i stayed in two different areas of the city and my first hotel, baiyoke boutique hotel, catered towards asian tourists and the second was cute with its mildly schizophrenic design styles meshed together to make it a 'boutique' hotel. my second abode was salil hotel and it was a lovely old building with creaks and cracks and a complimentary golf cart service from the main road (but the best part was that we had to go into the 7-11 at the end of the street, pay 1 baht, and call the hotel for our pick up on the corner, which was really only a 10 minute walk).
the staff at both hotels were accommodating, helpful, and always had a little something for you on your arrival, from flourescent coloured juice to elephant key chains!
if you don't love the grand palace's sharp guards dressed in white, wat pho's awe-inspiring reclining buddha, or wat phra kaew's itty bitty emerald buddha, the city has a plethora (and i mean plethora) of places to shop!
cheap electronics, designer knock off's, gorgeous malls full of trendy thai shops and japanese department stores, tiny boutiques full of one of a kind styles, floors upon floors of homeware, pirated music and dvds, tacky tourist tat, silk and gorgeous fabrics, flower markets, fresh fruits and vegetables, fried fish, shoes, shoes, more shoes, jewelry, and every other thing you could possibly find yourself needing (including an adorable 'cloth pouch' that i picked up for my sister!).
apart from the traffic jams, i enjoyed zipping around the streets in tuk tuks and finding little spots to eat or grab a coffee throughout the packed streets. i loved the little alleyways and the toll roads to blast you to the airport when you are afraid you will be late to check into your flight.
a special mention of the cream tea at the oriental hotel, which was absolutely divine and made me feel as though i was a colonial woman in a huge dress, holding a fan and seeing thailand as it once was. again, the service was impecable and the chocolate buffet was something i will be talking about for months!
most of all, and i think that this is what can easily make or break any destination, the people in bangkok were courteous, welcoming, helpful, and i never felt like someone was taking me for a ride or trying to rip me off (apart from that one wingnut who drew all over our map...). blending into the local scene was largely effortless and i think bangkok is a place i could live without constantly feeling like an outsider or being frustrating with the way things work.
and a little shout out to my favourite taxi driver who ended up offering us a free ride because he misunderstood where we wanted to be dropped and then saw us on the street later and came over to say hi and make sure we were not lost!
get your baht to bangkok and i am sure you will love the city as much as i did!
*does anyone else find it painfully difficult to upload photos to blogger?? i want to punch mr blogger in the nose after this most recent episode of blogger headaches. if you are remotely interested, i am posting all my photos on facebook in the coming days.*