30 April 2015

Hua Hin July 2014 Part VI - Plearn Wan Vintage Village, Baan Sillapin Artists Village

Continued from:
Part I - a bit about the journey from Bangkok to Hua Hin, Chatchai market (day time), Hua Hin Night Market, Asia Herb Association (for spa experience).
Part II - Amari Hotel Hua Hin
Part III - Santorini Park at Cha-Am
Park IV - Chao Lay Seafood, Koti Restaurant, Sangthai Seafood, Meekaruna Seafood
Part V - Cicada Weekend Art Market

Plearn Wan Vintage Village (http://www.plearnwan.com/en/home.php)

Plearn Wan is a retro-themed attraction in Hua Hin. According to the website, Plearn means Play and Learn, whereas Wan is a Thai word meaning yesterday. Hence Plearn Wan is designed and set up for visitors and the new generation to learn history through play, and find out more about life in the olden days.

The facade and entrance to Plearn Wan is eye-catching with an air of nostalgia through the vintage TVs and Vespa. Quite surprised that no entrance fee is charged.

The park itself is not very big, divided into three levels, and there's even a hotel within (level three).

The street is lined with vintage vehicles, an attraction itself for avid vintage car lovers.

These are how vintage juke boxes looked like.

Displays of vintage crockery and items.

Sundry items from the olden days.

Cool-looking retro chairs.

There are many old-school shops like this, reminded me of the old-time grocery stores.

Selling old-time tidbits and games, very similar to how goods were displayed at grocery stores in Singapore when I was young!

This kind of old-school fridge is becoming extinct.

Shop selling clocks, most of which are the old-school models and designs.

Old records.

Another tidbits store.

Also many pushcarts selling desserts.

Herbal drinks.

Coconut drink.

Local street food.

Towards the back of the park is a mini amusement park with game stores and even a mini ferris wheel.

This is where you purchase tokens to play the games.

Game stores.

Hotel entrance/reception. There are 20 rooms in the hotel, each uniquely designed and furnished with different retro-themes.

The restrooms look so cool as well.

Baan Sillapin Artists Village

Baan Sillapin is like the art centre of Hua Hin hosting art galleries, artist studios and classrooms for painting and sculpture lessons.

If you are keen and interested in art, this place is worth a visit, for viewing of paintings, sculptures or even take art lessons.

Artist specialising in wood sculpture.

Apparently the art workshops here are very popular. Well, if we had more time there, I wouldn't mind taking a short workshop to learn some acrylic or oil painting :)

Lovely place to spend 1-2 hours, strolling in the lush gardens and enjoying the creative works of the artists here.

Finally, the recollection of my Hua Hin trip is completed. Would I go back? Yes! For Cicada Market and the seafood!

29 April 2015

Hua Hin July 2014 Part V - Cicada Market

Continued from:
Part I - a bit about the journey from Bangkok to Hua Hin, Chatchai market (day time), Hua Hin Night Market, Asia Herb Association (for spa experience).
Part II - Amari Hotel Hua Hin
Part III - Santorini Park at Cha-Am
Park IV - Chao Lay Seafood, Koti Restaurant, Sangthai Seafood, Meekaruna Seafood

Cicada Weekend Art Market (http://www.cicadamarket.com/en)

Cicada market has got to be the highlight of my Hua Hin trip; I loved it so much that I went two days in a row :) And if there's any reason to go back to Hua Hin, it's for Cicada market.

CICADA stands for Community of Identity Culture Arts & Dynamic Activities, and happens only from Friday to Sunday. The whole area is an open-market concept among lush garden settings offering a very "chillax" atmosphere which I really like. The market has four zones, Art A La Mode, Cicada Art Factory, Amphitheatre and Cicada Cuisine.

The Art A La Mode zone lines the entire site along the pathways, where vendors set up stalls to sell handcrafted items like clothing, bags, accessories, souvenirs etc etc. Many of the vendors are students, and some vendors even from Bangkok.

The Cicada Art Factory is located at the centre of the site, where there are two white buildings that house studios for artists as well as a venue for art exhibitions.

The Amphitheater is located near the entrance, and hosts regular performances by cultural groups and bands.

Cicada Cuisine is the alfresco food area selling all kinds of local fare as well as international cuisine.

These art installations became popular landmarks of the market, and we could see many visitors taking photos of/with them.

From the entrance, we could see the food area, but since it was still very early when we went, we decided to go shopping first!

Unique and interesting handcrafted items are the highlight of the stalls here at Cicada Market. I would say hardly any stalls sell similar items from one another, which is what makes this market so attractive and popular. The stall vendors were all in very relaxed mood, not pushing for sales at all. When it wasn't busy, they would engage in friendly conversations or simply continue working on their creations.

I love these hand-painted canvas shoes, got a pair, they were so comfy.

These weren't just flowers, they were pens. Great souvenirs both aesthetical and functional.

Shop selling pretty-looking hats.

Colourful handcrafted t-shirts, cushions and soft toys.

One of my favourite stalls, selling cushion covers and multipurpose holders.

Hubby's favourite stall, "Wooden Fish", selling hand crafted pictures of fish mounted onto boards to create a "pop-up" effect.

Prices were quite reasonable as well, so hubby picked quite a few small coral fish designs.

As well as a big red coral trout which looks really lovely.

Stall selling handmade soup in different shapes, designs and fragrances.

Cute handmade key cover. Each piece is unique.

Lots of lovely keychains which could double as fragrant pouches.

Handkerchief and hairbands. The flexi-hairbands are made of wires and sewn with pretty cloths, very popular among ladies.

Crochet stall selling an amazing collection of crochet figurines.

Very interesting shop selling these large crochet dolls, that even comes with changeable clothes, bags and accessories.

Vintage car can also turn into a make-shift art gallery/stall.

DIY message frames.

These two white buildings are the Cicada Art Factory hosting art exhibitions.

And studios for artists.

Ground level of the buildings is an alfresco cafe.

More handmade dolls and pillows.

Vintage/retro signboards.

Open-air performance by a local band. How nice it was to enjoy music while shopping, it just made the whole atmosphere felt so cozy.

Another of my favourite stall selling handmade watches. Love the funky designs and I bought one specially to wear for my holidays to Thailand beach resorts!

Shop selling acoustic guitars and ukelele.

Cafe below the Art Factory with retro furniture.

Some cafe merchandise.

Postcards with pictures of Hua Hin in the olden days. Customers can buy the postcards, write, get some unique chops, and send them out here.

This area is outside of the Cicada Market already (just next to it). A more rustic alfresco dining area, selling all kinds of thai street food.

There was also a live band.

Hubby and I were more interested in the street snacks, just buy and eat as we walked along.

This is a crepe cum prata-alike snack, topped with egg, corn, milk or butter. Very crispy and sweet. Yums!

We love the thai pineapple, so sweet and juicy. And they were already pre-cut, very easy to hold and eat.

We also ordered some grilled sotong and pork.

Papaya salad which was so spicy and tangy!

Couldn't remember what this "train" stall was selling, but it's definitely an eye-catching stall.

This stall was selling freshly-squeezed orange juice and other fruit juices. Was very popular and we had to wait for a long time, but really nice.

That's all for Cicada Market, hope we could be back again!

Stay tuned for the last part of my Hua Hin trip, on Plearn Wan Vintage Village and Baan Sillapin Artists Village.