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This is the next installment of TPG Managing Editor Eric Rosen’s series on his month-long trip to Southeast Asia. Other posts include: Send in your Southeast Asia Tips, Flight Review: Lufthansa 747-400 First Class and Trip Report: Lufthansa First Class Lounge Frankfurt Terminal 2, Flight Review: Thai Airways A380 First Class, and Hotel Review: Park Hyatt Siem Reap, Park Hyatt Saigon and Intercontinental Hanoi. In this post, he travels back to Bangkok to spend an evening at the St. Regis Bangkok.
Towards the end of my trip, I spent a couple nights in the Golden Triangle near Chiang Rai and had to transit back through Bangkok for one last night before heading on to my final destination of Hong Kong, so I decided to check out the St. Regis Bangkok.
The hotel is in the upscale Rajadamri business and shopping district across from the Rajadamri (also spelled Ratchadamri) SkyTrain station and the Royal Bangkok Sports Club, so it was a convenient 40-minute taxi ride (well, convenient for Bangkok) from the airport (it only took 30 minutes on the way back out the following day) that cost me roughly $10 including tolls and tip – a much better deal than booking one of the hotel’s Mercedes for a private transfer at the cost of 3,000 THB (about $100 at the going exchange rate).
The hotel opened just in 2011 in an elegant, skinny glass skyscraper, so when I got to the hotel in the evening, I went right up to reception on the 12th floor and checked in. I had gotten a rate of 5,500 THB ($171) for a Deluxe Room – the starting room category. The rate included breakfast at Viu, the all-day dining restaurant adjacent to reception, as well as free internet (otherwise it’s 400 THB ($13) per day), so for my SPG Gold welcome amenity, I chose the 250 bonus Starpoints.
I asked if there were any rooms they could upgrade me to thanks to my SPG status, but they said they were fully committed, so I just took the room I was given and was thankful that at least they had honored my request for a non-smoking room with a king-size bed and that the pillows were hypo-allergenic as I’d asked for in response to a pre-check-in welcome email one of the guest services agents had sent me a few days prior.
The hotel has 277 rooms including 57 suites. My reception agent took me up to my room on the 20th floor personally and when we walked in we found my St. Regis butler, a young lady named Bo, putting the finishing touches on turndown service. She took over room orientation from there and showed me the features then left me on my own.
The hotel describes its rooms as a mix of classic Thai decor with contemporary finishes, though I didn’t see too many distinctively Thai elements in evidence except for some patterned silk panels on the wall and bed headboard. The palette was a rather muted melange of beige, silver and black and I thought it was a bit sterile, but with over 500 square feet, a luxurious pillowtop king bed, and a plush, overstuffed sofa with a coffee table, it was still very comfortable.
There was also a large work desk set against the floor-to-ceiling windows, and a wall-mounted 42-inch flatscreen over the chest of drawers containing the minibar and hot water kettle (you get free tea and coffee with the butler service, so I don’t think many people end up using it).
I thought the bathroom was rather interesting. It runs alongside the entry hallway with a large wooden sliding door separating it from where you walk in, and then there are two sliding wooden doors that come to a corner on the side of it nearest the bedroom so you can close it off, but otherwise it’s part of an open floorplan, which I actually thought made the room feel more spacious, though it would be a pain to open and close all the doors if you were traveling with someone else and needed privacy.
It was mostly marble with a black granite sink top and double vanities, a glassed in WC and separate shower with wall-mounted and overhead rainfall showerheads, a deep soaking tub, and a stockpile of signature Remede products.
I just had one evening to spend there and I had to eat and dash out to meet some friends, so I ordered some pad Thai (hey, it was my last night in Thailand and I wanted something easy!) from room service before heading out.
The following morning, I ventured down to the 12th floor to check out the Drawing Room bar area and grab breakfast in Viu, which was an extensive buffet with made-to-order egg and noodle dishes and the usual mix of eastern and western options as well as fresh fruit and cold cuts, and then it was time to check out.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to check out the hotel’s other restaurants – JoJo serving rustic Italian cuisine for lunch and dinner, Zuma for Japanese izakaya, or the Decanter wine bar – or the 15th-floor pool and Elemis Spa, but time was just too short, so I’ll have to drop back by next time I’m in town.
Although I didn’t think the hotel had a huge amount of character, I will say the staff was delightful and everyone was very friendly and efficient, and for the price of $171, I thought I got a great value for my stay, though if you’re looking for any sort of Thai authenticity, I think you’re better off booking a different property. Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.
Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.