Features |

Guruwan Courts Broad Market

Stephanie Smith

You don’t have to travel to bring a taste of Thailand home with you. In fact, you don’t even have to leave your bedroom. Although high-end online stores are hardly eyebrow-raising in the age of luxury e-retailers like Net-a-Porter, Moda Operandi and Gilt Groupe, anyone eager to sample Thai-made luxury wares may have previously found their options limited. Fortunately there has been a recent explosion of e-commerce platforms across the previously untapped Asian markets, led in large part by Guruwan.com.

One of the premier online luxury platforms in Southeast Asia, Guruwan boasts the largest selection of online retailers in Thailand. The site is owned and managed through Siam Brands, whose founder is also the managing director and face of the decadent Sri Panwa luxury hotel and spa resort in Phuket.

Whether you’re looking for whimsical jewelry set with semi-precious stones harvested straight from the region or distinctly eastern-inspired home décor (think hand-woven stools, delicate tea sets and Dali-esque elephant sculptures), Guruwan offers it up—complete with secure payment options and international delivery. Many of the best-selling apparel pieces are also overtly inspired by the culture of Thailand or its neighboring countries, as seen in the best-selling silk fisherman trousers which go for a cool $291.

One of the foremost driving forces behind Guruwan’s rapid rise to success has much to do with the company’s fierce authenticity and unabashedly Thai branding. In this sense, Guruwan offers something unique, an unadulterated taste of the Asian luxury market that expands far beyond mere apparel or famed Thai silk products. The company has smartly positioned itself as a lifestyle brand with a primary focus of celebrating and making available Thai and Asian-made products. Yet even with this niche focus, the Guruwan lifestyle is far from exclusionary. Modern and contemporary styles are balanced with more traditional pieces, and the more affordable items are showcased with the same care and enthusiasm as the site’s plethora of ultra-luxe offerings. More importantly, all of the available apparel and home products translate exceptionally well between differing markets and consumer bases.

Even the origins of Guruwan’s name reflect the dedication and desire of founder Vorasit Issara to create a far-reaching platform for Thailand’s specialized luxury goods. “Guru” translates to master while “Wan” stands for “Wide-Area-Network” (and is also Mr. Issara’s nickname). From home decor to furniture and jewelry, the founders are indeed driving the company towards meeting the full potential of its name. As of now, more than 200 Thai designers have partnered with Guruwan to sell their wares to buyers all over the world.

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