Don’t listen to the naysayers who tell you that Bangkok is a city for flying to and then fleeing for beaches and hills. It remains a unique place and one of the most exciting destinations in the world. It’s more fun than Shanghai and more accessible than Rio. It’s modern thriving chaos at its best. But it can wear you down if you aren’t used to the noise, the smells and the heat. So, pick your hotel wisely. Bangkok caters to every budget. Once famous for the backpacker enclave of Khao San it now boasts some of the world’s best hotels. And for a traditional Thai experience at the hearty of the city, travellers with a comfortable budget would be well advised to consider the Sukhothai.
I like the Sukhothai because it is a luxurious hotel that has stayed true to the essence of Thai traditions. While high rise hotels with rooftop bars spring up with regularity, sporting modern glass and metal that could be any Asian city, I booked into the Sukhothai and immediately felt like I had arrived in Thailand. It is located near Lumphini Park close to the MRT metro station but set way back from the busy Sathorn Road in 2.8 acres of green space.
There are two sections: the main wing housing the primary reception, several restaurants and tranquil garden area, and the newly refurbished Club Wing where the Club Suites with balcony, swimming pool and spa centre are located.
The hotel's design and name is a reference to the ancient city and former capital of Sukhothai and the overall design, refined to the smallest detail in the décor and staff dress, gives life to the evocative era. I was particularly struck by the serenity of the Garden Suites that open out onto the sculpted gardens where two pet turtles float around under the waterlilies.
There are several dining options offering several types of cuisine. Two of the best are Celadon where Thai cuisine is served in traditional surroundings and Italian restaurant La Scala in the Club Wing with its open kitchen that looks out onto the gardens at the back.
A short walk is the spa where I tried out a massage, but there are an array of other health and beauty options.
Thailand is a country that is suffering from its own popularity. As ever-increasing numbers of tourists flock to its shores, especially from China and Russia, so the country is making moves to protect its natural beauty (they recently-closed famous beach of Maya Bay on the west of the country). Instead Thailand is becoming a destination of luxury and opulence where, if you’re able to meet the expense, you can experience the plushest of holidays. If so, the Sukhothai is probably the best choice in Bangkok.
Loyalty scheme – Sukhothai Rewards that allows you to earn points and redeem rewards at The Sukhothai Bangkok as well as accessing special offers ranging from complimentary room nights, food and beverage, spa treatments.
Cost – Superior Rooms start at THB 7,800 with the Club Room around THB 12,700 and Garden Suites from THB 20,000
Types of tourists – perfect for couples or those celebrating a special occasion