Nestled amongst Bangkok’s historic palaces, temples and museums, and alongside the River of Kings lies this expansive 39-room luxurious retreat. Dubbed “The Siam”, this boutique gem is about on three acres of premium river frontage, transporting company to a bygone serenity suffused with priceless antiquities, quintessential Thai attract and modern comforts. The Siam contains personal pool villas and distinctive entry to Bangkok’s historic palace district. At The Siam, company have the distinctive expertise of exploring Bangkok by boat from the lodge’s personal pier. On the subject of rest, bask in a pampering session at The Siam’s seductive spa or just unwind with a sundown cocktail on the lodge’s riverfront bar.
With a hanging million-dollar reinvention, The Siam has pulled out all of the stops relating to enhancing the aesthetics of its inside house together with a daring new black and lightweight gray checkered courtyard with a hovering glass pyramid roof. Trendy and purposeful, company are welcomed right into a temperature-controlled surroundings earlier than indulging in a very culinary expertise curtesy of The Siam’s signature Chon Thai Restaurant.
The Siam stands out for its means to fulfill the rising calls for of right this moment’s trendy traveller whereas concurrently staying true to honouring Thailand’s heritage. Real kindness, authenticity and a caring angle are all Siamese attribute that this lodge strives to keep up. Be it for an in a single day escape or final personal riverside journey, its no secret why The Siam was topped as one of many “most iconic lodges of the final century” by Architectural Digest Journal. LUXUO speaks to Nick Downing, the overall supervisor at The Siam lodge to seek out out concerning the lodge’s distinctive choices, curated artworks and future plans for growth.
Inform us about your expertise in hospitality and the way it began?
Being an solely baby of oldsters who travelled avidly, I suppose I used to be all the time destined to fall in love with lodges and totally different cultures. Whereas I used to be at college learning Enterprise and Data Techniques, I truly wrote to all of the five-star lodges searching for an entry degree job. Fortunately Hyatt Regency Perth provided me the evening porter place and the remainder is historical past. I used to be learning through the day and dealing the nightshift. Hyatt was my hospitality basis; together with me in all their coaching applications and selling me by way of the ranks and finally ended up transferring me to Park Hyatt Canberra because the Entrance Workplace Supervisor. From a stable ten-year interval with Hyatt, alternatives opened forward of me to take wonderful positions starting from opening Palazzo Versace to wonderful experiences in Maldives, the Seychelles, Cambodia, Thailand and different nations across the Indian Ocean.
When did you be part of The Siam lodge?
I truly joined The Siam household in late 2016.
What’s the DNA of The Siam lodge and the way does the lodge differentiate itself from different high-end boutique lodges in Bangkok?
I all the time assume phrases equivalent to “luxurious” and “boutique” are fairly generic phrases lately with out actual that means. I usually really feel “boutique” lodges are all about type however someway lacking soul or coronary heart. Finally it needs to be greater than a easy design. That being stated, we clearly have a surprising Invoice Bensley designed property within the royal district of Bangkok. Nonetheless I imagine the key is that we’re household owned and independently managed. The Sukosol household lead by Khun Kamala has all the time given us the liberty to do no matter it takes to succeed. Our major aim is to make sure now we have completely happy company and a contented group. This may in the end result in success as a property, creating an distinctive popularity for crafting memorable experiences past merely checking out and in.
The Siam is understood for providing distinctive personal pool villas however what do your visitor love most at The Siam?
We’ve so many options on the lodge which differentiate us. Company love the truth that now we have so many hidden corners to discover. Whether or not it’s the Vinyl Room with an incredible assortment of vinyl information to get pleasure from, or the personal screening room to get pleasure from watching that favorite film with your loved ones. Our Opium Spa which not solely encompasses a haven of unique house but additionally the chance to obtain a standard Sak Yant tattoo from a Grasp. Or maybe it’s the chance to get pleasure from a category with our chef by the river studying some key Thai recipes. Company continuously point out the sense of house all through the property. Most lodge designers or homeowners would have put over 100 rooms on a website of this dimension, whereas The Siam was created to make sure a way of exclusivity and serenity, a real sanctuary to retreat to after a day exploring the frenetic power of Bangkok.
How simple is it to entry Bangkok’s vibrant metropolis centre utilizing the Chao Prayah river?
That is the important thing to the visitor expertise of The Siam. Company make the most of our personal water limousine than runs on a schedule all through the day for our company to discover key historic websites and head out for wonderful meals or procuring experiences. Journeys are organized by way of their butler and coordinated relying on their needs. Not solely does this escape Bangkok’s notorious visitors snarls, it additionally ensures that company can precisely plan their day realizing they may get someplace or return to the lodge at a particular time, in the end maximising their time with us.
Each element at The Siam lodge tells a narrative with an emphasis on reinvigorating native craft, arts, tradition and group. Inform us extra about its exterior in addition to inside design and ornament.
The Siam was designed by Invoice Bensley who all the time has a way of drama to his properties. The Siam is now totally different and is sort of hanging. A mix of Deco and Asian influences. Dramatic black and white scenes all through the lodge. Nonetheless attributable to each Bensley and the proprietor’s love for the reused and repurposed, the vintage and curious, the entire lodge offers the environment of and Lodge and Museum with its corridors and rooms crammed with paintings and antiques from round Asia and past. Proudly owning member of the family, Krissada Sukosol-Clapp is understood for continuously adorning and styling areas across the property as he finds new items or inspiration. The newest is the Bar at The Story Home which had taken a dramatic flip with pink accented items and a gothic type chandelier. Each current additions for the shock of our common company.
Inform us extra concerning the particular relationship between The Siam and Thai luxurious model Jim Thompson?
In 2022, it was determined to transform our well-known Connie’s Cottage from a visitor villa into public house. We had numerous concepts what to do with the areas. Nonetheless it was proprietor Khun Kamala who steered we open discussions with Jim Thompson (as an internationally recognised iconic thai model) to see if they’d be fascinated with a proper collaboration to take over all or a part of the villa. This was particularly related as Jim Thompson options within the historical past of the 4 vintage Thai homes which can be on the property. We then had a dialogue with the incoming CEO Frank Cancelloni who was additionally seeking to associate with different iconic Thai manufacturers. We finally got here to settlement for them to take the bottom ground as a small retail house which might introduce our company on to the model with the concept to entice them to go to their revitalised and relaunched Heritage Quarter downtown. I’m happy to say the partnership and collaboration has been an incredible success for each events.
What The Siam has on supply on tremendous eating?
Our signature restaurant is the riverside Chon Thai Restaurant. Nonetheless fairly than taking place the “tremendous eating” route, now we have most popular to deal with distinctive home-style delicacies for our company to get pleasure from the perfect flavours from Thailand whereas sitting within the historic environment of century-old wood Thai homes.
To counter this conventional Thai expertise; through the covid interval we selected to create a brand new eating expertise on the different finish of the lodge referred to as The Story Home. A hanging Bensley designed renovation was accomplished and a dramatic collection of rooms crammed with Krissada’s antiques, artworks and furnishings created an area for company to expertise a menu of up to date culinary choices with flavours from all over the world. Opening Govt Chef, Blair Mathieson was purchased again to launch this restaurant and I’m delighted to see company get pleasure from a variety of choices with many plant based mostly specialities additionally.
Will The Siam expertise in Bangkok be reproduced in different components of Thailand? What are the plans for model growth?
In November 2019, we truly introduced plans for The Siam Chiang Mai. The Sukosol household have bought an unbelievable website which lends itself to create an expertise distinctive for Chiang Mai. For us, it’s essential that any new visitor expertise we create in Chiang Mai (or elsewhere) can also be a logical and is a welcomed extension to the one now we have created in Bangkok. Finally Covid paused this mission and we hope to revisit this within the close to future and convey the mission to life.
Bangkok is quickly altering. What are among the challenges the town is going through post-Covid in attracting extra vacationers from the Southeast Asian area and past?
The Bangkok skyline is altering each day and is unrecognisable from ten years in the past. This features a multitude of recent lodge developments stretching from downtown to the riverside with extra to return within the subsequent few years. The problem comes not solely from elevated native competitors but additionally from different nations and areas. Ease and price of journey to and from any nation is crucial in addition to the protection and safety of travellers whereas visiting. Although travellers have brief reminiscences and have a tendency to revert to previous journey habits in a brief time period, it is usually crucial for any nation to be politically secure. Thailand continues to show its resilience and continues to look ahead with hope.
To finish this interview, inform us one secret that you’ve by no means shared about The Siam lodge? Maybe a hidden location or a secret expertise?
There’s not a time period that we aren’t desirous about the subsequent visitor expertise we create or easy methods to elevate The Siam to new ranges. Whether or not it’s enhancing an area or on the lookout for new methods to impress company. For instance we’re beginning a collaboration with an area photographer who has taken metallic plate classic portraits and we’re introducing this distinctive expertise for our company. I can not share the precise particulars however we’re at the moment trying on the feasibility of one other visitor expertise that will undoubtedly be a primary for any Bangkok or certainly any Thailand lodge. However sorry, you’ll have to await these particulars!
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