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A first-timer’s guide to Bangkok’s Siam District

The Siam District is at the heart of Bangkok’s best shopping, eating and nightclubs.

And if you are planning a holiday that includes some serious shopping, it is important to find a hotel nearby so you can drop your parcels back in the room at any time, recharge your batteries, and head back to the action of the shopping mega malls.

Siam@Siam Design Hotel Roof Top

The Siam@Siam Design Hotel is just a short, easy walk from some of Bangkok’s best shopping destinations. We are talking places like the MBK Center, CentralwOrld, Siam Paragon, Siam Center and Siam Square One.

SQ1 (open from 10 am – 10 pm daily) has seven floors of digital gadgets, lifestyle brands and is popular with local students. Siam Paragon is home to south-east Asia’s largest aquarium – and more than 250 hip fashion stores.  CentralwOrld is big – and open until midnight. It is the one-stop mega mall with not only food, electronics and homewares but also some stunning art installations. Make sure you go to the centre website because there are some great daily discounts you can access through the tourist drop-down menu.

MBK has been around since 1986, and it is a tourist destination in its own right. Here you can shop until your heart’s content. The fifth-floor food court is treasured by local gourmands. There is a cinema and even a gaming arcade to keep those that don’t want to shop engaged. The Siam Center boasts more than 200 international and local brands with everything from Adidas to Victoria’s Secret.

If you don’t find what you want at these mega malls, don’t worry, because you can always try one of the Siam District’s markets. The markets tend to be on street corners or down lanes. Be brave, follow your instincts and they may lead you to some tremendous bargains.

When it is time for food you can pay a fortune or just a few Baht to dine in Bangkok. Both options are good. Tung Sui Heng, just 450 metres from the Siam@Siam Design Hotel, has a Michelin Bib Gourmand award and they have been serving duck and goose noodles here for more than 50 years. 

If you are heading back to the hotel late try Jeh-O Chula (50 metres from the hotel) for some delicious tom yum hotpot which is filled with pork balls, seafood, veggies and eggs. Locals often queue here for hours for a taste of the Khao Tom (rice porridge).

Taan, at the Siam@Siam Design Hotel, is also gaining a reputation for its innovative Thai cuisine. You dine 26 floors above Bangkok and while the view is stunning, chef Monthep Kamolsilp’s food – especially the tasting menu – is even better.

MBK, Siam District

Thai Dusit Waen, about two kilometres from the Siam@Siam Bangkok, is known for its beef noodle stew – locals even call this a Chinese medicinal recipe.

Jim Thompson’s is iconic in the district. The café features both western and Thai dishes and you sit dining surrounded by water, plants, butterflies and birds. It is a meal that satisfies all your senses.

If you have any energy left at the end of the day you might want to try one of the Siam District’s nights clubs.

The Hard Rock Café at Siam Square is known for the quality of its rocking live music. Groove at centralwOrld has many bars over two storeys including our favourite HOBS (House of Beers) which is open until 1 am. If you are staying at Siam@Siam Design Hotel you don’t even have to leave the hotel. Check out Party House One, a New York loft-style establishment with pumping live music and excellent DJs until late into the night.