With a thrilling blend of history, rich culture and mouthwatering cuisine — it’s no surprise that Bangkok is one of the world’s most visited cities. Offering a feast for the senses, the Thai capital welcomes an influx of visitors every year, from history buffs interested in temple hopping to foodies craving the sour-spicy spectrum of Thai cuisine.
With the city flooded with more than 10 million inhabitants, the streets a perpetual hive of activity (and congestion a constant headache), however, it’s not always easy to feel relaxed and on holiday mode when you’re navigating the best Bangkok has to offer. For that, you can look to the city’s most luxurious hotels and hideaways for taking a much-needed respite from the bustle of the city at the end of the day. Below, we present the 10 best luxury stays you should book on your next trip to Bangkok.
A chic oasis in Sathorn, you’d be hard-pressed to find a hotel with a more enchanting blend of traditional architecture and modern luxuries than The Sukhothai, long heralded as one of the city’s most coveted accommodations. Entering the sprawling estate of The Sukhothai is like stepping through a soundwall — you’ll instantly find the noise and traffic of the streets melt away, as you settle down amongst the leafy paradise of the well-manicured grounds. From the floating lotus ponds to the intricate architecture composed of polished teak and stonework — the hotel’s sense of old world elegance and beauty is unparalleled.
Leisure options are plenty for hotel guests looking to hole up all weekend, from award-winning restaurants to a state-of-the-art spa, and an expansive swimming pool fringed by palms with towering skyscrapers as the backdrop. Lounge under one of the sea green umbrellas as you sip a well-made martini, then head in to Celadon, where the spectrum of Thai flavours are celebrated in a lengthy a la carte menu spanning Australian beef Penang curry to giant river prawns in fresh coconut milk. Five-star service and the warm demeanour of the staff will make you feel right at home.
Located in the heart of the city within the former Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel, the prestigious Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park marks the hospitality group’s ‘Marquis’ debut in Asia, ticking the brand boxes of being housed within a landmark building in a central location, with large-scale facilities and more than 1,000 rooms. The 5-star hotel boasts 1,388 rooms, in fact, along with a 24-hour state-of-the-art gym and a full menu of rejuvenating treatments at Quan Spa.
Most exciting are the diverse array of dining experiences (another highlight of the Marquis brand), with no less than eight F&B outlets spanning Japanese soba to Korean fusion and Cantonese, plus one of the best rooftop bars in town. A notable component of the hotel is its avid commitment to sustainability through the Marriott’s ongoing Serve 360 social impact programme: from the ‘Second Love’ concept at Goji Kitchen + Bar which makes creative use of typically discarded ingredients; to a strong partnership with local organisation Scholars of Sustenance Foundation Thailand (SOS) to help provide meals to the underprivileged. If you’re looking for a feel-good stay while on holiday, this one’s for you.
With its Thai-influenced design nodding to the heritage of the surrounding neighbourhood, The Siam is ideally poised to bridge the connection between well-heeled overseas travellers and the local culture and cuisine of the area. With sumptuous accommodations from Pool Villas to Riverview Suites, The Siam’s top-notch location allows for easy access to the city’s major temples and museums; while unique features such as a hotel-operated river boat along the Chao Phraya offer exclusive excursions to enhance your stay. In-house facilities include a cooking school, yoga terrace, spa, library, screening room and even a muay Thai boxing ring for working off those vacation binges.
Let’s cut to the chase: The epic rooftop infinity pool at 137 Pillars Suites & Residences Bangkok is reason enough to book a stay at these sumptuous suites. But beyond swimming laps high above the city, the luxury Thai brand — which has a sister property in Chiang Mai — offers plenty of other facilities for you to enjoy, from well-appointed residential-type suites; to round-the-clock butler service, wine cellars and beautiful marble bathrooms with posh tubs. Sleep in the lap of luxury in the 400-thread-count Egyptian cotton linens, and wake up to breakfast out on your spacious balcony with panoramic views of the skyline. Guests staying in suites will also enjoy exclusive access to the Leonowens Club lounge on the 26th floor, offering a la carte breakfast, afternoon tea and pre-dinner cocktails.
First opened as The Oriental in 1876, the Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok remains one of the city’s most iconic properties, sharing brand flagship status with just one other property — the Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong. Despite its age, the premises have been wonderfully maintained over the years, with the hotel just this month unveiling the newly renovated River Wing, following makeovers of the Authors’ and Garden wings in 2016.
The spectacular and historic hotel now features a total of 331 luxuriously appointed guest rooms and 46 suites. In line with the brand’s DNA, lavish furnishings incorporate expensive brocades and regal textures, with Thai accents subtly woven in. And as with any Mandarin Oriental around the world, food & beverage is an absolute highlight: don’t miss an artfully crafted cocktail at Bamboo Bar, Michelin dining at Le Normandie, and the indulgent international buffet at The Verandah. The serene spa, located opposite the river, is an attractive option for some much-needed downtime.
This list certainly wouldn’t be complete without the Rosewood Bangkok, which opened earlier in 2019 around the same time as its sister property in Hong Kong — both adding an impressive and dramatic new addition to their respective city’s skylines. Conceived by Kohn Pedersen Fox, the design of the building is inspired by the wai, the traditional Thai hand greeting with palms pressed together in prayer-like fashion.
As a recent visit proved, the Rosewood Bangkok is every bit as luxurious as its sister property in the SAR, with elegantly appointed suites embracing the Rosewood’s signature residential-style aesthetic, an indoor-outdoor saltwater pool, and an excellent selection of restaurants and bars. If you can manage to get yourself out of your 600 thread-count linen sheets and plush terrycloth robe and slippers, you’ll want to head for a nightcap at speakeasy-style Lennon’s Bar replete with handsome leather sofas and a cigar mezzanine.
Steps from the city’s shopping and dining hub, the COMO Metropolitan Bangkok offers an urban escape in Bangkok’s central business district, with free shuttle service to the nearby Saladaeng BTS Skystrain. It’s within this five-star hotel that you’ll find celebrated restaurant Nahm, now under the stewardship of chef Pim Techamuanvivit, who presides over one of the most renowned fine dining Thai kitchens in the city. Retreat to your plush suite at the end of the evening — the guest rooms clocking in as some of the largest in Bangkok — and relish in the urban-chic East-meets-West furnishings, a blend of warm Thai Makha wood and brass accents filled out by abundant natural light. You’ll want to pay extra attention to the unique artwork by Thai artist Natee Utarit, with custom pieces lending a sense of individuality to each room.
A writers and artists’ enclave, the Cabochon Hotel is a refreshing respite from the large-scale, grandiose hotels — a quaint boutique accommodation with a charming throwback vibe. Softly romantic rooms are awash in a colour palette of beige and white, with cosy armchairs, writers’ desks and quirky trinkets such as antique typewriters lending an old-world, 1920s vibe to the decor. Take a dip in the rooftop pool, then hole up on one of the snug sofas in the Library Bar over a signature cocktail or a good book. Across the way you’ll also find Joy Luck Salon de Thé (name after Amy Tan’s famous novel) where a mix of opulent furniture and intriguing curios — think Louis Vuitton steamer trunks and French museum vitrines — make for an atmospheric venue from which to enjoy a fine wine or malt whisky.
Located in downtown Sathorn across from Lumpini Park, the Sofitel So is beloved for its funky and playful design, with 238 guestrooms and suites boasting different design concepts — themed around the Five Elements — to cut through the homogeny of corporate hotel chains. The hotel was designed by French celebrity designer Christian Lacroix along with local Thai artists, and aims to cater to the younger crowd with a mix of quirky aesthetics and artsy vibes. Service stays on par with other international five-star brands, while playful staff uniforms and high-tech amenities — think an Apple Mac mini system and Press Reader stocked with over 2,000 newspapers and magazines in your room — keep this stay far from feeling dull or corporate. The hotel is across the road from the MRT with the BTS Skytrain conveniently located one stop away.
Spectacular views coupled with luxury modern amenities make up the appeal of this contemporary residence, with most of the 248 rooms and suites offering uninterrupted views of the Chao Phraya River. An infinity rooftop pool is undoubtedly the star attraction of the property; while epicureans will find comfort in four dining outlets headlined by the multi-storey Seen Restaurant & Bar, with a mouthwatering modern Portuguese-Brazilian menu overseen by celebrity chef Olivier da Costa. After dinner, the lounge, deck or rooftop are excellent places to bunker down with a cocktail to the tunes of live bands and DJs as night falls on the city.