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Dang Derm

Hard to miss

What we say: 3.5 stars

Best swimming pool on Khao San is a key selling point for Dang Derm Hotel, a more mature sister to D&D Inn across the street. Looming over a part of the strip known for its party scene, the sprawling yellow building arrived around 2010 and exemplifies a gradual gentrification of the backpacker hood. It’s a fine choice for a comfy room that puts you right on top of the action.

The biggest building on Khao San.

The biggest building on Khao San.

Spanning almost the entire eastern end of Khao San Road, the imposing five-storey concrete structure is done up with a fairly tasteful design that we’d perhaps call traditional Thai chic. Rooms are composed of dark hard woods, woven bamboo, terracotta tiles and Thai-cotton axe pillows. Firm mattresses with good linens are placed on slightly raised platforms, and the spacious hot-water bathrooms are better than we’d expect.

Accessed by a lift and key-card locks, all rooms are equipped with TVs, mini-fridges, free WiFi, electronic safes and air-con. Security here is solid. Many of the front-facing rooms also come with private balconies that are great for people watching, but these can be very noisy until the nearby bars close up around 02:00. Rooms towards the back are quieter but also darker. The cheapest editions face across a narrow gap and into a neighbouring room’s window.

The rooms we peeped at were very well kept, though some have complained of foul smells emanating from bathroom drains. Interior setups are very similar in all but the priciest superior, which bags you more windows and a huge partitioned living space with desk and daybed on glossy white tile floors. Included Western breakfasts are served buffet style in the “Italian-Thai” Greens & Cheese Restaurant.

Glimpse of a standard double.

Glimpse of a standard double.

Value-wise, Dang Derm’s digs are slightly sub par compared to other Khao San flashpacker mainstays, like Rikka Inn and Buddy Lodge, but its swimming pool is far and away superior. In addition to the good-size pool, the massive rooftop features a bar and deck with recliners, tables, wicker sofas and even a few trees. The atmosphere is great for kicking back with a few drinks before hitting the town.

Down on the first two floors, the building is still a work in progress. Reception is decked out with the same dark colours found upstairs, but the adjacent halls can feel like a parking garage with no cars. We reckon they’ll eventually fill in with the usual travel offices, massage shops and tailors. We’ve found staff to be more polite and professional than at D&D.

Rates at Dang Derm are more or less fixed whether you walk in, book through the hotel’s website or a third-party booking site. Discounts of up to 250 baht can be scored on last-minute rooms (especially in low season) and if you book well in advance. This is certainly a good choice if you want an easy-to-find hotel, though we’re not sure how it managed to score the address 1 Khao San Road when it isn’t at the start of the road!

While Dang Derm is well-suited to flashpacking couples and groups seeking a central Khao San location, solo travellers might feel out of place and families will no doubt find it too noisy. If you’re after an air-con room with extra comforts for a bit cheaper, the much older (but recently renovated) D&D charges a bit less for smaller bathrooms, a far smaller pool and less-interesting design.

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Contact details:

1 Khao San Rd, Bangkok.  T: (02) 629 2046-8 , (02) 629 4449 F: (02) 629 2049  
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What we were quoted

Type of room Low season High season Notes
Standard - Double 1,500 baht 1,500 baht Triple standard 1900 baht
Standard - Single 1,250 baht 1,250 baht
Superior - Double 2,150 baht 2,150 baht
Family room 2,900 baht 2,900 baht Sleeps five

Added to Travelfish on: 30th November, 2011
Last visited or updated on: 1st February, 2015

Last reviewed by:
Usually found exploring Bangkok's side streets or south Thailand's islands, David Luekens is an American freelance writer & photographer who finds everyday life in Asia to be extraordinary. You can follow his travails here.
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Dang Derm
1 Khao San Rd, Bangkok. 
T: (02) 629 2046-8 , (02) 629 4449 F: (02) 629 2049

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