from Mont Albert, Australia
Submitted on 10-04-2017
We are a family with three children (7, 8, and 14) who travel a bit. We travel on a budget and enjoy out of the way places. Siem Reap is not exactly out of the way as it's the launching place for those looking to explore Angkor Wat and the other temples in the area. However, we found this hotel as the result of package option offered through a discounter and decided to take a punt on it. We'd seen quite a mixture of previous reviews so were a little leery, but we loved it. As for details, t...
We are a family with three children (7, 8, and 14) who travel a bit. We travel on a budget and enjoy out of the way places. Siem Reap is not exactly out of the way as it's the launching place for those looking to explore Angkor Wat and the other temples in the area. However, we found this hotel as the result of package option offered through a discounter and decided to take a punt on it. We'd seen quite a mixture of previous reviews so were a little leery, but we loved it. As for details, the staff are highly attentive, they're incredibly friendly and provide impeccable service, always with a warm smile. I really can't say enough about the warmth we felt from all the staff while we were there. Most spoke a lot of English, but some were sketchy, but were still very helpful.
The food was amazing. Breakfast is included in the cost (which was already quite reasonable as the cost worked out to about AUD$100 per day as part of our package).
The breakfasts tended to be a bit western with the usual eggs (fried, poached, boiled, scrambled, or scrambled with capsicum). Each egg order was one egg, but you could order several and they happily provided it. We are big eaters (three growing children, an ultra marathon running mother, and a biggish father means we can pack away a lot of food). There were also delicious baguettes fresh daily. And of course typical fluffy pancakes with sugar based (not maple) syrup in plain, chocolate, or topped with your choice of fruit. There were local options for breakfast, but for some reason we didn't try them.
We ate meals other than breakfast in the resort five times during our stay. Our approach tended to be to really tank up on breakfast, have a very light snack midday, and then have an early dinner and that would be enough for us for the day.
The lunch/dinner menu was split into two parts. The "regular" food (really good) and the Khmer specialty food. You're asked to order two hours in advance if you want Khmer food, but we noticed it wasn't always necessary. The food from both menus was delicious. We're lucky in that our kids are not fussy eaters and will try pretty much anything. They loved almost everything they tried. Sometimes the chilli was too hot for them, but the menu (which is a great book of photos of the food supplemented with an order sheet on which you tick off what you want) indicated which dishes were spicy and the staff were very helpful with suggestions. If you or your kids are into chilli, you'll love all the food. We particularly liked the banana flower salad, the pumpkin and coconut soup, and the curries were amazing. Another nice feature is that you can have the food in the restaurant, in your room, or at a table by the pool, all for the same price. They will happily deliver it wherever you like.
Aside from the great food (which was really good, they never gave us a bad meal), the resort was small and compact. We occupied the biggest cabin, which has two bedrooms (one with a queen bed and the other with three single beds). All beds had memory foam mattresses which were great to sleep on. I didn't get the pillows though, they were thick and hard and quite uncomfortable to me. I swapped mine for a pillow from one of the chairs in the lounge area and was quite content.
The resort is on a quiet, unsealed, back road just outside of Siem Reap (on the side of the temples, so it's closer to the temples than hotels in the city). When it rains, and we were there during the rainy season, so it rained a bit, the roads became awash for a few hours, but the locals still managed to get everything delivered both safely and on time. One particular day, after a very hard rain, the paths in our section of the resort were completely awash. This was a day in which major flooding had happened in nearby areas, so it was an unusually heavy fall, but for some this would be a complete turn off to have to wade through the ground water to get where you wanted to go. This would be a complete non-issue in the dry season. The smiles of the friendly staff never slipped even during this drenching.
The pool is quite small, but was perfect for us. As it was the low season, most of the time we were the only ones in the pool, which suited our rambunctious kids down to the ground. I imagine in the high season the pool could get crowded easily as it's not large at all. It's a kidney shape and about 10 metres by 5 metres roughly. We loved the pool and used it for at least two hours every day. Again, if the resort was busy, I could imagine that would not be possible.
There is a spa there, and the costs are quite reasonable. Massages are USD$15 per hour. There is also regular yoga available for free several afternoons per week. My wife and I both got a massage and this was professionally done. I had no complaints at all.
As for other facilities, the place is very light on. Don't arrive expecting to be entertained every minute of every day. It's not that kind of a place. There is also a well used (but also well cared for) pool table in the dining area that our kids loved to play.
As it was wet season there were plenty of mosquitoes around. Come prepared and you should be good. One thing I noticed was that Cambodian mosquitoes don't seem to like buzzing around your ears for a while before going in for a bite. Instead, they just go straight for a nip on the ankles or legs and then disappear without you even realising it. For those worried about malaria, that can be a bit scary.
In summary, if you like five (or more) stars of luxury accommodation, give this place a wide berth. Conversely, if you're more interested in an authentic experience with cozy cottages (air conditioned I would add), and great, friendly service, then give this a try. We loved it, and would go back in a heartbeat.