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Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Airbnb’s Pride Guide: Explore Bangkok!

 A year-round destination popular with LGBTQIA+ travelers, Thailand is celebrating Pride this June with activities up and down the country that showcase diversity and embrace inclusivity. From parades and catwalks to music, flea markets and more, Thailand’s doors are wide open to LGBTQIA+ visitors and allies from around the world.

This Pride, Airbnb has collaborated with Airbnb Host and MasterChef Season 3 and All Stars contestant “Gino” Jitsak Lim-Pakornkul for the company’s first-ever Pride Guide to Bangkok. Read on for the lowdown on what to do, where to go and where to stay!

Born in Phuket, currently living in Chiang Mai and having spent many years in Bangkok, Gino credits Thailand’s open-minded and multicultural society for the country’s appeal to LGBTQIA+ travelers, “Thailand embraces its diversity in culture, ethnicity, language and mindset. Thais always smile – we are kind, friendly and are always ready to welcome everyone. This is why LGBTQIA+ travelers feel welcomed and accepted when they visit Thailand.”

Popular Bangkok hangouts during Pride
A vibrant city full of excitement and new experiences, Pride is home to the annual Bangkok Pride Parade, the unofficial kick-off to Pride across the city. Awash with colour through June, there’s lots to check out across the city. Here are some of Gino’s top recommendations:

  • HOP Hub of Photography – This popular hangout amongst the community is an LGBTQIA+ friendly art gallery, library and creative space with rare books and has year-round curated exhibitions for everyone to enjoy.
  • DJ Station on Silom Soi 2 – A favorite of Gino’s since college, DJ station has changed over the years to keep up with the latest trends. While it was previously known for its retro disco vibes, now it’s global dance hits for all ages including K-pop for today’s Thai youth.
  • Bipolar Silom – This is Thailand’s ultimate drag show and in Gino’s opinion,  comparable in quality to any international drag shows and a must see while in Bangkok.

Where to eat during Pride in Bangkok
Bangkok is a melting pot of cuisines and home to a kaleidoscope of culinary options from street food to riverside eateries, rooftop fine dining and everything in between. To help guide you, here are some of Gino’s favorites:

  • Mee Yam Charoen – This is Gino’s absolute favourite, especially when he’s missing his hometown of Phuket. Mee Yam Charoen serves up delicious Phuket and Chino Portuguese specialities at their outlets in Sathorn, Central Embassy, centralwOrld and Ram-Intra Soi 5.
  • Epia Yum Ratchada – Extremely popular amongst the LGBTQIA+ community. More than a Thai spicy salad restaurant, it’s now a popular hangout where LGBTQIA+ diners meet-up and exchange ideas. They also have branches across Bangkok in Huai Khwang, Sam Yan, Ari and plan to open at Asiatique.
  • Supanniga Eating Room – Gino suggests exploring the family-friendly Michelin-starred Supanniga Eating Room, where authentic Thai cuisine and regional dishes have been passed down for over 80 years.

Where to stay during Pride in Bangkok
A year-round LGBTQIA+ friendly destination, here are some top recommendations for inspirational homes for your next stay in Bangkok:

Designer home in Sukhumvit
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This unique retro-styled townhouse bustles with colour and character, and can accommodate up to four people. Its unique interiors, open plan kitchen and patio garden make for a great space to chill with family and friends, and it’s pet friendly too.

Santiphap Room at Ba Hao Residence

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This contemporary Thai-inspired room is located on the top floor of a renovated bar and shophouse, right in Bangkok’s vibrant Chinatown area. With its own en-suite facilities, the co-living space on the second floor is a popular place to relax and connect with other guests.

4/BR private House near Silom

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This chic private house can accommodate up to 11 guests in four uniquely designed bedrooms, with lots of common space for entertaining and self-dining. Just a few minutes away from cosmopolitan Silom district and the Chao Phraya river, this centrally located stay is a great base to explore the city and Pride.

Entire home in the city centre

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This designer stay is located in the heart of the city’s uber-cool dining and entertainment district Thong Lo. Guests can easily get around Bangkok and enjoy the Pride activities from the nearby skytrain station.

Private house in the old town

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Stay in the old quarter of the city in this loft-style historic Thai shophouse. Just a short walk from the popular Khaosan area of Bangkok, there’s plenty of street food, restaurants, cafes and bars nearby.

Beyond Pride, beyond Bangkok
Gino recommends visiting the major cities of Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket (Patong) and Chiang Mai (Tha Pae) during Pride, where there are also parades, shows and Pride celebrations happening. He shares, “People can travel and celebrate Pride all over Thailand. Do consider visiting some of Thailand’s smaller cities where you can experience the local way of life, delicious local cuisine and many hidden gems to visit!”

Note: All stays referenced are intended purely to inspire and illustrate. Airbnb does not recommend or endorse specific stay or experience listings on the Airbnb platform.

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