The Luxe List 2009, Thailand: Le Méridien Bangkok, Bangkok

Modern artwork, signature scents, funky designer furniture … this hotel, one of Asia’s first new-look Le Méridiens, adds a welcome edge to the Bangkok hotel scene. Located near the Patpong red-light district, the 282-room hotel is popular among party people for its cheeky Circular Suites, replete with round beds, mood lighting, and playful throw pillows. For everyone else, details such as paisley prints and wall-poetry by Thai bard Sunthorn Phu give rooms a personal, homey feel. Jean-Georges Vongerichten was called upon to mold the menu at all-day restaurant Latest Recipe; equally toothsome are the mod-Japanese nibbles and creative cocktails at the glittery Bamboo Chic lounge (40/5 Surawong Rd.; 66-2/232-8888;; doubles from US$252).

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