“Hansar” means “to be in the moment of full joy and happiness” in Thai; that sounds like the perfect place to spend Valentine’s! Dave’s colleagues had bought us a night at The Hansar as a wedding present and given our usual nonchalant attitude towards Valentine’s we were really looking forward to an evening away.
We took the BTS (via Asok to scoff some pizza at Pala) to the Ratchadamri stop and walked the 2 minutes to the hotel, despite being so close to Siam the area is quiet and tree lined and looks to be predominantly condos and hotels, with the St Regis and Four Seasons being on the same street.
We were whisked straight up to reception and given cold, mint scented towels and a glass of juice whilst they checked us in. Despite being over an hour later than the earliest check in time of 2pm, our room wasn’t ready so we were directed up to the pool to have a drink whilst we waited, annoying but not exactly the end of the world!
Within half an hour we were taken to our room, well suite, we had been upgraded due to the occasion (our wedding…not Valentine’s) from a studio to an urban. The corridors in the Hansar are really interesting as they are open to the outside to help with the carbon footprint of the building by not using air-con in these areas; a really clever idea, lots of plants and trees also enhanced the feeling of bringing the outside in.
Anyway onto our incredible room. Situated on the 11th floor, we walked through the huge door to be greeted with a floor to ceiling living wall inside a glass box, a really stunning installation. Then we had a living area, a separate bedroom (with the most ridiculously comfortable bed) and an incredible dressing room/bathroom the size of our own bedroom.
The room was incredible but it did get us thinking. The website states the Urban suite is 71 sqm, a size that is much bigger than a lot of the condo’s we’ve been tentatively looking at for when we move into town in July. Whilst this size seems pretty decent for a hotel room, how would it be to live in? Hmmm…it was food for thought for us, anyway I digress.
We headed back down to the pool on the 8th floor and had a gin and tonic and enjoyed the late afternoon sun. The pool is a decent size, at least 25 metres, and there was a jacuzzi as well.
After getting ready to some enlightening Thai pop music on MTV we headed down to Rouge on the ground floor of the hotel for dinner and cocktails. The Hansar currently has 3 restaurants, and a Japanese restaurant opening shortly. We chose the most casual of the 3 for a more laid back dinner but it does still require a more smart-casual level of dress. Now, naively we had expected the retaurants to be as busy as they would be in England so had pre-booked, especially as there was a pianist and violinist to serenade diners. Needless to say we were the only ones inside the restaurant (there were a few diners and drinkers outside) and it remained that way until we left at 10.30!
Anyway, the staff at Rouge were great, and the service attentive. We settled at the bar and had a cocktail as it was happy hour. We had two Paris-Bangok’s…yum. Lychee is a flavour I’ve not experienced an awful lot until I came here but it is my absolute new favourite, especially in a good cocktail! Dave was particularly impressed by the bar snacks we were served; tiny bread sticks and cubes of cheddar, heaven to a cheese lover in a city of little/expensive cheese!
PARIS-BANGKOK Lychee, Peach Liqueur, Kaffir Lime Leaves, Gin
On to dinner, we shared a starter of Thai Prawn Cakes with plum sauce. More like huge breaded prawns but not as ‘Iceland’ as that sounds, they were really good.
Another cocktail was in order before the clock struck 9pm so we went for a Cranberry Gin & Tonic. Not as good as the lychee one but nice. The pianist failed to show but we were treated to some violin accompaniment at this point, he made good work of ‘songs from the movies’ as Dave put it, including Titanic and Armageddon.
For main course we both chose the Angus Beef Ribeye served rare with mashed potatoes, vegetables and red wine sauce. Both steaks were cooked perfectly and were delicious, the vegetables were interesting and included what looked to be yellow and purple carrots…
Unable to resist a glance at the dessert menu (which in itself was worthy of a picture as it was a solid perspex block in a leather case viewed with a torch…) we thought as it was Valentine’s we’d share a creme brûlée. Laced with some sort of alcohol and with a crispy, sugary top we thoroughly enjoyed this too!
With my Valentine’s rose
After a fabulous nights sleep with the air-con on (woop woop, no leccy bill to worry about here!) we had a great breakfast. The usual buffet style with lots of hot and cold options, I had fruit and plain yoghurt followed by bacon and egg followed by the nicest pain au chocolat I’ve had in Bangkok.
We had a lovely time at the Hansar, the room was fantastic and would highly recommend it if you’re visiting Bangkok for a few days or if you just fancy a night away, with rooms from around £100 a night its luxury at a great price. I would love to come back one day…maybe next Valentine’s day!