If i’m in love, i wish i can fly… The most beautiful feeling i can share in the right place. One of them, represent now. Reaching for the clouds at Vertigo and Moon Bar on the 61st floor of the Banyan Tree hotel is one of the best ways to end a long day in Bangkok. There is no lack of rooftop bars in town but Vertigo has always been amongst the favourites.
Located on Sathorn road, a very large busy avenue peppered with tall glass and metal skyscrapers and not far from the Lumpini park and Silom area, Banyan Tree is a name often associated with luxury. The hotel and its unusual design might be a bit aging, but once you step inside the lobby, you’re still aware of this sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere. From the lobby, a fast lift will take you to the 60th floor where you find the popular Bai Yun Chinese restaurant, walk pass it and up a flight of stairs that leads you outdoors. You better not be afraid of heights, as Bangkok will be laid out below you the moment you step outside.
What surprises people the most is to walk out on a rooftop with absolutely nothing above you. Often similar venues would have a roof or a wall or even the continuing structure blocking part of the view. Not here… the designers have successfully eliminated anything that could block your vision and the impression is accentuated by the rather slim appearance of the building… it just appears narrow of course; there’s still a 327 room hotel underneath! But the elongated shape hosting the Moon Bar on one end and the Vertigo restaurant is certainly impressive; this spaceship has an open-air bridge connecting the two areas hovering majestically above the city.
The prices at the bar are of course a bit high, you are in a five star city hotel after all but everybody seems to agree it’s worth it. While you are not near the riverside, the cityscape is striking with a full 360 view, and here at least you can admire the sunset from a nice sofa, and on clear nights the setting sun lights up the river in the distance, like a golden ribbon amongst the skyscrapers. Be sure not to arrive too late, the best seats are quite limited so to grab a table arrive well before sunset, which is usually around 6.30 pm. There are plenty more seats on the walkway leading to Vertigo restaurant but it’s less comfortable and there’s a aerial in the way of those vista photos. Vertigo restaurant serves excellent imported steaks, lambs and great seafood, good without being really fantastic. Spending a romantic evening on the Banyan Tree rooftop is all about dining on top of the world.
It is strongly advised to ring ahead before getting a taxi to Banyan Tree, especially during low season from June to November. Being a real open air bar and restaurant, they close it when it rains and use the less impressive room below, which is obviously not the same fun. Remember also to allow enough time to reach there; traffic jams on Sathorn road are not unusual at the end of the afternoon.