We guarantee you’ll gasp out loud as your beautiful, clasped-handed hostesses and army of butlers check you into Thai heaven (for us on the 37th floor) at The Peninsula Bangkok. Sharing the level with only the private lounge of the hotel’s infrequently used heliport (and Thai aviation museum – make sure to ask to see it), this suite is so named because of its vast, private terrace, giving you towering views over Bangkok and the Chao Phraya River; and, as if we would forget to mention, it comes complete with a sublime outdoor hot tub.
Peninsula branded champagne on ice sat chilling by the door to the terrace as the butlers gave us a knowing nod and proceeded to fill the tub outside. It’s all part of the welcome here at The Peninsula Bangkok, as well as the biggest, most exotic and elaborate fruit salad we had ever seen, cookies, cakes, truffles and the piece-de résistance: a hand-carved chocolate white elephant that nearly lived up to its name, had we not decided that it wasn’t too beautiful to eat after all!
Like a Thai palace, the interior of this enormous suite with a breathtaking 180-degree city view, consisting of a lounge, dining room, two bathrooms, bedroom, walk-in wardrobe and office – dressed in a mix of contemporary and traditional Thai soft furnishings, fit for a king – or a pair of queens. And it doesn’t end there, imagine our surprise when we found our names embroidered into the pillowcases in silk thread! The Peninsula Terrace Suite deservedly tops the bill.
Why you’d ever want to leave this room was beyond us, but the hotel itself, a city resort of contemporary elegance and superb facilities gave you good reason to: its numerous restaurants (Thiptara is a masterclass in experiential Thai food excellence and the Peking duck at Mei Jiang is to die for). And if you’re planning on having in-room breakfast during your entire stay, don’t – The River Cafe and Terrace is an amazing, international feast each morning.
That’s before we even talk about the property’s sublime spa and ‘see and be seen’ pool, or a complimentary riverboat service that takes you to the other side of the river throughout the day and night to show you just what the amazing city of Bangkok has to offer.
Right on time
While you’re Out There
If you’ve literally just landed and want to get acclimatised to Thai flavours, but you’re not quite ready to hit Bangkok’s wet markets just yet, take a little boat ride with The Peninsula Bangkok shuttle. It leaves every half hour from the hotel’s pier and will take you to the enormous temple to retail and entertainment that is ICONSIAM in under 5 minutes. There is all manner of food there, including international chains, but our hot tip is to search out the quaint little food court, designed to emulate the Bangkok canal system. Here, you will find “street food vendors” serving up traditional Thai fare from makeshift wooden boats or stilted houses. It’s a little ‘Disneyland’ but a good introduction to local Thai food that will kick off your culinary journey through Thailand.