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About Phnom Penh
Despite all the photos you’ve probably seen of Cambodia’s glimmering capital, many people find Phnom Penh hasn’t lost its feeling of exoticism and promise. From the wonderful views of the mighty Mekong river to the traditional palaces, the smells of the markets, the bikes and motorbikes and the magical humidity, this is the Asia many people long to visit. This is a capital city, so the best places to stay in Phnom Penh range from the very affordable to the rather opulent, but generally our Guru’s prefer smaller, independent hotels in the heart of the historic district, often with amazing Mekong views.
Phnom Penh was liberated from the Khmer Rouge in 1979, but it still remains one of Asia’s least developed capitals. But its few Western style malls and many markets - numerous occupying the French colonial boulevards and pedestrian promenades - are what give Phnom Penh some of its appeal. The wonderful palaces and Khmer temples also help give it its own character. And then of course there are the people.
There’s not quite enough electricity to go around here, but the tourist area, by the riverside, is fairly well catered for and littered with great bars and cafes. There are also plenty of touts, but Phnom Penh is generally pretty friendly.
Some of Phnom Penh’s unmissable sights include the Royal Palace, the National Museum of Cambodia, Wat Botum, the Wat Phnom, the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Silver Pagoda. It’s also worth trying plenty of local cuisine, taking a cruise on the Mekong and visiting loads of markets! Be careful when you’re walking around town though, there aren’t that many traffic lights in Phnom Penh. And the road rules seem to favour larger vehicles.
Our pick of the best places to stay in Phnom Penh offer something for every taste and budget, from cheap'n'chic to top of the range luxury.
For great value
- One Up Banana Hotel is a trendy little number offering suite only accommodation in a superb location. Prices start from around £30 per night!
- The Blue Lime Hotel is a small, airy hotel in a quiet alley behind the National Gallery and near the Royal Palace. There’s also a lovely tropical garden and plunge pool. Rooms start at £32 per night.
- Around the £40 per night mark is The Quay, a chic, 16 room hotel with minimalist, monochrome decor and teak wall and floor panels. There’s also a rooftop hot tub and good food.
- The Sangkum is an intimate little villa with just 12 rooms, outdoor pool surrounded by tropical greenery and just five mins from Wat Phnom. Doubles from only £43.
- Rambutan Resort is a revamped '60s villa with tropical gardens, pool and great location in the BKK1 district. Again prices start from around £43 per night.
- The Okay Boutique Hotel is another extremely reasonable option, with 40 large, luxurious rooms in central Phnom Penh. There’s also a spa and pool and a restaurant. And you're in a brilliant location close to all the city's attractions.
- The Kabiki is a child friendly haven, tucked down the same street as the Prime Minister's house! Rooms are simple, but there's a great garden with special fenced off area for playing and dedicated kids' pool.
For location location location
- The Amanjaya Pancam Hotel is right on the banks of the Mekong river, and has a stylish, yet traditional vibe with lots of wood and deep red colours. There are just 21 rooms and you’re right by a number of historical sites, museums and galleries.
- The Bougainvillier Hotel, sits on the Sisowath Quay with lovely river views, and is just a few minutes stroll from the Royal Palace, the National Museum and the Night Market. The decor is traditional Khmer in style, with silk and wooden furnishings and four poster beds.
- Circa 51 is a chic little property with simple rooms and a stunning pool owned by a Pakistani-Australian couple - the Pakistani food is fabulous!
- The Governor's House is located in a quiet area and oozes colonial charm on the outside with chic rooms on the inside! Plus you'll find a gourmet restaurant and extensive wine selection.
- TEAV Boutique Hotel is a modern delight - a fusion of Khmer aesthetics wtih contemporary design. There's also a pool for cooling off and an excellent restaurant and cocktail bar on site.
For colonial charm
- Raffles Hotel Le Royal offers a grand combination of colonial architecture and Art Deco style. It promises the luxury of a bygone age, plus lively bars and haute cuisine.
- The FCC Phnom Penh is a lovely colonial villa conversion right on the river front. The furniture is period, with lots of wood, and there are parquet and marble floors. There are just nine rooms and a good restaurant.
- Villa Paradiso is another options if you're after a colonial mansion house. Spacious rooms are traditional in style with four posters and crisp white linens. And it's easy walking distance from some of the city's best bits.
Best Hotels in Phnom Penh
The Sangkum 12 rooms from $55Phnom Penh
This intimate little villa offers a more personal experience of Phnom Penh. Enjoy a glass of wine with the Italian owner, or laze by the pool after a long day's sightseeing. The spacious rooms are simple but tasteful, with vintage furniture, cool colours, tiled floors and poster-adorned walls.Value chic - Unbeatable value with standard rooms from just $55 per night.Local markets - Just a 10 minute walk from both the Old Market and the Night MarketSwimming Pool - Oudoor pool surrounded by tropical greenerySights nearby - 5 minutes from Wat Phnom
The Governor's House 12 rooms from $104Phnom Penh (Boeug Keng Kong)
In a stately part of town lies this former Governor's House. Behind its colonial exteriors are chic rooms decorated in muted palettes and black and white photographs plus modern bathrooms and espresso machines. There is a gourmet restaurant with an extensive wine collection and an alluring pool.Foodies - Boasting a fantastic restaurant with excellent wine selection.City Style - Explore the city from the most dignified of residences.Local markets - The Russian Market is a great place to pick up gifts and souvenires.Sights nearby - The National Museum, within easy reach, is a fascinating visit.
Circa 51 10 rooms from $68Phnom Penh (Daun Penh)
Chic little hotel with B&B vibes. Rooms are simple with wooden touches and retro furnishings; set in a 1960s villa. Owned and run by a Pakistani-Australian couple, whose restaurant serves Pakistani food. Come for a relax away from the hubbub, good food, a kind welcome, and a pool to die for.Traditional - former 1960s residence of Princess Bopha Devi (half-sister of present Cambodian king and a celebrated classical dancer)Sights nearby - located in the popular Street 240 area, it lies just a 15 minute walk from the Royal Palace and National MuseumOutstanding locationLocal markets - Good for local colour.
Bougainvillier Hotel 23 rooms from $130Phnom Penh
Set along Sisowath Quay's waterfront, minutes from the Royal Palace, National Museum and Night Market, the hotel boasts stunning views of the Mekong. Designed in a classic Khmer style, four poster beds nestle among silk and wooden furnishings. Enjoy the pool, sauna and the great hive of activity.Sights nearby - 3 min walk to Royal Palace, National Museum and Night Market.City StyleTraditional - Designed in the classic Khmer style of silk and wooden furnishings.Local markets - Good for local colour.
La Rose Boutique Hotel & Spa 10 rooms from $125Phnom Penh
La Rose successfully combines contemporary design with touches of French Indochina to produce real comfort - dark wooden four-posters, with matching furniture & frames. Moody reds slice through the monochrome theme in the form of pillows and throws. Total relaxation is on the cards in the fab spa.City StyleSights nearby - Just minutes away from major city attractions such as Independence Monument, the Royal Palace and the National MuseumViews - Of the cityLocal markets - Good for local colour.
iRoHa Garden Hotel & Resort 25 rooms from $100Phnom Penh (Sangkat Tonle Bassac)
A blissful hideaway for those seeking to put a bit more distance between them and the main hubbub. iRoHa offers a haven of peace with its lush tropical garden, overflowing pool, intimate cabanas and extensive spa therapies. Individually designed rooms range from the Colonial to the Urban.City StyleSights nearby - 5 min drive to the Royal Palace and Riverfront Park. 10 min walk to The Independence Monument.Spa - iRoHa Spa offers treatments to rejuvenate mind, body and spiritLocal markets - The famous Russian Market is just half a mile away
The Blue Lime Hotel 23 rooms from $50Phnom Penh
This 4-storey hotel is notable for its use of concrete and silk. The effect is modern and airy. Rooms are capacious with all the desired mod cons. Found down a quiet alley behind the National Gallery, the verdant tropical garden and luxury pool to the rear are a treat. Laze in a cabana, or head out!Sights nearby - The hotel is located in a quiet alley right behind the National Museum and the Royal Palace.City StyleSwimming Pool - Salt water outdoor pool. For something really special book one of the four rooms with a private plunge poolRestrictions on children - Children must be 16 or over.
Okay Boutique Hotel 40 rooms from $70Phnom Penh (Sangkat Chey Chumneas)
A luxurious, yet extremely affordable hotel in central Phnom Penh. The spa, pool, views, balconies, restaurant and proximity to the best attractions make this hotel hard to fault. Rooms are large and airy, with comfy beds and wooden furnishings in the classic Khmer stlye.Sights nearby - Nestled behind the Royal Palace and the National Gallery.City StyleTraditional - Traditional Khmer styleSwimming Pool - Outdoor rooftop pool
One Up Banana Hotel 14 rooms from $39Phnom Penh (Beung Keng Kang I)
This trendy suite only accommodation offers exceptional value for money. Albeit no restaurant and pool, but there is a lovely terrace with views of the city, a bar lounge area and modern, capacious rooms with hints of Khmer art and style. Not to mention the uber cool location in the BBK1 district.Value chic - This property offers exceptional value for money with rooms from just $40 per nightCity StyleSights nearby - 7 min walk to the Independence Monument. 10 min drive to Sisowath Quay & the famous Royal Palace.Outstanding location
The Quay 16 rooms from $65Phnom Penh
This chic little hotel invites an escape from the bustling Sisowath Quay. Its sixteen minimalist rooms, all cut from the same cloth, have teak panels and floors, sleek black and white contrasts, plus frosted glass. Come for swish bathrooms, good food and a dip in the hot tub on the roof!Lively - Hip and happening.Local markets - Good for local colour.Outstanding locationViews - Great views from hotelRecommended by - CN Traveller, I Escape
The Sam Boutique Hotel 12 rooms from $60Phnom Penh (Sangkat Boeung Keng Kang I)
Once again Phnom Penh produces a delightful hotel with pool, restaurant and excellent value for money. Contemporary Khmer art adorns the walls, keeping in line with the modern approach to the classic Khmer styling. Rooms are spacious and well lit with LED lights. Relax in the sweet tropical garden.Value chicCity StyleSights nearby - Under a mile from Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Royal Palace. 1.5 miles to the famous Riverfront Park & Sisowath Quay.Local markets - The famous Russian Market is 1 mile from the hotel
The Pavilion 36 rooms from $60Phnom Penh
The definition of a Cambodian boutique hotel, The Pavilion can be found in an old colonial style building. Come for wooden four posters, big windows, crisp white linen and tasteful decor. Located just 100 metres from the Royal Palace, why not hop on a hotel bike and explore!Sights nearby - Situated right behind Wat Botum, the Royal Pagoda and close to the Royal Palace and Riverside.City Style - The Pavilion embodies "colonial chic"Swimming Pool - Two pools (one in the sun and one in the shade) plus four private plunge poolsLocal markets - Good for local colour.Recommended by - CN Traveller
Amanjaya Pancam Hotel 21 rooms from $115Phnom Penh (Corner Street 154)
Right on the banks of the Mekong river, this chic hotel offers a trendy base while exploring Cambodia's capital. The wooden beams, dark browns and moody reds combine to give a flavour of effortless style. Head to the roof bar for a drink with a view, or jump on a hotel bike to explore Wat Ounalom.Sights nearby - Historical sites, museums and galleries all very close by. Wat Ounalom is about 20m from the front door.Local markets - Don't miss the local Russian market!Outstanding locationLively area - In the thick of the action.Recommended by - I Escape
The Villa Paradiso 14 rooms from $70Phnom Penh (Daun Penh)
A converted colonial mansion house, walking distance from some of Phnom Penh's top attractions and home to a popular cafe and indulgent spa. Rooms are spacious and feature traditional furnishings, four poster beds with white linens and modern bathrooms. There is a tropical garden and pool.Value chic - This kind of luxury doesn't come much cheaperHoneymoons - Special honeymooners package available.Spa breaks - Plenty of indulgent spa packages.Spa - 5 wooden spa cabins await guests arranged around the pool. Spa menu ranges from traditional Khmer massages to beauty treatments.
Raffles Hotel Le Royal 175 rooms from $270Phnom Penh (Daun Penh)
Le Royal is the best by far that Phnom Penh has to offer. A grand combination of colonial architecture, with slick Art Deco interiors, this hotel speaks of a bygone age visited by the greats. Haute cuisine, lively bars and top service; come for real luxury, and prepare to pay for it!City Style - Phnom Penh's grand dame oozes colonial charm and luxury.Lively - The bars on site stay open long after everything else closes at sundownSwimming Pool - 2 swimming pools surrounded by frangipani-lined tropical garden.Views - Great views from hotelRecommended by - CN Traveller
FCC Phnom Penh 9 rooms from $125Phnom Penh
Colonial villa conversion in the riverfront district where parquet & marble floors reign. Colour schemes are simple; browns, whites and beiges complement the wooden furniture and large windows. Come for a more intimate experience in the hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh. No pool, but good food.Views - Deluxe rooms have views over the MekongRomantic - Good for couples.Local markets - Good for local colour.Lively - Hip and happening.
The TeaHouse 52 rooms from $68Phnom Penh
This relatively new tea-themed urban bolthole exudes hints of contemporary Asian style, whilst honouring the past. Fast becoming a favourite in Daun Penh, in the alleys behind celebrated street 240. Come for the afternoon tea (choose from 30 types of tea) and rooms where red and white schemes reign.Value chic - Chic spot in the centre of town where doubles start from just $68 per night B&B.City StyleSights nearby - walking distance of the capital's historical center: the Royal Palace, National Museum and RiversideLocal markets - Half a mile to the famous Central Market
The Plantation 70 rooms from $100Phnom Penh
One of the larger hotels, with one of the best pools (yet still bang in the middle of Phnom Penh), The Plantation oozes decadence and modernity, despite being housed in both Khmer style and colonial era villas. Come for elegant muslin draped wooden four-posters, views, and a top notch spa.Architectural - The hotel buildings originate from both the colonial era and the Khmer styleSights nearby - Located directly behind the Royal Palace. Walking distance to the Royal Pagoda and National Museum.Swimming Pool - The outdoor is one of the best in the city.Lively - Hip and happening.
La Maison d'Ambre 10 rooms from $100Phnom Penh (Sangkat Wat Phnom)
Slightly different from the rest, these 10 private suites (that come with their own kitchen and living areas, and named for films) are testament to the contemporary waves now rolling over Phnom Penh. The Fifth Element is a reputable bar & restaurant, frequented by the well heeled and trendy types.City Style - Contemporary accommodation right in the centre of townContemporaryChicLocal markets - Explore Phnom Penh's Central Market - it sells everything under the sun!
Rambutan Resort, Phnom Penh 19 rooms from $55Phnom Penh (BKK1)
The Rambutan is a newly revamped 1960s villa complete with pool, tropical garden, spa and reputable restaurant in the desirable BKK1 district. Gay-friendly, fun loving, filled with contemporary art; the vibe is good and the rooms are chic, modern, airy and simple with sleek marble floors.City Style - Modern Asian style complemented with beautiful handcrafted furnitureSights nearby - 10 minute stroll away to the Royal Palace and Sisowath QuaySwimming Pool - Outdoor poolLocal markets - Good for local colour.
TEAV Boutique Hotel 12 rooms from $112Phnom Penh (Boeung Keng Kang I)
This unique hotel fuses traditional Khmer aesthetics with contemporary post-industrial style, materials, and balance. The 'Teav' concept is embedded in Cambodian culture; a historical title associated with great hospitality. The rooms are minimal & monochrome, with hollow chalk sketches on the wall.City Style - So modern, it's post-modernValue chicSights nearby - National Musuem, Royal Palace and Night Market are 5 minutes’ drive from the hotel.Local markets - Good for local colour.
Villa Langka 48 rooms from $60Phnom Penh
Identifiable for its class, style and comfort among the onslaught of new hotels springing up around Phnom Penh, Villa Langka stands out. Its lush pool, verdant garden, capacious rooms and stylishly minimalist interiors with touches of Cambodian features offer a great place to stay in a central spot.Hideaway - Though you're in the centre of town, once inside it feels a million miles away with the pretty garden and pool.Sights nearby - 200m from the Cambodian Independence Monument and opposite the Wat Langka pagodaDesigner - Uniquely designed interiors.Local markets - Good for local colour.
The 252 19 rooms from $55Phnom Penh
Since 2010 this Swiss owned hotel has nestled in a calm oasis, bordered by a leafy tropical garden, cosy cabanas and an overflowing pool. The 19 rooms are spacious, airy and contemporary, with furniture of polished wood. The better rooms offer pool views. Sip on a poolside cocktail before dining in.Value chicCity StyleSights nearby - Quay Sisowath, the Royal Palace, the Central Market and the National Museum are within 5 minutes drive by tuk tukCooking classes - Highly recommended by the hotel - they can help with selecting the correct one and with booking
La Rose Suites 25 rooms from $210Phnom Penh (Sangkat Tonle Bassac)
A more expensive option in the Cambodian capital, but well worth it. The divine salt water swimming pool, tasty restaurant, private cooking classes and complimentary massage all add to the luxurious ambiance. Inspired by French Indochina and the grandeur of Angkor Wat, the rooms are wooden chic.City StyleSpa - Traditional Khmer massage and other techniques are available as well as scrubs, foot spa sessions, bath treatments and moreSights nearby - 900 yards from the Royal Palace, 1 mile from Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum & the Riverfront ParkLocal markets - Good for local colour.
The Kabiki 18 rooms from $55Phnom Penh
The Kabiki, a child-friendly haven, is tucked away down the same street as the Cambodian Prime Minister's house. Rooms are simple, with an abundance of white linen, wooden four-posters, and hints of lime green running through. There is a children's pool, and organised activities on offer.Families - The spacious fenced off garden makes an ideal space for children to play, and there's a special baby pool for little ones.Child friendly - The Kabiki prides itself in being a top choice for families, especially with younger childrenValue chic - With standard twin rooms only $55 per night, you can't go wrong!Spa - Located @ The Pavilion (sister hotel) 2 mins away