Bangkok advice sought

Discussion in 'Thailand' started by Aktchi, Dec 18, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Aktchi
    Original Member

    Aktchi Silver Member

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    I am traveling USA-India with my wife in late January and have an opportunity to stop in BKK for two days. This would be her first time in Bangkok. I need the advice of experts on a few points:

    (1) If we decide to stop, we would have flown USA-Tokyo-BKK approx 27 hours (albeit in Business Class, and including brief stops in lounges) and reach BKK at 5:30AM Saturday morning, probably getting to our hotel around 8AM-9AM.

    We'll have Saturday and Sunday in BKK, and must leave on Monday morning, latest by noon.

    Due to work situation in Chicago and a family wedding schedule in India, there is no flexibility.

    Question is, does a stop like this make sense? Is it possible to have some relaxing sense of the city?

    (The alternative would be to fly Tokyo-Delhi directly without stopping in BKK. We are in Delhi all the time, so nothing particularly attractive about that option, just that it is where the wedding is.)

    (2) If we do BKK, where should we base ourselves? I have SPG points and was thinking of Royal Orchid Sheraton. This will allow us a few hours on the river, which I am sure she will enjoy. However, if you think another hotel/neighborhood will provide a much better base, please let me know. (Would definitely like to avoid massage parlor scenes.)

    (3) If you are in mood to be even more generous with advice, I welcome ideas on which few sights/activities would be best for 1.5 days we'd have.

    TIA!
     
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  2. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    Don't stay @ the ROS if you're only gonna be there for 2nights. Stay somewhere near/on Sukumvitt. SGS/4P/Aloft/ etc are much better home base, in that you can hop on the BTS/MRT easily. I havent been back to BKK in 6 years, but from what I remember Chao Praya is not a "beautiful" river. I'm staying at the ROS for 6 nights because I got it for C&P. Super cheap ...

    Does it make sense ... That is entirely up to you. 2 days in BKK you can see the temples/palaces, shop, eat, etc. Lots to do ...
     
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  3. Aktchi
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    Aktchi Silver Member

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    Thanks for your take. I too would be getting ROS on C + P. Was trying to avoid Sukhumvit because of the massage parlor scenes. I want to be able to stop in BKK when traveling alone, w/o causing domestic stress. :)

    However, is there consensus here 4P or Aloft would be better than ROS? (I could afford all three. SGS and Westin Grand were more expensive when I checked.)

    BTW, I though ROS offer a free boat ride to the BTS station? We can also cab around in BKK, those seem inexpensive.
     
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  4. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    If you do not tire easily, I think it is worth the stopover. I would stay on the river as I like watching the boats go by and there is a train station with easy access to Sukhomvit. My brother lives in Sukhomvit and I would never stay there. It is a good neighborhood to visit, but too busy in my opinion to stay there.

    You have time to see temples, Chinatown, the floating market, MBK ( a large multi story mall with some good deals to be found) or several other options.

    I would recommend getting a massage while you are there, The prices are quite reasonable and the foot massages can't be beat.
     
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  5. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

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    I havent stayed @ either or ... but I guess question is Do you like the W scene or a more calm environment. That should dictate where you go.
    And yes the ROS does offer a boat ride (they say, again I dont know) that takes you to the BTS at Saphan Taksin.
     
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  6. chrislacey
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    chrislacey Milepoint Guide

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    If you aren't concerned about losing out on points, my favorite hotel in Bangkok is SilQ: http://www.silqbkk.com
     
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  7. Kalboz
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    Kalboz Gold Member

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    Sure it makes sense versus the alternative you provided ... I take every chance I get to stop in Bangkok :)
    You have SPG points, but how about status, preferably Platinum? St. Rgis, the new W, and the SGS are all great properties. The 4P is closer to the BTS than the Aloft even though they both have complimentary tuk-tuk shuttle to the skytrain. The ROS has a wonderful riverfront location, and the Plaza Athenee is also special in its own right. You might want to skip the Le Meridien in Silom due to its proximity to "the massage parlor scenes", even though it's a great property.

    There are other new properties in Bangkok which are wonderful, such as Accor's Sofitel So Bangkok and Sofitel Sukhumvit. And the above mentioned SilQ which is located between the 4P & WGS within steps from the BTS & MRT.
     
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  8. Aktchi
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    Aktchi Silver Member

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    I appreciate the recommendation. Could you briefly tell me what you like about the hotel so much? The link shows nice rooms and a bewildering array of packages, but: Is it a big hotel or small? What is the immediate vicinity like? (I know what Sukhumvit Road is like, but this is offset a little.)

    I don't know enough to ask right questions but would like to know why you like iSilQ so much! And yes, the points business is convenient but not an overriding factor.
     
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  9. chrislacey
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    chrislacey Milepoint Guide

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    Hi Aktchi,

    So sorry for the delay! Was just going through my notifications and didn't remember replying to your post! Wooops! If you haven't made your reservation yet, here are some details about SilQ.
    • Very small/boutique hotel
    • Good speed (and free) wireless internet access
    • Very good free breakfast
    • Amazingly helpful staff. We knew nothing about Bangkok and they took the time to setup tours, give walking directions, etc. (We've stayed at higher-end hotels and have never received the same level of service) It wasn't as if they were going through the motions with us like everyone else. I really felt like they took the time to get to know us and what we were interested in, then made recommendations as appropriate.
    • The owner was (and I'm assuming still is) Ravi Sehgal who is also a custom tailor who has a shop a few doors down from the hotel. He was at the hotel multiple times daily, and was a pleasure to speak with. I also happened to buy quite a few items from his shop, and see him once a year in NYC when he comes to meet clients in the US. Hotel guests do get a discount in his shop if you're interested in that.
    • Room size isn't huge, but is perfectly adequate. We stayed in a king bed Superior category room and it was plenty large for the two of us.
    Drawbacks are:
    • Doesn't participate in any loyalty program as far as I'm aware
    • If you're driving...parking at the hotel is EXTREMELY limited
    • It's not the "best" location (see more about location below)
    • Restaurant was fairly expensive for dinner, although the food quality and presentation was excellent
    Location
    • Sukhumvit on Soi 19
    • About a 1/2 block to the BTS and MRT stations
    • 7-11 (I think that's what it was) right across the street for inexpensive snacks/drinks
    • 2 minute walk to major department store (can't remember the name)
    • Lots of restaurants and entertainment within a short walk
    In short, if we go back to Bangkok, I wouldn't consider staying anywhere else.
     
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  10. chrislacey
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    chrislacey Milepoint Guide

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    ...on a side note, I'd also recommend Oasis Spa. It's pricier than lots of other spas we saw, but the one in Bangkok (we went to the one on Sukhumvit 31) was our best spa experience ever! No nonsense either. It's totally legitimate. http://www.oasisspa.net/destination/bangkok/

    We also went to the Oasis Spa in Phuket, but it was outdoors, hot .. and just not as enjoyable.
     
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  11. estnet
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    estnet Gold Member

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    IMHO - ROS - even tho there are many things I don't like about the hotel,but being on the river and being able to watch all the "life" go by is great (all rooms have a river view). If you are booking on points it is a great bargain compared to the other hotels.
    It is much more tranquil than Suk. area where there is a huge amount of construction going on, traffic is terrible (and the BTS is there but usually crowded) and so many sidewalk vendors that it is almost impossible to walk.
    There is a free shuttle boat every 30 minutes to the BTS station (a nice 10 minute river ride), you can take the local (or tourist if you prefer) river boat right next to the hotel to the grand palace or an hour to Thonburi (the end of the line) for about 50 US cents and see a lot of life along the river.
    If you want to shop and are adventurous you can take the local bus 36 (around the corner from the hotel - 2 minute walk) to MBK (a huge and air conditioned shopping complex) or you could take a taxi.
    Really depends on what you want to see but I'd surely stop to see Bangkok.
     
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