Not just street food in Thailand – hotel buffets are Bangkok’s best-kept foodie secret

Using such apps, tourists can get a breakfast buffet at Aloft Bangkok Sukhumvit 11 hotel for 335 baht (US$9), a lunch buffet at Holiday Inn Bangkok Sukhumvit, an IHG Hotel for 575 baht, and a dinner buffet at Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel & Towers for 938 baht.

The Post tried four of the best Bangkok hotel buffets:

Desserts and fresh fruit at the InterContinental Bangkok lunch buffet. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

1 Best value lunch buffet

InterContinental Bangkok

My plate looks like a culinary tribute to the United Nations.

Thailand is represented by a small portion of massaman curry, its sauce absorbed deep into chunks of beef.

France makes an appearance in the form of buttery Brie cheese.

Japan’s contribution comes via fresh salmon sashimi, which abuts three slices of Hong-Kong-style char siu, and there is a salute to Italy in the form of truffle-infused ravioli.

I separate each of its miniature courses with a palate-cleansing sip of bottled water, iced coffee or tea, all of which are included in the cost of the lunch buffet served in Espresso, the chic, mezzanine dining room overlooking the marble-draped foyer of the InterContinental Bangkok in the central Chidlom area of the capital.

InterContinental Bangkok has an array of stir-fried dishes. Photo: Ronan O’Connell
I move on to petite portions of smoked chicken salad, grilled sea bass, beef stew, freshly grilled pork kebabs, stir-fried duck with black bean sauce, har gow or prawn dumplings, Bhindi masala Indian curry and carved slices of roast pork.

The finale is tiny tastes of marble cheesecake, plain chocolate mousse, caramel pudding, lemon meringue tart, fruit cake, bread and butter pudding, and six flavours of ice cream and sorbet.

Cost: 1,404 baht (inclusive of VAT and service charge)/as low as 804 baht through Eatigo

2 Best value buffet with a view

Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort has a scenic waterfront location. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort

As Wagyu beef melts in my mouth, Ram Thai dancers twirl their arms and sway their hips before a spectacular backdrop. Behind them, the Chao Phraya River glistens and skyscrapers glow.

Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort owns a majestic location on the west bank of the river, opposite downtown Bangkok. Guests absorb these views, and dance moves, during Anantara’s International Buffet dinner, held on the Riverside Terrace daily from 6pm to 10pm.

For seafood lovers, there are oysters, slipper lobster, sea bass, blue swimmer crabs, white prawns, mussels, river prawns and squid. For carnivores, freshly smoked beef short ribs and Kurobuta pork.
Prawns on ice at Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

The Thai offerings are similarly flavoursome, although in some instances jarringly spicy; from papaya salad, to stir-fried chicken with cashew nuts, beef massaman curry, pad Thai and pomelo salad.

There are plenty of Indian and Chinese dishes, too, but all that went before is eclipsed by an avalanche of desserts: apple cheesecake; strawberry cream cake; chocolate brownie; green tea cake; mango mousse … I could go on.

Cost: 1,999 baht/1,339 baht

3 Best value seafood buffet

Novotel Bangkok Bangna offers plenty of variety at its buffet. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

Novotel Bangkok Bangna

Midway between downtown Bangkok and the city’s main airport, Suvarnabhumi, the Novotel Bangkok Bangna has several buffet deals each week, the most impressive being the Saturday Seafood and International Buffet.

Sat on ice is a massive mound of snails, squid, oysters, mussels, cooked prawns and rock lobster. Nearby are trays of sushi, sashimi, shrimp, salmon salad and crab stick salad.

Complementing the seafood are Chinese favourites such as roast duck, drunken chicken, roast red pork and steamed buns, British-style roast honey ham, Italian pizzas and pastas, and Irish lamb stew.

Novotel Bangkok Bangna has a great value seafood buffet. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

Also included are well-made desserts such as creme brûlée, blueberry cheesecake, chocolate mousse cake, strawberry panna cotta, lemon meringue pie, caramel custard and fresh baked chocolate chip cookies.

Cost: 1,871 baht/1,071 baht

4 Best value luxury buffet

Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok

I would gladly eat at the Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok buffet every night of my life if I didn’t know I’d end up shaped like a pear. So vast and appetising are its offerings that I find myself wandering and staring for the first five minutes.

Seafood dreams at Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

In upmarket Ratchadamri district, this five-star hotel’s International Dinner buffet is hosted beneath the lofty ceiling of its Dining Room each day from 6pm to 10pm.

There are oysters ice, along with clams, shrimps, sea snails, crab, lobster and mussels. Salads include Niçoise, octopus and smoked salmon, and cheeses range from smoked and blue to Parmesan, Taleggio and provolone.

Pizza flavours change throughout the week – my two slices of chicken pizza are addictive, as are the freshly made carbonara pasta, roast pork roll, beef bourguignon, duck à l’orange, and seafood gratin.

Sushi at the Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok. Photo: Ronan O’Connell

This buffet’s dessert section can only be described as a sensory bonanza. I have double servings of tiramisu, vanilla panna cotta, mango pavlova, Biscoff cheesecake, pear mousse cake, lime basil meringue tart, hazelnut Paris-Brest and chocolate passion fruit tart.

Each is so carefully made that I have no sugary aftertaste, just a wish to return and start this buffet all over again.

Cost: 2,398 baht/1,440 baht

The writer was hosted free of charge by the above hotels.


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