Category Archives: Asia

Bangkok, Thailand

October 2023

The conference in Bangkok was the catalyst to our trip to Asia. The highly anticipated yearly conference of Dave’s digital entrepreneur group was back in full swing post-COVID and he was ready to go. He invited me to join and after getting through a round of “I can’ts” and pivoted to “let’s make it happen”, the trip was on the calendar. The scale of this city was something I hadn’t fully grasped prior to arrival. It was a juxtaposition of so many things- old and new, wild and conservative, dirty and opulent. I should have done my homework a bit more prior to arrival, so I didn’t get to fully experience this city properly. I did have a memorable time though and was grateful to be staying an amazing hotel that was worth the trip on its own.

Getting there…

We flew AirAsia from Osaka to Bangkok after our stay in Kyoto. This required an early morning car trip to the high speed train station then about 90minute directly to the airport. It was pretty seamless until our “digital tickets” we thought we had were turned away after waiting >30minutes in the security line. We had to hustle back to the ticketing desk, wait some more, then they made me check (and pay for) my bag causing us to be at serious risk for missing our flight. Dave saved us by sweet talking an agent at the priority line, so we made it just in the nick of time. It all worked out as fortunately it usually does.

Asia Air is a no-frills airline, so I spent 6hrs slowly sipping my one water bottle and zoned out to my book. Bangkok international is a HUGE airport but was modern and easy to navigate. We hired a car to get us to the Conrad Hotel. It was surreal how different Thailand was compared to Japan. I was dehydrated and exhausted and getting to our hotel was a blur for me. We made it though, and the hotel did not disappoint.

Where we stayed…

The Conrad hotel was where the conference was held and Dave set us up with accommodations onsite, so we didn’t have to waste any time on travel and could see each other on off times. This place was a fantastic, 5-star oasis in the middle of a crazy bustling city. It is located in the center of the city’s business district but maintained a tranquil spa-like vibe. I can’t recommend this place enough and I think it was nicest hotel I have ever stayed.

I had really wanted to venture out to see some of the famous temples, particularly Wat Pho, but everything was out of walking distance an I was not comfortable hailing a taxi or tuk-tuk and wandering about with a completely lost voice. I did motivate to get an authentic Thai massage that I will never forget and went walking to the 2 large parks that were nearby. Once I figured out there was a pedestrian sky bridge it made getting around much easier. The chaos of traffic/car situation on the city streets is crazy and I felt like a scooter or car was going to take me out at any moment (even on the sidewalk).

Dave conferenced, networked and ran.

What we ate…

Most of our dining was taken care of at the hotel. The upgrade to the executive lounge was so worth it. The spread was expansive for the breakfast, teatime and cocktail hours that were offered. The service was top notch as well. We did have a lunch at the hotel bar once, ate at finger foods at the after parties and went out for dinner at an Italian restaurant our last night.

Final Thoughts…

Bangkok was a quick visit that did not really do the city justice but was a great experience, nonetheless. Meeting other conference goers and getting a peak into the lifestyles of digital entrepreneurs was new for me and I did enjoy it. I would definitely go back and luxuriate at the Conrad again. Next time I will make sure that I have a game plan beforehand for adventuring out more and will be sure to stay hydrated and not lose my voice.