Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Phuket, and more

For anyone that hasn't been to Phuket, it's a lush tropical paradise. The beaches are clean, the water is warm and crystal clear, people are friendly and it's still pretty cheap. We stayed at Le Meridien with all the other wedding guests, and while I thought the resort was pretty well appointed, you may be a little disappointed if you are looking for a really traditional Thai experience. I guess it depends on what you want... I must add, however, they left a bit to be desired in the service department. The now happily wedded couple booked the hotel months back, and made sure to communicate closely with hotel staff about the guest bookings - as they had guests from afar as the US, UK and other parts of Asia. Many people arrived to find their reservation didn't exist, others had to wait hours for their rooms to be available, and the worst part - they put the bride and groom in separate beds! If you're a traditionalist, you're probably thinking that's the way it should be, and I respect that - but I think if you spend a tonne of money at a hotel for a wedding, and specifically ask for a double room, they should go all out to make sure you're both happy. Anyway, I'm not grumbling too much - we got a free upgrade!

This is the view that I had to deal with all day for the long weekend from the beach. Pretty hard to deal with, hey ;)

My time in Bangkok this trip was purely in transit, however, I thought I'd share a place I found the last time I was there. Agalico (meaning 'timeless' in Sanskrit) is a simply gorgeous cafe/tea house, inside a colonial style building next to an old royal palace amongst a lush garden. Agalico is the brainchild of Poomchai Chumbala a distant member of the Thai Royal family no less, as well as a noted Interior Designer and hobby gardener. This place is more than just a respite from the hustle and bustle of Bangkok, it's a veritable oasis. The decor of the tearooms - as you can see from the photos below - is mostly white, apart from the lush green of the plants indoors and out, as well as the odd piece of blue & white china scattered around. It's really quite breathtaking, and such a refreshing contrast to the rest of the city.




But, apparently it's a closely guarded secret, so remember, this is just between you and me ;)

9 comments:

Anna Spiro said...

Wow Suzy Agalico looks so beautiful! Love the all-white!
xx
Anna

porter hovey said...

Oh my! It's just amazing!!

Gina said...

This teahouse looks fabulous. I wish I had known it when traveling busy Bangkok. And the Le Meridien in Phuket I know too. We, too, had to complain about the room (they put us into a back-yard room) and got a free upgrade with beautiful view then.
Gina from Germany

Markus said...

Thank you so much Annetta for posting these beautiful pictures! I've been following your blog for a while and I never tire of the gorgeous pictures and stories you share. I'm studying Interior Design in Toronto and entering my second year this fall, thanks for the little bits of inspiration!

Suzy said...

Anna - I just knew you would love this!!

Porter, if you ever get a chance to go to Bangkok, make sure you visit - it really is more lovely in person - these photos don't do it justice.

Gina - so sorry to hear you had troubles at Le Meridien too! Maybe you'll have to book a trip back just so you can make it to Agalico....

Thanks Marcus - good luck with the studies!

columnist said...

A secret indeed - I have not come across Agalico, but I will make inquiries. At first glance I thought it was the Authors' Lounge at the Oriental. Actually, you might be surprised to know there are a number of really amazing hidden treasures scattered around the city. If you haven't already, next time you should visit "Incredible" in soi 23, and their new "Eligible", (both interiors shops run by Khun Bun).

Suzy said...

Hi Columnist - so glad I could share something with you!! There is a map on their website. They are only open a few days a week apparently - but well worth the trip I'd say. I'll be sure to let you know next time I'm there for some of your recommendations!

So Haute said...

Wow...so beautiful! Hope you had an amazing time!

Anonymous said...

Could anyone tell me what the music is on the Agalico website? I'm in love with it and I can't seem to find out what it's called or who it is by. Thank you very much for sharing this.