The Sukhothai Hotel: An Oasis in Bangkok with Breakfast

IMG_5015About 15 or so years ago when I first went to Bangkok I stayed at the Y right next store to the Sukhothai.   The Y was fine, it was more like a hotel then a Y and was very cheap and had a pool.  Walking past the Sukhothai ever day with its long driveway and beautifully manicured gardens it was hard not to fantasize about one day staying there. The Y has now been converted into the 5 star Metropolitan hotel which houses one of the best Thai restaurants in the world: Nahm. Neil and I ate there on this trip and it is a reminder of why it is we love Bangkok so much. The food is amazing, diverse and way less money that it is here.  Not so much with fancy hotel meals, even thought they are often less expensive. Wine tends to be more expensive because it is highly tax. The other reason is because staying at aspirational hotels like the Sukhothai doesn’t have to be a fantasy, hotel prices, especially off-season, are a bargain, even for a 5 star property.

Over the years I have stayed at the Sukhothai about 5 times., it has become the gold standard by which Neil and I judge all other hotels.  Our friends are sick of hearing us talk about it.  There are two reasons that to my mind-set this property apart:  it is low raise set on expansive gardens so the noise and madness that can be Bangkok are left behind you, by the time you enter the lobby they are nothing more than a memory.

And unlike all the high-rise, chain hotels that make gestures towards Thai “accents”  this hotel actually feels Thai, you never wonder if maybe you are in NYC or London or Vancouver in this hotel, everything about it is uniquely Thailand. The hotel is a group of low-rise building designed by Ed Tuttle  Kerry Hill, and Pichitra Boonyarataphan that either focus on a view of the water-lily gardens or the pool.  After 23 years instead of starting to look dated or tried it just keeps reaffirming itself as the classic, iconic hotel that it is.

The other noteworthy thing about this hotel is the breakfast, which if you want to quickly scroll through the below tour of the hotel is at the end of this post.  Oh, and I almost forgot, the good news about the Sukhothai is that you can afford to stay here, with rates sometimes as low as $150.  Just make sure when you book you book a room with breakfast included! IMG_4832At the end of the entrance drive on the right is the highly regarded Thai restaurant: The Celadon .IMG_4831IMG_4848The Lobby is beautiful and redolent of the smell of Tuberose, which they use in the floral centerpiece at the very center of the entrance.IMG_5053IMG_5056IMG_5037IMG_4752IMG_5254IMG_5051A statue of Jayavarman 7th waits with you at the elevator.IMG_5162We stayed on the second floor, just by the pink Bougainvillea the last two windows on the right.IMG_5232The massive entrance to our suite, which we were upgraded to from the deluxe room we booked.  My only historic grievance with this hotel is their website which I find to not be particularly used friendly, which is why I think we were upgraded because I have snarky middle-aged man back and forth with them before booking on Hotels.comIMG_5239The truffles were replenished daily, one day dark chocolate the other ginger.IMG_5240IMG_5227IMG_5230The pamphlet folds out to reveal pictures of every fruit you might get with a description.IMG_5223IMG_5241The bathroom is HUGE and there is anther guest bathroom in the entrance hall.

And now we come to breakfast, it is after all food blog.   IMG_4849IMG_4766IMG_4858IMG_4769IMG_4767IMG_4925IMG_4764In addition to the vast array of the western breakfast usual suspects like: morning breakfast pastries, breads, cereals, yogurt, muesli, made to order eggs, pancakes, wafflesIMG_4763IMG_4757waffles, meats (lots of meats) including what I thought was a rather idiosyncratic addition of a big baked honey hamIMG_4765cold cuts (my favorite was the smoked Duck breast) and smoked SalmonIMG_4768 a salad bar, a cheese course with honey combIMG_4755 and finally a selection of juices and flavored water.  IMG_4999Coffee and Tea are made to order and brought to your table, which looks out onto a reflection pond that has  reproduction Sukhothai era Stupas in it.  IMG_5057We aren’t finished, now for the Asian selections. Steamed Chinese buns and made to order Dim sum.IMG_5046 IMG_4759IMG_5048Miso with fixings and sushiIMG_4761 Asian soup with pork and vermicelli and I believe fish balls was also made to order along with I believe Chinese Congee.IMG_4762Steamed rice and a few other Asian treats were also available IMG_4758IMG_4760Here’s the bottom line:  if I have already proven that this is indeed an insanely beautiful hotel with an over the top breakfast, I have one more thing to convince you to stay here when you are next in Bangkok.  With taxes out room with breakfast for 2 cost less than $200 – the base rate was $163 plus 20% tax and service  – which came to about $193. We stayed for 6 nights and if you did nothing in Bangkok at all, but enjoyed the luxuries the Sukhothai serves up: Gym, Spa, Dinning (Champagne Brunch on Sunday, Chocolate Buffet on the weekends, La Scala Italian restaurant, the Celadon Thai restaurant) the pool, you would not leave feeling like you missed anything.  Not that I wold suggest this, as there are so many wonderful things to see and do in Bangkok, but as a place to retreat and regroup in a city  it doesn’t really get any better than the Sukhothai.

About urbanfoodguy

I'm a self taught cook with a dedication to buying and eating food that is as humanely and sustainably raised as possible. Which is why in addition to recipes you will see a lot of environmental/political reporting here. I started cooking when I was about 6, it's something I always loved to do. Watching Graham Kerr - aka "The Galloping Gourmet" - was what got me started and I have never really looked back. Over the years I've been a private chef, a caterer, and a food stylist for magazines such as Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Real Simple, Oprah, Martha Stewart's Everyday Food and many more. I've also worked in the prep kitchen for the Food Network on the Bobby Flay and Paula Deen shows. Now I work at home in my kitchen sharing with you here recipes that I create or that other people have created that inspire me and I think you will like. I love my neighborhood (the Lower East Side of Manhattan) and I love to travel. Because NYC is such a big place I tend to focus mostly on my 'hood and the ones that are close by: The East Village, Bowery, Chinatown and Williamsburg. My love of travel has no limits really, I'm always ready to get on a plane. I was lucky enough to have a business for many years that allowed me to spend a lot of time in South East Asia. These days I've been spending time in Mexico, Germany, Canada and the West Coast of the U.S., but check back you never know where I might end up. I do consulting, cooking classes, and freelance lifestyle writing so if you are interested please send me a note: urbanfoodguy@gmail.com
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One Response to The Sukhothai Hotel: An Oasis in Bangkok with Breakfast

  1. databong says:

    Wow. Sigh.

    That brunch outdoes even tho old defunct Ritz Carlton SF Sunday Brunch.

    * travel pangs *

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