Traffic. It's the the worst, and always when you're trying to get somewhere quickly. Many hotels in traffic-prone cities like New York and Jakarta can't do a thing about the congestion, short of sending a private helicopter transfer. But then there's Bangkok, Thailand, specifically The Peninsula Bangkok, which not only has solved the problem of traffic but made the solution free to guests. That solution? There's two Peninsula Piers on the Chao Phraya River, complete with Peninsula-branded boats going between them.
You see, the Peninsula sits on the Thon Buri side of the river, across from where all the action is happening. To connect this very active part of the city over the river, there is the Taksin Bridge. During rush hours, forget it. Therefore, The Peninsula has a Pier Lounge on the Bang Rak side of the river for you to arrive at, be welcomed, checked in and directly transferred by boat to the hotel on the Thon Buri side. It's quite a dramatic way to make an entrance, really.
Now here's the really cool part: the boat transfer is not just for arriving and checking into the hotel. We used it to check out and grab a car to the airport. It's also there, with the free boats running continuously, to get you to the other Peninsula Pier (and also Saphan Taksin Pier) for shopping, dining, sightseeing, whatever.
Naturally the boat porters will assist you with luggage or shopping bags, and if you really want to make it an experience, call the concierge and have a green Peninsula BMW 730Ld car waiting. They can even prepare food to be ready to eat inside. Have an early flight? Hop the boat to the Bang Rak pier, and find breakfast on the BMW seat next to you. Time and time again, we're finding Peninsula Hotels to truly understand the value ofexactly thattime, for a frequent traveler.
Disclosure: We were a guest of the Peninsula Bangkok, but all photos, videos and opinions are completely our own.
[Photos and video: Cynthia Drescher for HotelChatter]