No matter what time you arrive in the Phranakorn Nornlen - and be it in the middle of the night; a welcome with a nice smile is always there. The big plus of this little boutique hotel are the many green areas, terraces and wells as well as the staff which will become a second family in no time. The rooms are simple and in some cases small (starting from 36 Euros), but they are decorated lovingly and with much creativity - and the breakfast tastes fantastic, especially the traditional Thai-tea. On the small roof there is a little terrace with a vegetable garden (the crop serves for the breakfast) where one can relax. The little tables of the comfortable bar on the first floor look directly at a big Buddha statue. Overall, the Phranakorn Nornlen is a low-priced and heartwarming alternative to anonymous hotel chains. Five-star comfort, however, should not be expected. The beds, for instance, are relatively hard as is usual in Thailand, but the staff provides the guests gladly with additional blankets. Besides, there is always a masseuse at service.
Hardly surprising that the Sukhothai won countless awards for its interior architecture. The trio Ed Tuttle, Kerry Hill and the Thai designer Pichitra Boonyarathaphan managed to find the perfect balance between tradition and modernism: symmetric colonnades, mirror basins, open air ambulatories, buddha statues and everything made of finest and natural materials like bronze, teak wood and marble complemented by precious fabrics and mirrors. Wherever you look at, you'll see serenity and beauty - and that also applies to the suites (starting from 160 euro) that are equipped with flat screens, Bose sound systems, rain showers, touchscreens and perfect lighting. A dinner in the award-winning Thai restaurant Celadon makes a perfect day in the metropolis complete.
Old Bangkok Inn
Compared to the hotel skyscrapers in the city, the Old Bangkok Inn is refreshingly different. The family-run house has only ten rooms, but shines with its renovated Thai-Teak wooden furnishing from the times of King Chulalongkorn. And the breakfast is terrific (coconut-pancakes!). Important sights such as the Grand Palace are about 20 minutes away by foot. For whom it is too hot to walk: The concierge can call a taxi at any time. Six years ago the rooms were newly decorated and named after Thai plants: Rice, Lemon Grass, Lotus, Jasmine, Orchid and Rose. The Lotus-Suite (starting from 150 Euros) spans over two floors, is kept in a luscious green and provides space for four people (48 square meters); more than four people would be too much though. There's also a kind of private mini garden with lounge chairs, lotus flowers and a bath tub. Splendid! Take note: one should be fit for the steep stairs of the hotel.