No way. I whispered to myself as a concierge opened the door to my room. A posh mini living room with a comfortable sofa, coffee table and huge LCD television greeted me. A few steps away is the bedroom; two plush chairs, ottomans, colossal flat-screen TV, and in the middle of everything, an inviting king-sized bed.
And all this just for me. Just for me, I silently uttered in disbelief.
It was a grand welcome for the first day of the Thailand Connect: Hip & Heritage Business Events; a familiarization tour spearheaded by the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau aiming to enrich MICE Tourism in Thailand. And in keeping with the tour’s tagline, our night would be spent at the opulent The Siam, a mid-1800’s inspired boutique hotel located in Bangkok.
Just a week ago, I stayed at Hotel Luna, a hotel cum museum at the UNESCO World Heritage City of Vigan and I was amazed by their art exhibit. But little did I know that a week later, I would be overwhelmed once more by an even more extensive display, this time at Bangkok.
The Siam Hotel is owned by Kamala Sukosol, a famous Thai jazz singer who’s apparently an antique collector too. Part of her collections are displayed within the halls of the hotel; first edition and antique books line the display cases of the hotel’s library along with numerous ceramics and potteries from the Neolithic period. I even saw a Han Dynasty terra cotta horse and carriage sculpture dated from 206 BC. Just wow.
Located on three acres of prime property along the Chao Phraya River, it would be a sin for The Siam to not have a pool. And yes, of course it does have one.
Usually early in the morning before breakfast, I would strip down and have a few laps at their pool which is just a stone’s throw away from the restaurant and the river.
Even with a five-star rating, The Siam Hotel is intentionally small. It has limited rooms and only stands three-storey high. Take note though that 28 of its 39 rooms are exceptionally beautiful suites, while the rest are roomy villas spread along the river and garden area.
Ordinary rooms are banned at The Siam.
The hotel’s design reflects architecture reminiscent of King Rama V’s reign over Thailand, infused with modern whites, black lines and a certain 1920’s jazz chic. I love how minimalist yet stately its interiors are, somehow reminding me of colonial-era structures—even though the country was never really colonized.
The rooms at The Siam opens up to a huge enclosed central courtyard with a dark marble reflecting pool. The atrium is planted with tropical vegetation. The effect evokes that of a greenhouse, but an elegant and handsome one at that.
I was assigned at the second floor of The Siam and even though the hotel is only three-storey high, elevators are still provided for. The suites each have Art Deco-inspired private living rooms equipped with a television and a bar with a mini-fridge.
It connects directly to the bedroom, but drapes can be pulled if a guest wants a bit more privacy. The main room, decorated in black and whites like the rest of the hotel, is massive. It has an unthinkably large TV, a study table at the back of the bed, two easy chairs and roomy closets.
An iPod dock is available right by the bedside, so are seemingly unlimited complimentary bottles of mineral water.
And despite the old-world feel, I love how state-of-the-art their TV system is and I totally appreciate the strong Wi-Fi signal throughout the suite.
The Siam’s toilet and bath is larger than my room back home. It features two separate vanities, a beautifully classic bath tub and separate shower and toilet rooms. It’s one of the most beautiful and spacious bathrooms I’ve ever shed my clothes on.
Breakfast is included with The Siam’s room rates (check here) and it is usually held at their Chon Thai Restaurant. It’s an open-aired affair under three transplanted Thai teakwood houses facing the Chao Phraya River. I was told that these hundred-year old houses were once host to parties with the likes of Jackie Onassis and Roger Moore.
Unlike most big hotels that serve lavish breakfast buffets, morning meals at The Siam practices restraint. While guests can order everything on their menu—as much as they can—they still have to ask for the waiters to serve it to them. In all practicality, it’s still a buffet, but one has to wait for dishes to be prepared—which I find to be a good thing really, versus the total abandon and excess of the usual banquet buffets.
Chon Thai Restaurant is also were we held one of the more fun aspects of staying at The Siam Hotel. One lunchtime, we were invited to partake in a cooking session with the restaurant’s chef. She gamely showed us how to cook Thai spring rolls and the famous Pad Thai.
My culinary skills are limited to frying eggs and hotdogs for breakfast, but I was game with everything. After an hour or so of challenging myself to fry more than sausages and actually mix a pad thai, the fruit of our labor was finally laid on our table.
And surprise, surprise! It was going to be our lunch! Well, it wasn’t half as bad as I expected it to be and to be honest, it was actually quite good too. Talk about self-service haha.
The Siam Hotel
Address: 3/2 Thanon Khao, Vachirapayabal,
Dusit, Bangkok, Thailand
Contact Number: +66 (0) 2206-6999
Rates and Online Booking: Click Here
GPS Coordinates Map: 13°46'52.1"N 100°30'21.2"E