Week in Hua Hin and BKK

Nov 20th, 2005, 02:04 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 48
Week in Hua Hin and BKK

Dear Fodorites,
I promised myself that I would say thank you for all the help I received from this forum in planning our visit last week to Bangkok and Hua Hin. I hope you find my posting helpful as well. We are Americans living in the Gulf, so itís a quick five and a half hour flight to Bangkok. Iím a retired flight attendant and have been in over fifty countries, and Thailand is the first place we have ever chosen twice for a vacation! So you know how special it is to our hearts as we explore this lovely country and get to know the people. Two years ago we were in Phuket, staying at the Chedi. We loved the bungalows and the beach but felt we were far away from the fun and shopping of the ďmain drag.Ē So when we thought about going back, I wanted to choose a hotel closer to town. We had a weekís holiday and split it between Bangkok and Hua Hin, mostly because I decided that it was more relaxing to take ground transportation than hassling flight connections. Our travel agent here in the Gulf booked us a limo to the Sofitel Central in Hua Hin and we were there in two and three-quarter hours. We very much liked the hotel and its proximity to the town, but were a bit disappointed in the beach. After all, Thailand has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, but this isnít one of them. However, we enjoyed walking the beach and dining and shopping in town. I had a silk suit made at Mike and Co., Tailors (very expensive) and we had a very nice meal at the Japanese restaurant at the Sofitel and then at a little place called Mama Miaís near the hotel. But my best find was a fantastic spa called Amana which is about three blocks from the Sofitel near the Tanawit Hotel, in an unfinished commercial building. The ladies were wonderful, the facilities lovely and clean and the price was right! I had a massage/sauna/scrub each day and the cost averaged about $10/hour. Then on to Bangkok and the Peninsula. I loved being on the river and the Peninsula was quite nice. The service was professional, but I would not say personal. The carpet did smell of mildew but the bathroom was just great. The buffet breakfast was overwhelming. I really loved the water taxi over to the other side and with a hotel map and a few of Fodorís ideas, we were off on the Skytrain. Jim Thompsonís, where we bought two silk bathrobes for a wedding present, then liked them so much we went back the next day for a pair for ourselves. High-end window shopping at Grayshornís and Emporium (same old/same old.) A. Price Tailor at the Shangri-la for a blouse (OK, but a bit of a hassle with the fitting.) Antiques at the River City Mall where we actually bought a (we hope) 19th century Chinese cloisonné plate. Royal Thai benjaming (?) porcelain. Street clothes that fit since Iím a womenís small. Tours of temples and Chinatown and the flower market, then back to shopping and dining. We decided on La Dalat Indochine for the first nightís dinner. Wonderful house with loads of atmosphere. Food was interesting, and not expensive. The next night was Harmonique. Itís a good thing that Grandpa was outside to tell us this was the place; otherwise we would have walked by. The cook came out to tell us heíd make the 13 course dinner for just two for 1000 baht, so we said go for it. Wow! We were stuffed and impressed. Good thing we didnít have to swim back across the river. The last night was dinner at Annaís Café Ė the original. Really lovely and very different from the other two restaurants. On our walk back to the Peninsula pier, I found my second favorite place Ė the spa called Lan-la at the Bossotel just down the road from the Shangri-la. Again, wonderful ladies, great prices, nice facilities. In fact, Iíd be tempted to stay at the Bossotel next time! I like the location and you canít beat the price. Who needs remote-control room curtains? Too soon, it was over and I began planning my next trip back on the plane home. Mandi
Mandilulur is offline  
Nov 20th, 2005, 03:22 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
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Mandi-thanks for your report. We stayed at the Sofitel and always stayed by the pool on the wonderful lawn. It was so relaxing that we fely no need to venture out onto the beach. Harmonique is a bit difficult to spot, but well worth the trouble.
Gpanda is offline  
Nov 20th, 2005, 07:25 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,943
glad you had a good trip...did you notify the penn of the moldy rugs?? for that price it should not happen...i have never experienced that...i fear to say that at bossotel you may have more than a moldy smell...great location however...
rhkkmk is offline  
Nov 20th, 2005, 08:29 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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The best of Hua hin beaches are south of town beyond Khao Takiab, I have to confess myself not knowing this after many visits to Hua hin but once discovered that is where we head 'everytime' now, for thos familiar with the beaches from the Hilton/Sofitel down past Marrioot and Chiva Som/Hyatt it is quite surprising to find such beaches

http://www.khao-takiab.com
JamesA is offline  
Nov 20th, 2005, 09:08 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
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I agree that you should definitely contact the Penn about the moldy rugs--at those prices and for a new hotel that's inexcusable. But as I've often said-- bad things happen at the best of places. What defines them is how they deal with it. So if you report it they should make good in some way. I too found the service correct but impersonal--that's something you either like or don't but it's not a hotel problem. Mould is.
glorialf is offline  
Nov 22nd, 2005, 03:22 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 284
Mandilurlur

You state you had a silk suit made very expensive, what is the going rate for silk suits.
john44 is offline  
Nov 26th, 2005, 08:44 AM
  #7  
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Gosh, I hope it was less than I paid! Two years ago in Phuket at Raj Fashions, I had a lovely silk jacket and long skirt (the same style as the Thai flight attendants wear) made for about $100 US. This time, I paid about $270 for a silk jacket and long skirt. The material cost was around $100, so I was very surprised when the tailor would not budge from his price. I had planned to have a few more things made, but after much negotiation decided to go with just these two items. This was the final price after bargaining - the guy came down perhaps 15%. I did have a blouse made in Bangkok for $30 US (not including material) so that seemed more reasonable. Mandi
Mandilulur is offline  
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