Want to get away from the crowd and stay somewhere unique in Bangkok? The Thai capital’s growing collection of boutique hotels may provide you with the difference that makes your holiday even more special
Bangkok has some of the best hotels in the world, like The Oriental, The Peninsula and The Sukhothai, but it also has its fair share of soulless cookie-cutter big chain hotels too. Fortunately there has been a trend in the last few years towards boutique hotels opening in Bangkok – individual hotels with only a few rooms, often family run, who offer a unique ambience and more intimate atmosphere. These range in price from upmarket backpacker to full on luxury, but they all offer something a bit different from the anonymous blandness of the big chain hotels.
Here’s a run down of the boutique hotels in Bangkok that I’ve heard about, along with links to reviews by previous guests on Tripadvisor.com. You can book most of these hotels direct through their own websites, as they tend not to show up in the listings of general Bangkok hotel websites. This means you don’t have to hunt around for a better price, but you’re unlikely to get a discount bargain too. Agoda has several Bangkok boutique hotels in its database at competitive prices and you can also earn points to use against future bookings – click here to search for Bangkok hotels on Agoda.
A classic 1940s Thai home converted into an elegant hotel down a quiet soi of Bangkok’s Sukhumvit Road, the real centre of the city. Period furniture and teakwood flooring retain the villa’s original charm, while wireless internet and LCD screens keep it updated, along with spa and massage facilities. A good choice if you want to be in the heart of the action but be able to escape from it.
Originally a residence of Thai royalty, Chakrabongse Villas is three separate apartments together on the banks of the Chao Phraya river. Tripadvisor reviews are generally positive of this venerable house.
I’ve visited Arun Residence’s lovely al fresco restaurant The Deck recently and would definitely recommend it. The hotel and restaurant sit on the bank of the Chao Phraya River, offering a perfect view of Wat Arun, one of Bangkok’s most exquisite temples on the river’s opposite side. Arun Residence gets lots of good reviews on Tripadvisor, and TIME magazine gave it a glowing write up
Arun Residence lobby
Also name checked by TIME, Phranakorn Nornlen is located in the historic old part of Bangkok near the backpacker haven of Khao San Road. It’s been described as an upmarket hostel for those who want a bit more comfort without breaking the bank. It’s also very near to Wat Intharawihan with its 32 metre high Buddha! You can read Tripadvisor reviews of Phranakorn Nornlen for guest opinions.
Ibrik By The River and Ibrik in the City
Two different boutique hotels, one located on the river and the other in Bangkok’s business district. Ibrik By The River only has 3 rooms and gets rave reviews on Tripadvisor. The same page also gives a solitary thumbs up for the City branch too.
Located in a quiet residential area a few minutes away from Sukhumvit, Bangkok’s answer to 5th Avenue, The Eugenia already has a reputation for excellent service and a colonial feel, exacerbated by the animal skins hanging from many of the walls. Nothing but compliments on The Eugenia Tripadvisor reviews
The Old Bangkok Inn
Perhaps the most famous of Bangkok’s boutique hotels, The Old Bangkok Inn was showcased in TIME magazine a couple of years ago and has continued to polarise customer opinion according to the Old Bangkok Inn Tripadvisor reviews. The dark teak wood, odd shaped rooms and general elderliness of the building are not for everyone, and some have complained of allergy problems – however, the Inn still has plenty of admirers too, especially for the owner’s attentive service.
Known for its over-the-top, kitsch room designs, Reflections is a technicolour riot of a residence within Bangkok. Most of the reviews for Reflections on Tripadvisor love it precisely because its such a madhouse looks wise. Situated in the Prayathai area of Bangkok.
You might also want to check out LUXX Place, a hyper modern smallish hotel that offers boutique minimal surroundings with luxury service – it gets lots of complimentary guest reviews. Also in the contemporary minimal style are Bangkok’s Metropolitan Hotel, Dream BKK, Siam@Siam and the Millennium Hilton, uber chic designer hotels that aren’t boutique sized but are still have a unique edge to them. If you want an even bigger choice of hotels, browse the complete list of Bangkok hotels and Thailand hotels too.