Old Customs House
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Old Customs House information
Lonely Planet review
Old Customs House was once the gateway to Thailand, levying taxes on traders moving in and out of the kingdom. It was designed by an Italian architect and built in the 1890s; the front door opened onto its source of income (the river) and the grand facade was ceremoniously decorated in columns and transom windows.
Today it’s a crumbling yet hauntingly beautiful home to the fire brigade with sagging shutters, peeling yellow paint and laundry flapping on the balconies. For years the building has been used as a base for the waterborne fire brigade and the firefighters’ families, meaning that the interior of the building can only be accessed by residents.