Bangkok is a living and breathing creature in its own right. It grows with new spots and hidden treasures popping up everywhere everyday. It’s a city for everybody: every neighbourhood, every street, every soi has a different personality to offer. And it’s truly worth exploring them all.
The LSA Neighbourhood Guides aim to help you get started towards exploring the various wonders around Bangkok. For this edition, we’re heading to Surawong Road.
Bordering the creative district, the business district, and the ever-famous entertainment district, there are few roads that bring together so many different interests like Surawong Road.
And yet, the stretch of land that runs parallel to Silom road manages to maintain a peaceful and friendly aura.
Surawong Road: a place to eat, drink, and play, with one fine option to stay. Checking in to the Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse for a sweet staycation one weekend, we managed to explore what the neighbourhood has to offer. Read ahead for the top 10 reasons why you too should check it out.
[Hero and Featured Image Credit: Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse]
1. A staycation at the Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse
If there’s a travel trend brewing amongst Bangkokians at the moment, it is this one: staycations.
What with travel restrictions on international flights and traffic jams leading to Hua Hin, there’s no time like the present to enjoy the best of what the city has to offer right here. Once known as more of a business hotel, we’ve found that a staycation at the Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse actually provides much of the refreshment a leisurely staycation is designed for. Close to many of our favourite attractions, it is a great stay for city dwellers, between a contemporary interior design and plenty of options to enjoy the weekend.
We particularly love the spacious design of the M Suite (with residential options for long-stay guests available and highly recommendable), with views overlooking the concrete jungle just outside, and a fully-fitted kitchenette for nights in. Access to the M Club is a must-do, given its intimate and sophisticated ambience, and ample light snacks and cocktail hour. We love a good cocktail hour — and it is really and honestly one of our favourite spots to unwind or catch up on emails on the property.
Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse, 262 Surawong Rd., Bang Rak, +66 2 088 5666.
2. Dive nose-deep into a book at the romantic Neilson Hays Library
The Neilson Hays Library is home to one of the largest selections of English books in Thailand, and is simultaneously one of the most romantic locations in the heart of the city. Covering fiction and non-fiction, we love heading here for their book sales and fairs especially, or just for a cup of coffee in the coffeeshop. It is a wonderful way to spend an afternoon and seek inspiration in the leafy premises. They also host events pretty regularly, so there’s always a reason to visit.
Neilson Hays Library, 195 Surawong Rd., Suriyawongse, Bang Rak, +66 2 233 1731.
3. A Thai silk shopping spree at Jim Thompson
Is there a fabric more beautiful than Thai silk? It’s a trick question; of course there isn’t. Visit the Jim Thompson store on Surawong Road for a shopping spree of its most beautiful kind, between clothing and accessories and interior decor items made from fine Thai silk. They’ve also got a pretty neat sale running at the moment, so the timing couldn’t be better.
Jim Thompson Surawong, 9 Thanon Surawong, Suriya Wong, Bang Rak, +66 2 632 8100.
4. Japanese food for days
There are a lot of Japanese restaurants scattered around Surawong Road, all the way into Silom and Thaniya Square. Check out Shakakiri because you’re not a true Bangkokian if you’ve never been, or Tonsei for tempura. There’s also Uminoya Izakaya for all your izakaya needs, as well as Raki for sushi and sashimi, and Katsushin for any and all katsu cravings. We’ve also got our eye on the bento boxes at Hokkaido. Did someone say lunch?
5. The neighbourhood’s most ‘grammable infinity pool
We’ve long been fans of urban oases, and it’s nice to know that Surawong Road too has a kind of secret spot like this of its own. Perched on a high floor of the Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse, find yourself amongst a juxtaposition of skyscrapers and important office buildings, and relaxing cabanas. Definitely one of the biggest must-gram spots in the neighbourhood.
6. A blast from the past at Baan Suriyasai
Here’s another spot you wouldn’t believe rests in the heart of the city. The elegant Baan Suriyasai was once a family compound, and has now been converted into a Thai restaurant, tea room, bar, and cooking class space. Still maintaining the beauty of its past, it’s a wonderful location to revel in the charm of Thai hospitality with a 1900s flair.
Baan Suriyasai, 174 Thanon Surawong, Suriya Wong, Bang Rak, +66 2 237 8889.
7. Dinner and drinks at Yao Restaurant and Rooftop Bar
We love a good rooftop restaurant and bar, and when it comes to either of these entities, Yao Restaurant and Rooftop Bar does not disappoint. The restaurant serves up traditional and innovative Chinese cuisine perched atop the 32nd floor, with panoramic rooftop vistas to suit.
After dinner, be sure to check out the rooftop bar just above, with chic Chinese-inspired decor and sprawling views of the city.
If you don’t like to stay up late, we also really love the lunch menu at Yao, for in-between city meetings or just on its own. There’s also a fun afternoon tea set, if you’re in it for the ‘gram and a lighter bite, too.
Yao Restaurant & Rooftop Bar, 32/F, Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse, 262 Surawong Rd., Bang Rak, +66 2 088 5666.
8. Burgers for days
If you’re craving a good burger, you’ve come to the right hood. 25 Degrees has long been notorious for providing some of the best in town (combined with a classic milkshake, of course) in sports bar setting that is open until late. For more barbecue goods, head to the Smokin’ Pug just nearby, and dig in to ribs, wings, and rings galore.
9. Late night munchies
With the entertainment district just around the corner, it comes as no surprise that there are many late-night restaurants in this area. Not strictly on Surawong Road itself (but definitely walking distance), we love the little corner where Boon, Shangarila, and Liaoning meet for an array of late-night Sichuan dishes. Even our friend Chef Black recommends this spot for lamb gyoza especially.
Opening hours have changed a little post-lockdown, but we hope things will ease up soon.
10. A day spa
There are a number of spas and massage parlours along Surawong Road, including Plumeria Spa and the So Thai Spa, yet if we’re looking for the best treatments and ambience in the area, we’re always to be found at Quan. From wraps and scrubs to facials and massages, head here for a day of relaxing treatments (or a couples’ wellness retreat) without even having to leave central Bangkok. Luxury day spa? In the heart of the city? Goals.
The Bangkok Marriott Hotel The Surawongse has launched a special ‘Happiness Continues’ Package which includes complimentary access to the M Club as well as daily breakfast. Rates start at THB 5000 for the M Suit and THB 6000 for the 2-Bedroom Residential Suite. The offer runs from now until 31 October 2020.