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Photo: Courtesy

Bangkok is known for many things: Its shopping, nightlife, mouthwatering food and burgeoning design scene, among others. And there’s no better place to experience all this than at the W Bangkok. Situated in the heart of the city’s central business district, the “5 star urban playground”, as it calls itself, is a stylish, gleaming tower that exudes cool. This coolness extends throughout the posh hotel—from its mood-lit bar just off the lobby, to the achingly hip rooms that combine traditional Thai elements with the W’s signature modern, playful aesthetic. But, in a nod to Bangkok’s storied past, you can also find the painstakingly restored dining establishment of the moment, The House on Sathorn, on its premises as well. This cultural icon is a a colonial mansion built in 1889, and has been the house of a Thai aristocrat, the Russian Embassy, and a hotel. Now, it hosts two unique restaurants (one of which is consistently on the Asia’s Top 50 list), and private function areas that show off the grandeur and old world charm of the place.

Without further ado, here are the top five things we loved about the W Bangkok:

1. The rooms

Plush, comfortable beds and luxurious baths aside, what we absolutely found delightful were the touches of Thai elements in the rooms. For example, the gigantic sequinned Muay Thai boxing gloves that doubled up as pillows, and the bedspread printed with new takes on traditional Thai prints. Oh, and the monochrome colour scheme of the rooms made it oh-so-chic.

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The Wonderful Room comes with distinctly Thai design influences. Photo: Getty

2. AWAY Spa

If you’re looking for a pampering experience, the signature AWAY Spa, which can be found in all W hotels, is the perfect place to unwind. The multi-sensory treatment rooms come with adjustable light colours, and aromatherapy to soothe your senses as you get your worries kneaded away by the expert masseuses. We loved the AWAY Signature Massage and The Boxer treatment and facial.

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Relax in the inviting atmosphere of the AWAY Spa’s multi-sensory treatment rooms. Photo: Courtesy

3. Facilities

Fancy a swim to beat the heat or thinking of working off those calories? The W Bangkok’s facilities are so uber-chic, they will make you want to work out. Spiralling majestically in the centre of the W Bangkok’s 6th floor, the WET® rooftop pool is silver sanctuary away from the bustle of the city, and, if you look at it from a bird’s eye view, it’s actually shaped like an eye! The gym comes with state-of-the-art equipment, but what we loved were the energy snacks thoughtfully laid out so that you can get a quick bite before/after a workout.

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The stylish swimming pool. Photo: Courtesy

4. Instagrammable backdrops

If you didn’t Instagram it, were you really there? And the W Bangkok is full of picture-perfect backgrounds. The lobby features a sparkling giant W (easily the most Instagrammed location), but what we recommend is to head to the spiral staircase that comes with a uniquely Thai touch—instead of a crystal chandelier, the hotel commissioned an artist to pay homage to the plastic drink bags that are so recognisable of the city. Another cool location to check out is the wall of tuk-tuk lights that flicker on and off in a mesmerising pattern—great for Boomerangs.

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The spiral staircase sculpture was inspired by plastic drink packets found commonly in Thailand. Photo: Courtesy
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Theis ultra-Instagrammable lobby art took tuk-tuk lights and turned them into a fabulous light display. Photo: Getty

5. The House on Sathorn

Last but not least, The House on Sathorn was one of our favourite dining experiences in the city, with its focus on both traditional Thai food and comfort food. It comprises of three distinct establishments: The Bar, The Courtyard and The Dining Room. The Dining Room, headed by W’s Turkish chef Fatih, presents a modern expression of Turkish food, while The Bar and The Courtyard focus on comfort food from East and West.

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The House on Sathorn by night. Photo: Courtesy
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The Dining Room. Photo: Courtesy
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The panaeng crab curry is a must-try. Photo: Getty