Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Accommodation, Pt. 22: The Rose Hotel, Bangkok

From the Rose Hotel, looking down the sub-soi (and Le Meridian's side driveway) to Suriwong Road

Down a narrow sub-soi off of Suriwong Road, past a line of food carts, storage bins (and the occasional worker napping on top of them) lies the entrance to the Rose Hotel, tucked quietly in behind the Northeast corner of the enormous Le Meridian Hotel that faces Suriwong itself.

Although nearby areas are bustling until the wee small hours of the morning, being where it is the hotel is a blissfully quiet spot.

Google street map view - The Rose beneath the green arrow

It's what I'd call a medium-sized hotel: 72 rooms and suites, in a variety of sizes and within a reasonable range of prices - from $50USD for a corner room double to $53-58USD for a standard (with breakast) up to $90USD for a junior suite during the current low season (prices from Agoda, which don't include taxes).

Standard room bed, double occupancy

The rooms may seem small to those who are used to enough room to swing one of the area's feral cats, but I don't spend a hell of a lot of time in my room on vacation, anyway, so I've been fine with them. Some rooms - such as some of the corner rooms - don't allow much more space than the bed itself takes up, but their standard rooms are more than adequate. I've never stayed in a suite there, but you can see the hotel's photos for them here.

Standard room desk, TV, refrigerator and mini-bar

I've stayed there a few times and, other than once when the aircon unit drain stopped working and made a small puddle on the floor beneath it I can't think of anything I've ever been unhappy with, save one thing: the wi-fi isn't free. I hope they remedy that soon, as it seems a needless charge for a place that size and at those rates.

The Rose Hip restaurant is a very pleasant place for breakfast or lunch, and there's always the lovely teakwood Ruen Urai restaurant with its formal (but not stuffy) atmosphere for dinner. The restaurant is just to the side of the front of the restaurant, next to the pool area. While they don't require reservations I'd suggest making one to avoid being told "sorry, all full for tonight" at the reception desk - something four of us had happen once at 19:00 on a weeknight. You can reach them for a reservation via the link above, and look at or download the PDF of their menu here.

I've always had good water pressure and plenty of hot water in the bathrooms

For those who thrive on - or at least dive into the deep end of - the  colorful night life in the Big Mango the central tourist hub is within an easy walk, for breeders and non-breeders alike. I've added some numbers to this satellite shot, and there's an explanation just below the image. You may find it helpful to open the image in a new window.

Another Rose hong nam view
1 is the Rose Hotel - as a point of reference. 2 is the Sala Daeng BTS station on Silom Road, 3 is the main street of the Patpong Night Market (stories about the daily afternoon setting up are here and here - with a video clip here). 4 is Soi 4, home to several nice places to eat and some gay clubs.

5 is Soi Thaniva, known to myself and a few friends as Soi Yipun - yipun being Thai for Japanese - because it's lined with a wide variety of restaurants and clubs (think "ping pong show") aimed more at the Japanese tourist than the farang, but still an interesting walk, even during the daytime. I ran into a tout there who wanted me to have a beer with him once, and had a somewhat testy exchange with a man offering children another time.

6 is Soi Pratuchai, aka Soi Twilight, where the highest concentration of gay clubs are. There are also several comfortable places to sit, have a drink and watch the parade of tourists and club people; especially delightful if there's any sort of breeze and you're not in a hurry to do anything but relax.

Finally, 7 is the general area below and near the Sala Daeng BTS station. In that single block you'll find the Bug and Bee, Coffee Society (a great spot for coffee and free wifi), two worthwhile massage shops  (Thai Thai [formerly Siam Sawasdee] and Green Tea to the left of it - both nice for foot massages, manicures and pedicures), a Burger King for those who need a little reminder of Western junk food and a few other places.

The unusual "inner core" of The Rose is above the lobby and cafe

There's hotel parking if you or a guest have an auto, and for those who find a good swimming pool an added bonus there's one of those, too; yet another good place to relax after a day of running around or just to rest before going out for dinner, drinks, clubbing or some combination thereof... whatever floats your boat.

Some interesting angles to one of the hotel's stairways

Although standard check in is 14:00 and check out is 12:00 noon they've (so far) always been as flexible as possible with those times. I don't recall specifics on the laundry fees, but I felt they were reasonable.  There's 24-hour room service available, and no - for those who are wondering - there is no additional fee for guests you might invite back to your room. It's not a "short time" hotel by any means, but other than asking for (and holding) your guest's identification they didn't bat an eye at anyone I saw coming through with a "rented admirer" while sitting and writing in the lobby late one evening, just to see.

The Rose plays with several of the booking services, and different sites get different blocks of rooms at different rates, sometimes, so check a few in addition to the hotel's site - which is The Rose Hotel. I'd suggest looking a ways in advance for high season bookings, as it's a popular place.

We're closing in on a couple of dozen hotel reviews so far, and there are still a lot of them to come. I hope at least a couple of them are a help to you while planning your stay. Drop me a line or leave a comment, if you would - whichever you're most comfortable with.


Anonymous said...

I agree with all of your thoughts about the Rose Hotel.
I have stayed here lots of times over many years, always just for a night or two.
The staff are friendly and remember me.
Its greatest feature for me is the location. Right near where I want to be at night.
And yes, they are very relaxed about joiners, no issues at all.

khunbaobao said...

A friend told me three years back they'd gotten a quizzical look from the regular night shift reception staff when they DIDN'T have a guess coming back to their room with them!

In the distant past - before the hotel had done an upgrading - it was known as extremely guest friendly.