My stay at the ibis Sathorn, Bangkok, was a result in my determination to show the Power of Promotions (read more here): Accor is running a promotion to give you between 2,000-5,000 miles for every stay at one of their hotels. I opted for 2,000 Air Berlin miles and targeted Gold status with three stays. To minimize the cost of the status, I tried to find low-rate hotels in Thailand, a great destination with often low prices, and my first stay is at the ibis Sathorn.
Ibis is the budget brand (read more here) within the Accor group of hotels. I had previously staid at an ibis Styles hotel and liked it. Friends of mine had staid frequently at the ibis Sathorn and recommended it, so I was happy to try!
Location: This ibis hotel is located in the Sathorn/Silom area, reasonably close to the Sathorn business district and the Silom shopping and nightlife area. It is not easy walking distance to either nor to public transport with MRT/BTS. making it not necessarily an obvious choice for tourists. They do offer a free, hourly shuttle to key business and leisure spots, making it easy to get where you want to go. I arrived late at night from the airport and found the lobby brightly lit, clean and welcoming. The bright colors certainly help.
Service: The front desk staff was professional and very friendly, proving yet again that you don’t need to spend a lot of money for good service in Thailand. I received my keys quickly and was on my way. Their shuttle was not operational during my stay, but the staff went out of their way to accommodate me and one of them gave me a ride to the BTS station!
Room: The room is compact, quite modern and very functional. I like the hardwood/laminate floor and the light-wood furniture, giving it a bit of a Scandinavian feel (more Ikea than BoConcept, though). The room has universal electric outlets for all your gadgets, a safe for valuables, a fridge and kettle. The TV is wall-mounted, but tiny. There is a bench to sit or store luggage and plenty of room for large luggage under the raised bed, so a couple with multiple large suit cases will still be able to move around easily. The bed is very comfortable and I slept like a baby!
The bathroom is also small, yet well thought out. It is all-tiles with accent mosaic tiles above the sink. The shower is in the corner, giving me enough elbowroom at 6ft3, has glass doors and great water pressure. There are shampoo/soap dispensers which some people don’t like. I find them very practical and better for the environment than thousands of little plastic bottles. There is a hair dryer as well as soft towels.
Food: I paid extra for breakfast and it was well worth it. I give credit to the French ownership for the butter and chocolate croissants, baguette and French toast. There are also hot Western and Asian food offerings, juices, coffee, tea, fresh fruit & yogurt and cornflakes. You should be able to find something to your liking. The quality and variety of items are much better than I expected at this price point.
Accor has cracked the code for small, budget hotel rooms and addressed the most frequent complaints about rooms in this price category. The rooms are modern, clean and functional, with enough room for two and their luggage and basic amenities are present. While you probably won’t be bragging about your stay here, you are not likely to have any complaints either, going in with realistic expectations. I paid $34 plus $7 for breakfast – even at low Bangkok prices that’s a great deal. Your alternatives at this price point would be independent hotels, most likely older and somewhat worn out. Add the 2,000 miles (conservatively a $20 value) and the stay is a bargain!
If you just need a room for the night, this is a good choice. There are plenty of other choices in Bangkok that will give you a little more space, a better location and more amenities for approximately $20 more – check out reviews here:
Holiday Inn Express Siam (coming soon)
Holiday Inn Express Sathorn (coming soon)
Silq Hotel Asoke (coming soon)