Sleeping Pills Siam Square

Sleeping Pills Siam Square

Sleeping Pills is a great little boutique in Siam Square that sells plenty of fun fashionable clothing. In fact the brand has become so popular that they now have an outlet at Zen in CentralWorld shopping mall. It’s something I really love about being here, discovering a brand and then following their success, all the while knowing I got their first!

The brand limits the number of each item that they make, and it’s really affordable, with dresses starting at 2,500 baht, tops at 1,500 baht and trousers at 1,600 baht.  In London it would be impossible to buy a limited edition piece at these prices!

The designers at Sleeping Pills take the current trends and give them a girly twist, with plenty of fabulous summer pastels and florals in the latest collection. Don’t worry though, it’s not too cutesy. Some items also have a 60s vibe, I love this black and white harlequin dress that retails at 2,690 baht. Sizes go up to a large, and as a westerner with hips and tits this is usually the size I need to go for. But who cares about the label inside when you look good!?

You can either find Sleeping Pills on the 3rd floor of Zen in CentralWorld or at their original Siam Square Branch, down the alley to the left had side of the Lido theatre, only a few minutes from BTS Siam. 

Taken from Sleeping Pills Facebook

Pop Music in Bangkok – Dancing to the hits of the 90s

Sonic Nightclub

Bangkok has plenty of great nightclubs, but finding one that plays pop music is not so easy. So when I found out that Trasher was organising a Now That’s What I Called Pop Music evening, I grabbed my friends and headed down to Sonic Nightclub on Ekkamai soi 10.

Sonic isn’t known for pop music. Most nights they play Indie Rock on the outdoor terrace (aka smokers lounge) and have live bands on the stage in both rooms. My pal said it looked a bit like a student union and I have to agree, it’s minimal with a lot of concrete. This is a relief because let’s be honest, I am not that hardcore when it comes to clubbing, and anywhere too cool scares me. The bathrooms at Sonic are pretty trendy though, papered with black and white newspaper clippings and photos. They are also clean! With paper!

We paid 200 baht to get in and got a free Tiger beer. We arrived at around 22:00, perfect timing as the place had a buzz but wasn’t jam packed with people. By the time we left at 1:00 it was so busy we could hardly move, let alone groove.

The music was really good. When I say really good, what I mean is fantastically bad pop music that I knew all the words to: Britney, Backstreet Boys, Cher and even some Sophie Ellis-Bextor. Trasher provide some dancers, one that looked like Michael Jackson and a couple of others with crazy hair. They can actually dance and really help the crowd get in the mood. Not that I needed any encouragement, I was as happy as a kid on Christmas morning.

It was so much fun, I hope Trasher organise some more pop club nights in Bangkok, because I need to dance!

Sonic Nightclub Bangkok Sonic Bangkok Bangkok nightclub Bangkok striptease

Bangkok’s Best Fish and Chips

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Fish and Chips is something that I have really missed since I moved to Bangkok, which is rather odd as I am not usually a huge fan of eating anything that comes from the sea. Thankfully there is a great restaurant on Sukhumvit Soi 11 that serves up some tasty catches with what I would argue are the most delicious fries in the world.

This isn’t your usual greasy cafe where you get a mound of slightly soggy chips in newspaper, although the dishes are served on print, which definitely made me smile. There are over half a dozen different fishes to chose from, and thankfully a short description on each one, as my seafood knowledge doesn’t stretch much beyond cod… The fish are caught from the seas around New Zealand and include the wonderfully named Tarakihi and Silver Trumpeter. The fish is served either battered or breaded with either tartar or garlic dipping sauce.

Fries come in three varieties: standard cut, thick cut and the most awesome of all, that I am sad I didn’t discover till I was 29, Kumera fries. Chunky, delicious wedges of sweet potato, fried and served with sour cream and chilli dipping sauce. I have been thinking about them far too often since we had our first bowl, and I keep wondering if it would be acceptable to go back and just have a portion of these and nothing else. Alone, so I don’t have to share.

Open: Mon – Fri: 17:00 – 12:00 and Sat – Sun: 11:00 – 12:00

BTS: Nana
Address: Sub lane of Sukhumvit 11, left hand side as you walk from BTS (less than 5 minutes). Look for the small lane with the gate and Cheap Charlies out door bar 
Tel: +66 (0)2 651 1098

Best Mango Sticky Rice in Bangkok

Soi 38

Soi 38 is one of the most popular places for street food in Bangkok, attracting everyone from locals to those with a copy of Lonely Planet. I usually take visitors here because it provides a local experience AND it’s clean, friendly with plenty of signs in English.

The stall that keeps me coming back time and time again is the one that sells mango and sticky rice. On the other side of Sukhumvit Road at the beginning of Thong Lor, there is a very famous mango shop, but I still prefer the Soi 38 one.

Firstly the staff here are so friendly, even though I come only a couple of times a month the stall owner still remembers me. The quality is impressive: the mango is always fresh and juicy and the accompanying rice really cuts through the sweetness with its light coconut flavours. All this for 60 baht, either at a table in the street or to take away.

The stall seems to be open every evening of the year. I have never been here and not been welcomed by piles of yellow fruit, whether I come at 6pm on a Tuesday or 11:30pm on a Saturday. It is only steps from the BTS at Thong Lor, on the left hand side. Delicious!

Mango and Sticky Rice

Bangkok’s Rainy Season

Gateway Ekkamai RainIt has been so hot here in Bangkok that I had become desperate for the rain. I was even contemplating a rain dance of some sort. Usually by the end of April the thundery storms have returned but this year it’s been hotter than hot. As I rushed from appointment to meeting, damp hair plastered to my face after only a brief walk outside my small talk centred around the weather: “It’s so hot at the moment … I am sure it wasn’t this bad last year”, and “I have been here almost three years and I thought I was getting used to it!”. My Thai counterparts did their best to reassure me that, yes, it was indeed very hot, hotter than usual.

I have even started using an umbrella to shade me, in the way that many locals do. It does work, but trying to circumnavigate a busy Thai pavement, with all its tripwires and low hanging objects, is hard enough without skipping along like you are Mary Poppins. Although my umbrella is UV protective and so protects my skin, I sometimes get the same stuffy feeling that would wake me up in my tent at festivals. It’s pretty uncomfortable…

For the first time in what feels like months, we woke up to a grey sky and dark clouds in the distance. Leaving the house this morning I could wear jeans again. The old shophouses that line the pavement dripped rainwater on us as we made our way along the street. I have mucky streaks up the back of my trousers. At the start of the rainy season it’s exciting to hear the thunder, but in six months time I’ll be glad for the cool, dry weather.

Sister Margaritta at Terminal 21 Shopping Mall

Sister MargarittaI was excited to see one of my favourite Siam Square shops has opened a boutique in Terminal 21 Shopping Mall near Asoke. Sister Margaritta sells cool individual clothing, ranging from classic preppy styles to glitter disco shoes. They also import some pretty funky bags and accessories from Korea. The cool stripy tees below start at 690 baht and the amazing 70s flower patterned cropped trousers cost just over 1200 baht. The shop in Terminal 21 is only a pop-up so who knows how long it will be around. For now I’ll make the most of not having to battle through the sweaty alleyways of Siam to visit Sister Margaritta.Sister Margaritta

Ladies Night Bangkok – Free Drinks and Great Deals (2014)

The Golden Dusit Thani Spike!

 One of the best things about Bangkok is most definitely ladies night. In a city that seems designed for the pleasure of men it’s great to have somewhere dedicated to honouring the fairer sex with free drinks and some cheesy music. Not that we are that easy to buy of course, but we appreciate the acknowledgement that is attached to Ladies Night.  I’ve put together a list of my favourite ladies nights in Bangkok.

My Bar at Dusit Thani

My Bar at Dusit Thani is the queen of Bangkok ladies night. This is premium quality ladies night, with all you can drink between 19:00 and 21:00 every Wednesday. The drinks list is impressive: red and white wine, beer, gin, whisky and a handful of rather sweet cocktail served (sadly) in wine glasses. The DJ seems to have a thing for 90s pop, but he also plays some recent hits as well. My Bar can be found on the ground floor of the Dusit Thani towards the back of the hotel, past the pastry counter. They occasionally enforce their dress code, which is smart casual with no flip flops. The cost is 200 baht for two hours, and the money goes to Charity.

MRT: Silom – BTS: Sala Daeng – Hotel is directly outside the MRT, if you haven’t been there before it has a huge gold spike on the roof!

Coyote

On Wednesday head down to Coyote Silom on Soi Convent. Ladies night at Coyote runs from 18:00 to 20:00, and the classic margaritas are free. Friendly staff will keep your glasses topped up and if you need something to soak up all that booze we recommend getting a plate of Nachos to share. Coyote is pretty informal and relaxed, making it easy to lose track of time and how much you have had to drink.

Silom Coyote, Soi Convent – BTS: Sala Daeng – MRT: Silom

Royal Oak, Bangkok

Only a few steps from the BTS at Phrom Pong you will find a row of British and Irish boozers. Every Wednesday from 20:00 till close (01:00) you can get free Vodka and Cokes, Chang Beer and Mojitos when the oldest pub in Bangkok holds its ladies night. The Royal Oak is usually filled with old men reading the newspaper and watching sports, but don’t let that put you off. It’s friendly and welcoming, and they do amazing desserts as well. The pub is easy to find, on soi 33/1, just past Robin Hood and The Dubliner.

BTS: Phrom Pong

Above Eleven

Every lady needs a rooftop moment and what could be better than looking down on one of Bangkok’s favourite party streets with a cocktail in your hand. Above Elven is a Central Park inspired rooftop bar and every Wednesday is Salsa night, with 150 baht Margaritas and Mojitos for women. You can see the Fraser Suites as you walk along soi 11, but you need to walk 10 minutes to the end of the street at go round the corner. The Above Eleven entrance is to the side of the building.

BTS: Nana

Am Bar

Or perhaps the rooftop moment should be accompanied by a glass of ladies night bubbly? If so then Thursday night at Am Bar at Sheraton Hotel on Soi 15 is the place to be, with buy one get one free on Prosecco. This isn’t the highest rooftop in town, you’ll be looking up rather than down when you check out the skyscrapers. But the vibe is pretty chilled out, and there are some super comfy day beds to lounge around on.

BTS: Nana

W Bangkok

On Wednesdays between 19:00 and 22:00 (until the 30th of June 2013) you can get free bubbles at Woo Bar at the W Bangkok. It’s easily one of the coolest hotel bars in Bangkok and they play some pretty funky music too.

BTS: Chong Nonsi 
 
Ladies Night drinks make my eyes crazy...

Bangkok’s Countryside and the Tree House Hotel

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If you want to escape the mad mad city that is Bangkok then there is no better place to go than the Bangkok Tree House in Phra Pradeang, which is a little like the London bump in the river where the Millennium Dome is, but has a jungle and a floating market on it instead of an entertainment centre. It also has cute puppies as well as the Bangkok Tree House, so it is the perfect place for a stay-cation.

To make it feel more like an adventure, we decided to walk from BTS at Bang Na to the pier, which is only about 1.5 km, but we got a bit lost and ended up in a temple complex with cows… If you take a taxi it’s about five minutes to Bang Na pier, where you can jump on the boat with a bunch of motorbikes and head away from grim industrial land to green jungle.

To make matters more adventurous we also took a wrong turning when we were trying to find the tree house, as the island is covered in a maze of small raised concrete walkways and no signs.  The Treehouse Hotel is right on the banks of the river, so you have to take a left as soon as you get off the boat, just near the gold Buddha.

I really enjoyed my stay there, and I would recommend it to friends who want to experience something different. It’s very cool. You have to climb some pretty steep stairs to reach your nest / room, they are decorated in large metal ants or butterflies, the shower is outdoors and rooms come with a fab movie collection that includes The Notebook and An Inconvenient Truth (The Bangkok Tree House is all about being green).

We had dinner and breakfast here and the food was delicious, all sourced locally, there is also a fridge full of free ice-cream for when you are feel peckish. The staff were friendly and you could loan a bike to tour the area, in fact we were even offered a free one hour tour. I am really impressed with their policies of employing local staff and using renewable energy. Despite all this, I didn’t feel that the hotel really had the wow factor.

There is a lot of hype about the Bangkok Tree House and perhaps for this reason it didn’t quite live up to my expectations. Even though they were removing rubbish for the river (at a rate of a kilo per booking) there was still a lot of detritus around the property and at times the place felt grubby rather than rustic. In my mind I had pictured a rural idyll but the hotel is still in Bangkok, not in the rolling countryside, so it wasn’t quite the getting back to nature I was hoping for.

After our impressive five course breakfast we went exploring. The highlight for me was the puppies we got to play with, but if you haven’t stuffed your face with waffles then there is also what just about passes as a floating market with plenty of food and the occasional monk blessing.

Again and Again Vintage Clothing Bangkok

There is something extremely romantic about vintage clothing. I am not sure if it is the history behind the item, or the idea of wearing something that you won’t see someone else in, but I love checking out all of the vintage shops Bangkok has to offer. One of my favourite is just around the corner from my house: Again and Again, on Thong Lor soi 4.

The founder of this store used to be a stylist for Marie Claire, so of course has impeccable taste. With pieces sourced from around the world and an impressive collection of bags, accessories and the occasional tennis racket, it’s hard to walk away empty handed. Again and Again also have an amazing Facebook page where you can check out pictures of the latest items as they come in.

Again and Again Bangkok Again and Again Bangkok Again and Again Bangkok

Address: Room B1a Market Place Thonglor Soi 4
Telephone: 089 486 5359
BTS: Thong Lor