Thai House of the Central Plain
Most traditional Thai houses in the central plain that have survived to our time are similar and nonvaried in the main styles. The majority of them were built between some one hundred to one hundred and fifty years ago. They are known for high gabled roof, “panlom” or gabled roof panel, generously wide eaves, ample space underneath the house on stilts. Thai houses in the central plain come in different categories, i.e. Thai house for lone family unit, Thai house that does business on the dry land, residence for royal personages, and living quarters for Buddhist monks.
Characteristics of Thai Houses in the Central Plain
1. High floor level allowing an averaged man to walk with clearance above his head and another floor of about forty centimetres below the main flooras to allow free ventilation and sitters on the main floor to hang their legs in comfort. High floor level is also for the following reasons:
1.1 Safety from wild beasts and possible intruders during night time.
1.2 As a measure against any inconvenience from flooding.
1.3 Space under the house for storage of farming equipment such as “kwian” (buffalo drawn wagon), planks, boats, ploughing set, large frying pan, etc.
1.4 Floor space under the house is used for producing handicraft, and a common sitting or squatting area.
2. High gabled roof and ample slanting eaves, and the roof cover made from a tap or earthenware tiles.
3. Large platform area which may represent as much as forty percents of the total floor area allowing exposure to sunshine and good clean air.
Thai house in the central plain has its roof line oriented along east west direction. This is to cut down the amount of sun light into the main body of the house and at the same time obtain the maximum benefit of the cool winds.
Information from: “Rice and Thai Ways of Life” published by Office of the National Culture Commission.