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Thailand’s vibrant capital, Bangkok is a feast for all senses. With so much to see and do but never enough time squeeze it all in, SUITCASE picked the brains of Mr Surchai Thong-on, Chief Concierge of Banyan Tree Bangkok, on the best way to spend 24 hours there.
How would you describe Bangkok in three words? Amazing, stunning, vibrant.
8:30AM Go for a local breakfast around Silom Road. Here you will find a variety of traditional breakfast foods such as rice porridge, boiled rice soup and BBQ Pork with sticky rice.
10AM Walk off breakfast at Lumpini Park – the large open green space in the centre of the city. Here, both locals and visitors enjoy swan-boat rides around the park. There are also lots of peaceful areas perfect for a picnic. I personally love spending time here jogging and doing aerobics.
11AM If you’re hungry again then Damnoen Saduak Floating Market is your answer. This large and popular floating market is about 100km southwest of Bangkok in the Ratchaburi province. You can buy various kinds of locally farmed fresh produce and delicious street food such as noodle soup and som tum. Give yourself between one and two hours to travel from Bangkok.
If you want to escape the crowds, I suggest you to take a long-tail boat to travel along Chao Phraya River. You should also take a canal tour – you will get special insight into Bangkok which can only be obtained by seeing it from the water.
1PM If you want something quick for lunch, then there are many options in Chinatown like dim sum, rice noodles with roasted pork and of course pad Thai. Top it all off with a Thai dessert and traditional Thai ice tea.
2:30PM Get brownie points from loved ones by bringing them home presents from The Platinum Fashion Mall. It is one of Thailand’s largest shopping malls, and here you can buy clothes and handicrafts galore. It was designed with a wholesale shopping concept which means that it supports many services for fashion traders, retailers and traders.
If you’re lucky enough to visit on a Saturday or Sunday, Chatuchak Weekend Market (locals call it JJ market) is home to more than 8,000 market stalls where you can find almost anything.
If your jet-lag starts kicking in, Banyan Tree Spa Bangkok features a total of 16 well-appointed treatment rooms on the 19th and 20th floors, and is an ideal escape for day spa seekers as well as in-house guests.
First-time visitors to Banyan Tree Spa are encouraged to experience the signature Royal Banyan and Rejuvenation packages. The Royal Banyan features the exclusive Banyan Massage, which combines the best of East and West massage techniques and uses a harmony of intricate and rhythmic strokes to ease away tension and work its magic on the senses.
For urban dwellers, the two-hour Rejuvenation package is a firm favourite for its flexible alternatives in the form of a body scrub and body massage, or a longer body massage of guests’ choice.
5:30PM Watch the sunset from the relaxed setting of Moon Bar at Banyan Tree Bangkok 61 floors above the city. Order the classic Vertigo Sunset cocktail, a mix of pineapple, cranberry and lime juices blended with just the right amount of Malibu.
8PM I recommend Saffron, Banyan Tree Bangkok’s Thai Cuisine restaurant. Showcasing authentic Thai flavours with an innovative twist, Saffron is inspired by the art of traditional Thai cuisine in all its splendour.
Traditional cooking methods reminiscent of the techniques passed down from generation to generation are evident in Saffron’s culinary presentation. The menu features a variety of delicacies originating from the historical Thai royal courts, dishes popular amongst countryside villagers to all-time favourite home recipes.
The signature dishes at the restaurant is yum hua plee (spicy banana blossom salad) and khao phad saffron (wok-tossed saffron rice, seafood, crispy dried shrimp and vegetables).
If you want to get out of the hotel and are after a more local experience, I recommend Baan Khanitha restaurant, which is located in the heart of the city. The food is extremely tasty.
10PM Now’s the perfect time to slink downstairs to the newly opened and very chic, Vertigo Too for a digestif followed by dancing the night away.
Enjoy a twin-centre holiday to Thailand with Abercrombie and Kent.
Discover the hustle of Bangkok followed by the tranquillity of Phuket.
Seven nights start from £1,575pp*, including two nights at Banyan Tree Bangkok and five nights at Banyan Tree Phuket.
*For bookings made with Abercrombie & Kent before 31st March 2016. Price includes accommodation, daily breakfast, international flights, airport transfers and a complimentary villa upgrade in Phuket. Valid for new bookings, subject to availability for stays made before 31st December 2016. Terms and conditions apply.
For enquiries and bookings contact Abercrombie and Kent on 01242 547 704.
This article was published in collaboration with Abercrombie & Kent and Banyan Tree
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