City Buzz

 |  May 1, 2009

A new band of bright lights illuminates the Nimmanheamin Road at the Look At This art gallery (which oddly enough does make one crane one’s head to look every time), just opposite the Amari Rincome car park. Owner, Marshall Kelly, hailing from the streets of New York, brings his personal taste and touch to the local art scene. Representing mainly resident Thai and foreign artists, this maze of a gallery is four floors high decorated by the artists exhibiting, and offering an interesting range of print works, paintings, sculptures and textile art. It’s a cool place to spend an hour browsing and Look At This welcomes art lovers who either wish to purchase interesting local art or simply meander around the gallery. Kelly is beginning to extend his talents abroad, showcasing local Thai art in other countries, spreading the word that Lanna is branching out. If you’re reading this and you’re an artist, you can visit the gallery and talk about exhibiting your work, if you’re a collector or even a person with an empty space on your living room wall then it’s definitely worth a Look At This.

Open 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. Mondays closed early.
6/6 Nimmanhaemin (opposite Amari Rincome Hotel)
Tel: 053 400921 Fax: 053 400921#16

KPN is a massive music company based in Bangkok that is a household name in Thailand, with their own label and production, music awards and their famous music academy. They’ve now moved up north to Chiang Mai. You can learn just about any instrument here (which they supply) as well as ballet, hip-hop, jazz and ballroom dancing. Instructions start for post toddlers at 3 and a half years old, and go from beginners to advanced, so if you want to leave your kids somewhere useful on a Saturday morning then why not have them learning how to play some rock tunes on the electric guitar or let them hit the drums? The school has one farang teacher teaching jazz guitar but classes can be taught in both English and Thai . . . Oh yeah, and you can even have your children sing to their favourite tune accompanied by music, have it recorded, and listen to your children’s recording over and over and over again!

Open 10 a.m. – 8 p.m., Sat – Sun 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
5/1-2 Moon Muang Road
(close to Mad Dog)
Tel: 053 279899, 089 63199899 (in Thai)

A fantastic new addition to Chiang Mai’s party scene, The Martini bar has great – yes you guessed it – martinis and cocktails but that is not all. It definitely boasts some of the best ‘bar’ music Citylife has seen in Chiang Mai, everything from retro, salsa, funky house to hip-hop with popular DJs rotating days and styles.

Their chic, yet comfortable style makes it the ideal spot for everyone; the interior has space to dance, a large bar with bar stools if you want to mingle, plus many tables. Want a more laid back scene? Head to the outdoor smoking patio; relax on a beanbag or comfy couch and take in the view.
The Martini Bar is a happening place with special events and different themes every night, this bar is always interesting.

Open 8 p.m. – Midnight
3rd floor Tawan Trendy Mall,
Sridonchai Rd. (opposite Pantip Plaza)
Tel: 089 430 6030

Lush, green, tropical, secluded, quiet and fragrant, this Lanna paradise is also very urban, being set bang smack in the city centre while cocooned in its well designed garden and Lanna style architecture. This boutique resort has been completely transformed from a noodle shop into a hideaway with water features, antiques, gorgeous teak murals and Thai paintings.
Their suites made Citylife want to permanently move in: huge comfy couches in a living room with flat screen TV, full kitchen, jacuzzi, even a private garden terrace accompanied with a sexy bed draped with a mosquito net. Good quality, healthy and big portioned dishes on their menu, lower than average prices for their spa treatments and infused with tranquillity; this is definitely a place to send your visitors to stay when they next come to town. Shewe Wana is currently featuring a special promotion: stay 3 nights pay for 2 with a complimentary two hour spa package and a Thai set dinner.

296, 298 Charoen Muang Road
Tel: 053 240020, 053 240023

Chiang Mai’s first real Belgian Bistro has opened in part of the city not known for western influence. Galae Thong Tower Bistro, on the ground floor of the large modern condo block of that name offers Belgian Frites (not French fries) and Flemish Stew (not Irish!) Just off Chang Klan Road, near The Park Hotel, Stig Vinck and his lovely team serve up top notch food, beer and wine that won’t break the bank. Off-street parking is easy. So if you’d like to try mayonnaise on your fries instead of ketchup, and cheese croquettes instead of pizza, give it a try. Live music and special menus every Friday evening!

Open Mondays-Saturdays 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. Fridays open later due to the special menu. Closed Sundays.
Galae Thong Tower Condominium, Chang Klan Road
Tel: 053 204570, 089 851 5741

The brand new La Vie en Rose opened with a bang. Their grand opening boasted over 200 people, live sax players, loads of food and great drinks, making them instantly well known in Chiang Mai’s bourgeoning gay community. Their welcoming and entertaining staff, comfy sofas, lively music, full bar and unpretentious and simple setting will be enhanced by plans for special events and live music. The owner’s main goal is to provide a meeting place for the gay community: a place to meet, enjoy good conversation and find new friends. Close to everything yet in a very quiet spot, La Vie en Rose is a great hideaway to meet others with similar interests. Special promotion for May: 3 bottles of Leo or Chang for 120 baht, 3 bottles of Singha or Tiger for 150 baht, 2 bottles of Heineken for 120 baht or 120 baht for a cocktail from 9 – 11 p.m.

Open: 6 p.m. – Midnight
Across from Hillside 4, Huay Kaew Rd.
Tel: 053 895199

If you are looking for the best quality clothes for your children, we would like to recommend Little Monkey and Kidberry. This baby shop features the finest fashions such as dresses, hats, shoes, and socks as well as dolls, toys and more. Their clothes hail from all over the world and include well known American and European brands. They cater to many ages of kiddies from precious newborns to rambunctious ten-year olds. Little Monkey & Kidberry make it easy to find stylish pieces for your little angels; so don’t miss the opportunity to dress them up in this chic wear.

Open 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.
G floor, Central Plaza Chiang Mai Airport
Tel: 080 1200001, 083 2059564

With 21 years of experience in designing and manufacturing mango wood products, usually for export to Europe, Wasana has finally decided to share their collection with Chiang Mai. Their brand new showroom exhibits everything from mirrors, vases, and knickknacks, to furniture and centre pieces all in strong elegant styles and colours _ real pieces of art not just furniture and woodwork. Check out their website and view their extensive collection.

Open Monday – Thusday
8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
69 Moo 13 Sankhampaeng
Tel: 053 392161, 053 392447

Mahanaga has long been a famous restaurant in Bangkok, having been included in Thailand Tatler’s Thailand’ Best Restaurants for many years. Its Chiang Mai branch, set in moody and atmospheric Lanna style old houses canopied by gigantic old trees and romantically draped vines, right on a quiet area of the Ping River, serves up scrumptious and interesting fusion Thai dishes. Painstakingly prepared food is beautifully presented either in the comfort of air-conditioned and elegant indoor dining, or on the breezy banks of the Ping. This luxurious restaurant features a long list of famous Thai delights recreated in the unique style of their experienced Bangkok chef. Mahanaga is ideal for a romantic evening or to take friends, family or clients for an intimate and fine dining experience. They also provide catering for outside parties.

Open 9.30 a.m. – Midnight
Charoenrat Road, Faham
Tel: 053 261112

The title says it all, Woven Sunbeams – the latest addition to the Patricia Cheesman Collection. Patricia Cheeseman, owner of Studio Naenna, has, for decades, been renowned for her knowledge and collection of South East Asian textiles as well as her own textile and fashion designs. Inspired by Tanjong Aru beach, Gaya Island, Woven Sunbeams, woven by Viroy Nanthapoom, are not traditionally Thai in colour or style, echoing the designs of Indonesia, where she spent many years. With a vibrant mixture of colours this celebration of light and reflection is exceptionally unique. These gorgeous works of high quality silk weft ikat depict a world that brings harmony and deep realisation automatically. Pictures of these pieces do not do them justice; you have to see the real thing.

Gallery Hours Wednesday
10:00 am – 4:00 pm (please phone first)
and other days by appointment contact Lamorna at 053 226042 or