Beaches and Mountains: Le Meridien Bangkok

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One of the things I’ve been looking forward to most as a newly minted Starwood Platinum member is stays at Starwood hotels in Asia, since they’re apparently very generous with elite benefits. I had read good things about Le Meridien so booked it using cash and points for 2,800 points plus $45.

Upon arrival at Le Meridien we proceeded straight through the modern lobby to check-in, where there was no line.


Hotel exterior


Lobby

They informed me that as a Platinum member I had been upgraded to a suite, and that we could have complimentary breakfast in the restaurant (Latest Recipe) and drinks in the bar (Bamboo Chic) in the evening between 5:30PM and 7:30PM. We were also offered some sort of a frappuchino-tasting welcome drink. One of the issues with suite upgrades and traveling with a friend is that most suites have just one bed. So when traveling with a friend you have the option of either sticking to a close to standard room and getting two beds, or going for a suite with a king bed and a pull out sofa (usually). I’d much rather have the latter.

Our suite was on the 12th floor at the end of the hallway, room 1223.


Hallway

The suite was modern, with a living room at the entrance featuring a desk, guest bathroom, and comfortable couch and daybed facing a large flat screen TV.


Bookshelf at entrance


Living room


Desk


Flat screen TV

Waiting for me on the desk was a welcome amenity consisting of teriyaki spiced almonds and raspberry chocolate, along with a handwritten welcome note.


Welcome amenity

The bedroom was also large, featuring a king size bed and desk.


Bedroom


Bedroom

The bedroom led to the bathroom, which featured double sinks, a tub and shower, and separate toilet.


Sinks


Shower and tub


Bathroom

The view from the room wasn’t especially nice. I prefer the location of the InterContinental or Peninsula, though Le Meridien is very close to public transportation.


View from the room

My favorite part about the room has to be the number of bottles of complimentary bottled water it had. I counted at least a dozen bottles.

By the time we showered and caught up on email a bit it was 6PM, so we headed down to Bamboo Chic to see what the drink selection was like.


Bamboo Chic

Upon asking the host that seated us about the Platinum happy hour she told us we could order any drinks off the menu. I’m not much of a drinker but at the same time didn’t want a Diet Coke with lime, so went with the only blended drink I saw on the menu. The drinks were served with a small appetizer consisting of octopus and something else, which I passed on.


Happy hour

We were offered further drinks though declined since we wanted to walk around a bit outside.

The pool also looked quite nice and was located just outside the door by Bamboo Chic.


Pool

Le Meridien is especially well located for the night market, where you can buy anything from a Happy Gilmore t-shirt to a happy ending.

The night market is always very entertaining on many levels. If you haven’t been, it’s mostly stalls consisting of fake t-shirts/handbags, etc. Sprinkled in are strip clubs every few feet with strippers very visible on the polls dancing to Lady Gaga songs. And if that’s not enough, as a male tourist you’re approached every two feet to see if they can interest you in a “good time.” No thanks.


Night market


Night market

My friend had never been to Asia before, so perhaps I scarred him a bit by having his first exposure to the continent be a Bangkok night market, but I guess in comparison everything else will seem “normal.”

After walking around for a couple of hours we headed back to the hotel dead tired after one long journey around the world (the long way).

The next morning at around 8AM we went to Latest Recipe for breakfast.


Latest Recipe

I’m not sure whether I love or hate Asian breakfast buffets. They have so much food from so many places that it could reasonably comprise breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hell, they even have a dessert spread… for breakfast!


Buffet spread


Buffet spread


Buffet spread


Buffet spread


Buffet spread

At the same time, I hate them with a passion because I just have no self control at breakfast buffets in Asia. I just have to have everything every time. I’m full? Who the hell cares. If the world comes to an end I’ll be better off having eaten two pounds of fried rice and 16 croissants.

Anyway, at around 9:30AM we headed to the airport for our 12:25PM flight. Check-out took forever. In the US checking out of hotels is so efficient. Heck, you don’t have to check out of hotels, you can just leave. After about 10 minutes at check-out we were in a cab on our way back to the airport.

On the whole I had a great stay at the Le Meridien. It’s a great hotel with great elite recognition. The thing about Bangkok is that there are so many great luxury hotels at reasonable prices, that I have a hard time returning to any particular hotel, no matter how great a stay is. But I do highly recommend this hotel.

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Comments

  1. I am making my first trip to Thailand next week – staying in BKK, HKT and PYX. While I am not going the luxury route for air and hotels, your trip report got me excited all over again!

  2. Um, you were at Pat Pong, while technically a night market, really a red light district at night. In fact, one of the most famous, or infamous.

    In BKK for Starwood, I prefer the Sheraton Grande for their service and location, or for those who prefer the river experience, the Sheraton Royal Orchid, which has great executive suites and a huge club lounge.

  3. Wow Le Meridien Bangkok looks like an amazing value. For the dates I’ll be in Bangkok, it’s about $175 a night. Is everything that affordable out there?

  4. The craziest part of LM BKK’s Plat Happy Hour is it’s ALL you can drink for 2hrs. Very dangerous 🙂

  5. Mark: too bad this isn’t flyertalk, because I’d be able to block your stupid comments. You are an Internet troll…I’m sure that’s what your mother wished for you to become as a child.

  6. After the March 11 earthquake in Japan, I fled to BKK 48 hours later and stayed at this hotel for 3 weeks. Starwood Gold but after many visits to BKK, I love this location and the hotel was a great refuge to relax. The best bed I have ever slept in!

  7. “One of the issues with suite upgrades and traveling with a friend is that most suites have just one bed.”

    Depends on what kind of friend 🙂

  8. I stayed in this exact suite earlier this year, lucky, and I was also quite pleased with my stay. Hotel management is generally very competent, and any requests I had were graciously honored.

    The restaurant also has as special Platinum elite breakfast area, with limitless prosecco if you want it. (It was rather pleasant, but one glass of prosecco is enough for me…)

    As another reviewer noted, the hotel is in one of the most seedy areas of Bangkok; I found Silom so distasteful that I would find it difficult to recommend to anyone really. I’m not that familiar with Bangkok — it was only my second time, and I was visiting a friend who works for the UN there — but I suspect there are many other properties where you’d feel more comfortable taking your parents or a significant other. The Grand Hyatt is at the top of my list for my next stay in the Thai capital.

    Also, the almonds and raspberries were inedible.

  9. If the world comes to an end I’ll be better off having eaten two pounds of fried ride and 16 croissants.

    I think you mean “rice” instead of “ride”

  10. @ infamousdx — Bangkok is the city with the most luxury hotels at reasonable prices. Even the Four Seasons or Peninsula aren’t more than $200-250 per night.

    @ hawaiiansurfer @ Jim — Fixed, thanks!

  11. I’ve stayed in all of SPG properties in BBK (except St. Regis and the new 4P) multiple times at each one. Of all, I used to like Sheraton Grande, but given the price difference, LeMeridien is my choice in BKK. Like what Lucky said, the breakfast is great and generally the service very good. Last time (July) I went, there were some hick-ups with upgrade (I had an upgrade confirmed two days before arrival, but when checking-in the agent gave me regular room), but was able to get a suite on the 9th floor. Plus, the spa prices are very reasonable. I highly recommend this hotel if you are a Plat member.

  12. One of my favorite funny episodes during a Bangkok visit was how quickly the touts changed from “need a girl for a good time” to “need a boy for a good time” after I declined the girl!

  13. I miss Bangkok now! This is one of my favorite hotels… I have slept in almost every suite in this hotel! Once you become more of a regular there, you may get super-lucky and get upgraded to a suite with a circular bed! It’s FIERCE!!!

    While I love this hotel, try the St Regis next time. It is more $$$ but absolutely amazing!

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