Ma Maison – teahouse in the park?

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Purposefully I strolled into the Nai Lert Hotel Swisshotel across the Swiss embassy on Wireless Road. I was convinced that the Ma Maison restaurant was right there, overlooking the beautiful garden.

A concierge informed me politely that I was in the completely wrong place. As I was already late for my appointment my face must have shown the disappointment (in me – as I am apparently even unable to read instructions on “Line” – not a strong point). The concierge told me though that the restaurant was not that far away and if I went through the park I would reach it in a few minutes.

The Nai Lert Hotel has one of the most amazing hotel parks in the city, as I had discovered almost a year ago when I went to an exhibition of painted hippos.

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I quickly walked out to the grounds in my high heels, past the illuminated swimming pool, along the darkened pathways, bushes and trees until I came to the spa house. Sensing that I was lost again, I asked the spa attendant about the way and he accompanied me on another small path through the now completely dark park to a cross-road where another hotel employee was waiting for me. Probably the whole hotel knew that there was this strange foreign woman wandering about in the park.

He too me on a short stroll to the side entrance of the park and pointed across a nicely manicured lawn towards a pavilion. Unbeknownst to me, I was now in the grounds of the Nai Lert Park Heritage Home, a 24,000 square meter park in the middle of the city with a museum showcasing antiques and artifacts from the last century.

However, my focus was on “Ma Maison” which was nicely illuminated at the end of the stone path. The restaurant and the group of friends impatiently awaited me. The restaurant was very quiet, only one other table was occupied that night. The food was mainly Thai cuisine which was delicious, but fairly expensive. The atmosphere was like sitting in a drawing room or sunroom with a big library (and a bunch of stuffed birds – what was up with that?).

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I felt like I needed to come back on a Sunday afternoon and linger about with a good book and a fine cup of tea.

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