Answers from Our Experts (2)
Bangkok has a number of luxury hotels offering per-night rates that are often less than half of those you’d expect at similar hotels in other major cities, so this is definitely a destination to consider spending a little extra since it’ll go a long way.
Before deciding where to stay, first decide if you want to be close to the Chao Phraya River in the old part of the city, with taxis and the river ferries as your main mode of public transportation, or in a more central location close to the BTS Skytrain station. If you plan to do a lot of shopping and bar hopping, our Forbes Travel Guide editors suggest staying somewhere near the BTS Skytrain, while if you plan to mainly focus on the historical and cultural sites during your stay, you might instead stay near the river.
Here are our picks for the best places to stay in Bangkok:
1. The Peninsula Bangkok. This 37-floor luxury Five-Star hotel located right on the Chao Phraya River enjoys an enviable reputation as one of the finest accommodation options in the city with 370 guest rooms, seven restaurants and bars, an outdoor pool and world-class spa. Complimentary ferry rides are available to take you back and forth across the river.
2. Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok. Four-Star Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok offers the best of both worlds given its riverside location and close proximity to the BTS Skytrain. The views across the river from the gorgeous guest rooms and suites are phenomenal, especially during thunderstorms, and the large pool is the perfect place to hide out during the peak heat hours of this steamy city.
3. Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok. Another luxury riverside hotel, Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok has 393 guest rooms and suites spread out along 16 floors. You’ll love the views from these well-appointed rooms in the Five-Star hotel — not to mention inclusive butler service — as well as the sprawling facilities that include barbecue and riverside terraces, an infinity pool and wonderful spa, gardens and excellent restaurants.
4. Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok. Located in central Bangkok a short walk away from Lumpini Park, Siam Paragon, CentralWorld Plaza and the BTS Skytrain, Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok is a great option for those who want to stay in the heart of modern Bangkok. The hotel’s i.sawan Spa & Club is one of the best-kept secrets in the city, with private huts for facial treatments and massages, and the sumptuous lunch buffet and weekend brunch are not to be missed.
5. Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok. There’s so much to love about Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok: the lavish cabana rooms located in a lush, beautifully landscaped central courtyard near a tranquil outdoor pool, the impressive lobby highlighted by handpainted murals on the ceiling, beautiful The Spa by Mspa, the restaurants, the service… we could go on and on.
There are a lot of great hotels. The Sukhothai Bangkok is a wonderful hotel. If it’s your first time in Bangkok, I wouldn’t stay there though; I think you should really stay by the river. Hotels such as Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok, The St. Regis and The Sukhothai are great business hotels because they’re around the business district.
From my personal experience, because it can get very warm, staying by the river is very convenient. Every time I’m in town, I have to go to Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok because I used to work for Mandarin Oriental for seven or eight years, and it was my first hotel. I just like the location on the river. It’s wonderful to sit there. They always have such beautiful flowers in the lobby. Flowers are a big part of the Thai experience.