Once a bustling commercial district on the edge of Rattanakosin, now a breeding ground for creative dining concepts and quirky cafes. Lan Luang and its adjoining streets are hot, and these four cafes that have opened their doors in the past year show you why:
Opened in July last year, it was this cafe that single-handedly lured camera-toting hipsters from wide and far to an area formerly unbeknownst to them. For good reason: the Parisian style shopfront, the rustic (but highly manicured) interior, and eclectic table settings make for fantastic Instagram fodder. Now that the hype has died down, Eden’s proves that they can offer much more than a just pretty picture: the homemade pastries and cakes are seriously good (try a slice of lemon pie or dark beer cake), as are the thick cuts of toasted bread that come topped with fluffy scrambled egg, smoked salmon, or prosciutto.
7/1 Lan Luang Road, Bangkok
Alex & Beth
The European ambience continues next door at Alex & Beth, a quirky little cafe with mismatched chairs, vintage knick-knacks, and coffee served in porcelain cups. The menu is small, but perfectly curated: a handful of sweets, a few perfectly executed sandwiches (try the grilled cheese or avocado toast with caramelised onion) and two daily specials on rotation. There’s espresso for a caffeine kick, or try one of their creative concoctions like the Iced Chocolate Orange or Shizuoka Matcha Latte.
9 Lan Luang Road, Bangkok
Pollen Baked Goods
This rustic style bakery operated by the team behind dining darling Seven Spoons (located just a few doors down the road) has recently set up shop in a cosy shophouse along Chakkrapatipong Road. Behind a storefront with Wes Anderson-esque yellow signage, a display filled with colorful (and really! very! sweet!) confections –glazed donuts, cinnamon buns, and chocolate-dipped madeleines– greets you right at the door. Pick what you like, order a coffee or fresh lemonade on the side and nab a seat at one of the three tables in the tiny seating area. During the weekends, a range of weekend-only specials grace the menu, keep an eye on their Instagram page to see the current ones.
10 Chakkraphatdi Phong Road, Bangkok
M.T. Rollin Club
Technically not in Lan Luang, but located in adjoining Phra Nakhon, this eclectic bistro-cum-jazz bar brings a whiff of old-world opulence to Bangkok’s historic district. Housed in a stately mansion that once functioned as a hotel, M.T. Rollin Club is now filled to the brim with European antiques, floral arrangements, and Roman sculptures – all on a beautiful Sino-Portuguese tiled floor. The menu is impossible to decipher without the help of one of the amicable waiters (everything is listed under creative, but rather meaningless names), but you have a choice of creative cocktails and Western fare like french toast, scones, fresh oysters and various main courses. Open by appointment only since June 2019.
94 Asadang Road, Bangkok
Where to stay in Lan Luang
Just a stone throw away from party-Valhalla Khao San Road (if you’re into that kind of stuff…), but ten times more charming. These 3 hotels on or around Lan Luang are a perfect base to explore the area from.
Bangkok Publishing Residence
Housed in a – you guessed it – old publishing house, this luxury boutique stay is a real gem. Doubles as a family museum, and the friendly staff is happy to give a tour.
1905 Heritage Corner
A tiny 3-room bolthole on the charming Phreang Bhuton square. Beautifully renovated and decked out with modern-day comforts, a delicious breakfast and friendly service.
Located at a village-like piazza smack in the middle of the Old Town, the Bhuthorn is a charmer. This 3-room B&B is run by a friendly architect couple and oozes with nostaligia.