Bangkok’s New Tourist Hub
Towering over the popular On Nut district on Sukhumvit Road, INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit is ushering in a new era of development for this once overlooked part of the city. The rickety night market and pop up beer bars have given way to luxury condominiums and world class hotels, while two large shopping malls feature cinemas, restaurants and all types of retail stores. On Nut is now challenging its more illustrious neighbours Ekkamai and Thonglor as Bangkok’s new tourist hub.
Having opened its doors to guests in July this year, this is the fourth Meliá Hotels International property in Thailand and the first to carry the lifestyle INNSiDE brand, which is a collection of unique urban and beach hotels designed for travellers with curious minds and flexible lifestyles. So whether you are a business traveller, an adventurer or a digital nomad, INNSiDE has you covered with its creative meeting rooms, open living lounges, rooftop bar and free Wi-Fi. And then, there are the little details such as plastic-free amenities, organic cosmetics, a complimentary minibar and even a yoga mat.
INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit impresses with its stylish interiors from the moment you step through the front doors. A concierge desk is located on the ground floor where guests can leave their luggage before taking an elevator to the main reception on the 32nd floor. From this vantage point, enormous windows allow guests to marvel at the magnificent views of the city with the skyline changing hues from sunrise to sunset. A stunning golden mural set on a white background sits behind reception and depicts temples and the cityscape.
Elegant references to Bangkok can be seen throughout and each of the hotel’s guest floors have different images and patterns that highlight a major tourist attraction. Also, every room is wonderfully furnished with classic black and white photos of some of Bangkok’s most iconic landmarks. This use of monochrome images perfectly matches the white and gold interior décor colour scheme.
INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit offers guests a choice of nine different room types spread across 34 floors starting with the 20-square-metre INNSiDE Room with King or Twin format and topping out with the spacious 40-square-metre Townhouse room. With floor to ceiling windows, every room is filled with natural light and provides amazing views including sunrise for those who rise early enough to catch daybreak.
Despite its modest ground area, the design of INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit exhibits remarkable creativity with its compact building footprint. An automatic car lift allows guests to park on the five lower floors of the hotel, while a car-stacking, short-term parking facility is also available. At the top of the hotel, the stunning sky terrace includes the outdoor infinity pool complete with a transparent bottom, a relaxing sky bar and a giant swing – another nod to a classic Bangkok landmark.
Having admired the hotel’s amazing artworks during check-in, which include life-size golden lampposts typically seen around the Grand Palace, we were offered complimentary cold drinks before being escorted to our Townhouse room. At 40-square-metres, our accommodation included a separate bedroom, lounge and bathroom. A super comfortable king-size bed with DreamMaker mattress ensured that we slept as good as we’d ever done, while the living room offered a large daybed next to the huge windows, a very stylish Marshall Acton III Bluetooth speaker, a small table with two chairs, a coffee machine and a small minibar with complimentary drinks. The addition of a real plant on the table was a charming detail.
We were especially impressed by the bathroom arrangement, which departed from the usual open-plan design. Our included dual wash basins, a separate toilet, and a combination rain shower and bathtub. The plentiful mirrors created an illusion of a more spacious area than it truly was. With doors leading to the bedroom and lounge, as well as to the toilet and bathtub, privacy was guaranteed.
Making ourselves at home, we connected to the Marshall sound system and put on our favourite playlist while we unpacked. Grabbing a couple of cold beers from the minibar, we came across a lovely note from the general manager welcoming us to the hotel. It seems that all guests are given a welcome note folded in to a paper plane, which is an endearing gesture. Our room also had two large wall-mounted TVs – one in the lounge and one in the bedroom – but we were here to relax and not to watch the goggle-box. On the bedside table sat a black retro dial telephone, but with push buttons, and a stylish reading lamp.
Dining is a Breeze
When it comes to food, guests at INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit are spoilt for choice with excellent in-house Thai, Spanish and international cuisine, while just a five-minute walk away is a smorgasbord of eateries including street food options, food courts, Japanese, Korean and Thai restaurants, which cater to virtually all tastes and budgets. With the On Nut BTS Skytrain station nearby, guests who want to experience the best of Bangkok’s incredibly diverse and vibrant dining and entertainment scene, are free to roam the city to their heart’s content.
The Kites Eatery is the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner in elegant surroundings with a choice of seating arrangements. We found sitting by the windows at breakfast a little on the warm side and so opted for the comfortable couches and lounge chairs. As the name implies, Kites Eatery features traditional designs of Thai kites, a pastime millions of people enjoyed as children.
If you are looking for a menu that provides something a little more adventurous, then a visit to LUZ Bangkok Tapas Bar on the 33rd and 34th floors, is sure to satiate your appetite. Here diners can enjoy a culinary journey across Spain courtesy of Spanish Chef de Cuisine Laia Ferrer. During our visit, Chef Laia served us a selection of classic Spanish tapas as well as one of her signature dishes.
We picked the perfect evening for an al fresco dinner as the weather was perfect with a cool breeze and clear night skies. Above us we could see guests swimming in the infinity pool, while at the large bar at the centre of LUZ, a small group of people were savouring a variety of cocktails served by skilled mixologists. If Bangkok experiences inclement weather, LUZ also has a stylish indoor seating area, which is ideal for an intimate dining experience.
We began our Spanish feast with a mouthwatering dish of Clams in White Wine, a rich seafood dish comprised of the freshest, juiciest clams and a wine sauce that made my partner’s head spin. Next up was a double act of Toasted Homemade bread garnished with Fresh Tomatoes and Iberico Ham Croquets. The croquets offered a crispy outer texture and a creamy interior bursting with flavours. Our LUZ signature dish was the barbecued Octopus with Mashed Potatoes, Paprika and Extra Virgin Olive Oil. We completed our gastronomic journey with a Spanish dessert of Berries Mousse and Wine Sauce.
Perhaps the most popular place at INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit has to be The Giant Swing Pool Bar. Located next to the infinity pool, this rooftop terrace has magnificent views and features décor that highlights one of the city’s major bridges. If you are looking for a rooftop pool bar that promises amazing vistas, sunbeds and a Mediterranean vibe, then this is your place. However, one word of advice, make sure you get there early as the best spots are quickly occupied.
Some of the other standout facilities at the hotel include a 24-hour gym, a range of meeting rooms for corporate and social events, grab & go snacks and beverages, 24-7 reception and a laundry service. Ensuring that the hotel is inclusive to all, all public spaces have been adapted for guests with reduced mobility.
For guests who want to explore Bangkok during their stay, the BTS Skytrain is the best choice of getting around with easy connections to the city’s subway system, airport link and river ferries. The BTS also stops serves major shopping malls at Phrom Phong, Asoke (interchange for the MRT subway), Chidlom and Siam Square – the main Skytrain interchange station.
For business guests, nearby facilities include BITEC at Bang Na BTS station and the newly opened Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre at Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre MRT station. For a walk in a park, Benchasiri Park is located at Phrom Phong BTS station, while the larger Benchakitti Forest Park is a short walk from Asoke BTS station or Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre MRT station.
Within easy walking distance, guests can shop at Lotus’s On Nut, a large shopping centre with banks, fast food restaurants, food courts, games area and a large supermarket. On the opposite side of Sukhumvit Road (accessible via the Skytrain) is Century Movie Plaza, a contemporary mall with retail stores, chemists, restaurants and a cinema.
Meanwhile, just behind the hotel on Soi 50 is Beacon Place, which is home to Bangkok’s legendary Cheap Charlie’s bar as well as a few other bars and restaurants. A little further away, but still within walking distance, is Best Beef Sukhumvit, a Thai restaurant specialising in beef buffets, while the popular W Market at Phra Khanong BTS is filled with bars and food stalls and is popular with the expat and local crowd. If you want to practice your golf swing, 42 Tee-Off Driving Range is located at Sukhumvit Soi 42, a short taxi ride away.
Our stay at INNSIDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit was a sponsored two-night visit.
INNSiDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit
1472, Sukhumvit Road, Phrakanong, Bangkok, 10110 Thailand.
Tel: +66 (0) 2340 – 5499