Centara Announces Third Property in Bangkok

July 16, 2011 by  
Filed under Exotic South East, Hotels, News

Centara Hotels and Resorts has announced the launch of its third hotel in Bangkok, the Centara Watergate Pavillion, a four-star hotel located further right above the Watergate Pavillion Shopping Complex. The announcement comes at the heels of the June 7 announcement which sees Oversee Construction Co Ltd, the owners of the project, sign a management contract with Centara Hotels and Resorts.

Centara Hotels and Resorts boast two other property in Bangkok, both oh which are located near a prime-district shopping center. This was a positive factor in securing the management contract, with both Centara Grand and CentralWorld and Sofitel Centara Grand Bangkok providing ample proof of the capabilities of Centara Hotels and Resorts. The project is estimated to be opened in the second quarter of 2012, with approximately 700 million baht in investment cost.


“Centara Hotels and Resorts are very proud and delighted in the confidence shown in placing this impressive property under our management,” enthused Suthikiati Chirathivat, Chairman of the Executive Board of Centara Plaza Hotel Public Company Limited. “The property is the perfect addition to our portfolio in Bangkok. With our current properties, guests are able to enjoy the best of shopping and entertainment facilities. This will also be the case with Centara Watergate Pavillion in Bangkok.”

The hotel and shopping complex are located inside a recently constructed 20-storey building. The hotel will be taking up a total of 10 floors, spanning a total of 288 guest rooms. Facilities planned will include an all-day restaurant capable of seating 300, a rooftop restaurant for 100, as well as a rooftop bar with 80 seats. There will be a spa with 9 treatment rooms and a 56 square meter fitness center, as well as two meeting rooms.

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Bangkok’s Newest Novotel to Open in September

April 16, 2011 by  
Filed under Hotels, News

Accor, the largest international hotel operator in Thailand, has expanded further in Bangkok with Novotel Bangkok Fenix Silom to open on September 15, 2010. The upper mid-scale brand hotel will open after a complete building transformation from basement up to the rooftop. The hotel is conveniently located in Silom Road, one of the most vibrant areas in Bangkok, with easy access to highways and BTS Skytrain stations.

“We are pleased to welcome our newest Novotel hotel to the Thailand network,” said Paul Stevens, Director of Operations – Accor Thailand, “This property has undergone an extensive change, and its prime location near the business and leisure districts make it an ideal accommodation for all types of travellers.”

The hotel boasts modern interior design combining Thai and Asian accents with western design motifs. This 20-story high hotel features the latest of Novotel’s “NEXT” room design with 216 guest rooms of which 12 are suites and 34 are Premier Executive Club rooms.

Novotel Bangkok Fenix Silom will feature “The Square” a 122-seat all-day dining restaurant, the “Blue Sapphire” lobby lounge, “Gems Café” sidewalk café, the “Premier Executive Club” lounge, a fitness centre, a swimming pool, a business centre and a 1,740 sq.m shopping arcade. Wireless and wired high-speed Internet access are available throughout the hotel. All guests can stay connected with the hotel’s “Web Corner on a Mac,” a comfortable space outfitted with user-friendly Apple iMacs and a full service business centre available. The hotel also provides complimentary shuttle service to and from the BTS Skytrain stations for guests’ conveniences.

Novotel Bangkok Fenix Silom is ideal for both corporate and leisure travellers seeking a prime location accommodation. Here, guests can expect the same friendly and casual, yet efficient service in modern and practical settings as they would at any Novotel around the world. Silom Road represents the heart of Bangkok, lined with a stretch of major businesses, night entertainment, shopping venues, and is a stone’s throw from Bangkok’s main water artery, the Chao Phraya River.

Novotel Bangkok Fenix Silom will join the network of eight well-established Novotels in Thailand including Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square, Novotel Bangkok Bangna, Novotel Phuket Beach Resort Panwa, Novotel Hat Yai Centara, Novotel Chumphon Beach Resort & Golf, Novotel Phuket Resort, Novotel Rayong Rim Pae, and Novotel Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport hotel.

Accor currently operates 83 Novotels throughout Asia Pacific.


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Bangkok’s Top 9 Fine Dining Highlights

January 14, 2011 by  
Filed under Attractions, Exotic South East, Gourmet

Bangkok is an interesting city of contrast and intrigue – full of chaos and traffic jam, with a wide variety of people with varying lifestyles. But at the same time, it is also full of its charms and hidden gems, a popular tourist attraction that continues to dazzle and impress. Unearthing Asia takes on a tour of the city’s fine dining spots for your special night out on the town.

Blue Sky Restaurant

Beyond the blue horizon of Bangkok lies the Blue Sky restaurant, sited up top on the roof (24th floor) of Sofitel Centara Grand Hotel in Bangkok. The restaurant is a great open-air venue to enjoy a tasty dinner under the starry night sky, with a great 360 degree view of the bustling metropolitan city. Try out the tasty crowd favorites – Japanese Spring Rolls, Blue Sky Sibi and Lemon Tarts, amongst others.

Sala Rim Naam

Located on the opposite bank from The Mandarin Oriental Hotel, this Thai restaurant comes with a great view overlooking the Chao Praya River. The atmosphere is excellent, with the twinkling lights of passing boats setting a romantic tone in the evening night sky. Every night there is also a traditional dance show that is worth checking out. But if you are forced to choose between a table with a view of the river or of the performance – my choice would be of the former.

Vertigo and Moon Bar

Vertigo and Moon Bar is one of the highest al-fresco bars in the Asia Pacific, and a must-visit destination on every Bangkok travel itinerary. Located some 61 floors above the streets of Bangkok, at the top of the Banyan Tree Bangkok, this open-air rooftop lounge truly lives up to its name, offering views that simply take your breath away. There’s no better place for a romantic rendezvous, lounging after work or a glamorous launch party.

Flava Restaurant & Lounge

Flava Restaurant & Lounge is a chic and stylish restaurant located in the Dream Hotel Bangkok. Set above the lobby, Flava blends modern design and ancient tradition in appealing fashion. Savor the creative gourmet fusion of Western and Asian fare while taking in the Bangkok street scene in a lush, comfy surrounding. An evening at Flava is sure to be filled with exotic ambiance and lush atmosphere.

Breeze

This ultra-hip spot is one of the newer addition at the State Tower, home to some of Bangkok’s priciest restaurant. The open air concept on 52nd floor serves a mix of pan-Asian cuisines that embraces the pinnacle of perfection. At night the restaurant is aglow with purplish glow, complementing the extraordinary bird’s eye view of Bangkok which you can choose to admire from the al-fresco terrace or from the spectacular glass-sky bridge suspended in mid-air.

Red Sky Bistro

Crowning the stylish Centara Grand at CentralWorld, the Red Sky Bistro is a chic urban concept with a modern, delectable approach to old world dining. Set at the top 55th floor, the bistro comes with stunning city views and artfully arranged wind-protection to ensure the dining comfort of guests. The menu is not extensive but satisfactory, with a methodical care at preparing a five-star meal for you. The real star however, is the extensive Wine List, which offers you a perfect companion to savor the beautiful night sky.

Salathip

Located at the Shangri-La Hotel by the Chao Praya River, this restaurant’s atmosphere is perfect to set the tone for a romantic evening. Enjoy a sumptuous Thai dinner as you enjoy the passing boats lighting up the river. Live traditional music and dance accompanies your meal, and if you are lucky you may even catch some fireworks over the river.

The Reflexions

This award-winning restaurant offers modern French cuisine with intense flavors at Level 3 at The Plaza Athenee Bangkok. The atmosphere is cozy and delightful, with an extensive wine list to complement the innovative and intriguing menu created by Chef Thibault Chiumenti. Old black and white movies are played in the background to add a touch of classic flair into the decor, all in all a complete package!

Opus Wine Bar

Located in the heart of Bangkok’s downtown Business District between Silom and Sathorn, the Opus Wine Bar is an Italian restaurant with a classic ambiance. The atmosphere is cozy, with tables spread out nicely for guests to enjoy their own space, and the food features a wide range of Antipasti and Tapas ideal for sharing, as well as home-made pastas, fresh fish and grilled meats. The highlight of the restaurant however, is without a doubt the extensive walk-in wine cellar which offer guests a selection of over 400 labels – probably the widest selection of Italian wines in Bangkok.


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Surviving a Layover at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi

March 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Exotic South East, General Fun

Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport is one of the busiest in Asia, having opened its doors to the new terminal in September 2006. The airport is a major hub for both Thai Airways and Bangkok Airways, as well as a focus city for airlines such as Cathay Pacific and EVA Air. As such, travelers might easily find themselves here with some time to spare.

The airport is several miles from the city and travel into town is not practical unless you have an extremely long layover; as well, Bangkok can be a complex and confusing city if you aren’t familiar with it. Thus, here are a few suggestions for ways to spend your time and make the most of a few extra hours in Bangkok!

Bangkok's new swanky airport. Photo credit - crazyegg95.

Bangkok's new swanky airport. Photo credit - crazyegg95.

Things to do in Suvarnabhumi. Photo credit - eliodoro, Mani's lounging, pittaya.

Things to do in Suvarnabhumi. Photo credit - eliodoro, Mani's lounging, pittaya.

Relax at Starbucks.
I’d normally not make such a blasé recommendation, as chain cafes aren’t my favorite, but on level 3 in the main terminal is a great Starbucks. Sure, the menu and offerings are the same as you’ll get anywhere, but there is a whole hidden café area which wraps around the side of the Starbucks with plenty of comfy sofas and chairs. It is a relatively secluded space and offers the peace and quiet that you’d only get in one of the expensive airline lounges.

Shopping.
As you can imagine, any new airport features plenty of retail space, and Bangkok is no exception. Concourse D on Level 4 is a luxury shopper’s paradise, with a seemingly endless array of brands, from Bvlgari to Mont Blanc. Squeezed in between are a few Thai handicraft shops as well as several food and snack shops.

Hit the Spa.
Foot and massage spa parlors are available in the Main Terminal Level 3, and in Concourses A and G on level 4, so there is no excuse for not checking out the facilities. You can get anything from a manicure/pedicure combo to an aromatherapy massage. At a minimum, I would recommend either the foot massage or the shoulder massage, but indulge where you can – the prices aren’t as extortionate as one might expect.

Have a Snack.
Most of Suvarnabhumi’s cuisine is unhealthy fast food junk. However, there are a few noteworthy stops if your stomach is screaming for nourishment. Kinramen on Level 4, Concourse D has always proved a popular choice for sushi or Japanese noodles. @ Bangkok Cafe and Bar, also on Level 4, is a fun choice for light and tasty fare. It should be said that you’ll pay far more in the airport for food than you would in the city, but as a captive audience, you don’t have much choice.

What’s your secret for surviving a layover in Bangkok? Got an interesting story that happened during one of those layovers? Share in the comments!

About the Author. Andy Hayes. Andy Hayes is a freelance travel writer and photographer based in Edinburgh, Scotland. When not crossing the world to have his next Asian travel adventures, he is hitting the walking trails near home. To get in touch or see Andy’s other travelogues, visit his website, Sharing Experiences.