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Grand China Hotel
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Reviews (577)
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Reviewed 21 April 2007

The fellow from Turkey who wrote in his review that the Grand China Princess is "first class" must be accustomed to a very low standard of "first class" as there is no way in the world GCP is even second class. Its undoubtedly a third class hotel without question, the next step up from backpackers and 2 star places. It is what it is. And that is not 1st class!

I stay at 5 star hotel as well as 2 star and everything in between.

Grand China Princess is a 2-2.5-3 star, the higher rating applicable only to the suites and rooms on the higher floors when they have been thoroughly cleaned, carpet stream cleaned and when the bathroom has been doused in bleach to kill the mould. The less than 3 star is when the sheets or towels are torn, thin, dirty, smelly or missing, when the bathroom is dirty and/or stinks of mould and when the bedroom itself pongs of tobacco, old human secretions and no steam cleaning of the carpets or soft funishings.

Worst aspects is the smell. The rooms do usually stink.

Do not believe any booking agent or staff who claim there are non-smoking rooms or non-smoking floors in this hotel. It is an outright lie.

I have stayed there twice. On both occasions our ordered and agreed to "non-smoking rooms" had ash trays littered around the room [some with ash specks still in them!] as well as the unmistakable stink of acrid tobacco air throughout. If you are a non-smoker this is clear.

The air in Bangkok is pretty foul at the best of times and without trying to be insensitive, it does burn out the lining of the nostrils of long term residents and disrupt their sense of smell. I think the staff honestly don't think its as rank as non-smokers or those accustomed to cleaner air know it is.

The postive is that if you go in, turn on your air con and leave it running for a few hours when not in the room, it does seem to assist disperse the worst of the pong.

However, anyone at all sensitive, with allergies, asthma etc should not stay at GCP. The same people will also experience problems with the air in Bangkok if they go outside, as its pretty rough on human tear ducts, throat and skin.

GCP breakfasts were fine but, DO NOT eat in the breakfast restaurant area for lunch or dinner. There is a very good reason why it is almost always empty - except at breakfast. Room service food is also dicey, so avoid it.

A number of cases of food poisoning occured with room service and the breakfast restuarant's lunch and dinner on both occasions I was there. First visit it was my companion ordering a hamburger from room service with undercooked meat. She was bed ridden for 48 hours thereafter. We just avoid it now except for breakfasts [never any problems]. There are plenty of fine and inexpensive places to eat in Bangkok that choice is not a problem.

The bell hops and staff are, I agree, on the mouch all the time - because they are poor and their wages are not so great. So its a matter of knowing that and deciding how you want to handle this.

Yes, I have observed staff behave in malicious ways towards guests they regard as tight fisted. Payback does occur. If however you do as I do and you pay decent, not extravagent tips to the staff, the word goes out amongst them very quickly that you are paying a bit as you go, and your treatment is always quite reasonable after that. If you are tight wad with them, some will seek petty revenges.

Spreading around $5-10 or so in tips every day is not an obscene amount to me and it certainly facilitates better treatment and prompt service. So thats what we do.Other people aren't comforable with this and make other decisions.

I have in fact experienced some extraordinary kindness from the GCP staff when we had a problem out in the city and a staff member who recognised us from the hotel assisted us in a variety of ways and then refused my offered tip to cover her time, the use of her mobile phone and writing down an address and speaking to the taxi driver so we did not get ripped off. I made sure I left her something decent on departure . The hotel massage ladies also got a decent slab of my business [they were very vigorous]. I tipped them also. The $5-10 per day in tips was worth it to me.

Do not let the staff talk you into going to their friends shops etc especially the jewellery shops etc as it will be a rip off. The same rip off occurs in almost all hotel in Bangkok except for the 4 and 5 star ones, where they pay staff more and have stricter standards about this.

GCP is not for super neat freaks, any with allergies, those that panic being squished in crowds when they shop and who are sensitive about tipping, sensitive about staff trying to scam them a bit [or a lot if you go to their friend's shops!] and those wanting to relax. I would not take children there but others do. Adults who are fit enough to cope with and enjoy the chaos of bargain hunting in Chinatown and using the river and taxis or tuk tuks into the main shopping centre, who will lay out a bit everyday in tips and who come prepared to suppress the pong in the room will be fine. When I want 4 and 5 star I get the 1,000 thread count pure cotton sheets, the flat screen TV, the fluffy king size whote bath sheets, spa bath and all the other little niceties I pay for.



The positives.

Look, we went back to stay a second time as we knew what we were getting ourselves into and took further precautions to ensure we minimised to the a great practical extent.

For example, I knew full well our booked non-smoking room would be a nonsense andthe room would stink after being closed without air con operating. I took a nil tobacco spray product that works on soft furnishings and room odour. I also arrived at a time when we could go up, turn on the air con and then go out for a few hours while the air con filtered the yukky air in the room. I also had a habit returning after the room was made up and ensuring the air con was turned on again just as a filtering device so when we reentered the room, it was as least offensive as possible.

It is not an expensive hotel,so for people who want the familiarity and standards as well as the price ot The Marriott, then by all means book there, not the Grand China Princess.

The breakfasts we had were always great, we really enjoyed the food in the revolving Japanese restaurant on the roof, and we loved the piano man in the cocktail bar late afternoon and then the same fellow later in the Japanese restaurant. He plays requests.

Grand China Princess is central Chinatown in Bangkok, oneof the busiest cities in the world. It is super busy! Stepping out of the hotel you are immediateky in the midst of that swirl of people.

Shopping in Chinatown is like an Olympic sport [it is sweaty, chaotic and crazy - do not attempt it if you are at all claustrophobic] BUT it is also fun. For serious market goers who love the thrill of trawling up and down tiny side alleys where you have to turn sideways to get through, it is also exciting.

There are bargains galore if you can cope with the crush of humanity. Tiny Chinatown shops in the alley ways supply most of the costume jewellery and kids stuff and fabrics to the largher markets in Bangkok, so Chinatown shopping is even cheaper than the shopping in the rest of Bangkok - which is already cheap. I saw hand made costume jewellery that sells in boutiques in Sydney for $200 for one necklace in Chinatown were 5 for $10 and at other markets in Bangko were $5-10 each.

The Chao Praya river isvery close to the Grand China Princess , so it was easy to grab the boats up and down the river and have easy wharf access to some great temples, architecture, the University and so on.

  • Stayed: April 2007, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank Hax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2007

The Grand China Princess was our first stop in Thailand, and most def our last.

How they can call this hotel grand is beyond belief, arrived at hotel, informed our Superior room had a balcony which we could not use. Can any one tell me why? Nope.

Shown to our stale smoked room (asked for a non smoking room in booking) Lighting is poor in the room, musky damp smell, large rain fall show was probably the best part about it.

In a very busy part of china town, when exiting hotel you'll get hit by 3/4 taxi drivers.

My one warning is watch the bell boys, very greedy and do tend to bother you.

The one bell boy stiched us up, got us a taxi and sent us to wrong airport. The name of the airport was written on paper so there wouldn't be any confusion. 1000 Baht later we get to theright airport.

Any one stopping here, I wish you luck

  • Stayed: March 2007, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank lu_ash
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2007

Do not stay here!!!! We checked in and checked out straight away. The rooms although big are outdated and smelled damp. The bathrooms had mould pretty much everywhere and the showers, well, they hardly showered you, more just got you as damp as the rest of the room!

The staff at the hotel were nice although the porter did hang around for ages until I eventually tipped him. The reception staff were friendly and did offer us a different room, but it was in the same condition as the first one.

The hotel facilities were poor. The 'pool' was more of a paddleing pool. I have seen bigger pools on sale in supermarkets! You had to go to the bar on the top floor and then walk down the fire excape to get to it and there is only 1 lift that goes to the bar. The restaurant smelt and looked like it hadn't been cleaned in a long while. The hotel (although it claims it is a non smoking hotel) stunk of smoke.

I have stayed in some ropey hotels before but i can honestly say that this is one of the worst and would really recommend you cancel your booking here!!!

  • Stayed: April 2007, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank IainDriscoll
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 March 2007

Arrived at the hotel on 14 March 07 after having spent 4 great days in Koh Samui. We had booked 3 days in a superior room. What a disappointment it was when we arrived. The hotel is located in busy China town, surrounded by quite a few run-down buildings. This 12 year old hotel (which by the way does not look as nice as the picture you see on the web) although presenting a decent lobby, has quite frankly awful rooms. The superior room offered to us although providing panoramic views of ‘crazy’ Bangkok, suffered from peeling walls, drab carpets, a not so fresh smell, and an absolutely horrid bathroom, needing a total refurb as did the rest of the room. We tried to organise a better room, from the not so helpful reception staff and ‘distant’ manager. The room offered was no better. To be honest there was no real effort to assist us. The manager made us aware that people had never complained before !. In view of the no progress, used their internet services, 100 baht for a half an hour, to book the rest of the stay at another hotel.

Made a rapid exit , 1 hour later !, from the not so Grand China ‘wannabe’ Princess to the absolutely gorgeous JW Marriot ah.

  • Stayed: March 2007, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank HousePeople
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 March 2007

I have stayed a few days here. This is a tall hotel with great views over Bangkok, expecially once you get over 20th floor. It has a small outdoor pool on 23rd floor with terrace and an original 1970's style revolving restaurant on the top 25th floor if you need reminding of that bygone chrome and smoked glass era. I think generally too much carpeting for this humidity/climate and you might notice a musty smell in parts.

The delux room was very good though- big window stunning views, nice bathroom. My next visit was a smaller standard room and I was not so impressed this time. The bathroom was a bit tired, OK if you are Thai or under 5 foot tall -I banged my head on the fixed shower and I am not even 6 feet tall.

Breakfast is OK here, big choice. Service is OK as well -staff were helpful. I had one non-breakfast meal here and was not very impressed -though I should add it was cheaper than I was expecting for a hotel meal.

The location is not the "new centre" so depends what you want from your stay. Good if you like China Town -I did; and some older historical sites or river based tours. Duelling over taxi fares in Bangkok is such fun anyway and cheap enough to use them all the time- or if you are feeling brave take a tuk tuk, but those guys usually want to take you somewhere you don't want to go first!

  • Stayed: March 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Check-in / front desk
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Thank LondonDizz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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