Thursday, June 14, 2012

Apsara Cruise Banyan Tree Bangkok

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The Bangkok post was too long so I decided to split out the entry for our dinner cruise. The cruise was fabulous! I heard about it at work when the marketing team from Banyan Tree came to my office to give a presentation on their property in Bangkok and their dinner cruise, the Apsara Cruise by Banyan Tree.

You can visit their website at:

All you need to do is just send them an email or give them a call. I called them one week before our trip to make the booking and all they needed was my name and contact number.

Before our trip, I was thinking what we should do in Bangkok since I don't like to shop. I was thinking of jungle trekking on elephants or going for the morning floating market.. But since I don't like the sun, hate mosquitoes and can't wake up early in the morning.. I decided to book the dinner cruise instead. It is a special surprise treat from me to Brendan. :)

They only have one boat and there are very limited tables, so book in advance!

There are lots of dinner cruises available in Bangkok, but Apsara is special because it is much smaller and does not cater to mass tourists, thus more exclusive. Also, their dinner is not buffet style unlike many of the other operators. Theirs is a set menu of fine dining thai cuisine. It is a 2 hour cruise from 7.45pm to 9.45pm, though our ended later cos of an unexpected surprise event! :)

This is a typical dinner cruise boat. It is modern, fast (how to enjoy the views?) and super crowded! It's 100% filled with noisy tourists! We were standing at the dock observing the crowd boarding the boats and were glad that we did not fall into that tourist trap because it's gonna be a horrible ride with the noisy crowds. The food is buffet style so don't expect much from the quality since they cater to mostly tour groups. I have joined such cruises in other countries before and it's super cliche and lousy. Splurge on the Apsara please!

This is how the Apsara boat looks like. 

Before boarding the cruise :)

Welcome drink (Lemon Grass) and towel

It so happens that there was a wedding going on in Intercontinental Hotel (right side of the picture) and there were fireworks on display the moment our boat left the dock! Super lucky! :)

I remembered Brendan standing behind me to hold me in case I fall cos the boat was quite rocky as there were many bigger boats moving past us.. then he hugged me and we just watched the fireworks in silence while I leaned on him... Super romantic please! 

The boatman turned our boat towards the direction of the fireworks so we can all view it even though we were going in the opposite direction.. Super nice of him. He even moved the boat nearer to the fireworks and stayed until the fireworks ended, which extended the duration of our cruise for free! Instead of ending at the usual 9.45pm, we ended nearly at 10.30pm cos we spent some time stopping at one of the temples for photo-taking! :)

Menu of the day!
You can opt for vegetarian option. Just inform them in advance.

Le bf enjoying his Mojito cocktails~
FYI.. Drinks are not included in the package.

My mocktail! I forgot the name. Look at the pretty stirrer!

First dish! Appetizer! 
Crackers with some coconut meat sauce. Yummy! It's not in the menu!

Khong Waang Ruam Mit
Appetizer Sampler

Tom Kha Kam Poo
Crab claw coconut broth with lemon grass, chili, lime, coriander

The crab claw!!

Goong Thord Kratiem Priktai
Wok tossed tiger prawns with garlice and green pepper corn

Kaeng Phed Ped Yang
Roast duck red curry with pineapple, cucumber and lychee

Pla Hima Neung Manao
Steamed snow fish with chilli, lime, garlic and coriander

Phad Pak Ruam
Stir fried brocoli, asparagus, shitake mushroom

Kao Saffron, Kao Horm Mali, Kao Mun Poo
Saffron rice, Jasmine rice, Brown rice

Mixture of the trio rice. Interesting!

Ended with desserts! 
Khanom Waan Ruam
Assorted Thai dessert, mango sticky rice, Thai tea panna cotta

Night view of the river banks


We stopped here for a photo taking session!


Towards the end of the cruise, the chef will go round introducing herself and serve us with more local thai tidbits. Her cooking is fab!

Chef with our personal waiter (spot the Thai tidbits on his tray!)

His service is impeccable! I tipped him THB400 (SGD16) and he was so happy! But he deserved it cos we felt like royalty! He walked us all the way to the main road from the boat which was quite a distance away and helped us flag a cab and tell the taxi driver to send us back to St Regis! Super nice of him cos he didn't have to do that. :)

Remember we stopped for a photo? They helped us take a photo with their camera and gave it to us at the end of the cruise! It's in a beautiful envelope..

They have to upgrade their camera and use a better one cos their Canon digicam is damn shitty. The manager had to take our shot 3 times before it was 'non-blurry' cos there's no anti-shake function and the night capture is horrible. I used my camera and got the shot in one take.. and I brought my Sony point & shoot, not the DSLR.

Overall, we enjoyed the cruise a lot! It's romantic, quiet and very enjoyable. Every staff on the boat is super likeable! They are non-obtrusive, very attentive and super polite. This is one of the most memorable thing I've ever done in my life.. Highly recommended! Brendan loved it too and commented that the food is delicious and service is great. 

Give it a try when you visit Bangkok next time! You won't regret it! :)

3 comments to “Apsara Cruise Banyan Tree Bangkok”

  • July 18, 2012 at 3:27 PM
    Anonymous says:

    nice posting.. thanks for sharing.

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  • January 7, 2014 at 11:50 AM

    hehe, you got lucky you got on it in your shorts (skybar they don't allow at all):

    Dress code:
    At the request of the majority of our patrons, a Casual Dress Code is observed on Apsara where flip-flops and athletic apparel are not permitted.

    delete
  • January 10, 2014 at 5:22 AM
    NotaesKram says:

    Excellent post!!! Thanks for the write-up.

    delete