Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok – 3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

by Paris B on · 43 comments

in Food & Lifestyle,Spa,Travel

By way of explanation for my silence on the comment and email reply front, I just returned from a short trip to Bangkok so I’m catching up on everything now! icon smile Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury It was a trip I was supposed to have made last year but got pushed forward to this year instead. I’ll have some Bangkok tales come up later but there’s one thing people go for while in Bangkok or Thailand generally, and that is massages. Massages or even spa packages are relatively cheap by comparison to many parts of the world, even Malaysia and its so easy to find massage places. Almost every soi (street) has a few.

But this time, I wanted something different. I did not want to just pop into a random massage shop for a 1-2 hour RM30 (about US$10) foot massage, and I did not really want to have the traditional Thai yoga style stretching massage either. Based on previous experiences, some of them do more harm than good to my old bones and back. I was itching to try something different – a proper head to toe spa – so I looked around online and what do you know? My search yielded one – So Thai Spa.

sothaispa Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

I thought it interesting because So Thai Spa is also in London and they had recently opened up their Thai branch. But what got me most intrigued was that they are ranked #1 on Tripadvisor (as of January 2013) for spas in Bangkok (here). That can’t be an easy feat! The reviews on Tripadvisor sounded promising and I didn’t think their spa packages too pricey, so I bit the bullet and made a reservation!

What this meant was that I had to allocate 3 hours of my day (not hard, I’m on holiday after all!), find out how to get there (really easy) and see how the treatment went! I’m always open to other massage/spa suggestions so if you know of a good one in Bangkok, please tell me so I can visit next time! icon smile Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

So Thai Spa is set in a bungalow in Sukhumvit Soi 31. It was a quiet street with some residential homes surrounding it, and that was nice because it was quiet and comfortable. What it also meant was that getting to the spa isn’t as easy as getting off the BTS Skytrain and landing on the doorstep. I’ll have the easy to follow directions for you below.

As you enter the compound of the bungalow, there is a swimming pool with flowing water so there is a nice soothing sort of environment. If you have a car, there’s ample parking space. I arrived at 10am on the dot, for my 10am reservation. I had chosen the So Thai Pampering Package for THB1799 (approx RM179/US$60) which I reserved online.

sothaispa2 Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

The waiting area is very large, bright and spacious so there is a nice feeling of space. My treatment room was upstairs and the rooms are huge! They comfortably fit 2 massage beds with lots of space for the masseuse to move around so that’s nice. My room had some sunlight streaming in through the blinds and the masseuse thoughtfully hung a makeshift curtain to cut off the glare,which I thought was a nice touch, seeing as to how she spoke no English and I spoke no Thai icon biggrin Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

You are left to change into disposable undies and a robe before the masseuse returns for your foot soak and clean. The So Thai Pampering Package included a choice of facial or foot massage, herbal body scrub and a Thai oil body massage. I opted for the foot massage because I don’t like having facials at places I am unfamiliar with. Also, I’ve learnt the hard way that if a masseuse is good at massages, they are rarely good at facials and vice versa. The touch and technique is much too different.

I expected to have to sit in a chair for the foot massage as per normal in most massage places, but not this time. I was asked to lie on the bed (still in my robe) and the masseuse performed the foot massage, kneading my poor sore feet which had been abused the previous days by pounding the pavements of Bangkok city. The foot massage took about 1 hour and was good. She did not just massage my feet but also my calves and thighs – you know, all those bits you use to actually propel yourself forward. I usually dislike foot massages (painful!!) but this one was good and my legs and feet felt so much lighter thereafter!

Then it was the herbal body scrub which was ok. One more nice touch. During the scrub, the masseuse turned off the air-conditioning because a lot of you is exposed and it ensures you do not catch a chill. It was for about half an hour and you can then shower in the attached bathroom. The bathroom is tiny though so you do have to take turns if you are sharing rooms with a friend. My skin felt lovely and smooth and clean, which was again nice, because I’d been sweating in the heat before that.

sothaispa3 Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

After you dry off, you are served some hot tea to relax and then it was time for the oil massage where I can’t tell you much because I was dozing most of the time icon biggrin Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury It was very comfortable and relaxing and there was no time wastage. I can tell when a masseuse is just biding her time and it did not feel that way during my session. I can’t speak for others though but I hope it is all good.

I had a shower after that to wash off the oil and then you go back downstairs for more hot tea. It was about 3 hours as scheduled so I was quite happy with that. I didn’t feel shortchanged.

While waiting to make payment, I saw a bunch of customers leaving and more arriving, so if you do plan to visit, I will suggest making an appointment. They are quite reasonable with replying emails and accommodating requests. My package cost THB1799 nett which I thought was a good price for 3 hours of pure relaxation and pampering. No complaints from me!

In a nutshell

So Thai Spa is a day spa set in a bungalow on Sukhumvit Soi 31. It is relatively easy to find and to get to, and I liked the quiet surroundings. Prices displayed outside the spa are higher than what is offered online so I would suggest that you look at their promotional prices online and make your booking from there. I enjoyed my 3 hour pampering session there and I found the price reasonable, the service good, and it was nice not to have to be badgered for tips as is wont to happen in many other places I’ve been to. Do note that if you opt to pay by credit card there is a 3% surcharge.

What I like: Comfortable atmosphere, Quiet surroundings, Affordable spa packages, Not shortchanged on time and service

What can be improved: I think longer or larger towels, similar to large beach towels may be better because I’m not very tall and the towel could not quite cover my feet when pulled right up to my shoulders

Getting there: Take the BTS Skytrain to Phrom Phong station and head to Exit 5. Exit the BTS station, walk straight down the road till you come to Soi 31. Turn right into Soi 31 (S31 Hotel on left) and walk straight on past an intersection. So Thai Spa is on your left. The sketch map on the website is very handy! It took about 15 minutes for me to reach the spa from the top of the street and about 25 minutes from Phrom Phong station. You can also take a taxi from the station and it should get you there more quickly and comfortably… but where’s the fun in that icon razz Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury The spa can also call you a taxi after your treatment.

Has anyone come across So Thai Spa Bangkok before this? Do you have a good similar sort of spa to recommend in Bangkok?

I had a great time and I’m glad I decided to try something different this time around. Granted, its not as cheap as the many other massage places round, but it was a nice experience and within my budget so I have no complaints. So Thai Spa claims to be a luxury Thai spa and aims to be the best spa in Bangkok and whilst I’d say luxury is subjective, it is well worth the money I spent and I left feeling lighter and more refreshed. That’s what a good spa session should feel like right? icon smile Spa Visit: So Thai Spa in Bangkok   3 Hours of Affordable Luxury

Paris B

So Thai Spa Bangkok 269, Sukhumvit Soi 31 Bangkok Tel: +66-2662-2691 Web: sothaispa.com Opening Hours: 10am-10pm

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[ 43 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

Applegal January 17, 2013 at 9:08 am

25 mins walk from the station is a bit long, but if it’s good, why not? Thanks for the recommendation! Will look for it if I’m in the area!

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:31 pm

It does sound a little long so the spa does advise people to take a taxi from the station or you could even take it from the hotel. I like walking so I didn’t mind it :)

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Issa January 17, 2013 at 9:20 am

the place looks very relaxing! oh, i need to make time to go to a spa. :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:32 pm

Its good to get away for a couple of hours and have your troubles massaged away! Hope you find some time for that soon, Issa :)

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Jenn
Twitter:
January 17, 2013 at 9:31 am

Eh I love the Thai-alphabet style font in your first picture! So cute!! :D

Argh I want a massage so bad now after reading your post! Sounds like you’ve had a wonderful session! :D The price of this place is indeed more expensive than the usual massage place, but not overly pricey so I may check this one out if I’m feeling generous the next time I’m in Bangkok! :D I usually go to Healthland Spa but the customer service there is atrocious the last few times I was there so I stopped going.
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Ting January 17, 2013 at 9:03 pm

Hello Jenn, could you tell me please which branch of healthland you been to (the astrocious customer service)? Thanks!

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Jenn
Twitter:
January 17, 2013 at 11:01 pm

Hi Ting! :D I always went to the one at Sathorn. Their prices are really good but unfortunately the customer service (or the lack of it) killed whatever chance of me returning to the place ever! >.<

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Ting January 18, 2013 at 12:58 am

Thanks Jenn. I’ll avoid this branch at all cost! :p

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Hahaha you noticed! :D I was planning to go to Healthland initially, but I read a few reviews and read about how many of the recent reviews were about bad service or massages that weren’t great, and badgering for tips so I decided not to go there and to look for another one instead.

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Lily
Twitter:
January 17, 2013 at 10:04 am

I need a massage!!!!!! The whole time I’m reading your post, I’m just imagining someone kneading my knotted muscles. Have. To. Get. A. Massage.!!!!
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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:35 pm

Hope you get one soon, Lily! I’m planning to book one in for next week or the week after just before the hectic CNY break!

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Isabel January 17, 2013 at 10:07 am

RM179 is VERY reasonable. I’m going to check this place out the next time I go. Thanks for the review!

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:35 pm

You’re welcome, Isabel and I hope if you go, you will enjoy it as much as I did :)

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Tuti January 17, 2013 at 11:00 am

I neeeeeed massage. I live in Bali but hardly go to massage. What a waste. How about compare to Bali massage ?

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:36 pm

Ahhhh how can you live in Bali and not go for massages?! Time to book yourself one, Tuti! I can’t remember my massage in Bali which was years ago. I remember it was very good too but I think I have to go again, right? ;)

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beetrice
Twitter:
January 17, 2013 at 12:36 pm

Looks like a lovely place – will have to put that on the agenda for my next trip to Bangkok. You make the foot massage sound heavenly! :D I usually end up at Chang’s for my massages since they’re so conveniently located near my usual hotel and open really late (nothing like an hour of foot reflexology after a long day of walking and shopping before drifting off to sleep!)
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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:37 pm

I usually hate foot massages but this one was good, mainly because I wasn’t sitting maybe LOL! I did check out the Chang’s place as I told you but it was packed. Probably from people staying at the hotel so I had to pass :)

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Nikki January 17, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Looks very relaxing! i am itching for a SPA/Massage now but I really am making sure to be careful with baby AMW around!

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Ting January 17, 2013 at 9:07 pm

Hello Nikki, the last time I was pregnant and went for full body massage, I had to tell the masseuse that I was having a bun in the oven and they will make sure not to press on some major points. But I went to the one I trusted so you do still have to be careful. Hope that helps and you are able to have a relax massage soon. :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Some masseuse know how to do pre-natal massages, Nikki and I’ve been told they help soothe back aches but if they aren’t careful then it can be dangerous. I suppose its better to be safe than sorry!

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Jess January 17, 2013 at 3:35 pm

Bookmarking this!!! Love the spa/massage in Thailand…!!! I really like i when you enter they greet you with a smile and when you leave, they send you off with a smile!

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:39 pm

Yes, this spa was very friendly and what I appreciated was the not pushy bit – no bugging for tips and the like. Do give it a go next time you’re in Bangkok :)

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casey23 January 17, 2013 at 4:10 pm

JEALOUS MUCH!!!!!! In the part where you shared the foot massage I swear my muscles got a little bit relaxed as well :) I am craving for a spa treatment for so long, and I have no money but on my birthday (March) I will request a gift certificate to a full spa treatment from my mother..

Also a good friend of mine is going to Bangkok on March, I can totally rave about this place to her.

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:42 pm

I hope you get a good massage in March then Casey! I find its good to go and have someone work out the knots in the body once in a while. Are body massages expensive where you are? We get some inexpensive and expensive ones here so its a matter of looking for one to suit your budget :) If your friend visits I do hope she’ll enjoy this spa too.

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Tammy January 17, 2013 at 4:49 pm

This looks amazing Paris! I am exactly the same. When going for spa I never really care for facial. I think they rub too hard! ;-)

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:42 pm

They definitely do! I sometimes feel like they are giving me more lines than helping :P

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Marla January 17, 2013 at 6:33 pm

Wow, that looks fabulous. I love spa visits.

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:43 pm

Me too! I love trying new ones :D

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Ting January 17, 2013 at 9:09 pm

I’m glad you’ve found a spa that is worth the visit. And thanks for sharing! :)

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:43 pm

Yes I did and it was great! Maybe you could try it next time, Ting and let me know if you enjoyed it too ;)

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Monica Tores January 17, 2013 at 11:26 pm

I am not sure if I am up for the walk but the spa looks so good, I might as well give it a try. Thanks for the idea, Paris.

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Its quite easy to hail a cab from the station then its just 5 minutes! :)

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Apple January 18, 2013 at 12:07 am

Never have a change try thai massage yet, as i was pregnant during my last visits :-(
For sure environment is my first impression to justify the comfortability of the massage.

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:46 pm

Definitely! I’ve been to some dodgy looking massage places and I can never relax in there :P I hope you get to try the massages in Thailand the next time you visit!

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cushy January 18, 2013 at 4:04 am

your post is handy as i’m going to bangkok next month. have you been to any other spa that’s less expensive?

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 3:50 pm

Hi Cushy, no I haven’t. The ones I used to go to were really dodgy, on hindsight but cheap – about THB250/2 hours for the regular Thai massage or foot massage. I usually just stop by anywhere for foot massages that look ok from the outside. This was the first time I”d gone anywhere “nice” :P

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Michelle January 18, 2013 at 12:25 pm

When I’m in Bangkok, I go to Healthland. They’ve got branches everywhere. It’s a very local place with awesome massages and therapies at local prices. Was recommended to me by a local Thai colleague a long time ago. You can sign packages which I do if I’m there for a week or so. It’s not that hard to have foot massages daily ;) They have therapeutic massages like Tui Na etc which was effective for my father in law who had a sports injury. The only downside is that it’s not really a “spa” like environment. It’s big, clean, well decorated, spacious and polite but just not zen spa like. You rarely see any tourist at all! (website: http://www.healthlandspa.com/)

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 5:39 pm

I’ve been recommended Healthland spas to try too but every time I try to research them, I’ve always come up against negative reviews. I am told that many locals go there so it might be to do with the particular spa or the area that gets more tourists. Which outlet do you go to? Another “problem” I face is that they aren’t as easy to get there but maybe I should give them a shot the next time I go. I’m told that a reservation is necessary these days due to the volume of tourists who flock there now.

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Catherine January 19, 2013 at 3:40 am

It sounds lovely! I would love to have foot massage, for now Im on a hunt for great nail bar near champ de mars…

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Paris B
Twitter:
January 20, 2013 at 6:05 pm

I hope you find one, Catherine! Its so nice to have a pampering session occasionally :D

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Gupta October 30, 2013 at 3:37 am

Hi, me and my wife Are looking for a spa Place in bangkok. I like oil massage, she likes only foot massages. Does this Place have good oil massage? Compered to others?

Thanks
Gupta

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Paris B
Twitter:
November 3, 2013 at 5:21 pm

I thought they were ok. Not wonderful as other places I’ve been to, but it depends on your personal expectations and experience.

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Gupta October 30, 2013 at 3:57 am

Or you will regiment aromatheraphy insted of oil?

Thanks
Gupta

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