There are a handful of super luxurious hotels in Bangkok, and the Peninsula should be considered one of the finest of the group. Situated on the west side of the Chao Phraya River, the hotel defines quality with spacious river-view rooms, incredible drinking and dining options, and a world-class spa. Lovers of the Peninsula brand around the world will feel right at home as this high-end hotel offers the same services of its sister properties, but with a decidedly Thai touch.
The Peninsula is the only hotel in Bangkok with helicopter access direct from the airport. Privacy minded guests can enter the hotel through a special lounge, while splurge-happy tourists can rent the helicopter for exclusive sightseeing tours of the city.
Every room in the hotel has a view of the river, yet all rooms are not created equal. Standard fare is designed with Thai silk touches, has daily fruit, complimentary water/coffee/tea, and free shoe-shine service. Suites, meanwhile are all individually designed and offer enhanced amenities like bottles of champagne, chocolates and cookies, and even mood lighting.
YOU SHOULD KNOW One drawback in the standard rooms is that there are no outlets near the bed, making it difficult to plug in your phone at night.
Large marble bathrooms are outfitted with Oscar de la Renta products and feature separate rain showers and sunken bathtubs. The commodes also come with flatscreen TVs and ultra-plush robes.
The expansive lobby has large floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the river and offers a variety of all-day dining options as well as their famous afternoon tea. Live piano music accompanies both the afternoon tea and the evening dinner.
The exceptionally long and narrow pool seems to reach out towards the river and is surrounded by lush foliage, teak wood cabanas, and white lounge chairs. A full-service pool bar provides guests with a variety of snacks and drinks throughout the day.
World-famous, The Peninsula Spa is located in a jaw-dropping three-story Thai Colonial building behind the pool. Here, 18 treatment rooms are used for one-of-a-kind massages, facials, scrubs, and more.
For a truly harmonious experience, try the Thai Health and Harmony program, which offers meditative sunrise yoga at the historic Gong Wu Shrine--it’s complimentary and the hotel provides yoga mats and transportation at 5:50 a.m.
The Fitness Centre is surprisingly small for such a luxurious property, but it does have hardwood floors, Life Fitness machines and free weights. Highlights of the gym are in the locker rooms where guests can indulge in both hot and cold plunge pools or relax in the sauna and steam rooms.
Want to play tennis or soccer? The hotel has courts for both!
Unsurprisingly, the hotel has a number of great dining options. Thiptara sits on the river and is known city-wide for its authentic Thai cuisine (mind the mosquitos!). Mei Jiang, meanwhile is one of the best Cantonese restaurants in Bangkok open for lunch and dinner.
The aptly named River Bar is an outdoor space that’s perfect for sunset sips while the uncreatively named The Bar is a nightcap spot with classic cocktails and piano music until midnight.
For a unique experience, take the hotel’s cocktail cruise, a one-hour boat ride that stops at The Grand Palace.
You’re close to major thoroughfares if you ever decide to get into a car. But if you want to avoid the heavy sting of Bangkok traffic, just hop in the hotel’s boat which can drop you off at various sites or take you to the Taksin Pier where you can find a BTS Skytrain station.
Take the hotel’s boat right across the river to Le Normandie (10-minute boat ride/walk) at the Mandarin Oriental for the best French cuisine in Bangkok. If you want to delve into more authentic Thai cuisine with some classic Thai dance performances, head across the river to Salathip (3-minute boat ride) at the Shangri-La Hotel.
After eating at Le Normandie, stay at the Mandarin Oriental and drink like a Colonial explorer inside the Bamboo Bar (10-minute boat ride/walk). If you eat at Salathip, hang out at the Shangri-La and find some of the most inventive cocktails at the Long Bar (3-minute boat ride).