First thing that strikes you is the cosiness of the check-in foyer. Cosy because everyone is squashed together - those checking in, those checking out, those waiting, and everyone's luggage. It is quite uncomfortable. If they removed the small bar that no-one ever uses the space could be put to better use I am sure.
Then you notice that there are only two lifts. This hotel has 37 floors. You do the math. Expect some long waits. I was at the point of giving up and taking the stairs down went I was going shopping - I felt lucky to be only on the 8th floor - when one finally arrived. If the lift is empty it is quick to come up from the lobby, but at peak times you are in for an extended wait - and hopefully the small lift (with loud music) will not be overfull already. Perhaps I am overstating this risk, as the building itself is on very small footing, with only six rooms on each level.
Yes the rooms are small because of the building size. It is quite a toothpick. As I am here for a week on business I am not heading out partying so I will be in the room working or relaxing most nights: it will not doubt seem a bit claustrophobic by the end of my extended stay. I would have preferred the TV facing the chair not the bed, or at least adjustable but it is fixed, set into the wall panelling. Other hotels these days allow you to plug in your HDMI cable and watch your own movies from your PC on the big screen. Can't do that here with the wall mounting: a small point, but one feature I have I come to expect.
Another space saving (i.e. dysfunctional and annoying) feature is to hide the (very) small wardrobe doors behind the sliding bathroom door when it is open. There were no bathrobes and slippers as mentioned in the room description in that wardrobe but there is an ironing-board instead.
The bathroom in my room was an adequate size, but mine was an Executive room, the second largest floorplan on the floor - perhaps it would be smaller in a standard room. BTW the Executive Room does not mean access to the Executive Club and other assorted privileges - that would be the Skyroom. Free drinks at happy hour, breakfast included, newspaper, laundry, etc...
For breakfast I was lucky to be on a low floor - as we went up floor by floor to the 35th, the soon crowded lift could inevitably accept no more passengers, as I predicted in the previous paragraph! And when we got to the restaurant we immediately crashed into the queue lined up waiting for a table. There were just not enough tables by about half. And the breakfast was not worth the wait. A limited choice of dishes (e.g. no bacon!) at the buffet and another queue for the only thing worth eating - the eggs, The clever egg-chef was working three hot-plates plates at once however so the delay was minimal. But the baked beans were stone-cold and the sausages steamed, not fried. Overall a very parsimonious and underwhelming buffet for the level of hotel.
And a final point of irritation - another first world problem I know, but BKK hotel competition is fierce! and as a left-hander I notice these things - the hipster / cool / designer coffee mugs are designed especially for right handers. I am not kidding. (The Excelsior in HK, a much better hotel, has the same problem.) The cute curvy bit on the back of the cup for a right-hander is in my front and the handle is set slightly forward. It is awkward and annoying to drink that way.
OK, one more final point! After my shopping (books and a pair of slippers to replace the missing ones) I came to the front door with both hands full of bags... The concierge/doorman had his head buried in some paperwork or other and I had to struggle to open the doors myself (this is Bangkok, unheard of!), nearly bumping into his station at the door. He didn't even look up.
Free WiFi (at limited baud rates though and it cuts out often on my floor) is a plus.
Haven't used the gym or pool yet, so I can't comment, but unless they are exceptional The Continent will be lucky to make it onto my short-list for my next business to Bangkok. For a brief personal holiday it might be more suitable due to its excellent location - I won't get the breakfast package.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Continent Hotel, Sukhumvit Bangkok is a luxurious hotel in a convenient location that suits all types of lifestyle, business or leisure travelers. In just a few steps out, you can enjoy a range of shopping malls like Terminal 21, Robinson and more. The public transport like BTS (Asok Sky train Station) and MRT (Sukhumvit Subway Station) is just next door. The hotel is positioned right in the heart of Sukhumvit between Soi 21 and Soi 23 , near Soi Cowboy and other night life entertainment. The hotel offers 153 guestrooms which are designed in four different themes called Ocean, Forest, Desert and Space. All rooms and suites are well appointed and present a lifestyle of comfort and convenience with sophisticated in-room amenities. Additional facilities include innovative bars, a lofty restaurant, a meeting space, a sky gym with city view and an elevated swimming pool. ... more less
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