It’s just a 30-minute boat ride along the Chao Praya river from the city, yet Ve Handojo found a totally exclusive and lavish escape at The Siam.
The sky was just about to shift from daylight to sunset when we took the five o’clock boat ride from Saphan Taksin to The Siam. The crowds were either gathering to board the popular and touristy Asiatique, or waiting for the boats from big chain hotels. We were the only two to take The Siam’s vessel. Furthermore, our boat was the only one to travel away from the cluster of hotels by the Chao Praya river.
It was the perfect timing as we passed Wat Arun – The Temple of the Dawn. The sky and the lighting provide a dramatic shade that even your poor Blackberry camera would take a picture worth a hundred Facebook “Likes”.
The boat ride took us to the old imperial district of Dusit that is often neglected by travel pamphlets, and the small resort’s jetty was already dressed for evening cocktails. Smooth breeze, white-clothed tables, bar snacks and aperitifs were waiting for us as the dining tables inside Chon, the hotel’s Thai restaurant.
It was our last night in The Siam, actually. We arrived a day before – checking in to the white-washed urban resort, and settling ourselves in one of the sixteen Siam Suites. The suites are 80 square metres, and ours had a high ceiling to magnify the spacious bedroom even more. Fusing old and new Thai, the suite provided a luxurious bathing area with twin vanities, a cozy lounge, local ornaments, old paintings, and artworks.
The boat ride took us to the old imperial district of Dusit that is often neglected by travel pamphlets.
The suites are all located in the main building that was designed like a greenhouse, boasting trees, plants, and a soothing water feature at the very centre. A collection of antiques and artifacts encased in clear glass boxes were neatly arranged to one side, making a little museum that enthusiasts could silently enjoy. Further inside was among the coolest features a boutique hotel could have: a classic art deco waiting lounge to enter a vintage style screening room. A range of vintage cameras and behind-the-scenes pictures of classic Thai movies dressed the area.
I took an hour of muay thai training in the hotel’s gym. The very proficient, English-speaking trainer taught me a lot of basic techniques and movements in such a short span of time. I felt like I was burning thousands of calories during the fun session inside the gym’s mini boxing ring.
Besides the sixteen Siam Suites, The Siam boasts twelve even-more-spacious suites, ten pool villas, and one massive, 160sqm Connie’s Cottage. An elegant, healthy, and delicious a la carte breakfast was served in Deco Bar & Bistro. Chon Thai Restaurant itself, where we had our dinner, was rather casual. Sharing portions served inside one of the three authentic Thai teakwood houses sourced by Jim Thompson, the silk tycoon himself.
By setting themselves apart from the crowds, and finding a home by the river, The Siam and its Opium Spa really have earned all the superlative labels. “Most luxurious urban escape” or “enriching, elegant oasis of tranquility” won’t do it enough justice. No, not even close. The flawless service and the loving passion to make each stay as impressive as possible are the elements that have taken The Siam up there, one level above.
Tel: +66 2206 6999