After disappearing from the media spotlight for several years, Thai socialite Sumanee Gunakasem, also known as “Thailand’s Barbie,” spoke to the media for the first time this week since she was diagnosed with uterus cancer four months ago.
Sumanee, now 81, was frequently spotted at social events throughout her 70s. Famous for her youthful face that has no wrinkles and her blonde wig, Sumanee has only admitted to having eyelid surgery, despite obvious facial transformation.
Today, Morning Talk Show checked in with Sumanee four months after her diagnosis with cancer. Having gone through several chemo treatments, Thailand’s Barbie remains positive.
“I’m not quite ready to die just yet,” she laughed. “But I’ve just requested that the doctor write a note that I’m still well enough to sign documents. My closest friends are shocked by the news. Nothing is certain.”
Sumanee, who once said in an interview that she loves to dance and dress up, has a plan to party on if she recovers.
“After cancer, I want to bring all the musicians and friends to a party at my house, and I’ll have a personal, nude photo shoot,” she laughed.
Sumanee’s background and wealth has always been a bit unclear. It’s rumored that she was born into a family of a wealthy bureaucrats and her great-grandparents owned several plots of land, which was assumed to be a source of her wealth. Educated in England and the United States, Sumanuee married Pracha Gunakasem, a former diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who died in 2009.
Sumanee reportedly owns eight floors of a building on Lang Suan Road. Her rooms are decorated with her family’s collected antiques including a stone shelf she bought in New York that costs THB25 million. She also owns a rug that used to belong to the twin sister of the Shah of Iran, which she bought in an auction for THB4 million.
The most famous items in her home, however, are the toilet and bathtub infused with 24k gold.
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