Design-focused small hotels in Bangkok
It feels surreal that this leafy paradise exists in one of the city’s most bustling areas. The hotel is takes its name from the Thai word that signifies being in a dreamy state, and Kloem tries its best to evoke the feeling with a scattering of bean bags and huge hammocks at the lobby (perfect for all-day slumbering or midday naps), while traditional Thai elements like triangle pillows and woven crafts evoke a “homestay” feel. Choose between a dormitory-style room or a private bedroom decked out in black and white. The hostel also frequently hosts Thai cooking classes, but you need to call for the schedule.
If you’re a nightcrawler and Thonglor bar-hopping is part of your main agenda when visiting Bangkok, Blok Thonglor may just be perfect for you. Tucked inside Soi Thonglor 6, Blok features photogenic, modish interiors that include faux brick walls and blond wood flooring. An interesting interplay of colors define the hotel—the lobby is splashed with red, white and blue, while themed rooms are dressed in bold shades like red and dark blue (Twilight Dining Room) and teal (Midnight Cocktail room). Start off your night at the nearby Rewind Bar, which offers two free drinks to guests of the hotel.
Located within convenient access to notorious Khaosan Road, but far enough not to be bothered by all the chaos, Tales Khaosan takes guests on a comforting ride within a train-themed hostel. An old shophouse has been transformed into a photogenic setting that resembles a train compartment. Each bed in the mixed dorm is designed to resemble those on a sleeper train. (But fret not, the beds here are much more comfy and spacious, and are equipped with USB sockets and a reading light.) Those who prefer privacy can book the one and only private room. A café on the ground floor serves good coffee brewed from beans from Chiang Rai.
The elegant Sino-Portuguese interiors of Baan 2459 in Yaowarat transports guests to the bygone era of early modern Rattanakosin. The state-of-the-art hotel was refurbished from a century-old mansion, and the renovation work was conducted to retain the structure’s original interior as much as possible. Four rooms are all pleasingly decked out in ancient-style furniture and earthy retro colors, and each comes with an elegantly dressed bathroom. The restaurant on the second floor serves Thai-style breakfast like congee and kai ka ta (fried egg served in a small casserole). Caffeine specialist CHATA has opened a café nearby that serves specialty coffee and homemade baked goodies.
This lovely hotel in the Old Town evokes a home away from home. Infusing a contemporary flair into traditional Thai elements, Nanda Heritage Hotel is built from repurposed parts of a historic European-style mansion that belonged to the esteemed Lekhyananda family. Each stay offers a history lesson as you’ll be sleeping among original decorative elements like window frames, carved teak wood banisters, and louvred ventilation panels that have been combined with modern minimalist elements. A swimming pool on the second floor is perfect for beating the summer heat.
For decades, this noble home was passed on from one generation of the respected Vajrabhaya family to the next. A few years ago, its current owner, Premmanat Vajrabhaya, converted this colonial inheritance into a boutique hotel. Baan Vajra has a distinguished air that has not diminished over time. The garden is a focal point, boasting a majestic centuries-old bodhi tree. Antique furniture set in classic, colonial-style rooms plays a big part in transporting guests to old Bangkok. An outdoor jacuzzi with a view of the bodhi tree is an ideal spot to unwind after a hectic day of sightseeing around the city.
As a tribute to her grandmother, owner Sirasa Mangklapruk has converted parts of a commercial building on Soi Sukhumvit 49 into this pretty little boutique hotel. Step inside the lovely teal building and you’ll be bombarded by vintage memorabilia, most of which belonged to Sirisa’s grandmother (a pharmacist) such as old medicine bottles, antique tables, chairs and lamps. The rooms are basic but are comfortable and boast a cozy charm. The room on the top floor is perfect for chilling with friends and boasts a private rooftop with decent views of Sukhumvit.