Sampran Riverside Thailand - Hotel Review

Lovely View of the Ta-Chine River from Our Hotel Room at Sampran Riverside
Lovely View of the Ta-Chine River from Our Hotel Room at Sampran Riverside | Source

"Sampran Riverside? Okay. Thanks, Mom," said I, grateful yet uninspired, after learning that my mother had booked a room at this hotel for me and my husband. Its location near the beautiful Ta-Chine River and its renowned botanical garden didn't excite me much. Having lived in Sacramento for over a decade, I became somewhat jaded by rivers and gardens already. We were going to spend only 2 weeks in Thailand. I was more enthused to revisit Bangkok, my charmingly hectic home city, and to loaf on the delightful Cha-Am Beach over the weekend. One day and night at Sampran Riverside Resort seemed to me like an unnecessary program on my travel schedule. Yet, lo and behold, it turned out my preconceived notion about this hideaway was quite wrong. My husband and I really cherished our time there and wished we could have stayed longer. Now you may wonder what changed my mind. Was I suddenly enthralled by the magic of the river? Or were there talking trees in the botanical garden? Well, the river was just the river, and none of the trees could talk. What won me over was the "hidden paradise" atmosphere of the entire resort as well as the impressive dining experience and great diversity of activities available to us.

My Review of Sampran Riverside Thailand

4 stars for Sampran Riverside

Sampran Riverside - Location

Also known as "Rose Garden Riverside" and "Suan Sampran", Sampran Riverside Resort is humbly nestled in Nakhon Pathom, a small outskirt town of Bangkok. It took us just about 40 minutes to drive from Bangkok to the hotel. If we had traveled during rush hours, however, we would probably have had to sit in the car at least an hour longer. (Yes, rush-hour traffic in Bangkok is merciless; avoid it with all your might!) For those who want to spend the day in the city and stay in a peaceful sanctuary at night, this riverside resort is a very good choice. Plus, there are many other worth-visiting attractions within a couple hour drive. Ayudhaya, the old capital city of Thailand, is not too far up north. The famous Damnern Saduak Floating Market is within an hour drive. And if you go a little further down south, there are several gorgeous beaches to check out, such as Cha-Am and Hua Hin.

Map for Sampran Riverside Resort and Nearby Holiday Spots

show route and directions
A markerSampran Riverside Resort -
Phet Kasem, Yai Cha, Sam Phran, Nakhon Pathom 73110, Thailand
[get directions]

B markerDowntown Bangkok -
Bangkok, Thailand
[get directions]

C markerDamnern Saduak Floating Market -
Damnoen Saduak Floating Market, Damnoen Saduak, Ratchaburi 70130, Thailand
[get directions]

D markerCha-Am Beach -
Hat Cha-am, Cha-am, Phetchaburi 76120, Thailand
[get directions]

E markerAyudhaya (The Old Capital City) -
Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Thailand
[get directions]

Sampran Riverside - Deluxe Room Review

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Deluxe Room - Sampran Riverside ThailandBathtub Separate Shower RoomNice View from Our Private Balcony
Deluxe Room - Sampran Riverside Thailand
Deluxe Room - Sampran Riverside Thailand | Source
Bathtub
Bathtub | Source
Separate Shower Room
Separate Shower Room | Source
Source
Nice View from Our Private Balcony
Nice View from Our Private Balcony | Source

Deluxe Room Amenities

Amenity
Availability
Air Conditioning
Yes
Bathtub
Yes
Cable TV
Yes
Complimentary Fruit Basket
Yes
Hair Dryer
No
Mini Bar / Refrigerator
Yes
Microwave
No
Room Service
Yes
Safety Deposit Box
Yes
Shower Room
Yes
Telephone
Yes
Wi-Fi Internet
Yes

The lodging options at Sampran Riverside include 73 garden-view superior rooms, 69 river-view superior rooms, 7 river-view deluxe rooms, 7 river-view suites, and 6 traditional Thai houses in the lush central garden. Thanks to my mom's generosity, we got to stay in a nice deluxe room overlooking the serene Ta-Chine River. Although the interior decoration was not that memorable, the room's spacious square footage certainly provided a sense of luxury. Free wi-fi Internet access was available but not as high-speed as advertised. That didn't really bother me, though. I wanted to use the Internet as little as possible during my vacation anyway. The bathroom was sparkling clean, with a nice bathtub and a good-size shower room. The basket of homemade organic toiletries was also a lovely addition. Everything was herbally aromatic and came in dainty containers; it felt almost like having a private spa. Finally, the best feature of our one-night abode was the private balcony that invited us to just sit idly in the late afternoon, sip our drinks, enjoy gentle breezes from the untarnished river, and watch random boats drift by. I still don't think there was anything extraordinary about the river, yet that afternoon, I guess I somehow developed a little bond with it.

Sampran Riverside - Rim Nam Restaurant

Watching the Sunset While Enjoying Our Dinner
Watching the Sunset While Enjoying Our Dinner | Source
Having Dinner at Rim Nam Restaurant
Having Dinner at Rim Nam Restaurant | Source

Out of a few dining options at the resort, we chose to have dinner at Rim Nam Restaurant because they offered attractive outdoor seatings by the river. According to our friendly waiter, a lot of their fresh ingredients and spices were from the resort's very own organic garden. The menu was huge and comprised of three sections: Thai, Western and Japanese cuisines. My husband might have been slightly tempted by the mouthwatering pictures of western dishes on the menu, yet we both agreed we didn't fly an 18-hour flight from the U.S. to Thailand to eat burgers or pasta. An authentic Thai meal would be more worthy of our moolah. So we ordered roast duck curry, deep-fried catfish salad, grilled chicken wrapped in pandan leaves and some steamed rice. The foods came pretty quickly, and none of the dishes disappointed us. The roast duck curry, in particular, was very exquisite.

Halfway through our meal, the sight of the sunset surprisingly put me in a romantic mood. Yes, I said it was surprising because I'm usually not a romantic person at all. (I hate Valentine's Day, look down upon romance novels and think Titanic sucks.) At that peculiar moment, I felt like giving my husband a tender kiss and telling him I love him, but oh well, our dinner was too good so I just ate on. The sappy stuff could wait!

Complimentary Breakfast Buffet at Sampran Riverside

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Kanom Krok - Thai Breakfast DessertThai Traditional Breakfast SoupBread and CroissantWestern Breakfast
Kanom Krok - Thai Breakfast Dessert
Kanom Krok - Thai Breakfast Dessert | Source
Thai Traditional Breakfast Soup
Thai Traditional Breakfast Soup | Source
Bread and Croissant
Bread and Croissant | Source
Western Breakfast
Western Breakfast | Source

First of all, I have to admit I wish I had taken more photos of our breakfast buffet. Once again, I was too busy savoring my food to do much else. At Sampran Riverside, a complimentary breakfast buffet is available to guests every morning at Rim Nam Restaurant. The selection wasn't enormous but it was enticing. There were both authentic Thai and western-style breakfast choices. The foods were scrumptious, and nothing that I tried tasted like reheated leftovers from the day before. I also loved that they had staff members cook certain items for us right at the spot. What my husband and I both considered to be the best thing we had that morning was the Kanom Krok, a delicate coconut dessert. He actually got so hooked by it he wanted to bring a Kanom Krok pan back to Sacramento so we could make them ourselves. Unfortunately, we couldn't find one that was light and small enough to fit into our suitcase. He hasn't given up on his Kanom Krok pan pursuit yet, though. Maybe we'll find one online.

Thai Cultural Show at Sampran Riverside

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Sukothai DanceThai Drum DanceMuay Thai - KickboxingRegional Thai DanceBamboo Dance
Sukothai Dance
Sukothai Dance | Source
Thai Drum Dance
Thai Drum Dance | Source
Muay Thai - Kickboxing
Muay Thai - Kickboxing | Source
Regional Thai Dance
Regional Thai Dance | Source
Bamboo Dance
Bamboo Dance | Source

This one-hour cultural performance is held twice a day at the resort's theater. Accompanied by live Thai classical music and English narration, the show demonstrates many aspects of Thai culture, including the world-famous Muay Thai boxing, sword fighting, classical dances, as well as traditional celebrations like the wedding and Buddhist monkhood ceremony. For those who are curious about the Thai way of living, this should be a tantalizing and educational performance to watch. For a Thai native like myself, it was entertaining enough. Although nothing in the show was new to me, I really enjoyed the music and lovely visuals. My only complaint: it felt as though the air conditioners in the theater might be broken that day.

Sampran Riverside - Botanical Walk

Sampran Riverside Botanical Garden
Sampran Riverside Botanical Garden | Source

Known as a home of rare tropical herbs, flowers and vegetation, the Sampran Riverside Garden is a wonderful "amusement park" for botany enthusiasts. My husband and I are actually not very plant-savvy, but we had a great time exploring the garden nonetheless. I loved the hilly and snaky landscape of it. There were a lot of zigzagging shrubs; mini lotus ponds flaunting themselves among humble bonsais; little stairs and bridges that led to different sections; and lush foliage mottled with colorful wild fruits. All these features seemed to be put together in a charmingly disorganized fashion, giving the place a half-man-made and half-natural feel.

Sampran Riverside - Swimming Pool

Swimming Pool at Sampran Riverside Resort
Swimming Pool at Sampran Riverside Resort | Source

Happy to learn that it was Ozone-treated and contained no chemical treatment whatsoever, we spent about an hour in this funky-shaped swimming pool. There was no lifeguard nearby, but the entire pool was just about 4 feet and 8 inches deep, so it seemed to be safe for most adults. At first, I thought the two mini pools on the side were jacuzzis, but it turned out they were normal pools, probably just for kids. My minor critique: I wish they would keep the water just a tiny bit warmer.

Carved Vegetables (from One of the Morning Workshops)
Carved Vegetables (from One of the Morning Workshops) | Source

Other Resort Facilities and Activities We Did Not Attend

  • Arusaya Spa
  • Children Playground
  • Thai Cooking Classes
  • Fitness Center
  • Herbal Workshops (Learning how to make homemade toiletries)
  • Morning Workshops (Thai dancing, martial arts, traditional weaving, umbrella painting, pottery, vegetable carving, etc)
  • Organic Farm Tour
  • Pedal Boats
  • Tennis Courts
  • Weekend Farmer's Market

A Few Final Words on Sampran Riverside Resort

Is Sampran Riverside splendid enough to gain a five-star rating? No. But guess what? Luxury is not the only thing that makes our hotel experience worthwhile. This resort is not just a place to relax and enjoy ourselves, but also to gather valuable knowledge. I regret not staying long enough to visit the organic farm and attend their intriguing workshops, but there's always next time! On my next trip to Thailand, this hotel will definitely be one of my first choices.

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Comments 13 comments

akirchner profile image

akirchner 3 years ago from Central Oregon

Okay seriously--you don't like romance novels? OMG--OM!~ What a lovely place--I was wondering where you got to and now I know...having fun at the resort. What a lovely place and what a terrific review~~ Do they allow dogs? I forgot to check! We just returned from our maiden voyage with 2 of the mals--it was fantastic. I'm not sure though that Griff could sit in the seat on the plane for that long though...all the way to China....he'd be too demanding in terms of snacks and I'd probably be forced to land early and exit the plane.

Seriously--great piece and hope you had/have a wonderful time!!


leahlefler profile image

leahlefler 3 years ago from Western New York

I really want to go to Thailand! What a gorgeous place to visit. I absolutely love your photos and desperately want to try some Kanom Krok. I hope you manage to find a pan online - YUM!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 3 years ago from Southern California, USA

I have been marveling at your adventures, and I am happy to read what you have to say about every place you go. I wish I could go to Thailand.


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 3 years ago Author

@akirchner - Not sure about their dog policy. I actually saw someone with two little chihuahuas there, but maybe they don't allow bigger dogs. Anyway, I agree making a dog sit on a plane for 18 hours is basically pet abuse. Hope you and Bob had a nice Thanksgiving!

@leahlefler - Yeah, he just ordered a Kanom Krok pan online last night! We'll see if I can make them as good as the ones at the resort. Maybe I'll write a hub about my Kanom Krok experiment...hehehe.

@Sweetiepie - I'm glad you enjoyed this hub, Julia. Hey, maybe you can join us next time we go to Thailand!


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 3 years ago

Sounds like the place to unwind and just relax. The next time your mother sent you to resort and you don't feel like going, send me! I've been to Bangkok a number of times and I've to say I love it. Your review is excellent and now, I need to see about going there the next time I visit Thailand. Lovely pictures and so jealous!


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 3 years ago Author

@anglnwu - Hehehe I can see you're turning green with envy! Next time maybe you and I (plus the two Steves) can visit Thailand together =D


GoodLady profile image

GoodLady 3 years ago from Rome, Italy

Years ago I stayed at the Rose Garden hotel for a few nights whilst we were locations scouting for a movie and I wonder if it has become this wonderful resort. All that you describe in your review is so beautiful, the freshly grown produce, the Thai cultural show. You never know, I might go back one day and so this would be a lovely place to stay thank you. I have voted and will share and Pin too, so that I can find Sampran Riverside when and if one day.


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 3 years ago Author

@Goodlady - Yeah, it might be the same one because that's what the hotel used to be called. Glad you enjoyed this hotel review, Penelope. And thanks for your votes, comment and pin!


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 3 years ago from malang-indonesia

Nice review, my sister. You cover everything here. Very well written and beautiful presentation. I have the same passion with you where we can enjoy the hotel beside the river. Thanks for share with us. Voted up and pressing the buttons, except funny.

Best wishes, Prasetio


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 3 years ago Author

@prasetio - Thanks a lot, Pras. Really appreciate your kind words and votes. :)


prasadjain profile image

prasadjain 3 years ago from Tumkur

A good ,comprehensive account about a good lodge.I feel it would have been much helpful had you given the tariff in terms of American dollars and rates in other hotels there.


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 3 years ago Author

@prasadjin - I thought about doing that but decided against it. Hotel rates are pretty fickle. Those who are really interested in staying at Sampran Riverside can easily visit the hotel's website and find out what the current rates are.


Journey * profile image

Journey * 3 years ago from USA

This looks like a very nice vacation. I'd like to visit Thailand one day. Thanks for sharing.

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