Firstly, for those that are unaware because maybe you have never been to Thailand, or maybe just living under a rock somewhere, Nana ( Nana Plaza ) is located on Sukhumvit Soi 4. It is one of Bangkok's red light areas and in my opinion seems to push the prostitution concept into a almost acceptable part of life. There is nothing descreet about this area, it is all about selling to foreigners. selling flesh, pirate DVDs, Stun Guns, Knives and beer. As a guy who has spent too long in Thailand, it is probably one of the least favourite places I know in the area. But there are some good places, live entertainment and even some good food to be had.
So on Wednesday, I arranged a meeting with another contributer ( a Mr Sam B Chang ) to Thai Together, down from Issan for his yearly visa "procedure", for a drink. It is nice to meet the real people behind the stories here and we had a good evening. We met at his hotel and early evening we took a tuk tuk further up the road before crossing Sukhumvit road and to a bar " Beer Garden" in Soi 7... I never quite understand why they call these places gardens as other than a tree growing from the floor and through the roof, there really was nothing garden-like about the place. I can really only describe this as a cattle market, with girls all around the room sitting at bar stools trying to get your attention and returning it with a smile or giggle. Local beers were quite expensive at 90 baht for Singa and 85 for Leo, but it was reasonably quiet and you could hold a conversation through the background 1970's disco music. We stayed a couple of hours, drank a few beers and tried not to attract attention by looking at anyone.
After that "Sam" showed me a fantastic place that sold the best steaks I have ever tasted in Thailand. For those who spend alot of time here you will have experienced the elation when you are going out to a Steak House, only to be disappointed after greeted with a this gristly item than a chainsaw would have difficulty doing battle with. Medium, rare are all words I can assume that have no meaning in Thailand, as every steak up until this wednesday was well cooked, over-cooked or burned !! Anyway this place was different, attentive service, perfectly cooked and attractive to the eye. I really should learn to slow down when eating, my physique tends to admit that I eat well, but my speed of digestion seems to give people the feeling that I hadn't eaten for a while. I will try and edit the name into this article at a later date, but it was between soi 5 and soi 7 on Sukhumvit.
Next we walked back to Soi 4, this takes a while as Sukhumvit was starting to get busy with the 1000's of "night workers" turning up for their shift ( or should I say shaft ? ) as well as the countless beggers and freelancers lining the street and calling anyone " a handsome man" . If you get singled out for the handsome man line, don't take it to heart, just check the mirror when you get home. The mirror never lies, but these girls and ladyboys will, or they may be referring to the attractive wallet you keep in your front left hand pocket, X ray vision I am certain is a quality these girls possess as well as many others that you would need to agree a price before you get to see. We then spent a few hours on a open bar in front of Nana Plaza or ladyboy central as it is known if you are still drinking there at 1 am.
We left the bar at a ridiculously "untouristy" 11pm and went our seperate ways. I crossed back over onto Sukhumvit Road, and walked toward the Sky Train station " Nana" at a snail's pace, as the road was heaving with street vendors, beggers, tuk tuk drivers with laminated cards of interesting night time venues. I feel I should mention that night time "tuk tuk" drivers are prostitutes of a different kind waiting to exploit you in exchange for a commision from a club, massage parlour or if you are really unlucky a jewelery shop.
Anyway, a great night out but not a place I would enjoy to spend my time on a regular basis. A little tip for anyone in the area after 11pm.. On Sukhumvit Soi 7/1 there is a live entertainment club called Bangkok Beat, great bands and atmosphere and I believe it is open till either 2 or 3 am !