Recommended place to stay:
Mandarin Oriental Bangkok
Bangkok, Central Thailand, Thailand|www.mandarinoriental.com|
Official star rating:
The Mandarin Oriental is a luxury landmark sandwiched between the bustling Chao Phraya River and Bangrak, Bangkok’s oldest district. The river affords views and ferries to the city’s best sights, while Bangrak’s historic streets are awash with atmosphere.
For those content to stay in and revel in its unsurpassed luxury, the hotel is home to one of the city’s finest spas, a 25m pool and several excellent on-site restaurants.
Thais love the tradition of afternoon tea and the sumptuous spread served in the Authors’ Lounge is legendary. At sunset, order a cocktail at the hotel’s waterfront Verandah bar – there are few finer places in the city to savour the sun going down.
The Mandarin Oriental is also home to the city’s finest cooking school – indulge yourself with a morning market walk and Thai cookery class, followed by lunch.
The Mandarin shares its riverside location with several other five-star luxury hotels; this is a glitzy waterfront enclave, backed by gleaming high-rises, topped with some of the city’s best rooftop bars. Like everywhere in Bangkok, it’s busy and seethes with energy, but it’s safe and calmer at night than other areas.
The bustling Chao Phraya River, lined with luxury hotels, rickety houses on stilts and glittering wats (temples), is easily accessed from a public pier beside the hotel.
Head away from the river and you’ll find yourself in the heart of historic Bangrak, the oldest part of Bangkok, with its charming shophouses and simple eateries dishing up everything from roast duck to hearty curry.
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