BY: Manta Klangboonkrong
If Khao San Road is getting overcrowded, bunkwise, there's always Samsen Road, where Bangkok Governor Apirak Kosayodhin last year snipped the official ribbon to open Diamond House.
The inn near Bang Lamphu Bridge has 22 guestrooms in one tall, colourful building.
The prices for superior, deluxe, super deluxe rooms and Diamond Suites range from Bt1,000 to Bt1,800, not including breakfast.
The airconditioned rooms have LCD television with cable, minibars, hot showers, safes, electric kettle and keycar access, and the hotel pro?vides 24hour room service and Internet hookups.
There are food stalls all over the neighbourhood, but the Diamond's own restaurant serves decent Thai food at reasonable prices.
On an upper floor you can pamper your travelling feet in the outdoor spa pool, and then chill out in the rooftop lounge with the Bangkok evening as a backdrop.
Just a few minutes' walk from Khao San, Samsen is definitely more peaceful and roomy, and still close to the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, Grand Palace, National Gallery, National Museum and the City Pillar Shrine, not to mention Chinatown and the Sampeng Market.
A bunch of cool little bars and eateries are also nestled in the road.
With no access to the Skytrain or the subway, and heavy traffic during rush hour, Diamond House might not be the ideal choice for business travellers, but it's truly a great one for globetrotters who want to be in the middle of all the action.
Where is this place?
Diamond House is at 4 Samsen Road in Banglampoo. Call + 66 (02) 629 4008.