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.