BKK Intercontinental or Oriental

Oct 17th, 2004, 06:55 AM
  #1  
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BKK Intercontinental or Oriental

Our trip is slowly coming together even though it is less than two weeks away. Pressing decision: my husband's conference is at the Intercontinental (formerly Meriden) in the embassy/business district). We would be willing to pay the difference in the rates to stay at the Oriental but I am wondering if it makes sense to do that. It is our first trip to BKK and posters say that it is best to stay on the river. Anyone have experience with the Intercontinental? Can't find reviews anywhere.
FromDC is online now  
Oct 17th, 2004, 09:05 AM
  #2  
 
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of course i am one who prefers the river...the communte to the conference hotel will take 20-30 minutes in normal traffic via taxi, less if you are lucky....also could be less if you use a combo of taxi/skytrain...

i would much more prefer the peninsula over the oriental...and its cheaper...

from the penn i think you could get to the intercont. on the far side of the river and then cut across up river to the intercont?? that might save time in a taxi...

the intercontinental is on plenochit which is a continuation of sukhumvit rd...in that area i would choose the 4 seasons or the hyatt or the conrad over the intercontinental

it would be somewhat of a pain to be on the river but it largely depends on when he would be making the trip back and forth.. myself i would still vote for the river...

there have been some fodors comments on intercontinental...put it in for a search
rhkkmk is offline  
Oct 17th, 2004, 10:18 AM
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I would definitely recommend that you stay by the river. As Bob mentioned, the Oriental isn't the only option. The problem with the Pen is that it is on the wrong side of the river, so it will add to your husband's commute. I'd recommend considering one of the other hotels on the river. If you've been searching this board, you will already know that I always stay in the Sheraton Royal Orchid Tower rooms. For the price of a regular room at the oriental, you could get a Towers Suite at the Royal Orchid. All the rooms have a full river view. The Towers rooms all include a full breakfast and evening cocktails and canapes, plus free laundry (6 pieces per person per day) in the price. You might also consider the Shangri-La.
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Oct 17th, 2004, 04:45 PM
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Having stayed at Le Royal Meridien (which is now Intercontinental) I can vouch that it is an excellent hotel. It is directly next door to Gaysorn Plaza shopping mall, and within a few more steps to the World Trade Center, the Thai Craft Village, and the great Central ChitLom dept store. You don't even need to take the skytrain to get to any of these shopping places.

The Grand Hyatt Erewon (sp) is right across the street.

Also, should you want to take the skytrain to another location, it is right in front of the hotel! Couldn't be easier!

I have also stayed on the river, both at Oriental and at Penn. I prefer the Penn as others have said... BUT, that being said, you would find Intercontinental to be excellent also!

Carol
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Oct 18th, 2004, 09:46 AM
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Stay at the Four Seasons...if you want luxury and a very Thai environment... on Rajadamri Road right across the street from the Rajadamri Sky Train station.I stay there regularly. Then you only have to go one stop to Siam...the main station...then switch sky trains and go two stops to Ploenchit. I have stayed at the Chateau de Bangkok by Sofitel (an Accor) hotel which is at the Ploenchit skytrain stop. Why not check them out? They have both hotel rooms...I got a Jr. suite with full kitchenette for 1400Baht...just in August...and they also have serviced apartments for 37,969...studio...43,146 one bedroom...44 square meters...48,323 for 50 square meters.They also have a beautiful roof-top pool and a laundry room and a couple of restaurants. The number in the U.S. is 800.818.4685. The exchange rate is 41 Baht to a dollar.
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Oct 18th, 2004, 09:51 AM
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While I usually refer folks to the Penn (note it is not on the wrong side of the river- there is no wrong side!). In your case given that your husband's conference is there I would say stay at the Intercontinental for this trip. That way he does not have any commute and you are withing walking distance of many shopping venues and right next to the skytrain. Also it will be easier to hook up with hubby during breaks in his conference.
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Oct 18th, 2004, 10:57 AM
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The Oriental is worth every penny and, in my opinion, MUCH better than the Penn unless you are into serious high tech -- three phones and a tv in the bathroom etc.
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Oct 18th, 2004, 11:05 AM
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Gloria- tell us how you really feel...don't hold back!
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Oct 18th, 2004, 12:13 PM
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I love the Oriental, and I have stayed at some of the poshest hotels in the world.

Stay on the river, no matter what hotel you choose. My doctor went to Bangkok recently and stayed near Siam Square. He HATED it, as there was too much noise, pollution, and the heat was sickening.
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Oct 18th, 2004, 12:32 PM
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FronDC:
Of course staying on the river is nicer, but you must weigh the advantages/disadvantages with regard to your husband's conference. Staying on the river is going to place some logisitical demands on your husband. Will he have to stay all day at the Intercontinental for his meetings? There will be breaks- and he will not be able to go back to his room. Logistically it might be better if you stayed at the hotel where the conference is. Heat is the same all over- yes there will be more noise at the Intercontinental- but the shopping and skytrain are right there also.
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Oct 18th, 2004, 02:30 PM
  #11  
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Thank you everyone for your advice. My husband will make the decision because it affects him more but I am rooting for the river.
FromDC is online now  
Oct 20th, 2004, 01:51 PM
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Sorry, darling, but the heat from car exhausts, pollution, and mobs of people is much worse in central Bangkok. It is much cooler along the Chao Phraya. The grounds of The Oriental are covered with shade trees and beautiful gardens, not to mention the swimming pool enveloped by the cool breeze from the river.
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Oct 20th, 2004, 11:09 PM
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I'm going to add my 2 cents to this one. We spent the night at the Oriental on our way to Chiang Mai and found it charming. Decided to cancel the Four Seasons and stay on the river on our 4 night return but the Oriental was sold out so we stayed at the Penn. I'll be blunt- we hated it! From filthy carpet in our room to completely unusable "free" internet access and on to the banal "Holiday Inn" decor, I couldn't wait to leave. A trip into town to find the Jim Thompson House resulted in complete frustration (our fault) and by the evening all I wanted to do was leave the city. On to Phuket the next morning (see the Chedi story). We had to spend one night in Bangkok for our very early morning return connection and the Oriental had a room in the garden wing. I was totally thrilled. I loved it. Spent the afternoon out of traffic on the river and the city went a way to redeeming itself. By the way, we did have dinner at Biscotti before heading off to Phuket so we could see the Four Seasons. We didn't see a room, but were discouraged by the pool overlooked by the large parking garage/apartment complex and decided being in the middle of this city wasn't for us!
And if anyone is interested. the Four Seasons Chiang Mai is worth every penny (and it cost plenty!!)
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Oct 21st, 2004, 03:36 AM
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Welch, Hope you post a complete trip report. Sounds like you may have some different views on BKK than many of the usual posters. Nice to get a different perspective. Also, What was your Jim Thompson House experience? Did you get lost? Let us know so we can avoid the same mistakes... And of course would love to hear more about restaurants you went to.
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Oct 21st, 2004, 04:20 AM
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One complaint does not a trend make. Our stay at the Penn in April was wonderful- carpets were clean and fine.
The decor was decidely not Holiday Innish- quite the contrary. This hotel did win best hotel in the world- now do you really think it would have won if it had Holiday Inn decor? This is a quality 5 star- read all the feedback and I think the overwhelming result is that it is a great hotel.
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Oct 21st, 2004, 05:24 AM
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Thanks again. Welch, am glad you enjoyed 4Seasons in Chiang Mai as we are going there after BKK. Any special recommendations for that part of the trip? And pls do share problem with JT as I was planning to go there.
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Oct 21st, 2004, 06:28 AM
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I didn't have a bad experience at the Penn but I know I would never return. I just found it impersonal.
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Oct 21st, 2004, 06:41 AM
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My husband and I discussed that very fact and came to the conclusion that the "best in the world" award the Peninsula received was due, perhaps, to the number of people who stayed there and responded to the surveys. The hotel has huge conventions and caters to many Americans. The service was fine, although we paid over $ 60.00 (never more than $15.00 in any other hotel) in phone bills to connect by phone one night to the internet (our daughter has a chronic illness that requires we check in on her and this is the least obtrusive way with a teen) when they have "free" but unusable service. I took pictutures of the carpet, it was so unpleasant. The drain in the tub fell apart when opened (ah yes, and there was "hair" in the tub..lots!), the window had so many oily smudges I cleaned it with a face cloth. This was the only hotel we stayed in on our trip that couldn't accomodate my request for a fan in the room and had the smallest TV (not even watched- and they did have the one in the bath, but I was very surprised given the high tech bells and whistles I found in the other hotels).I did find the decor banal. Sorry! Nothing interesting or Thai about it, in my opinion. Very impersonal. Best shopping on trip was in Chiang Mai. I'll try to post a trip report later today. I'm afraid I don't mince words, though. I know that's not appreciated by all on this board!
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Oct 21st, 2004, 07:01 AM
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And the Bangkok hotel feuds continue and will always continue!Love it. As for the Pen...I was there in August and didn't find any filth...however agree with Glorialf about it feeling impersonal and as far as all the high tech stuff....I could have lived without trying to figure out what all the buttons were for....As far as the comment about the pollution, noise, and heat in the inner city...well...I don't find much difference between that whether in the city or on the river...afterall...it's Bangkok....big and polluted...period.I've never had a noise problem at the Four Seasons or any other hotel I've stayed at in the inner city. I used to stay regularly at the Siam Intercontinental(now torn down to build a mall)...next door to the Siam shopping center...and never once had a noise problem....and that's the heart of the city. But to each his own.As for the river, I'm not one who finds pleasure looking out of my window at a brown, murky, river...I'd rather view the parking lot from the Four Season's pool...although I never noticed a parking lot from the pool area but since the hotel IS in the middle of a city, I wouldn't doubt it.It's not such an issue with me.I choose hotels more by their warmth, friendly service,great food, and great location to town than by views since I don't go on vacation to sit up in my room all the time anyway. I had the view out of my room from the Pen of a slum apartment building...but I just partially closed the curtains. Welch, I'm glad you posted your comments. I was just thinking of you yesterday and wondering how things were going. It sounds as though Bangkok is just not for you since you stated you felt like leaving after getting lost on the way to the Jim Thompson House. I would have just taken a taxi if I were you since it's a distance from The Oriental. It's two stops on the SkyTrain from the Four Seasons so it probably would have been better to have gone there on the day you checked out the Four Seasons.Happy Travels!
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Oct 21st, 2004, 07:02 AM
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OK if you do a search on this forum I do remember a post on the Oriental hotel that was a nighmare also- water problems, other issues etc. What this proves is that at any hotel there are always going to be some incidents where the stay was not pleasant. True other places give more of a Thai experience, but if you review the posts about the Penn- its no contest - its a great place to stay. Oriental and Penn are great hotels for different reasons.
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