Comparing Bangkok’s best hotels
THE PENINSULA BANGKOK THE ORIENTAL BANGKOK THE SUKHOTHAI FOUR SEASONS HOTEL BANGKOK SHANGRI-LA HOTEL BANGKOK Address 333 Charoennakorn Road, 011-66-2-861-2888, www.bangkok.. 48 Oriental Ave., 011-66-2-659-9000, www.mandarinoriental.com. 13/3 S, Sathorn Road, 011-66-2-344-8888, www.sukhothai.com. 155 Rajadamri Road, 011- 66-2-250-1000, www.fourseasons.com. 89 Soi Wat Suan Plu, 011-66-2-236-7777, www.shangri-la.com. Doubles as low as $244 $269 $241 $195 $200 Location West side of Chao Phraya River East side of river Midcity Midcity East side of the river Nearby site Boat trip on Chao Phraya to the Temple of Dawn Beautifully restored O.P. Place for upscale shopping Lumpini Park and the junky but fun Suan Lum Night Bazaar Erawan shopping and hotel district Skytrain Saphan Taksin stop In a few words Elegant, classy Opulent, historic Cool, high-powered Polished, palatial Big, busy Spa * * * * * * * * * * Memorable eats Thiptara, alfresco Thai Riverside Terrace with its amazing buffet Celadon’s elegant atmosphere and inventive nouvelle Thai menu Spice Market for such classics as satay and pad Thai Salathip for Thai cuisine by the river Pure delights The long, beautiful, riverside pool High tea in the white wicker Authors’ Lounge Excellent king-size beds $40 Thai massage in the health club (not the spa) The Best Salon in the shopping arcade where I got a haircut and blow-dry, nail-polish change and eyebrow shaping for $50 Best for free River shuttle boats Mandarin Oriental lotus and ginger toiletries Stunning Thai sculpture in public areas People-watching in the swanky lobby Costumed dancers at Salathip Nothing’s perfect Cramped, crowded locker rooms at health club I failed to specify and ended up in a smoking room Un-air-conditioned corridors Caters to cruise groups Uneven accommodations; different wings, different rooms, different experiences -- Susan Spano
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