Discovery >

Wake Up In Phuket’s ‘Memory’ Hotel

February 6, 2014 by Khiri Travel | Filed Under: , , ,

Before the advent of large resorts and tourism, Phuket was a mining island. Tin was extracted from the hills of Tungka and Kathu. The wealth from the tin trade created an affluent middle class. Shops and mansions were built. Paved streets made an appearance on the island a few years before they did in Bangkok. The local economy thrived.

memory On ON

Traders needed a place to stay while conducting their business in town. A few years after the turn of the 20th century the first hotel on the island opened: The On On. The name derives from the Chinese term un un which means “happiness to visitors”. Located right at the heart of the city on Phang Nga road it was close to the only bank and the police station as well as the harbor, which in those days was in the heart of the city.

For years The On On remained an icon of the city. It was (and is) an imposing Sino/Portuguese building blending some traits of Chinese as well as European architecture, a characteristic found on most of the historical buildings in town.

After the shutdown of the last mining businesses, Phuket town went to sleep: many shops closed, the once thriving city lost its shine. With a focus on tourism, attention shifted to the coastal areas and mining gave way to large resort developments as the main economic activity.

Luckily The On On was saved and after a one-year restoration process it re-opened its doors in early 2013 as The Memory at On On Hotel. As you enter the building you feel like stepping into another time and era: high ceilings, wooden floors, and a lovely patio all work to conjure an atmosphere of times gone by.

the memory at on on reception

There’s more to the island. Khiri has been closely following the efforts of Phuket town to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We have launched the Phuket Town Discovery Walk as well as the Taste of Phuket day tour for those travelers who want to explore beyond the sandy beaches and peek into the past of this fascinating town.

Staying at The Memory at On On Hotel and using it as a base to walk around Phuket town is like lifting a veil into the secrets of Phuket. Enjoying the tastiest local food, visiting the Chinese shrines and browsing along the old shops on Thalang Road. The beaches of Phuket are the main draw. But don’t overlook Phuket town – the living historical soul of the island.

For more information and bookings, please contact [email protected].

 

Latest post

Market Mishmash in Vientiane

Local markets are absolutely an important part of the Lao experience. Although the authentic street markets are slowly disappearing and being replaced by modern supermarkets and shopping malls, they remain a pillar of the Southeast Asian culture.

Read More

How to Dodge the Crowds at Angkor Wat

Angkor Wat silhouetted against the setting sun is a popular photo desired by the hoards of tourists descending on this ancient temple in the afternoon heat. We have a more peaceful and picturesque way to photograph Angkor Wat.

Read More

American Moondance Adventures find Adventure and Service Learning in Cambodia

This 11-day itinerary of travel in the cities and towns of Cambodia was carefully crafted for a group of American high school students.

Read More

Myanmar Elected: Ms. Khin Omar Win

In this weekly series counting down to the Myanmar General Election on November 8, here are the insights of Ms. Khin Omar Win. She returned to Myanmar in 1996, after having grown up in the United Kingdom, to see a people that are now free from fear..

Read More

Subscribe to our newsletter

Our B2B newsletters are for industry professionals




*We’ll never share your email address and you can opt out at any time.