Small rooms, exceptional service

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If you wish to stay in Bangkok’s Thong Lor area and you’re on a lower midrange budget, theatre-themed Playhaus offers plush and soothing, if rather small rooms, in a convenient location.

Travelfish says:

Did someone say flamboyant?

Did someone say flamboyant?

The boutique hotel is set in a renovated shophouse building, just off the main Thong Lor thoroughfare — a 10-minute walk down to the BTS. It is perhaps a little incongruously set on a decidedly un-Broadway like soi, but once you enter you’re completely ensconced in a well-executed drama playing out in its very own hushed world.

One of the common area nooks.

One of the common area nooks.

Rooms are set across four storeys accessed by lift. Each storey follows a theme: Aladdin, 4Reign, Mary Poppins and Romeo and Juliet. The air-con rooms are offered in two sizes, mini-queen and mini-king. We stayed in a Mary Poppins mini-queen.

While it was compact — and the hotel makes it clear the rooms are intimate on their website — it was well and rather sumptuously equipped, with a painted mural providing an interesting focal point, then notably comfortable bed with high-quality linens, smart lounge chair, flatscreen TV, in-room safe and hefty retro dial-phone. We did love the phone, its serious weight likely to lend gravitas to any ordinary conversation. The view was non-existent, looking right into an ordinary veranda of the neighbouring building.

There’s no desk, but each floor has a small nook where guests can stretch out and chill.

Spacious feel means less privacy. We liked it.

Spacious feel means less privacy. We liked it.

The bathroom has a clear glass wall looking through to the bedroom, which helps create a more spacious feel but does mean you won’t have any privacy at all. We liked the retro vintage feel of the fittings, the wraparound shower curtain and the standalone basin. The Elle toiletries were top notch too. A plastic air freshener sitting on the toilet cistern was the only tacky accoutrement on an otherwise perfect set.

A highlight here during our two-night stay was the helpful staff, located in the modest reception area on the ground floor, who were unfailingly polite and helpful — it was no trouble for them to sort out a dinner reservation for us when we couldn’t get our sim card to work. In fact, they carried out our request for help with positively five-star cheer. You might pay a few hundred baht more here than, say, RetrOasis down the road on Sukhumvit 29, but the service is definitely more polished and beyond what you might expect at this pricepoint.

The spicy 55th Avenue in the theatre-style bar.

The spicy 55th Avenue in the theatre-style bar.

The attached small bar, Backstage, is a popular spot later in the evenings, so if you don’t feel like checking out Thong Lor’s nightlife — all a stone’s throw away — you could happily tuck yourself away in a corner here instead. The cocktails list is priced at 320 to 340 baht — about on par with bars like Iron Fairies (just across the road) in the surrounds. We can recommend the 55th Avenue, a blend of bourbon, lemon, vanilla and mulled wine, which was so good we tried to replicate it on our return home (with some success — we needed to add Cointreau ourselves to pull it all together).

Forget about amenities like pool and spa — it’s all about your own little room here. If you just need a comfortable spot to spend the night and you need to be in this area, we reckon Playhaus does the job very well. We paid US$52 per night (around 1,900 baht) inclusive of taxes and service for our stay, which didn’t include breakfast, but there are plenty of cafes in the area — your friendly desk staff will point you in the right direction. You can book direct with them for approximately the same price, it seems.

Contact details for Playhaus

Address: 205/22-23 Sukhumvit Soi 55 (between sois 9 and 11, same soi as Chalachol Hairdresser and Thonglor Pet Hospital), Bangkok
T: (02) 712 5747-8;  
Coordinates (for GPS): 100º34'51.38" E, 13º43'53.12" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: 1,500B to 4,000B

Room rates

What we were quoted as a walk-in.

Standard double room
Excludes tax and service.
1,360 baht 1,360 baht
Superior double room
Excludes tax and service.
1,563 baht 1,563 baht

Reviewed by

Samantha Brown is a reformed news reporter. She now edits most of the stuff you read on, except for when you find a typo, and then that's something she wasn't allowed to look at.

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