The Luxe List 2012, Thailand: The Siam, Bangkok

Teaming 1.2 hectares of Chao Phraya river frontage with four antique teakwood houses, the singular talents of architect-designer Bill Bensley, and the extraordinary art and antique collection of the Sukosols—the Thai American family who own the property—The Siam raises the bar for bangkok’s booming hotel scene. The 39 guest rooms are smart and spacious with Art Deco fittings, extra-deep bathtubs, and objets trouvés sourced from vintage shops; book one of the 120-square-meter pool villas for their stunning black-and-white-tiled bathrooms and shaded courtyards with antique Chinese opium beds.

Connie’s Cottage, the largest villa, occupies a century-old Thai house originally brought downriver from Ayutthaya by silk designer Jim Thompson for his friend Connie Mangskau, an antiques dealer who entertained the likes of John Rockefeller and Jacqueline Kennedy. The property’s other teakwood houses are now home to Chon, a Thai restaurant and cooking school, with a bathhouse and muay thai boxing gym rounding out the amenities. Set in the old royal district of dusit, a good 40-minute drive to the city center, The Siam will be a welcome retreat for travelers looking to escape Bangkok’s bustle.

3/2 Thanon Khao, Vachirapayabal; 66-2/206-6999;; doubles from US$529.

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