Tried & Tested

Hotel review: Avani Riverside Bangkok

31 Mar 2017 by Craig Bright
AVANI Riverside Bangkok

BACKGROUND

Avani Riverside Bangkok opened its doors back in September last year, located above The Riverside Plaza shopping mall and directly behind Minor Hotels Group sister property, the Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort.

WHERE IS IT?

While not right in the heart of Bangkok’s key business districts, the Avani Riverside Bangkok is located on Charoennakorn Road almost adjacent to the Chao Phraya River, approximately 45 minutes by car from Suvarnabhumi Airport. Direct access to the waterfront is available for guests of both hotels via the Anantara, which guests staying at the Avani Riverside Bangkok can access via connecting bridge on the second floor.

WHAT’S IT LIKE?

The Avani is the more modern, edgy and events-focused of the two Minor Hotels properties, providing larger spaces and more of a cool hangout vibe next to the Anantara’s up-market traditional Thai style. That said, Avani Riverside is still a high-end hotel, though it is likely to be more attractive to younger business travellers and those looking for a more social atmosphere at their hotel.

ROOM FACILITIES

Avani Riverside Bangkok has four room categories, of which three are suites. I was in an Avani River View Room, the hotel’s sole non-suite guestroom category, which comes in at 30 square metres. Being a new property, Avani Riverside Bangkok has modern amenities and their condition was generally pristine. The overall décor of the room is bright, contemporary and simplistic. The lighting system was also straightforward to use and natural light is complemented by a light brown and white colour scheme, making the room feel quite spacious and uplifting.

One of the room’s most pleasing and immediately noticeable features is its semi-open-plan bathroom and wardrobe space. While the rain shower and toilet are each in separate glass-partitioned rooms, the sink basin is out in the open on a work surface, located next to a shelf with bottled water and bathroom amenities and beside the wardrobe area. This gives the room a noticeably open feel orientated towards the large window and city view – a pleasing accompaniment when getting ready in the morning – though it does come at the expense of only having a thin mirror behind the sink and a small circular mirror on an adjustable arm next to it.

An HDMI, two USB and two international power outlets are available, located above the work desk and under the TV. These are admittedly slightly far from the seat space where you would be working at the desk – not inaccessible by any means, but marginally inconvenient if you have a lot of work devices that require plugging in while being used. Two additional international sockets are located next to the bed (an almost essential feature if, like me, you use your smartphone as a morning alarm) and wifi is complimentary throughout the hotel.

RESTAURANTS AND BARS

Attitude is Avani Riverside Bangkok’s top F&B attraction, with an indoor-outdoor rooftop bar that leads into the main dining space. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer great views to compliment the Asian tapas-style menu, though an alfresco eat is arguably even better if you’re looking for a slightly more casual feel. Riverside, meanwhile, is the hotel’s main all-day-dining eatery, with an extensive buffet and dessert table. Along with the nearby 24-hour Pantry snack bar, Riverside is on the same level as the lobby (11/F) and the Long Bar – which somewhat functions as a de facto executive lounge in lieu of an official club lounge.

The feeling on this floor is relaxed but also quiet enough to suitably act as a work area with desks and chairs facing the oversized floor-to-ceiling windows. This provides phenomenal views, but due to the hotel’s orientation, sitting at these window-side seats can quickly become a sweltering endeavour, especially in the morning. Breakfast at Riverside or work at the Long Bar are perhaps best done further away from the windows if you get warm easily.

MEETING FACILITIES

Avani Riverside Bangkok positions itself as a MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) hotel, and its meeting rooms and events spaces – of which it has more than 20 – are well designed. Many of the pre-function areas include mini kitchen stations and tables, and like the event spaces can be adjusted using divides to create surprisingly customisable pre-event areas. Car lifts and space for up to 1,500 delegates are available.

LEISURE FACILITIES

The hotel’s rooftop infinity swimming pool is truly impressive, offering some of the best views of the city available in the hotel. Exercise-keen travellers may find the pool a little non-conducive to doing laps, and the fact that the pool closes at 7pm and becomes a social hangout spot effectively removes it as an exercise option altogether. That said, Avani Riverside also has a fitness club and private exercise and yoga classes. Guests at the Avani Riverside can also make use of the adjacent Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort, which has gym facilities and other classes. I highly recommend a one-on-one early morning muay thai kickboxing session to start the day.

The Avanispa is another of the Avani Riverside Bangkok’s major offerings, and effort has been made to provide plenty of offerings for both sexes. The treatments’ approach is focused on tackling specific ailments or problem areas and offering a highly customised service to treat them.

VERDICT

While slightly further from the city’s central business areas than some of Bangkok’s other hotels, a refreshing room product, modern aesthetic and sheer range of facilities when combined with the nearby Anantara make the Avani Riverside Bangkok a great place to stay, especially for corporate groups and business travellers looking for a slightly more laid back and relaxed urban stay.

PRICE

Internet rates for an Avani River View Room in mid-May start from US$172 including taxes and surcharges.

CONTACT

257 Charoennakorn Road, Thonburi, Bangkok 10600; tel +66 2431 9100; minorhotels.com/en/avani/riverside-bangkok

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