Thai Commemorative Swag

Apsara loves Mitoken is a Japanese blog specializing in the many limited edition gadgets made to commemorate important occasions involving the Thai Royal Family.

image via apsara loves mitoken

For the Golden Jubilee 50th anniversary celebration of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s accession to the Thai throne in 1996, Leica produced a gold-plated M6 camera with matching 50mm lens in an edition of 700. The King’s crest is emblazoned on the top.

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There were at least nine limited edition watches produced to commemorate the 60th anniversary of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s accession to the Thai throne in 2006, including a Patek Philippe and GUIDING LIGHT THAILAND, a commemorative Swatch, issued in a limited edition of 4509. From the text inside the special commemorative cardboard box:

Thai Airways International Public Company Limited is proud to celebrate with all the kingdom the joyous and auspicious occasion of His Majesty’s Accession to the Throne with a limited edition of Thai Airways International and SWATCH wrist watch uniquely made to celebrate this glorious event.

As His Majesty has always been a “guiding light” for the Thai people, symbolic guiding stars appear on the watch. The Thai numerical number “sixty” is attached to the strap, signifying the 60th Anniversary of His Majesty’s Accession to the Throne, and the strap is yellow as this is the color traditionally associated with Monday, the day of His Majesty’s birth.

Upon the death of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej in 2016, the throne passed to his son. His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun’s coronation in 2019 was commemorated by the release of a gold-plated wrist watch by the Italian fashion brand Klasse14 featuring the Royal Emblem on the face. It was available at a Klasse14 pop-up shop at the Siam Paragon Watch Expo that auspicious summer. One can easily imagine that His Majesty The King, who primarily lives in Bavaria, will be the inspiration for a great many things that convey the unique character of His Majesty’s glorious reign.

[five minutes later update: It appears my investigation of commemorative Royal Thai gold-plated Leica cameras has been incomplete. Wayne Bremser just posted a link to the 2022 release of the Leica M10-P Royal Thai limited edition digital camera and matching lens, in gold-plate and gold or green alligator. Of the edition of 30, six were given to the Royal Family, and 22 were purchased by ThaiBev, the country’s largest distiller. ThaiBev is controlled by Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, the country’s second richest person (not counting His Majesty The King, obv), and is run by his son Thapana, who instigated the edition. The 22 cameras were auctioned at Christie’s in Bangkok and Singapore last fall, thus giving the elite of Thailand and the companies they control the chance to publicly demonstrate their support for 22 of His Majesty’s favorite charities. So far I have found one result, of a real estate developer paying 5x the retail price for a camera ThaiBev donated to a foundation for the blind.]

[Few Days Later Update: I was traveling and did not win the auction for four limited edition Swatches designed by and/or commemorating key moments in the life of the Thai Royal Family.]