Insider Guide: a local culture editor shares where to stay in Bangkok

From serene stays in lush gardens to a real-life night at a museum, Bangkok’s best hotels – as picked by a locally based travel editor – offer everything you need

Words by Laurel Tuohy
Last updated: June 1, 2022
Best hotels in Bangkok | wooden villa hotel Baan Vajra
Baan Vajra

No matter what you’re looking for in a place to rest your weary head, this city’s got it – and choosing where to stay in Bangkok will play a big part in shaping your trip, because your hotel most likely dictates which neighbourhoods you spend the most time in. Many also offer experiences and public spaces to mingle in, alongside access to some of Bangkok’s best bars and restaurants that are well worth a visit in their own right.

From eclectic to epic, vintage to vaunted, Bangkok’s best hotels occupy utterly gorgeous buildings, like former banks and family homes – and each one will give you a unique experience. Here’s our local’s guide to Bangkok‘s best places to stay.

Best hotels in Bangkok | Sunlight falling on gorgeous four-storey hotel Ariyasom Villa and its pool, surrounded by trees
Ariyasom Villa, central Bangkok

Ariyasom Villa

Best for: Couples, solo travellers
Location: 65 Sukhumvit Soi 1, Khlong Toei Nuea, Watthana, Bangkok 10110
Price: From THB/170 USD with breakfast

When we’re away, we’re all looking for a home away from home. And especially a home away from home that feels, er, better than home. Enter Ariyasom Villa, a 70-year-old former family residence that is still run by the family. The hotel has 24 rooms, lush green surrounds, and a sparkling pool so perfect it feels like a mirage on sticky afternoons – so it’s safe to say it fits the bill. Organic onsite restaurant Na Aroon adds to the hotel’s allure, while a meditation hall plays host to yoga and wellness retreats. The calmness feels as if it’s miles from Bangkok’s centre – but it’s actually tucked into a quiet corner of Nana, a central nightlife area (and a great neighbourhood for experience some of Bangkok’s live music), and is just a few minutes from the shopping district of Siam. Can we move in permanently?
ariyasom.com

Where to stay in Bangkok | The foyer at Bangkok Publishing House, with a tiled floor, wooden furniture and old printing paraphernalia
The foyer at Bangkok Publishing House

Bangkok Publishing Residence

Best for: Couples, history buffs
Location: 37/1 Lan Luang Rd, Wat Sommanat, Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Bangkok 10100
Price: From 7,200 THB/215 USD with breakfast

Book this hotel-slash-museum if you love to learn while you travel. Perched in Bangkok’s historic old quarter, this 1960s shophouse was the former office of Bangkok Weekly magazine, which was also printed on the premises. The building’s narrative as a former publishing hub is lovingly shared through various installations at the hotel. With only eight spacious suites outfitted with refined antiques, the retro gem offers an intimate experience akin to staying with a worldly relative or family friend. It’s also a great base if you plan to check out Bangkok’s numerous historical sites, temples, museums and galleries, and street food – many of which are just minutes away. A breakfast buffet and à la carte offering with eggs and sausage seals the deal.
bpresidence.com

Where to stay in Bangkok | Riverside villas at Chann, with wooden buildings with balconies overlooking the water
Riverside villas at Chann

Chann Bangkok Noi

Best for: Couples, solo travellers
Location: 30/1 Soi Somdej Pra Pinklao 1, Riverside, Bangkok 10700
Price: From THB 2,199 THB/66 USD with breakfast

A bit off the beaten path, but well worth it for those looking to have a more chill Bangkok experience that involves sitting by the river and watching life go by. The small hotel is housed in a series of thoughtfully designed, low-rise wooden buildings connected by catwalks, and is a hotspot for where to stay in Bangkok for local couples enjoying staycations, as well as travellers from around the world. Outside, you’ll find a fairy light-laden garden and terrace on the river with boats cruising by that can take you directly from the hotel to any river-accessible activity, like a spot of luxury shopping at Iconsiam or soaking up one of the city’s endless cultural destinations. Arriving at Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, by picturesque longtail boat? Now you’re talking.
@ChannBangkokNoi

Where to stay in Bangkok | Thai accents, red upholstery and dark wood in a suite at Chakrabongse Villas
A suite at Chakrabongse Villas

Chakrabongse Villas & Residences

Best for: Couples
Location: 396 Maharaj Rd, Tatien, Bangkok 10200
Price: From THB 6,700 THB/200 USD with breakfast

If waking up in the former private residence of a Thai Prince to views of Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, sounds heavenly, you’ll flip for this grand boutique hotel in Old Town that’s as eclectic as it is refined. Positioned along the banks of the Chao Phraya River, the property was built in 1908 by HRH Prince Chakrabongse (you can read our interview with his great-grandson, Hugo, here). Inside the rooms, expect stained glass, canopied beds and colourful, classical Thai bedding. Given the hotel boasts one of the most romantic fine dining restaurants on the river, as well as the option of booking a boat ride on the villas’ own Riva speedboat, is it any wonder that this tropical retreat has been the site of countless wedding proposals?
chakrabongsevillas.com

Where to stay in Bangkok | dawn breaks over the forest and an open-air sleeping platform at Bangkok Treehouse
Bangkok Treehouse

Bangkok Treehouse

Best for: Friends, couples
Location: 60 Moo1 Soi Bua Phueng Pattana, Bang Krachao, Bangkok 10130
Price: From 2,300 THB/69 USD with breakfast

Perched on the edge of Bang Krachao, a man-made island in the Chao Phraya River, this one-of-a-kind hotel is a must for lovers of the outdoors searching for where to stay in Bangkok. Several connected wooden platforms make up the hotel structure. There’s a destination cafe and restaurant, and you can choose from modern indoor bungalows with all the amenities or opt for sleeping on a treetop platform under the stars. The island, which also goes by the nickname of ‘green lung’ for its fresh air, can be reached by one of many longtail boat taxis lined up on the shore. The island is also home to an excellent morning market on weekends where locals and travellers gorge on local delicacies and pick up handmade crafts.
bangkoktreehouse.com

Best hotels in Bangkok | wooden villa hotel Baan Vajra
Baan Vajra

Baan Vajra, Silom

Best for: Couples, friends
Location: 18 Silom Soi 19, Silom, Bangrak, Bangkok 10500
Price: From 1,000 THB/30 USD with breakfast

Baan Vajra’s 1930s wooden architecture gets brought bang up to date with noise-insulating windows, slick marble bathrooms, and a light colour palette. The 16 rooms are accented with antique furniture – but don’t let the old-world atmosphere fool you, as you’re just a few minutes’ walk from Silom’s high-fashion and souvenir shopping, nightlife of all kinds, and street food served from carts that stay up as late as the crowds.

baanvajra.com