Bangkok shopping--where?

Feb 16th, 2010, 01:24 PM
  #1  
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Bangkok shopping--where?

To revive a well-trodden topic: I will have two days in Bangkok. Hotel is the Four Seasons.
I am not interested in visiting glossy shopping malls.

Is there an area that has a good concentration of interesting shopping that I can taxi/train to and spend a few hours? My interests are "antiques," especially architectural remnants, home decor fabric (will plan to visit JT outlets--is there one that is better than the others; where can i find a list of the addresses?) and non-designer clothing (silks shirts, pants, etc).

Please feel free to give me leads for shops! I have the book Tresaures and Pleasures--if you have the book handy, are any of the shops listed within worthwhile? I also have a Nancy Chandler map. I will not be in town for the Chatuchak market, though, but enjoyed it last time.

Finally, what is the shopping scene like around the backpacker area in the old city?
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 16th, 2010, 02:48 PM
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>>>Hotel is the Four Seasons.<<<


Good going, crunchy, and let's keep this thread going for the next several years!

Now, wise move staying at the beloved FS, and must enquire: 'Cabana' level, perchance? If not, do hope you'll have some 'lounge' access, and yes, in-room massage treatments. (As of last stay, two lovely 'Regent-era' masseuses still 'on call'.)

As for shopping, this BKK business traveller largely limits his FS vicinity buys to yes, a rather convenient JT shop. (Those little silk lipstick and cosmetic cases never fail to keep me in good graces with the women in my life.)

Have fun in the Centre of the Known Universe, enjoy that lap pool, tip those marvelous masseuses, and do hope you kindly consider SQ - thank you.

macintosh (robert)


... "She's one of my friends!" ...

(Room ___, FS/Regent, 200_)
AskOksena is offline  
Feb 16th, 2010, 03:09 PM
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Eks, consider River City Shopping Center for arts and "antiques." I always enjoying browsing there even if I don't buy. You can take the skytrain to the river and River CIty has it's owen shuttle boat. Another place to consider is Amantee, which is located out by the old airport. They specialize in Tibetan items, but also have lovely things from Thiland and Burma. The man is very knowledgeable. Look them up on the web.

The Jim Thompson outlets are listed on their website.
Kathie is offline  
Feb 16th, 2010, 03:38 PM
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Robert you are a scream! I bet you buy whole boatloads of those lipstick cases for all your girls in far flung ports. Or airports.

I am too cheap to spring for the cabana room--but I will certainly ask for a free upgrade to one of that ilk upon arrival!

Kathie--Many thanks..those sound like good tips.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 16th, 2010, 06:49 PM
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The trend-setting fashion shops are still in the Siam Square area. This is where the young Thai designers have their shops. You have to get back into the narrow alleys between the streets to find them.

I don't think there's much of interest in the backpacker area, but the woodworking street next to the Golden Mount, and the parallel one across the canal, running from Wat Ratchanada (Loha Prasat) might be interesting.
MichaelBKK is offline  
Feb 16th, 2010, 07:03 PM
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Bangkok + shopping = Carol Simpson
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 02:26 AM
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Bulletin:

Fodors poster jailed in BKK for attempting to smuggle sacred artifacts. In an unsurprising twist, an American "tourist" was arrested today with several items regarded by Thais as essential parts of their culture. When questioned, Ms. Ekscrunchy stated, "They would go perfectly in my dining room." The American Consulate denied any knowledge of the arrest.
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Feb 17th, 2010, 02:39 AM
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(Ignoring tabloid journalism above)

The clothing I would like is Asian-inspired classic stuff or copies of my own things; is there any chance of having anything made in two days? Fitting on morning one, pickup on evening of day two? (This from someone who cautions against doing exactly this)

I will plan to visit River City Mall. Do I take the Skytrain to the river and find their boat at the dock near the Peninsula's dock? (Across from the Peninsula Hotel?)

JT store opens at 9am which appears to be earlier than most shops, so that makes a logical first stop.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 03:26 AM
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All the hotel boats (and River City) use the pier immediately next to the express boat dock, which is right under the bridge.
MichaelBKK is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 04:11 AM
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Sounds like you might want to explore the area around the Giant Swing ... lots of antique-y shops, and no malls.
DonTopaz is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 05:09 AM
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If you have something already in hand that is the right fit, design, whatever, then yes, you should be able to get copies made. I had a favorite "man shirt" that I took to my tailor, and he made 4 copies, in various wash n wear cotton blends. LOVE those shirts!

A good friend has two shops in River City. There are some very nice antiques in that shopping center.

Agree w/michaelbkk about Siam Square.

My type of shopping is in places like Pahurat, Pratunam, Chatuchak. I love the markets!

Carol
simpsonc510 is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 09:45 AM
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Thanks so much, all of you.

Carol: I know you are a bone fide expert on the subject. Could you describe Pahurat and Pratunam for me? (I loved Chatuchak when I visited two years ago but am not there on a weekend this trip)

I do not like those big fancy malls (I went to Siam Square and one or two others last time--I also visited the 4th floor of one of them where there were Thai shops but the prices seemed very high to me and there was no bargaining. I did buy a nice black silk ikat jacket at Anita but if I am remembering correctly it was not that much under $100U. Did I get taken advantage of or is that what I should expect to pay for something like that??

What would be a good going rate, without fabric, for a custom silk shirt? And what would I expect to pay for the silk of a good quality? (I like raw silk a lot; some of the "Thai" silks do not drape well in clothing)


I will pay a visit to River City for certain, for the antique-ey shops there.

Can you point me to any memorable threads about this subject--I am quite sure there must be reams of Bangkok shopping info here but I am not turning up much with a search..
ekscrunchy is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 10:42 AM
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Since you are going to River City, there is a great silk shop there. It is called JS silk and it is on the left as you walk in the mall on the bottom floor. Ask for Penny. They have wonderful silks to choose from, can make garments from your pattern or they have samples to buy or use for patterns, and I think they have good prices. I think you can plan on around $50-75 for a nice jacket.
stitchintime is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 11:26 AM
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take either the river city boat or the sheraton boat (i think they run every 1/2 hour) to get to river city... take skytrain to taskin stop and go downstairs to the river where the boats run from.. personally i would take a taxi to river city or the sheraton... getting a taxi from river city...go to sheraton and have doorman get you one or get ripped off out front...

the golden triangle shop in paragon mall has wonderful clothing with an asian theme....new jackets made from old silks mixed with new...$$$$.

make sure to visit the jim thompson main store on suriwongse at corner of rama IV.....go to outlet at soi 93, sukhumvit....

i will forward you a piece of mail i got recently from the shop kathie mentions out by the old airport...probably very worthwhile for a visit...

we find T&P a very reliable book...
rhkkmk is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 04:01 PM
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Ms. Consumer-if you take the Royal Orchid boat, you have to walk through the hotel, but there is a walkway into River City on the Mezzanine level. Tell them the Panda sent you, see how that goes.

How high did they set your bail?
Gpanda is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 07:03 PM
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never mention gpanda
rhkkmk is offline  
Feb 17th, 2010, 11:08 PM
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I would suggest you first look at the index of the Nancy Chandler booklet which came with your map and see what she recommends for antiques and architectural remnants, both of which I think you will find well-represented in her book. Also see the map which does describe some shopping areas generally.

I agree that River City has many really wonderful shops, including antique book/print shops and some outstanding furniture shops. Bring money. See http://www.rivercity.co.th/

You can also wander the streets by the Oriental Hotel, which have a good number of shops, including the very sleepy Thai Home Industries on the left just past the Oriental as you come up from the hotel/river. They have been around for about the last 35 years and have some interesting stuff, including a small amount of cotton clothing, and I think you may find some architectural pieces there. They are best known for their flatware. The shops in the Oriental Hotel may be worth a look, they have a few shops and a quite good if small bookshop (you can buy the hotel’s cookbook). This could easily be combined with going to River City which is just a few hundred yards up the river, in fact lunch outside by the river at the Oriental would be a nice break in between.

I like Almeta for high-quality silk fabric. See http://www.almeta.com/ Almeta has a huge variety of fabric available, both the more traditional heavy Thai silk and then they also specialize is a very light thin silk which is more akin to a Chinese silk. The selection seems much larger than what I have seen in the furnishing fabric department at the JT shops. Almeta seems to specialize mostly in bespoke furnishing fabrics, that is, their shop does not carry the huge selection of ready-made gift items like scarves, pillow cases, lipstick cases, ties, etc which JT does. They do have some placements, bathrobes and other items (they also carry silverware and other home items), and have some table linens as well. (They don't do a lot of tailoring for clothes, but you can buy yards of fabric and take it to a tailor). They will ship things when they are finished so there is no need to have things done in time to take with you. Their shop is located a few blocks down Soi 23 on the right, just off Sukumvit near the Asoke stop on the Skytrain. It is an easy walk from the Skytrain stop, less than 10 minutes.

The Vimarnmek Palace (one of the King's several palaces) is made up of several buildings and extensive grounds and is worth a few hours, especially as they have some beautiful handicrafts for sale, including some really exquisite basketwork items. Proceeds go to the women’s handicrafts guilds who make the items. These may not fit your list of required items, but make nice gifts and souvenirs. Also, again not sure if this is your interest, but the Nelson Hays Library is a lovely old “colonial-era” building just off Silom and quite walkable from the main Jim Thompson shop. They have a gallery which displays and also sells art, see http://neilsonhayslibrary.com/index.shtml.
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