Wednesday, September 19, 2012

COOL SPOTS : HOTEL HOPPING IN THAILAND

Our Adventures in Thailand feature continues with a look at our cool hotel experiences. Over the years, we've really developed a love for staying at boldly stylish hotels which Thailand has no shortage of. We only chose to stay at hotels that offered impeccable service, convenience, and remarkable design. Each of our hotel stays in Thailand offered those things in their own way.

St. Regis Bangkok

There really is "no address like the St. Regis." From the large, open and airy feeling you get when you walk through the front door, to the grand arrangement of floral artistry you encounter on your way to the check in bureau... the St. Regis Bangkok really serves up a mega dose of modern elegance. It is not too overstated, but unmistakably luxurious. The service, as you can imagine, is perfect with someone always on hand to anticipate your every need.

We thoroughly enjoyed the Elemis Spa complete with a thoughtfully designed boudoir for guests to get prepped for a day of pampering. The hot-cold muscle toning treatment involved us getting into the jacuzzi and then plunging into the cold pool that was connected to it. After getting over the initial shock, it was actually unbelievably rejuvenating. We later lounged in the floating pods of the wet area which St. Regis describes as a "fine balance of tradition and innovation."

Our most memorable dining experience would have to be the breakfast (when booking, make sure your breakfast is included here). And even more impressive was Sunday Brunch hosted by Dom Pérignon... need I say more? The food, ambiance and service really came together to create an unforgettable welcome to our stay in Thailand.


  
Four Seasons Resort Chiang Mai

After spending a few days in the bustling city, it was nice to get out to the mountains and check into the lush sanctuary that is known as the Four Seasons in Chiang Mai. As we arrived to the outdoor check in area, we were greeted with beautiful jasmine garlands and freshly made juices.

Our upgraded room was spacious and it had a cool private balcony situated in a jungle-like oasis that featured a narrow creek which served as a natural soundtrack. We immediately suited up to enjoy the main pool which is an infinity-edge swimming pool that offering breathtaking views of the Mae Rim Valley across picturesque rice terraces.

Perhaps two of the most unique of the many details that made the resort so special were the floating flower designs found all over the property (reminded me of the
temple patterns we saw a few days earlier) and the famous pink water buffalo (which we got to ride on).


Hotel Muse
 
"Inspired by the social and artistic milieu of fin de siècle Europe and King Rama V-era Thailand, Hotel Muse combines cosmopolitan chic with playful elegance amid a new golden age of Asia."

After spending several days luxuriating in the mountains, we returned to Bangkok for one more night before heading back to the states. This time we stayed at the boutique property, Hotel Muse. Located in a trendy, upscale soho-like neighborhood, this hotel offers a totally different experience than the others.

The design is a masterful combination of European opulence and Asian tradition punctuated with modern technology. Think Bond... James Bond. As we were being transported to our suite, we could not help but notice the illuminated button in the elevator labeled The Speakeasy. "There's a Speakeasy!?" "Yes there's a Speakeasy," the host replied. We both then replied, "Now That's COOL!"

Just when we thought things couldn't get cooler, we realized that the room was the kind that turns on and greets you as you enter. The bathroom is luxurious with a glorious venetian mirror and a claw-foot, roll-top bathtub on a black marble floor that leads into a separate rain shower. The extravagant bath tub is situated right next to a floor-to-ceiling window with a built in sound system so you can soak and peacefully watch television simultaneously. The wall baroque-inspired wall pattern compliments the dark wood floors and masculine furniture in the main room.


As we relaxed in the intimate infinity edge pool that overlooked the cityscape, we had the pleasure of meeting Alex, the super cool general manager. He was fun, full of energy and eager to make sure that our stay was everything we expected and more. The worst thing about the hotel is that eventually, we had to check out. Just when we thought we were alone in this sentiment, we met a local medical doctor who decided to stay there for 3 months just because she thought it was so cool! 



From the decor and design to the sipping and spa-ing (needed an 's' word)... The legendary Thai hospitality really lived up to the hype.

Hotel links here:
http://www.fourseasons.com/chiangmai
http://www.hotelmusebangkok.com
www.starwoodhotels.com/stregis/bangkok


Stay tuned for more cool from our Thailand adventure.