Aloft Hotel, a chain of boutique hotels by the Starwood group has been getting good reviews from numerous websites and and travellers likewise. Having tried staying at Aloft Kuala Lumpur, I was eager to try out the Aloft Hotel in Bangkok to see what they have installed for guests.
Date of stay: March 2013
35 Sukhumvit Soi 11, Sukhumvit Road
Bangkok 10110, Thailand
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Aloft Bangkok has an incredible location. Don’t be deceived by the stereotype that most boutique hotels are located in secluded areas which are inaccessible. This is definitely not the case for Aloft Bangkok as it is proximate to the Nana BTS skytrain station, and various popular shopping malls such as Siam Paragon, Emporium Department Store and MBK Shopping Center are all well within reach of the hotel. There are also a plethora of corporate offices close by to the hotel, with 14 corporate offices including Pacific Place, Time Square Building and CTI building all within a 2 kilometer radius around the hotel. Those who enjoy immersing themselves in the arts and foreign cultures can also look forward to an enriching experience at the Siam Society House and Garden and Jim Thompson’s Museum. unfortunately, I must admit that Aloft Bangkok does fall short of my expectations when it boils down to the sheer quantity of shopping and tourist facilities. Furthermore, some of these places are less inaccessible by foot and it would be necessary to take the skytrain.
I was allocated to the standard room, also known as the Chic Room. The interior design of the room was in fact almost the same as the other Aloft hotels that I have been to. This was slightly disappointing as I was looking forward to something different or some new surprise from the hotel. However, those that particularly enjoy the design of the room and comfort will quickly take a liking to this room.
The first thing you will notice upon entering is that the room was very modestly sized. If you have huge luggage and plus-sized bags, you will definitely face difficulties should you try to bring your luggage to the other side of the bed. Furthermore, there isn’t sufficient space should you want to add an additional bed, so if you are travelling in an odd-numbered group, you will have to either book an extra room, or get a larger room, both of which will cost you some additional dollars. However, the room is actually between 30 – 32 square meters, so on paper, it can be considered as being reasonably sized for a standard room.
From the carpeting in the room, you will definitely be able to tell that Aloft is a boutique hotel that is trying to inject fun into your experience. I especially appreciate the fact that this notion of fun is not over done, as the warm neutral tones of the walls also provide a somewhat cosy feel – something that every guest would love to return to.
The bed was comfortable and clean, meting the standards that I had expected. The surrounding area was very well lit a night, making it easy on the eyes should you wish to do some night reading. A unique thing about the bed was that Aloft actually included a colorful bolster and not only does it add to the comfort level, it also brightens up the whole bed area.
There was also a cool digital alarm clock beside the bed that had numerous functions, most notably being the iPod or iPhone dock. It is indeed a good addition to the room as guests can play music to create different settings in the room and is especially for in-room parties.
The work desk was joined to the TV console and I though this way of designing it was clever as it reduced clutter and did not make the room feel as cramped. However, the work desk was small in size, and I would say the space is insufficient for those with piles of papers and a laptop. Businessmen will definitely find it hard to work productively in such a constricted space. Furthermore, there were no stationery present except for a pencil and I expected at least a little more, since the hotel is located so proximate to corporate offices.
There was one major stand out point of the work desk though, which is that it was equipped with some of the latest technology and the market, designed to make the lives of guests more convenient. For instance, the power sockets require no adapters so guests do not have to fret over charging cameras and phones should you forget your adapter. Also, the HDTV comes with HDMI and USB support, so you can easily plug in and play movies or videos from your own laptop. For businessmen, the HDMI feature makes it a breeze to conduct mini meetings in the room as well.
There was also a mini bar in the room and it contained some soft drinks, beers and chocolate bars albeit limited. This came as a pleasant surprise to me because the previous Aloft hotels I had been to only had empty mini bars. However, guests shouldn’t be too bothered by the limited selection of food and Â drinks because you can always stock up more from the Re:fuel bar which sells an array of snacks and drinks and is open 24/7.
There was a complete sofa and coffee table set in the room so guests can sit and enjoy the snacks provided. The large and comfortable sofa is also a great place for visitors should you want to throw a party in the room. However, I found the placement of the sofa a little strange as it wasn’t facing the TV, neither was it facing the window behind it. Perhaps there could be some changes made, such as replacing the large sofa with a smaller one that has the versatility of being able to face the windows or the room. Only then can the space and the sofa be put to good use.