I finally hit up one of my bucket list destinations, Thailand, and it was everything. My trip was three nights in Bangkok, two nights in Siem Reap (Cambodia) & four nights in Krabi. I stayed at the Okura Prestige in Bangkok, and it was amazing. The price was very reasonable- I paid less than half what it costs in a major, US city for a 5-star hotel. I actually changed hotels very last minute thanks to a friend’s recommendation, or more like his distaste in my original choice, ha. I learned location is SO important in Bangkok, because it’s very hard to get around. It’s not just the infamous traffic, it’s that many streets in Bangkok are dead-ends with few major roads that cross over. So, you could literally drive in circles to get to a place right across the street (happened in my first taxi ride). Therefore, you need to be by a BTS train stop (best way to get around) and close to the places that you want to visit.
I originally chose a high-end hotel chain on the river, which is by the temples but far away from virtually everything else. Okura Prestige is centrally located and connected to a BTS station (Phloen Chit). There’s also a pharmacy, bank and Dean & Deluca at the bottom of the hotel. It’s a trek from the temples, but it’s close to where the action is. For example, it’s by the neighborhood, Thonglor, where posh locals like to shop, dine and drink. A huge perk for me is that it’s also connected to the Central Embassy Shopping Mall. Bangkok’s super malls are a destination in itself and most are connected to a train station. I loved Central Embassy particularly because they have a Din Tai Fung, my favorite restaurant in the world. Definitely check it out for the best soup dumplings you’ve ever had.
Okura Prestige is a Japanese, luxury hotel chain, and their service was everything you’d expect- prompt, courteous and never a “no”. I loved the attention to detail from the cherry blossom tree in the lobby to the hand-folded origami at turn-down.
Okura Prestige Deluxe Room
I stayed in a Deluxe Room, which is their smallest room category (of ten choices). It was very spacious for a standard hotel room. In addition to the formal foyer, there was a lavish walk-in closet, seating area, desk, huge walk-in rain shower and soaking tub. The toiletries are from the British luxury brand, Aromatherapy Associates. There’s also twice daily turndown service, complementary bottles of water and comfy Japanese-style robes.
🗝 Tip: Don’t forget to brush your teeth with the bottled water! The water in Thailand is not good for tourists. I didn’t brush with bottled water the first couple days and ended up getting a bit sick.
Okura Prestige’s cantilevered, 25 meter pool is breathtaking. Since Bangkok is hot and humid, having access to a pool is key on your trip. I was not used to the heat and was so grateful to spend every morning & every night, swimming. The pool is on the 25th floor, and the view is absolutely stunning, day or night. There’s also plenty of loungers from which you can order food and drinks. Check out a cool drone video of the pool on their website here.
The spacious & modern gym overlooks the pool and has the same great view.
I did not get to have a spa service done in Bangkok, but I’m sure it’s just as 5-star as the rest of the hotel. Next time, I’d like to try their Valmont energizing ritual facial.
Okura Prestige has three restaurants and a patisserie. Elements is a casual french restaurant with Japanese influence. Yamazato is a Kaiseki Ryori, Japanese fine-dining. Up & Above is an indoor/outdoor, international restaurant & terrace facing west on the 24th floor. It’s perfect for a sunset cocktail, and they serve their famous Okura high-tea. I’m a huge high-tea fan and was so sad I didn’t get a chance to try it. The photos are so beautiful, I guess I’ll just have to go back 🙂