It’s been almost three years now since our travels in Australia were cut short (here’s why!) but it wasn’t all bad news. It meant that we were able to spend a few months travelling through South East Asia with Bangkok being our final stop before returning to the delights of a post-Brexit United Kingdom. After much research, I finally settled on staying 6 nights at the Akara Hotel in Bangkok before our final night was spent at the Tower Club at Lebua (the one from Hangover II). It’s been a while but the time has finally come to review this hotel.
Akara Hotel Bangkok
Firstly, let’s introduce this hotel. We’re talking a five star luxury hotel in the Ratchathewi district; to the east of the Old City and north of the main shopping area. Everyone will have an opinion on Bangkok but it’s fair to say that this is a huge city. It’s loud, it’s busy, it’s crazy however the Akara Hotel was a welcome sanctuary and the perfect base to explore the city. Whilst you shouldn’t necessarily focus on the ratings on Tripadvisor, the Akara Hotel is the 23rd best hotel out of a whopping 1,417 hotels in Bangkok. At the time (August 2018) the hotel was pretty new with very few reviews so, as you can imagine, I was wary but I needn’t have worried whatsoever.
Stepping inside the Akara Hotel after a flight from Chiang Mai, a train from the airport and a short walk through the Bangkok streets was like stepping into heaven. Wood, marble, air conditioning. I knew immediately that we’d picked the right hotel; it was beautiful.
Just above the reception, on a mezzanine level, is the culiniary library lounge where you can sit in leather chairs and flick through a great collection of cookbooks. Unfortunately, whilst we missed this every day, they offer complimentary nibbles and drinks between 2pm and 5pm.
If you want luxury at a good price, you could do much, much, worse than the Akara Deluxe room. The room itself was very stylish keeping in check with the rest of the hotel with wood and marble decor and one of the most comfortable beds I have ever slept on. The main attraction in this room however is the bathroom; a stunning circle bath with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the Bangkok skyline.
We were a little unlucky in that our room wasn’t that high up so try and make a special request to be on one of the higher floors. Trying to relax having a bath with those windows opposite the skytrain surely made for some interesting sights! I apologise now for anyone that saw more than they bargained for!
The staff at the hotel were more than happy to help too though Emma had planned a little surprise for my birthday which was, initially, forgotten about. Emma apparently rang reception whilst I was in the shower and up three members of staff came immediately with a birthday cake for me. However, as I was in the shower, I can only imagine there was a case of mistaken identity as the three members of staff sang an extended version of happy birthday to Emma whilst filming on their mobile phones. Not wanting to be rude, Emma had to play along and thank them for remembering…
The Rooftop at the Akara Hotel
This is where the magic happens; definitely the Akara Hotel’s crowning feature. A rooftop infinity pool overlooking Bangkok is the perfect way to cool off in that humid city heat. We could have stayed in that pool for all six days if Bangkok just didn’t beg you to explore. If you go one level higher there’s a really cool bar that unfortunately we didn’t get chance to enjoy as we couldn’t stop exploring!
As I mentioned above, Bangkok is huge. Luckily, in the modern areas at least, the transport links are really impressive. We Brits think that we are one of the best countries in the world but the reality is, when you come to cities like Bangkok, we are so far behind!
Anyway, the Akara Hotel is just a five minute walk from Ratchapraprop station which will take you either straight to the airport or to Phaya Thai station (one stop to the west) where you can continue your train journey across Bangkok. If the train isn’t your thing (it should be, it’s cheap and the best way to avoid traffic) then from the Akara Hotel you can walk just a few KM’s south into the shopping district with the malls of Central World, Paragon, Siam Square and the MBK Center. Finally, if walking isn’t your thing, ask at reception and you can take advantage of the hotel’s free tuk tuk service.
This is where you’ll be shocked. For one of the best hotels in Bangkok, you’re almost certainly going to pay well less than £100 a night for a room here. Using Booking.com, if you’re a genius member (I’m level 1), you can expect to pay a price around £61 for a Superior King Room and £86 for a Deluxe King Room including breakfast (obviously dependent on availability, time of booking etc). Isn’t that amazing?
The Akara Hotel in Bangkok is definitely one of the best hotels you will find in this city. I cannot stress how much you need (for those that travel a little more luxurious) a peaceful hotel to come back to after a manic day exploring Bangkok. If I was you, I’d look no further than the Akara Hotel for your stay in Bangkok.
“One night in Bangkok and the world’s your oyster.”Murray Head
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