This was going to be my first stay in a hotel in Silom Bangkok and Sala Daeng looked like the perfect area to be in. Although I had heard many bad things about Patpong but there was also much information about Patpong's transformation from a seedy 'ping pong show' street to a night market of some repute. Tourists actually go there and as long as one is able to ignore the touts pushing ping pong shows, all goes well. To my surprise, Sala Daeng exceeded my expectations and even managed to become one of my favourite tourist areas of Bangkok. I have written an article on why Sala Daeng is beautiful - Patpong or no Patpong that you may find useful. Coming to my hotel in Sala Daeng, I was looking for a budget accommodation, preferably with some interesting character. The one I selected turned out to be a bit of both. It was budget alright: about 20 USD (600 THB) a day for a double room including free WiFi and free breakfast. Actually, on the face of it, Take A Nap Hostel is a great value accommodation. There are a few problems that can be totally resolved if only the owners and managers of Take A Nap get down to work. Keep reading...
|Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
Take A Nap Hostel is located at 920-926 Rama 4 Rd, Surawonge, Bangrak, Silom, Bangkok. Access to the hostel is through Sala Daeng BTS Station. One needs to get down from Exit 1, walk back a little and then turn left into Thanon Thaniya. Thaniya Road is a very interesting street and you can read about it in the Sala Daeng article that I linked in the opening part of this page. Walk through the entire street and come out on Surawonge Road. Turn right, walk a little and then after the road signal turn left on Rama IV Road. The hostel is very close on the left side of the road. Total walk from Sala Daeng is less than 5 minutes. There are 7-Eleven and Family Mart outlets on Thaniya and many Japanese restaurants too. Massage shops are omnipresent in the area. The Sala Daeng weekend market and Patpong Night Market are added advantages.
Room Types and Tariff
|Budget Double Room in Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
Room types in Take A Nap Hostel are not very well defined. Facilities are similar in almost all the rooms but the tariff varies depending on the size of the room - Single, Double, Triple, Family, etc. The walls in different rooms are decorated with wall paper bearing different designs and that is how the rooms are differentiated. You can choose a particular wall paper design from their website and book that room. They have Dorm beds too at 350 THB a day without breakfast. Published tariff for a double room is 1150 THB but I was able to book this room at 600 THB only and that too with a book now pay later facility for December 2015. A room with four beds has apublished tariff of 2000 THB and should come a discount for just 1200 THB or so. Walk in guests may have to pay more so it would be better to book online.
The Budget Double Room
|Double Room Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
|Double Room in Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
|Guest Bathroom in Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
I was in the hostel for 6 nights and stayed in two different rooms. Facilities in both the rooms were similar. An old CRT type TV, twin or double bed, an open closet, an electronic locker, a mirror, and a tea / coffee maker with daily supplies. The tea/coffee maker is the old big industrial type and would require a lot of water in it to work properly. I used my personal electric kettle instead. They gave me coffee/creamer/sugar sachets daily. No free water though but the Family Mart outlet on Thaniya Road always had an offer on 1.5 litre bottles at 14 THB for two bottles, better than 7-Eleven. Everyday I got two clean towels and daily housekeeping was available if I dropped my key at the reception before 12.00 noon. When I missed the housekeeping due to my fault, I was still able to get fresh towels and coffee/creamer/sugar, etc. from the front desk. WiFi worked almost OK in the two rooms I stayed in.
|TV and Locker in Budget Room Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
Problems in The Rooms
Some of the online guest reviews on Take A Nap say that the hostel facilities need upgrading and it looked like the hostel management was trying. Still, there were some problem areas. The room I got first did not have a working A.C. I slept the first night in an oven and complained about it the next day. The lady from the front desk came to my room to verify the problem and then changed my room. The second room I got had a good A.C. and was better designed too. The bathroom in the first room was not so good but was better in the second room. So, it would depend on which room you get to decide if you will stay well or not. Hot water was a problem in both the rooms. They have instant water heaters and the thermostat setting on them is fixed at the maximum level. You just can't rotate the dial to change the setting. As a result, after about 30 seconds the water starts boiling. The options were limited - either burn your skin with boiling water or shower with cold water. I decided in favour of cold. Otherwise, everything was OK and worth more than 600 THB in Bangkok and it included free breakfast too.
The Free Breakfast
|Free Breakfast in Take A Nap Hostel Sala Daeng Silom Bangkok|
Breakfast was served (self service actually) in a hall behind the front desk. They had tea/coffee, white bread with butter/jam, etc., cornflakes, Chocos, & milk, and some cooked food like noodles, rice, & eggs for non-vegetarians. There was no cooked vegetarian food. I was still able to eat something. For someone who takes non-vegetarian food, this was a very good breakfast and a big plus for the property.
Service At The Front Desk
The front desk was courteous always though I feel that they knowingly gave me a bad room first. But since it was changed quickly when I complained, I forgive them. There was staff at the front desk 24 hours for check-in/check-out and that was a good thing too.
Bangkok Sightseeing Tours
The hostel offered sightseeing tours in and around Bangkok and taxi / shared van services for travel to other destinations in Thailand. The Half-Day Damnoen Saduak Floating Village Tour was available for just 550 THB per person.
There was no in-house laundry but they pointed me to a nearby self laundry facility where a washing machine could be used by inserting three coins of 10 THB each.
Take A Nap is good if you are able to book a room at 40% discount to the published tariff and also get a room with a working A.C. Its a very peaceful area and connectivity is no problem because there are BTS (Sala Daeng) and MRT (Silom) stations nearby. I think I will stay at Take A Nap again.
|Posted by Narinder Singh|