The legendary hospitality of Thailand has earned it the name, "Land of Smiles." For this reason it has long been a popular choice for meetings and events in Southeast Asia. Its vibrant capital, Bangkok, is one of the top four international conference destinations in Asia; and first-class meeting venues in Bangkok are renowned for their outstanding service.
Bangkok is easy to get to: The new Suvarnabhumi International Airport, unveiled in late 2006, handles over 40 million passengers per year from most major cities in North America, Asia and Europe. The airport is just 18 miles from the city center and easily accessible via electric rail, bypassing traffic jams (and even allowing baggage check-in at one city station for departing passengers).
Chief among Bangkok convention venues is the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centre (BITEC), located 10 miles from the airport and 7 miles from the city center. BITEC offers more than 581,256 square feet of event space and 20 meeting rooms, the largest seating 20,000 theater style. The Bangkok Convention Centre at CentralWorld, located in the business district, has over 56,000 square feet of pillar-free space, and the Queen Sirikit National Convention Center (originally built to host the World Bank/IMF meeting) features more than 100,000 square feet of space.
Hotel venues in Bangkok include luxury-brand hotels with their own meeting facilities, including the Four Seasons, St. Regis, Mandarin Oriental, Peninsula, Sukhothai, Oriental and Dusit Thani, to name a few.
Thailand's blend of ancient traditions and stunning scenery make for a rich selection of special event venues in Bangkok. Many meeting planners combine a Bangkok conference with a trip to the seaside destination of Pattaya, which is just 90 minutes away and offers its own state-of-the-art convention center accommodating up to 8,000 people theater-style. In Bangkok proper, groups can enjoy a luxury dinner cruise aboard a converted rice barge along the Chao Phraya River, which winds its way past the city's most famous temples and palaces. Other popular options include a Thai theme party at the Siam Society, cocktails at the Rose Garden (a 70-acre resort with botanical gardens, a hotel, conference facilities, a spa and an 18-hole golf course), dinner at the Chakrabongse Summer Palace or a special event at the Ancient City, a 320-acre "mini-Thailand" theme park with reconstructions of historic buildings.
All average costs based on U.S. Government Per Diem rates as published by the U.S. General Services Administration.
Don Muang Airport (DMK)
Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK)
Approximate taxi fare: 306 THB
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