Hotel Vista Express – Bangkok, I’m baaaccckkk!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Why lookie here, I made a trip back to my fave shopping city again – Bangkok! On my first trip, I wanted to see, eat and buy. For this trip I only had one thing on my mind – to shop. So when CebuPac had another promo, I made my pitch “Wanna go to Bangkok to shop for only PXXXX?” and the trip was born.

Last November Manang (This is what I call my older sister since “Manang” is Ilonggo for Ate), Nix, Nix’s parents and I made our way to Bangkok for 3 days. In 2008, I lucked out when we checked in at Four Seasons International House in the heart of Pratunam without being familiar with this part of town. So for the goal of the 2012 trip, the Pratunam area was the obvious choice to find a hotel. I had the advantage of being familiar with the area so I had a good idea of the spatial distance of the hotels to the main road of Petchburi.

Based on familiarity and geographical concerns, we used Agoda to book our rooms at Hotel Vista Express - the renovated and upgraded version of Four Seasons International House.  Besides being a block away from Platinum Mall, it had free wifi, free breakfast and my preconceived bias. Teehee It is still owned by a Thai and Filipino couple who employ quite a lot of Filipinos which made the stay so much like home.

Before: Traditional interior design at Four Seasons International House
Now: Contemporary interior design at Hotel Vista Express

Hotel Vista Express adopted a cleaner and more modern aesthetic. Another noticeable change is they no longer occupy the first floor. It was turned into a mall. The lobby, bar and restaurant are now all on the second floor.
Deluxe Room (2044 THB/per night, approximately P2,791.50)
We went over budget when we booked our room. We wanted security, free wifi, a great location and cheap rates. I know you can’t have everything so we prioritized and location outranked price.

The Hotel Vista deluxe room is a vast improvement from its predecessor. With its white walls and cleaner lines, the room looked brighter. We loved the punch of color thanks to the chair and lampshade.
The tub has been replaced by a rain shower head (my fave) and a glass partition.

The room and its amenities were upgraded but unfortunately something spoiled our stay; there was an unpleasant stench emanating from the drain near the toilet. The problem was reduced but never eradicated during our stay.

So Pinoy! We saw this weighing scale in the hallway. Anyone who travels to Bangkok needs to use one of these while packing.

The free breakfast buffet consistently had cereals, bread, jam, a vegetable dish, a protein, soup, fruits, salad and various drinks. They would remain the same on our 3 days with a few variations. 

The buffet options.

I strategized by having different breakfast themes per day as not to get too bored with the selection. I had American on my first day (just cereal and bread with some protein) then had “Pinoy”  on the second day (rice + ulam y’all!).

As mentioned above, Hotel Vista Express felt like home because of the presence of our kababayans. The Thai staff was as warm as their Filipino colleagues which made the stay much more pleasant. (Back story, in 2008 I was disappointed because I met more unpleasant Thais than the friendly kind I expected.)

In terms of getting things done, the hotel has a lot to improve on. Besides our issue with the bathroom, there were times when we would request for something and it would take forever to happen. However in terms of demeanor, I have no complaints. Even if we encountered problems, the staff was apologetic and genuine in serving you.

For the price I paid, I had a good stay. The location, comfortable rooms and pleasant staff are enough reason for me to stay at Hotel Vista Express again despite the drawbacks we experienced.

* Additional photos from Rissa de Ramos-Cortez, Nix Sionosa and Four Seasons International House.

The rest of my Bangkok 2012 posts are here:
Part 2: Terminal 21

Hotel Vista Express
4/41-47 Petchburi 19 Petchburi Rd. Thanon Phyathai, Rajthevee, Bangkok, Thailand 10400

Want other hotel options in Bangkok? You can check it out here

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