THE MANAGEMENT of Bazaar Hotel in front of which was placed a huge statue of an emaciated, winged figure with golden fangs and scarlet talons early this month has decided to not remove it but build a dome at a cost of 60 million baht to somewhat cover it from openly being seen from the street, Naewna newspaper said last evening (Aug. 28).
Mr. Charlie Nopphawong Na Ayudhya, secretary to this four-star hotel’s executive chairman and the executive committee said at a press conference that the five-metre-tall Kru Kai Kaew statue will not be shifted from the prime spot in front of the hotel despite calls for its removal.
The capital of Buddhist Thailand has countless shrines to spirits and deities, big and small, and many pray and leave offerings in the belief that they will intervene and bring good fortune.
But the new figure, regarded by some as a god of wealth but by others as alien to Buddhism and even sacrilegious, has caused controversy.
Charlie said his hotel had leased the land from State Railway of Thailand but later had demarcated the area upfront and subleased it to Kru Kai Kaew Company for a 20-year period.
According to the contract the tenant is allowed to manage the area and trade but must not damage the hotel nor affect the society.
However, adamant calls for removal of this statue led to Bangkok Metropolitan Authority holding talks with the hotel to somehow hide it from open view to make those who are uncomfortable having it in their midst feel better.
The tenant has now agreed to build a dome to cover the statue with this costing 60 million baht of which the Bazaar Hotel is contributing 20 million baht and it will take two months to complete.
However Charlie said the Kru Kai Kaew statue has been positive for the hotel with the media coverage making it famous and attracting more visitors.
Top: A giant statue of the deity Kru Kai Kaew in the foreground with the one at the rear being of the Hindu God Shiva and Bazaar Hotel executives standing in front of it. Photo: Naewna
Front Page: The Kru Kai Kaew statue is pictured in Bangkok on Aug, 18, 2023. Photo: AFP/Lillian Suwanrumpha and published by CNA