Bangkok is a city bustling with life, be it any time of the day. It is one of the very few cities which provide as many fine dining options as the street food options. It’s a perfect tourist destination for families and bachelors alike. No matter which age group you fall in, it will definitely have something to offer. Not to forget, it is the world’s biggest and the best shopping destination.
The city boasts of an impressive skyline and amongst the tall buildings are housed innumerable hotels that are classy as well as reasonably priced. It’s a known fact that the value and hospitality your money can buy in this part of the world is unmatched.
You must be wondering why I booked an accommodation through Airbnb when the city has some of the most luxurious hotels. The reasons are threefold. One, I was traveling with a family of five which includes an infant so I wanted a place where all of us can live together and I could use the kitchen to prepare the food for the baby. My mother in law is a vegetarian and not very experimental with food, so she was also happy that a well-equipped kitchen was at her disposal and she could cook whatever she liked, for herself.
Secondly, my close friends from India were also traveling with us but had pre booked a hotel, so after an entire day of mall hopping and shopping, we had a common place to just relax in the evening and spend some quality time together. Thirdly, I wanted to experience the local Thai way of life and stay in a residential area away from the touristy areas.
Being a blogger, I love exploring different cultures and how people live around the world, and so I booked a villa through the Airbnb website in a residential area of Bangkok known as Huai Khwang, which is away from the crowded part of the city, still easily accessible to the central areas through the underground rail system- MRT. This house, known as Fantastic 44, owned by a senior advertising professional and artist Tor itself appears to be a piece of art.
The host Tor himself is a very warm host and welcomes you with open arms. He lives just next door. He has himself designed this house with utmost passion and creativity. While the walls were adorned with his the paintings made by him, the drawers and cabinets were equipped with all the necessary household needs and Bangkok city guides.
The ground floor had a huge living area, dining area and an open kitchen all housed together in a big hall. The first floor had two decent sized bedrooms with all the necessary facilities. There were two well-equipped bathrooms, one on each floor. The breakfast prepared by Tor’s house help Chu was really good and the best part is that it came as a part of the package.
Chu was available all day to look after our needs. She keeps the house really neat and tidy as cleanliness is a top priority for the house owner. I would not recommend you to stay here if your cleanliness standards don’t match up to his standards.
There are a few night markets in the vicinity. I would recommend you to visit the Huai Khwang Night Market, just ten minutes walk from the house, to get a glimpse of local Thai way of life as it is a completely local market open all night selling fruits, vegetables, household items, extremely cheap clothes, shoes, bags etc with almost no trace of tourists or the tourist traps.
Across the road, there is Lord Ganesha’s shrine, which too, to our surprise is frequented only by locals. The experience I gathered by living in this area is more enriching than the experience I could have gathered by living in a touristy area. All I can say is that if you want to visit and understand a new country then explore its culture instead of the malls and experience a slice of life of its locals as touristy areas are almost the same everywhere.