooden furniture and Thai fabrics. All rooms are spacious and come with huge tiled balconies.

Cool off here. : Mark Ord.
Cool off here. Photo: Mark Ord

A major plus for 137 Pillars is that they have restricted the number of rooms to 30 so though availability may be an issue, it does have a more intimate and casual feel to it than many other larger top-range establishments. Among the 30 rooms they do offer four slightly different variations—all suite style—but some with better views, some with their own plunge pools and so on.

As Thai staff were unable to pronounce the names of the various suites they offer, please check their very comprehensive website for full details. (We’re not quite sure who Mr Banes is but Leonowens is the family name of the royal governess.)

Impressive rooms within. : Mark Ord.
Impressive rooms within. Photo: Mark Ord

As is common with this category of hotel, pricing is dynamic, meaning it's changeable on a weekly basis depending not only upon season but also occupancy rates. We’ve listed indicative rates by season, but you’ll have to check their own website or see what online agents have to offer for rates specific to your stay.

Contact details for 137 Pillars House

Address: 2 Nawat Ket Soi 1, Wat Ket
T: (053) 247 788;  F: (053) 248 780  
Email: info@137pillarshouse.com
Web: http://www.137pillarshouse.com
Coordinates (for GPS): 99º0'15.1" E, 18º47'31.23" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: over 8,000B

Room rates

What we were quoted as a walk-in.

Deluxe Suite
Rajah Brooke Suite
13,050 baht 16,200 baht
Private pool villa
Louis Leonowens Pool Suite
31,390 baht 34,316 baht

Reviewed by

Based in Chiang Mai, Mark Ord has been travelling Southeast Asia for over two decades and first crossed paths with Travelfish on Ko Lipe in the early 1990s.

From US$390


Provided by Travelfish partner Agoda. Prefer Booking? Click here.


Our top 10 places to stay in and around Chiang Mai

Awana House
Awana House

Flashpacker standards, budget rates

From 400 baht Walk-in

Diva Guesthouse
Diva Guesthouse

Some of the cutest budget rooms in town

From 120 baht Walk-in

Ma Guesthouse
Ma Guesthouse

Like staying at your Chiang Mai granny’s place

From 500 baht Walk-in

Bed (Phrasingh)
Bed (Phrasingh)

Spot on midrange address

US$60 with Agoda

Galare Guesthouse
Galare Guesthouse

Long-running flashpacker favourite

US$14 with Agoda

Raming Lodge
Raming Lodge

Well situated for night life

US$30 with Agoda

Chiang Mai Thai House
Chiang Mai Thai House

Excellent value for money

US$29 with Agoda

The 3 Sis
The 3 Sis

Simple but effective

From 1,500 baht Walk-in

Karinthip Village
Karinthip Village

Great pool and garden setting

US$56 with Agoda