Simply put, Bangkok is one of the best cities in the world for those who adore hotels. An added bonus? You’ll find luxury hotels at half the price of Tokyo, Shanghai, or New York City. The grand, riverside operators have been on the scene for decades (or, in the case of the Mandarin Oriental, centuries) with their sprawling, stately lobbies of marble and open-air terraces for dining as the boats pass by. Meanwhile, a boom in boutique hotels has sprouted in the last five years, adding some interesting new spots to the mix. Ancient teak homes have been reimagined for villa-style stays, Indochina-styled colonial mansions offer curios to look over while you sip craft cocktails, and one local celebrity opened a property that offers a Muay Thai training package—complete with specialized dining, workouts, and spa sessions. Interested? Read on for our picks for Bangkok’s best hotels.
The word “greenhouse” will no-doubt come to mind when you step foot into The Siam. Birds-of-paradise rise 15 feet from the atrium’s long reflecting pool beneath a ceiling of glass and steel. Arrangements bloom from pedestals. Ferns spool out from planters. The greenery feels like Pop Art against a white-and-black palette, part of the hotel’s Art Deco–meets–Thai villa design aesthetic. The staff here caters to individual desires. You can plan and cram activities and tours into every moment––from spa appointments to speedboat rides. Or, just lounge by the pool.
Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel
The Anantara Siam Bangkok Hotel, which draws a fashionable crowd of international travelers, is a verdant sanctuary in the retail jungle. Much to the delight of those staying here, the property has a stronger resort-vibe than many in this area, with tropical landscaping, a central swimming pool, garden terrace rooms, and old-world Thai details. It also offers some of the only terrace rooms in town; they come with adjoining gardens where you can sit out on a private patio.
Chakrabongse Villas & Residences
The noise from the street vanishes when you walk through the tall gates. In its place: birdsong and the scent of tropical flowers. The Chakrabongse Villas & Residences is a grand example of a traditional Thai home that’s been painstakingly preserved to look exactly as it did when it served as a royal residence in the early 1900s. The design here is rustic, with beautiful teak walls, rattan chairs, silk pillows, and plaid blankets—it feels like your Thai grandmother’s shabby-chic river cabin. If you want to see the Grand Palaces, you won’t find a more ideal location; the hotel is steps from Wat Po. There’s also a plethora of cute cafes, coffee houses, and street food in the area.
Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok
Shopaholics will love Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok, which is located right next to Siam Center, Siam Discovery, and Siam Paragon, all excellent, upscale shopping malls where you’ll find everything from premium name brands to emerging Thai fashion labels. That’s one of the reasons why CEOs—many with kids in tow—favor staying here. Another reason: despite its epic size and scope, the service is warm and personable. Many rooms have private terraces with direct pool access, and five onsite dining outlets ensure you’ll never go hungry.
Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok
The Grand Hyatt Erawan offers a true five-star experience, from the house Mercedes to the helipad up on the roof. The over-the-top amenities, which make this hotel a favorite among corporate execs and stylish jetsetting families, also include the Erawan Spa Cottages, a cluster of resort-style villa suites that all face gardens. Oversize soaking tubs, rain showers, Nakamichi stereo systems, free-flowing cocktails, and a personal spa concierge are just a few of the many perks. Make sure to check out their Sunday brunch—it’s regarded as one of the best in the city.
The Peninsula Bangkok
It always feels like you might be in London at The Peninsula, in Bangkok’s Thonburi neighborhood, thanks to twinkling lights decorating the grand entrance, dapper doormen, and British racing vehicles parked out front. The hotel’s custom tuk-tuk reminds you that you’re in Thailand. Rich, warm, toffee tones carry throughout the lobby and lounges; the space offers grand views over the Chao Praya and the ramshackle, Thai river homes across the water. The Peninsula swimming pool is among the best in the city; there’s no better way to beat the heat in this famously hot capital than by taking a dip right on the river.
COMO Metropolitan Bangkok
Modern, sleek, shiny, minimalist—and yet still inviting: that’s COMO Metropolitan Bangkok. At this Sathorn escape, rooms are large compared with most in this price range in Bangkok. They feature giant windows, white linens, and espresso-wood floors with thick area rugs. You’ll find Michelin-starred dining at Nahm, chef David Thompson’s widely acclaimed modern Thai restaurant that serves one of best meals you’ll have in a town famous for its food. The pool is gorgeous; it’s surrounded by plush, heavy deck chairs, white umbrellas, and a staff that’s quick to refill your wine glass.
The Atlanta Hotel
The Atlanta appeals to a very specific style of traveler. Take the Art Deco lobby, which looks like it walked straight out of another era—it’ll remind you of The Shining or possibly a Wes Anderson film set. The Atlanta is truly memorable, and has therefore developed a cult-like following. One thing’s for sure: This funky cultural gem is an institution in Bangkok.
Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok
The Mandarin Oriental never fails to impress, whether it’s your first time or your 40th. The driveway doubles as a garden, and you enter to a teak-and-marble atrium room with birdcage chandeliers and plush rugs. Located in Sathorn, the hotel is ideal for shopping, transportation, and river activities like dinner cruises and longtail boat rides. This section of of the neighborhood still retains plenty of old-world charm, with hundreds of small, two- and three-story Chinese-style shophouses in bright colors and delightful street food.
The Cabochon is located at the very end of a long alley in Thong-Lo, one of Bangkok’s hottest neighborhoods. The exterior architecture has 1920s-style Indo-Chinese motifs, with grand balconies stretching across the front. You’d never know it was built in 2012. Inside, the Library Bar is decorated with vintage Louis Vuitton steamer trunks, thick leather armchairs, and cases of oddities and antiques. In guest rooms, vintage taps meet modern amenities, polished marble floors, and premium linens—like Indiana Jones meets Restoration Hardware, with beautiful dove-gray accents and neutral tones. In a word: elegant.
Park Hyatt Bangkok
At Park Hyatt Bangkok, the rooms and common areas were designed by the firm Yabu Pushelberg, which focused on clean, stark lines. The hotel has the feel of an art gallery, where striking design elements surprise you but nothing gets in the way. The Penthouse Bar & Grill, which spans three upper floors of the building, was designed by the famous New York firm of AvroKo. The idea was to turn one seamless space into five separate venues with marble, ebony, gold accents, and British antique stylings.
Built in 1942 by the family that designed Bangkok’s National Stadium two years earlier, AriyasomVilla was formerly a private home. Today, the Executive Suites feature full living rooms, gauze curtains on four-poster beds, gilded mirrors, and vintage rugs. The property also has a spa, a sparkling swimming pool, and organic, vegetable-heavy cuisine. The neighborhood of Wattana, meanwhile, is known for its shopping and dining; from the affordable and fun Terminal 21 mall to the glitzy, designer haven of EmQuartier.