The imposing private house at the centre of this riverside boutique hotel was built over 100 years ago by Prince Chakrabongse and is now owned and occupied by the prince’s granddaughter, Narissa. Scattered amidst the lush tropical gardens which surround the former royal home are 13 rooms and suites, lovingly designed by Narissa to offer a place of peace and serenity in a city which is sometimes overwhelming.
The comfortable standard rooms are entered through intricately woven Balinese wooden doors and are decorated with Moroccan-influenced fabrics which contrast with monochromatic walls. The rooms have some storage space and are en-suite, have shared tea and coffee-making facilities and a plentiful supply of bottled drinking water.
The suites are more extravagant, particularly the River View suite and the most recent addition, the Chinese suite. The former is a first-floor one-bedroom teak apartment with a very large wraparound deck and sun beds gazing out over the Chao Phraya River towards the Temple of the Dawn.
The Chinese suite is the hotel’s most appealing accommodation. It’s a uniquely styled apartment filled with Chinese antiques, wooden doors and furniture, and ample space for four people. The suite is set over two floors and includes two private terraces with sunbeds and a seating area.
Downstairs consists of a well-equipped living room and kitchenette and a twin en-suite bedroom. Up the spiral staircase you’ll find an en-suite double room with four-poster bed and red silk-clad walls. There is also a wooden desk and chair and striking antiques.
The Chinese suite has direct access to the hotel’s saltwater pool which in turn leads to the riverfront and the restaurant. Breakfast and dinner have to be ordered in advance from a set menu so the chef has time to buy the food fresh from the colourful local market.
Enjoying a freshly-cooked Thai meal in Chakrabongse’s restaurant while watching the river traffic on the Chao Phraya is a perfectly peaceful end to a busy day of soaking up Bangkok’s countless attractions.