The Singha Story




Initially, "The Singha Story" was just a book project. The book chronicles the journey of one man, Praya Bhirom Bhakdi, from being a son of an aristocrat who was expected to serve the Crown as a civil servant, instead took a chance in the business sector, and finally built Thailand's first and largest brewery, whilst serving the Crown in a new capacity. It is also the story of a family, moving through time, carrying the legacy of the Founder into the future, and expanding the brewery business at the same time, forging through countless obstacles along the way, nearly losing everything at one point in time.


The Singha Story book cover

From a book that was 10 years in the making by different groups of people, Soravij Bhirombhakdi, Praya Bhirom Bhakdi's great-grandson, soon took over the project, and rewrote the contents as well as changing the design of the book to make it more BIG & BOLD, befitting the Founder.

A private museum soon followed, expanding what is in the book into a real life walk through.

The Singha Museum's setting is the abandoned 1967 brewhouse within Boon Rawd Brewery's compound on Samsen Road, Bangkok, Thailand, that ceased production in 2001. The original 1933 brewhouse is next door, and is under renovation in Phase V of the on-going project.

Phase I was The Singha Story book, English version, completed in 2015, the first truly comprehensive look at Thailand's first brewery and the family that runs it.


Praya Bhirom Bhakdi

Praya Bhirom Bhakdi

The Singha Museum
Phase II was the renovation of the 1967 brewhouse that became the setting of The Singha Museum. Visitors are able to walk in the original German-design brewhouse that still houses the original copper vats. Production stopped in 2001 due to the continuous expansion of the City of Bangkok, turning the area into an industrial free zone. The brewhouse laid neglected and gathered dust as well as junk, until plans were made to turn it into a museum in 2015, the area was then cleared. The first phase of the museum was completed in December 2016, after some months delay, and saw minor updates in mid 2017. It is currently opened to guests of Boon Rawd Brewery and its subsidiary companies, as well as private prearranged group tours. Singha Museum

Phase III saw the renovation and modernisation of the Tha Naam 1 building, a mixed used building with reception and meeting rooms situated opposite the museum.

The renovation of the Tha Naam 1 building was finally completed in May 2018. The new modern façade together with the new pier with a new statue of Praya Bhirom Bhakdi represents the forward-looking into the future of the new generations of the Bhirombhakdi Family. A new gate, using the original 1930s design and war-time spellings, was also built, enclosing this area into the "Singha Museum Compound".

Singha Museum Compound

Phase IV was to translate The Singha Story book into the Thai language, which was finally completed at the end of 2017, and was publicly launched at the Bangkok Edge Festival in mid January 2018. The Thai version is smaller than the English version, with soft cover rather than hard, and much lighter to hold open and read, rather than the coffee-table-book style of the English language version.


Singha Museum

Phase V coincides with the 150th anniversary of the birth of the founder, Praya Bhirom Bhakdi, in 2022. A reprint of his diary that was distributed at his funeral with added photos and documents. There will also be an exhiibition of his life in the old buildiing that housed the first brewery. Having found new documents as well as his personal diaries, the Singha Museum will also arrange the brewery's archive, with the goal of cataloguing and introducing an on-line library. 2022 will also see a new Singha Shop in the same area as the 150th anniversary exhibition.

Zone 5 Singha Museum

The legacy of the founder was initially carried forward by his 3 sons - the story told at Zone 5 of the museum.

Phase VI is to renovate the old building that housed the brewery's power plant, which later became the soda water factory, and is now the IT building. It has remnants of the old water filtration machines, which have very authentic feels to it. The Singha Museum Company has taken over half of the building, and will repaint the machines on the first floor, with floors 2 and 4 repurposed to house the company's complete archive of documents, artifacts, and all things old.

Boon Rawd Brewery from the river

View of the Singha Museum (centre), Tha Naam 1 (right) buildings, and the white original 1933 brewhouse from the Chao Praya River.

Phase VII is to renovate the original 1933 building, first cleaning the building and repair the windows and interiors, adding show-lights to the original copper vats, and touch up the façade of the building. In addition, there are plans to place information points at specific places around the Samsen Compound, so that visitors interested in knowing the brewery's history can instantly get information and see old photos using QR codes. Diaries Phase VIII will be the renovation of spaces in the old 1933 building. There is a lot of space that can be used to host diifferent kinds of exhibition, both permanent and roving, though there is an issue of fire escapes which will need to be addressed sometime in the future.
Water Filter The phases listed here show that it will be one very large continuous project. It is a work that nobody sees the importance of, especially here in Thailand, where history seems to be quite insignificant to mostly everyone. But, it is very important to this company, the owning family, and should be to all those who work at and benefit from the company and its subsidiaries. One person has made it his mission to keep, catalogue and arrange everything important to the company and the family, and give anyone and everyone a glimpse into this very special world within Thailand. Singha Museum Gate

"As a descendant of the Founder, and tasked by my family with overlooking the museum and history projects of the brewery, I would like to see my great-grandfather, Praya Bhirom Bhakdi's name carried far into the future. His story is an inspiration in all ways, giving lessons of hard work and perserverance, not giving up hope as well as believing in oneself. He was the epitomy of a Siamese and Thai success story."

- Soravij Bhirombhakdi

Soravij Bhirombhakdi


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