We often marvel at the grand hotels of Europes that look like they came right out of a fairytale — but often forget about those right in our backyard. Sure, we don’t get the bragging rights of having centuries-old castles, but Southeast Asia has no shortage of historical hotels set amongst its charming old towns, tropical rainforests and picture-perfect beaches. Some of these hotels have been the sanctuaries of royals and luminaries over the years — and have even hosted Hollywood glitterati and writers of the past.
Many of Southeast Asia’s most historical hotels can be attributed to the Armenian Sarkies brothers, the foremost hoteliers of the East who saw a lack of luxury hotels in the Southeast Asian market — resulting in the development of properties such as the Raffles Hotel Singapore and The Strand Yangon. The Sarkies’ hotels offered a novel mixture of Asian-European hospitality as well as personalised service, fine dining and magnificent architecture — all of which was difficult to find in the region at that time.
If you’re travelling around Southeast Asia (or thinking of your next staycation), check out these luxurious, historical hotels that boast top-notch service, old-world opulence, and a fascinating legacy.
Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok48 Oriental Avenue, 10500 Bangkok, Thailand 10500
The Strand YangonThe Strand Yangon 92 Strand Road, Yangon, Myanmar 11181
Hotel Majestic Saigon, Vietnam1 Dong Khoi Street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Raffles Hotel Singapore1 Beach Road 189673
The Eastern & Oriental Hotel, Penang10, Lebuh Farquhar 10200 Penang 10200
Mandarin Oriental, BangkokWebsite here
+66 (2) 659 9000
The Strand YangonWebsite here
+95 1 243 377
Hotel Majestic Saigon, VietnamWebsite here
+84 28 3829 5517
Raffles Hotel SingaporeWebsite here
+65 6337 1886
The Eastern & Oriental Hotel, PenangWebsite here
+(6) 04 222 2000