The Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok Amplifies The Scintillating Settings By The Chao Phraya

Charoenkrung Road, which runs parallel to the illustrious Chao Phraya River, has evolved and meshed with the Thai capital’s multiverse of incarnations since the city’s founding in 1782. The waterway and the thoroughfare were the first points of contact for traders and their steamers from foreign shores venturing into Siam. Now on the side of Charoenkrung with more mom-and-pop shops and cute coffee shops is the Jean-Michel Gathy-designed Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok, which is part of the Chao Phraya Estate development. Suburban Bangkok is instantly forgotten as one’s car enters the hotel’s main gates. From this point in, Gathy’s minimalist (and masculine) neo-classical aesthetic dominates. Arrival and check-in is seamless, while the front desk staff is personable, polite and precise. There’s none of the over-the-top obsequiousness or sloppiness usually found in lesser places. 

Rooms (river-facing ones are the ones to book), though kitted out in the Four Seasons design colour templates of greys and creams, don’t scream over-the-top personality. What they do embody is a well-considered thought process dedicated to room flow. There are enough surface areas to place items, and these surface areas are configured in an imaginary circle around the space. So it’s easy to find one’s glasses, book or phone charger—sometimes it’s the little things than are most essential. Excellent room flow is key to a memorable stay, and before check out, it’s super easy to take one final sweep so that nothing is left behind. Other touchpoints include how quietly luxurious the bedding feels. The difference in texture of the duvet cover and the silken tofu feels of the inner bedsheet is palatably delightful. 

But one doesn’t travel to Bangkok just to hole up in the room. Downstairs at Riva Del Fiume, executive chef Andrea Accordi has fused nuanced Italian flavours and a Lake Como-esque personality to the Chao Phraya river scene. Breakfast outdoors amidst well-manicured and artfully placed shrubs replicate a Continental setting. Across the pool with lounge chairs that sit in water is Brasserie Palmier, so named after the verdant palm trees that line the pathways facing the river. Brasserie Palmier’s easy and often breezy environs attracts a well-heeled local crowd with penchants for wholesome French dishes with definitive yet unpretentious touches of luxe. 

Here, head chef Nicolas Raynal improves on classic French fare the likes of lobster bisque a l’Americaine with an indulgent side of chips de crevette, the roasted whole chicken (which requires a preparation time of 45 minutes), as well as the restaurant’s signature steak and chips starring an award-winning Australian wagyu striploin. 

Post-dinner, the killer cocktails of Berliner beverage manager Philip Bischoff beckon at BKK Social Club, currently ranked the 14th best bar in the world on The World’s 50 Best Bars 2022 list. It’s imagined as a glamorous dive back to old world Buenos Aires, and to commemorate this, Bischoff and his team have come up with creative pours such as the Evita featuring plantation pineapple rum, Campari, aperol, citrus mix, bay leaf, and cinnamon syrup. This libationary tribute to Argentina’s enigmatic former first lady—along with exuberant concoctions like the Champagne Colada made up of coconut oil, Bacardi, JM Rhum Agricole Blanc, pineapple cordial, coconut sorbet, and Jacquesson 742 champagne—are perfect mood enhancers that match the bar’s equally eclectic DJ tunes. 

For teetotallers, the bar staff channels their inner alchemists to distil drinks that generate an unmistakably pleasant hangover-free buzz by blending cream soda, ginger ale, coconut oil, pineapple juice, and one or two secret ingredients. A word of caution: after one or two of these magical mocktails, you’ll start wondering why you’re getting slightly tipsy. And this conundrum is possibly one the reasons BKK Social Club ranks so highly (pun unintended) on the World’s Best Bar list. 

Four Seasons Hotel Bangkok

Sign up for our Newsletters

Stay up to date with our latest series