Sukhumvit Road Ph.02 258 5403
In an old Thai house with a leafy garden, the food has been toned-down but the show and setting make up for it. The set menu does not include drinks and the show begins at 8.30 pm. Arrive early to ensure getting a table with a good view of the performance.
Sala Rim Naam
Soi Oriental, Charoenkrung Road Ph.02 437 2918, 02 437 3080
The historic Oriental Hotel has its own dinner theatre, on the Thonburi side of Chaopraya River opposite the hotel. The admission is well above average about 1500B but so is the food, the performance and the Thai pavilion décor (teak, marble and bronze); the river ferry between the hotel and restaurant is free. Dinner begin at 7pm., and the dance performances at 8.30pm.
Massage parlours have been a Bangkok attraction for many years now, though the TAT tries to play down the city's reputation in this respect.
Massage as a healing art is a centuries-old tradition in Thailand, and it is easy to find a legitimate massage in Bangkok, despite the commercialisation of recent years. That many of the city's modern massage parlours (aap op nuat or bathe-steam-massage, sometimes referred to as Turkish bath) also deal in prostitution is well known; less well known is the fact that many of the girls working in the parlours are bonded labour -they are not necessarily there by choice.
The most insensitive males will be saddened by the sight of 50 girls /women behind a glass wall with numbers pinned to their dresses. Often the bank of masseuses is divided into section according to skill and/or appearance. Most expensive is the "superstar" section, in which the women try to approximate to the look of fashion models or actresses. A smaller section is reserved for women who are actually good at giving massage, and who offer nothing extra.
The last several years has seen an increasing number of gay-oriented "saunas" sprouting up around the capital. Most of these have a contingent of masseurs who like their female counterparts, are rarely versed in any conventional type of massage.