While most visitors tend to base themselves near the river or in tourist enclaves near Khao San Road and Sukhumvit Road, if you're looking for the real Bangkok, it's worth considering this characterful place, originally built in 1892, in the heart of Chinatown. Rooms in this boutique hotel capture the mood of Shanghai in the 1930s, and are utterly romantic, decorated in deep clarets and mustards, and furnished with antique Chinese beds with carved screens, satin cushions, and velvet chairs. Staff are extremely attentive and efficient, the restaurant serves up some superb food, and the new Cotton Jazz Club is definitely worth a visit in the evening to watch the Siam Swing Band.