Travelling to Siem Reap, Cambodia, was no impulsive decision for me. I had been dreaming of it for almost 15 years. Why didn’t I go before? I guess Ethan and I travel a lot for work or to visit friends and family, and that leaves little time for purely leisure trips. Since we have been spending a few months in Taiwan, we took the opportunity to travel to Cambodia. For the first part of our trip, we stayed at luxurious and beautiful Park Hyatt Siem Reap, and that is what I will be writing about in this article.
We had an overnight flight and we arrived around 8am in the morning. The hotel had arrange a pick-up for us in one of their limos. That was obviously a wonderful start to our journey! You can usually arrange a limo pick up with the hotel for around $36. Some hotels include it in your package, but not necessarily – make sure to check.
And if not, a ride from the airport in a regular taxi should be around $10, have I been told
The Park Hyatt Siem Reap is a wonderful haven of tranquility in the middle of busy Siem Reap. Once inside it’s walls, peace and quietness surround you. And I have to give a special mention to how good it smells everywhere.
Little details definitely make this hotel a delightful place to stay at.
We were taken to the Living Room for our check-in. I love the dark wood of the floor and walls, mixed with the bright pink of the couches. There was also beautiful and impressive arrangements made of lotus flowers.
While we were waiting, we were offered as a welcome drink a beautiful choice of delicate infusions. Mine, the Park Limonade, was made of strawberries, lemon and mint, blushed with water. They also brought us little frozen towels to refresh our hands, neck and face. They smelled like jasmin oil and they did wonders to refresh us, specially after our long night of travelling.
Everything went as smooth as can be. The staff is warm, kind and caring and we really felt well taken care of.
The hotel has 109 rooms. They are all very spacious, but the ones on the third floor are especially grand, with their high ceiling and their huge windows. We had a nice view on the sunset and on the inside courtyard. The bed was as comfortable as one can dream, you know, the kind of bed that makes you want to stay in all day (but please don’t, there is so much to see here)!
Our bathroom was humongous : a bath tub, two sinks, a huge shower and a separate room for the toilet. In addition, we had a living room space and a walk-in closet.
We were welcomed with a plate of fruits, fancy vegetable chips and a bottle of wine. This was a great touch that we really appreciated!
The first thing we did after settling in our room was to head out for the pool. The hotel has two of them. One is a salted pool and I liked the fact that is was very quiet there. The other one had more people hanging around, but without being overcrowded either. In the morning, it’s very quiet, as a lot of people are visiting the Angkor Wat temples.
The afternoon tea
Our first day was meant for relaxing and enjoying our beautiful hotel and so we did. We were invited to try the afternoon tea and I must tell you, this is one of the most decadent I have had. If you have time to enjoy it, I strongly recommend you do, even if you are not staying at the hotel.
At $20 for the Khmer-inspired high tea or $25 for the Signature high tea, it’s a must have experience (not to mention an affordable one) in Siem Reap if you want to add a luxury moment to your travel!
Selection for the Khmer-inspired high tea included crispy crab cake, grilled beef skewer, stuffed fish cake, chicken curry and a long list of Cambodian sweetness! And of course, there was delicious teas involved, as well as the scones, the cream and the jam.
Be hungry when you go for it and try not to go on a night where you have a reservation for dinner (or at least go as early as possible in that case). We had tea at 4pm and that was it for the rest of the day for us – we couldn’t eat anymore!
The breakfast was included with our room, but make sure to confirm, as I think it doesn’t not necessarily come with all the rooms. The buffet ($28 if not included) is delicious. In addition to your favorite eggs (omelettes & royal Benedict included) and other breakfast delicious options (like French toasts), you’ll find everything you can dream of for breakfast.
The À la carte menu is also an excellent option. The dishes are small, but at $5 or $6 each, you can have two of them of share three plates for two people. That’s what we did and it was perfect for us on the first morning we were there. Also, you might want to try not to eat too much before going for a long walk in the heat!
We had dinner on the terrasse of the Dining Room, the chic restaurant of the hotel. You want to sit outside on nights where they feature their cultural show. On those nights, you can enjoy live traditional music and dancers while you have dinner.
Ethan and I chose two different set menus : the Pouk Menu (3 services, $30) and the Battamband Menu (5 services, $48) and we just shared everything.
Cambodian cuisine is fresh, healthy and fragrant. In this menu, nothing was too spicy for me to have (but beware in some restaurants, it can get pretty hot in your plate!).
We loved everything (really!), but my favorite dishes was the fish Amok, a must-try Cambodian classic, and the prawn sour soup.
If you have a chance while you are in Cambodia, take a cooking class! I did not have time but I put it on my list of thing to do next time I am here. The cuisine here is very inspiring, and this fine diner gave us a very good idea of all it’s richness.
As you can see, the portions were very generous. The deserts are quite different then what we are used to (green onion in a desert sauce, for example!), and that was very interesting. It’s not too sweet and we enjoyed it a lot.
I was very happy to be treated to a spa experience. The space is beautiful and it smells amazing. There are beautiful bouquets of lotus flowers everywhere. Most of the products they use and sell there are natural.
Ethan and I tried the traditional Khmer massage, a Cambodian style massage. It’s a dry massage (meaning you’ll receive it with your clothes on and there is no oil being used).
We were in the same room. First, we had our feet washed and exfoliated in jasmin oiled warm water (this made me feel like a queen!). Then, our therapist massaged our back, shoulders and legs, while we laid on our stomach, then we laid on our back for the rest of it; arms, legs, head and feet massage.
I even got my face massaged and I loved it! There are also some stretches involved, but they are very soft. I was a little bit soar the next day, as the massage is quite deep and it will really help your muscles to untangle and relax.
At $70 for a 60 minutes massage, I have to mention that it’s not cheap compare to other places around. We tried it in another hotel for $23, but the overall experience was hardly comparable. So yes, you’ll pay more here, but you’ll get all the luxury, comfort and pampering that comes with it
After our treatment, we were offered tea and light cookies to relax and enjoy the well-being procured by the massage.
To sum up, those two nights spent at the Park Hyatt Siem Reap were pretty amazing! The staff is kind and alert to respond to all your needs, at all time. This is as good as service can possibly be, impeccable.
If you want to spoil yourself with a luxury stay in Cambodia, this is the place to do it!
I’d like to give a very special thank you to the team of the Park Hyatt Siem Reap (especially to Noemie) who made our stay so memorable!
To see the prices for this hotel on Booking.com, clic here!
Park Hyatt Siem Reap
17259, Sivutha Boulevard, Siem Reap, Cambodia