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Citadines Bangkok



Instead of opulent lobbies, fine dining and lists of frills you'll never get around to enjoying, Citadines serviced apartments on Sukhumvit Soi 16 - open since January 2007 - give guests privacy, flexible services and the freedom to stay anything from one night to a month (or more). With a focus on giving its mix of busy business execs and urbane travellers compelling prices, it also reserves the heaviest doses of style - not for the exteriors or entrances you briskly breeze past, but rather the chic, modern living spaces upstairs - where it really counts.

They've also found a great downtown location. Quietly situated in the pulsating heart of Bangkok on Sukhumvit's Soi 16, don't expect windows looking out on to landscaped gardens, or across classic city skylines. Instead, you've got the ability to dive in and out of the equally anarchic and endearing Sukhumvit at will, the chance to wallow in the unruly splendour of this famous area whilst also lapping up Citadines' unique take on city living.

Countless first-rate restaurants, bars and clubs are minutes walk away, as are hyperactive street markets, restless traffic and the constant interplay of Eastern traditions versus Western imports: all the things that gives Sukhumvit modern magnetism, and draw tourists here in droves. There's easy access to shopping and entertainment complexes like Robinsons department store, luxurious mall The Emporium, or the Queen Sirikti National Convention Centre. The nearby Benjasiri Park has all the stimulating greenery you could wish for. It's a great spot from which to steer a swift course through the rest of the city. Five minutes walk away is Asok Skytrain (BTS) station, as well as the Sukhumvit underground (MRT) station.

Spread over eight floors, Citadines has 79 rooms, each with a modest size that is greatly outweighed by its interior ambition and harmonious style. The 67 studios are 30 square metres, the 12 one-bedroom apartments 36 square metres, making these by no means the roomiest serviced apartments in town. However, bold architecture brings to mind the 'it's not size that matters, but what you do with it' adage. Designers have done a fantastic job with available space, combining chic minimalism with structural ingenuity to create interiors with a modern glow, spaces that pack in all guests have come to expect. Living area, bedroom with storage space, private bathroom, home office facilities and kitchenette - they're all here, and yet nothing about rooms is cramped or cluttered.

A compact bedroom area (separated from the rest of the studio by an elegant sliding partition) comes with generous wardrobe with full-length mirror and safety deposit box, deep cabinets for storage and, of course, comfy double bed. There's also a diminutive but well-stocked kitchenette; its gleaming arsenal of utensils perfect for knocking up a late-night snack or whipping up a culinary storm for visiting friends. In addition to electric kettle, coffee maker, microwave, grill oven, cooking hob, refrigerator and toaster, an efficient air extractor keeps wayward smells well away from the bedroom. Tucked away in the cupboards are a hairdryer, steam iron and ironing board.

Factor in things like daily cleaning services, or the sliding flatscreen TV and DVD player that enables you to watch the latest new or listen to music in either living area or bedroom, and they make perfect and practical abodes for single travellers, busy business execs, or couples. If you'd like a bit more space, for only slightly more you can upgrade to a one-bedroom apartment with a more ample 36 square metres. These come with private bedroom, bath and shower, separate toilet and enclosed kitchen. If with little people or friends in toe there's the option of adding an extra bed in both types of room (although this will cost extra).

Citadines embraces stylish simplicity; the focus on giving guests a modern living space above extras or facilities you pay for but never use. That said, a small but inspiring array of external features are by no means wasted. The stylish 'City Xpress' restaurant on the second floor, for example, is where to receive your tasty continental breakfast (included). As if echoing the intelligent design of the rooms, this also functions as convenience store (drinks, basic toiletriesn and snacks) and sports TV lounge. Up on the eighth floor is a small fitness room, and in the lobby a business corner with wireless internet (costs extra). What really dazzles in this alluringly modern establishment, however, is the seriously chic style and spaces found up in the brand new rooms. That, and ease of access to brilliantly boisterous downtown Bangkok.

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