The Hotel Cambodiana in Phnom Penh is a stunning example of the New Khmer architectural style–you’ll either love it or you’ll hate it, but it’s sure to make an impression, much like carved wooden scale model of the temples of Angkor found in their lobby.
The Cambodiana is a massive hotel with a long and storied history. Soon after the hotel opened in 1969, the government was overthrown and Lon Nol soldiers used the hotel as military barracks, Later, the building was finally abandoned by the Khmer Rouge. Since then the hotel has been restored to its former glory, although it’s unclear whether or not they are still using the original decor or just going for a retro feel. Either way, this is not the sleekest most modern hotel in town, but they do have good deals on rooms and the best views in town.
Hotel Cambodiana looks out over the Mekong, and all of their river view rooms have stunning views of the action on the river. Even the rooms with city views make for pretty good goggling as the windows in every room are quite big and the rooms are high up enough to give a nice view of town.
Rooms are the standard, slightly worn, luxury hotel style. There’s nothing exciting here, but they’re immaculately clean with renovated bathrooms with bathtubs, and large, flat-screen televisions. They can also provide rollaway beds for kids, and they include a breakfast buffet every morning.
The rooms are large, and they have four types. Deluxe and superior rooms, and junior and executive suites that feature marble bathrooms and an extra room for watching TV and having meetings. Many of the rooms are for smokers, so be sure to ask for a non-smoking room if you prefer. Prices for the Mekong Club floor are $20-30 more for similar rooms, but they offer better views, a buffet breakfast, a two-hour “snack time” from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. with free sunset drinks and appetizers, daily newspaper delivery and other VIP offerings.
Guests also get access to the hotel’s fully equipped gym (check out our full review), steam rooms and sauna. Spend the day lounging by the recently-renovated pool and take a spot on a sun lounger that looks out onto the Mekong River. They also have two tennis courts with racket rentals, and if you want to improve your game, lessons are only $8 an hour. That’s hard to beat!
Rack rates for the rooms are between $200 and $700, but if you walk-in they are 50% off and they are even cheaper on Booking.com and Agoda, with rates as low as $75.
313 Sisowath Quay, Phnom Penh
T: 023 218 189
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