My latest story in Nikkei Asia is a close look at Very Bangkok, Philip Cornwel-Smith‘s seminal ode to Thailand’s capital.
In 2019, Bangkok was the most-visited city in the world, known for its temples, canals, palaces, local communities, street food, shopping, nightlife and freewheeling, relaxed ambience. That ambience has been somewhat tarnished in recent years, amid profound changes in the Thai capital. Concrete canyons lined by swish megamalls and high-rise hotels are replacing wooden house communities and narrow alleys, while living conditions for the vulnerable have not improved.
Since the country’s most recent military coup in 2014, the Thai government has done its best to stifle positive change — refusing to deal with chronic pollution and closing down the world’s most vibrant street food culture while responding to challenges with censorship, violence and imprisonment.
Read the full story in Nikkei Asia.