From Guenmai

Dec 19th, 2005, 12:43 AM
  #1  
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From Guenmai

Howdy folks. Made it to Bangkok yesterday after my 17 hour non-stop flight out of LAX. There was an upgrade sale at the airport for only $199. to go from regular economy to premier economy. I'm not one to pay for upgrades, but I jumped on that one as did everyone else. They sold out. Good I got to the airport early. I thought I was to be on an LAX-Osaka-Bangkok flight, but found out when I got to the airport that it was non-stop. The landing was so smooth in that Airbus 340-500 until the passengers all applauded the pilot. At the moment I'm at Siam Paragon Mall in the basement where the aquarium is. There is a free internet cafe here. Yippy! Craig, I'll try checking out the aquarium tomorrow. It's 450 baht for adult entrance. It's very crowded right now as it's 4:30PM. There is a gourmet supermarket on the first level where all the food courts and restaurants are and it's beyond belief. Mega huge...if there's such a word. I thought I'd seen it all, but this is something else. When I went to the fish department, there were at least 5 guys standing there and as I entered they all broke out in smiles and in unison saying..."Sawadee". Everyone is running around wai-ing and saying,"sawadee". It's a circus atmosphere and it's jam packed and Thais are shopping like there's no tomorrow and shoppers come up to me and ask,"Where are you from?" They all seem to want to practice English. When I tell them that I'm from L.A. then I hear that there's someone they know or a family member that lives there. It's taken me over an hour to just do my grocery shopping.They have every kind of food item imaginable. Now I have to slep this heavy bag of groceries to the skytrain or if I'm lazy take another taxi. I have a one-month skytrain pass, but today I've been taxi-ing around 'cause I'm still jetlagged. Yesterday I got in at 6:30 AM and hit the streets at 3:30PM and was all over the place until I couldn't keep my eyes open any longer. The weather is the best I've ever expereinced and I've been here several times at this time of the year. It's cool enough to wear a sweater and there's no humidity in the air and it's a bit windy. My Thai friend, who dropped by my apartment yesterday, said that she prays that this weather continues. As for my apartment at Emporium Suites, I couldn't be happier. It's absolutely beautiful, 80 sq.meters and the view is beyond breathtaking. I also have a full terrace overlooking Bangkok. I have the view of the Novatel Lotus to my right and the Rembrandt Hotel to my left. Well, I've got to go and get these groceries home. I'll try to write tomorrow. Oh, Kathie...the apartment building you were talking about is across the river form the Royal Orchid Sheraton...just to the right. I noticed it yesterday. Bye for now. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 01:25 AM
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How much are you paying for the Emporium Suites. It's in the same building as the Emporium dept store at Sukkumvit Soi 24?
KMLoke is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 02:04 AM
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Sounds good, Guen - I look forward to your report on the Aquarium. Glad the flight worked out well for you.
Craig is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 02:56 AM
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Guenmai, cool enough for a sweater and no humidity? Are you sure you're in Bangkok? Glad you made it there safely and look forward to your posts. Have a blast.
laurieco is online now  
Dec 19th, 2005, 02:59 AM
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Guen-- tell the weather to stay that way for anothr 3 weeks!

How was your flight? Is Golden Triangle in Siam Paragon as promised?
glorialf is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 04:58 AM
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Guenmai, what airline did you fly?
connette is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 05:13 AM
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she must have flow thai air because they are the only ones with nonstops to bangkok.
glorialf is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 05:14 AM
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Guen
Great to hear from you. Paragon sounds like my kind-a place!! Don't buy everything... leave something for me.. LOL.

I hope you will report in often. You said you rented for one month. When do you return to LAX?

Carol
simpsonc510 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 05:21 AM
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If you go to Thaiairways.com you will see a press release on this new non-stop LAX BKK service, which started on Dec. 2. Sounds interesting!!!

Carol
simpsonc510 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 05:59 AM
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guen...all sounds wonderful....now you can relax...

go over to the rembrandt and try their restaurants.....the indian one has a wonderful sunday brunch....make a res....the mexican rest. is quite good and i understand the italian is also good....they have a free tuk tuk to take you back to sukhumvit....

awaiting an on-going day by day report, even if you can't do it every day....
rhkkmk is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 06:02 AM
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Look forward to your report on the aquarium. I'll be there soon.
Gpanda is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 07:22 AM
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Glad to hear you're there safely and already enjoying Bangkok. The Emporium Suites is one of places we're interested in. I'll be very interested to hear your report.

Enjoy! And report back to us often.
Kathie is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 08:24 AM
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Guen:
Sounds like you really love being in Bangkok from your enthusiastic writing...can't wait to here more. Have fun!
Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Dec 19th, 2005, 11:06 PM
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Thanks folks for all of the questions and comments. I just finished typing the aquarium report...now to answer some of your questions before the aquarium staff throws me off this free computer....Smiles...I flew Thai Air from Los Angeles. The Skybus was wonderful and so was the service. I loved economy premier. As for how much the Emporium Suites costs. Well, when I was here in August, I went out to several serviced apartment buildings and dealt directly with the sales managers.I negotiated a price that included a corporate rate...although Im not a corporation...but I just wore the sales manager down I think and then I had her freeze the rent at the August rate because there was going to be an increase Nov 01st. So, I ended up with an 80 square meter studio with a kitchen as a separate room...a door on the kitchen...keeps the smells out of the other area. Im paying 4,950 baht per night for three weeks...taxes included. I dont know what the current rate is. You might be able to get something lower...depending on when you travel....remember this is HIGH season. But, I couldnt be happier with the place and yes its attached to the Emporium mall and theres a huge supermarket on the top level of the mall which makes grocery shopping a breeze and the Bangkok Bank....my branch...Emporium Branch...is right as you walk out of the lobby of the Emporium Suites. Theyve won 2002 to 2005 as the bank with the best exchange rates. I opened an account there in August and had an ATM card issued, but on arrival day I went back into the bank and asked for a VISA debit card instead. They offered me one or the other back when I first opened the account in August. I should have taken the debit card then since I usually wont use my American debit card overseas.This way I can deposit money into the Thai account and use the Thai Visa debit card. Its worked out brilliantly. I had to refill out all of those forms though since I was cancelling the ATM card and requesting a debit card.The banker gave me a free watch for being so patient. He was very nice and we laughed so much until he forgot to charge me the 300 baht to get the debit card. A Thai friend was with...to help with the translations and to help me fill out the forms....the English print is VERY small. She listed her cell phone number on my bank forms.When we left the bank, it had closed, and we were walking through the mall when her phone rang and she said we had to go back to the bank because the guy had forgotten to charge me the 300 baht for the debit card! So, they had to reopen the bank for us. I saw him today and he came over to me smiling and greeting me and still laughing.I say....tell folks a funny story or two and theyll give you great service. I try to keep people laughing. As for the weather...still cool and no humidity...I have to pinch myself to see if its real or if Im dreaming. Got to go. Ive been typing for over an hour and I want to check out the rest of the mall. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Dec 20th, 2005, 06:12 AM
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no humidity??? are you sure you are in bangkok and not in phoenix???
rhkkmk is offline  
Dec 21st, 2005, 09:35 PM
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Yes, and there's still no humidity and it's still cool! Oh, I'll post my travel report under the aquarium thread from now on as not to confuse folks. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Dec 22nd, 2005, 01:25 AM
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U are getting the best of Bangkok weather - Dec is really the time to be there. Glad u are enjoying Emporium Suites - we stayed there for couple months when we moved to Bkk and then earlier this year for a couple nights and I think it's fab. Location cannot be beat. Have u taken the rate with b'fast? They have quite a spread.
hobbes is offline  
Dec 22nd, 2005, 01:58 AM
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The weather is very cool now. In Ubol, where I was yesterday, it was 13C or about 55F last night and very windy. Bangkok this morning was 18C or 65F and they say it will get cooler for the next few days. 2 - 3 more weeks of cool temperature left for Bangkok so enjoy!
Hanuman is offline  
Dec 25th, 2005, 09:14 PM
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Hobbes, I didn't know there was a rate without breakfast. I totally forgot to ask about that. I'm so used to asking that question on trips to Europe. I thought about it though, the other day. I've only eaten breakfast, in the restaurant, twice and since I have a full kitchen I eat in my apartmnet. I would imagine that breakfast is about $15.00 a day as it is in most 4-5 star places. When I go back over to the lobby, I'll enquire. Happy Travels!
Guenmai is offline  
Dec 26th, 2005, 01:04 AM
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I can't believe this weather. Is this BKK or San Diego?
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