Virtual meanderings

Board games in downtown Bangkok

I got a call by Isaac  who had come back from Vientiane, Laos – and we arranged to meet in downtown Bangkok (where he lived). Khao San Road was far from the downtown area at Sukhumvit road. To get to Sukhumvit I could use a taxi or try the public transport – first the river boat and then the modern elevated “sky train” (I will be dedicating a separate post on Bangkok transportation options). I opted for the public transport option.

It was rush hour (people were going home after work) and the water taxi (B20) was fun. The sky-train (B40) at rush hour was even more fun.

Rush hour

Rush hour on the Bangkok sky train


    Luckily, in the former the river breeze was cooling me off, and in the latter it was the air-conditioning. I got off at Asoc station (one of the big downtown stations) and met Isaac, who had brought along two more companions – his fiancée and a Canadian friend of theirs. We then proceeded to pick up another friend of theirs – Kara (an American). Kara, too, was a prominent Bangkok Couchsurfing host and also lived in the Sukhumvit road area.

    This area is the epitome of upscale Bangkok. To quote the link above “[it] epitomizes modern Bangkok from its high rise apartments to air-conditioned shopping centers and stylish boutiques and restaurants. Sukhumvit also has a wide selection of nightly entertainment venues making this one of the city’s more colourful areas.”

Sukhumvit Road - Bangkok, Thailand

Sukhumvit Road - Bangkok, Thailand

Courtesy: MikeBehnken on flickr

    After having a quick snack at a nearby fast-food, Kara took us to a board game shop in the area, where club members could play board games for free. She had just signed up for a membership and was eager to try it out. Soon it was clear that I was in the company of seasoned board game players. As for me, I had not played a board game in my life (excluding the “board games” we played as little kids).

The boardshop was located at a gated community residential area with security guards (who never stop you to ask questions what you are doing and where you are going if you are white a “foreigner”). We left our shoes out at the front door, as is customary in Thailand. Inside were some local Thai teenage boys and girls playing – upper middle class (read: rich) kids, who also spoke decent English (not always the case with Thai people). The contrast to Khao San and its neighboring soi with their old buildings crammed together could not be sharper. To me the Sukhumvit area felt almost like a different country (but we never stopped at any of its bars full of old white men accompanied by young Thai girls).

Sukhumvit board games shop

Sukhumvit board games shop - random Thai kid (Look Ma - no shoes!)

    Courtesy: author

    My American acquaintancies decided on a board game called “Ticket to Ride: European traveler” and we spent the next four hours happily enjoying ourselves (the game was truly fun) – until it was already 1 am. Next thing on their agenda was going to a party. And me? I had to be getting up early next morning to go on a one-day trip I had booked, so I left.

Not only had I had a great time with them – but they had also provided me with a lot of insight on Thailand and South-East Asia. Possible new stops en route Bangkok – Shanghai – Tokyo were beginning to pop up (in my head, that is). But as far as tomorrow was concerned – I was going to Ayutthaya.


6 responses to “Board games in downtown Bangkok

  1. Carlos January 12, 2012 at 1:54 am

    I’ve read this post, I’m in Bankok and I do like to play board games. Could you tell me where this shop is? Any place to play board games here?

  2. mastercopycat January 12, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Hi Carlos. I do not know the address of the board games shop (other than it was in the Sukhumvit area). I will now contact Isaac to see if he is able to write down some instructions.

  3. mastercopycat January 13, 2012 at 8:20 am

    Hi Carlos. Isaac is not in Bangkok right now and it is impossible for him to check, but he believes the address was Sukumvit Soi 101. (A ‘soi’ is the word for a side street in Thai, in case you are new to the city). It is a gated residential complex, but you do not need to get inside the complex itself. The board game shop is on the second floor (there is a staircase next to the guard booth) and is facing the street.
    Isaac will be back to Bangkok after Jan 20th and is planning to go play there himself. He will gladly meet up with you if you are still in the city. He will provide his contact details here shortly.

  4. Anonymous January 17, 2012 at 8:10 am

    Carlos. I love board games and am always looking for people to play with. Find me here:

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