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Best hotels in Thailand?

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  • SamG

    The Marriott Marquis in Sukhumvit area in Bangkok was pretty bad. The hotel is just so massive, the rooms aren’t great, the lounge is too small with a poor F&B, the location is a bit scuzzy, and the breakfast was bad. We ended up there after it was recommended by a friend and pretty much spent the whole time wishing we were at the Sheraton Grande where we usually prefer to stay.

    In the past we’ve also stayed at the Sukhumvit Westin once and it was pretty decent but not spectacular. Stayed at the Sofitel Sukhumvit once- really liked the lounge and the hotel itself was decent. The first time we went we stayed at the Shangri-La on the river- liked it but it felt like it took forever to get anywhere from there, but I understand that the transport situation has improved since then.

    In Chaing Mai we stayed the Le Meridien, the hotel itself is tired but the staff were so lovely and almost constantly went above and beyond that I really enjoyed the stay. Location isn’t great but we generally managed to get around fairly easily.

    Yeah, we did a Shangri-La for a few days a while back: lovely, of course, and they were great with our then toddler, but really only useful if you want to be in that part of the city. Did some river/temple stuff, then back to the SGS!

    I liked the Shangri-la but once we were there at the same time as an American caravan sales reward trip and they really sold out to them – the whole pool area was closed 2 x early evenings for events which is just not acceptable without prior warning.

    The GM was very gracious about it and I ended up paying very little for the stay + 2 free nights next time (and it was just a long weekend from Singapore so nbd) but I’d have been very upset had I been in from Europe on a big holiday!

    readytofly

    The Sukhothai has the best pool in Bangkok. And I like the low rise plan of the hotel which avoids the vertical commute problem of a high rise. Its no longer among the most luxurious in Bangkok, but still elegant. Walkable to Silom…

    Olly

    COMO Metropolitan gets a lot of repeat guests and is also the home of what many, although this point is debatable, view as the best restaurant in Bangkok, Nahm.

    Re Chiang Mai, I really enjoyed the Rachamankha which is a beautiful colonial style hotel. I rate the breakfasts here as the best I have had in a hotel.

    I have not been to Koh Samui so nothing to offer.

    There is nothing to debate – the food in Nahm is the best you will eat in SE Asia, not just Thailand. The hotel itself though is a bit average

    • This reply was modified 52 years, 4 months ago by .
    Rhys
    HfP Staff

    Thanks everyone! Lots of non-chain hotels. What about Marriott/Hilton/IHG options too?

    Obviously in the wrong part of the country, but since you specifically asked, I had a good stay at the JW Marriott Khao Lak. You’ll recognise it – it gets used a lot in Bonvoy marketing materials.

    The whole place is connected by a network of swimming pool canals (and half the rooms are swim-up), which gives it a really fun vibe. Now and then there’s a canoe that goes round selling beers and ice cream. You can swim from the bar to your room.

    The property is sat on a gorgeous beach, public but dead quiet given the location. On-property dining was nothing remarkable, but there were a few options set up by locals around the property set back from the beach that were very good and inexpensive. We ate out every night after we discovered them – follow the other guests disappearing into the treeline with phone torches after dark!

    Thanks! Was thinking of staying in Krabi but this could be a good option too!

    QRA

    I have had 5 visits to Anantara Rasananda in Koh Phangan. All rooms have dip pools and the Ocean suites/villas open directly on to the beach, which is a glorious bay. You also have the little village of Thong Nai pan Noi just behind the resort for some great local food. Arrive on the beach via their own speedboat from Koh Samui in just over 30 mins. I have also stayed at the Cpnrad in Koh Samui where the rooms and vistas are superb but the overall vibe is somewhat sterile by comparison.

    QRA

    In Bangkok the Siam Kempinski is a haven within the metropolis, with swim up rooms that are great after a hot day in the city.

    BP

    I have a soft spot for the Intercontinental Bangkok. Excellent Elite treatment with free breakfast for Spire guests, even on award nights. Superb location for shopping and the Sky Train is right outside too. Conrad is OK but not as nice. Others in the area like the Grand Hyatt and St Regis are also nice.

    On Samui it really depends what you are looking for. It’s a sizable island – it’ll take almost 2 hours to drive the full circle to give an idea of size. Chaweng is the busiest area with lots of restaurants but a little touristy and full of McDs, BK, KFC, Starbucks etc… Having a car is awesome on Samui as there are so many nice places to drive to.

    IC Samui is very nice but a little isolated. Stunning sunsets. I got married there and have visited 3 times now so I know it well! The sunshine restaurant in the hotel next door is excellent and there also some local restaurants nearby walk-able and others nearby that will pickup and dropoff for free if you phone them.

    Koh Phangan is worth a visit. Anantara is very nice and the nearby village has some excellent places to eat. Santhiya resort on the same beach was also very nice but it’s been about 10 years since I visited.

    In Chiang Mai, I visited the Anantara back when it was under The Chedi brand. Back then it was one of my favorite hotels in the world. A little out of the old city though so not ideal for sightseeing. I’d recommend staying somewhere central. We done a mountain biking tour down the nearby mountain which was pretty cool and the Patra Elephant Farm elephant caregiver package was excellent and seemed to be the most ethical of the elephant places. They look after working elephants rescued from captivity.

    PaulC

    This topic is making me want to go back to Thailand.

    Crafty

    If you do decide on Hua Hin, we really enjoyed 10 nights at the Marriott there to unwind at the end of a 3 month trip round S E Asia.

    Hbommie

    Not to pry too much but what are your plans to cover the test and go requirements? Stay in Bangkok for 5 days or book into a sha++ hotel in another location?

    Crafty

    Thanks everyone! Lots of non-chain hotels. What about Marriott/Hilton/IHG options too?

    Obviously in the wrong part of the country, but since you specifically asked, I had a good stay at the JW Marriott Khao Lak. You’ll recognise it – it gets used a lot in Bonvoy marketing materials.

    The whole place is connected by a network of swimming pool canals (and half the rooms are swim-up), which gives it a really fun vibe. Now and then there’s a canoe that goes round selling beers and ice cream. You can swim from the bar to your room.

    The property is sat on a gorgeous beach, public but dead quiet given the location. On-property dining was nothing remarkable, but there were a few options set up by locals around the property set back from the beach that were very good and inexpensive. We ate out every night after we discovered them – follow the other guests disappearing into the treeline with phone torches after dark!

    Seconded entirely! Didn’t come across the canoe, though! A new F&B director was taking over, and had big plans for the dining options on property.

    Michael C

    If you do decide on Hua Hin, we really enjoyed 10 nights at the Marriott there to unwind at the end of a 3 month trip round S E Asia.

    Another vote for HuaHin Marriott. Nice pool area (especially for kids), and bang in the centre of town for walking to the night market, etc.

    Rhys
    HfP Staff

    Not to pry too much but what are your plans to cover the test and go requirements? Stay in Bangkok for 5 days or book into a sha++ hotel in another location?

    Bangkok for day 1 and elsewhere for day 5.

    EDB99

    Another vote for HuaHin Marriott. Nice pool area (especially for kids), and bang in the centre of town for walking to the night market, etc.

    You might be mixing up the Marriott and the Hilton.

    It’s the Hilton which is bang in the center of town near Hua Hin beach and the night market. The Marriott is like a 2.5 mi/4 km walk from the night market.

    masaccio

    Latest issue of Conde Nast Traveller has a wee spot on Chiang Mai (free mag if you have Apple One or Readly) and mentions this place: http://www.villamahabhirom.com/ which looks very nice

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