Sojourn was this trip's highlight for us! :-)
We weren't really planning to shell out for accomodations in Cambodia but as we were travelling with our 3-year-old, we figured we needed to stay at a place with a pool atleast for one night so that he could enjoy himself after we bring him around temples all morning that we weren't sure he'd be able to appreciate yet. Anyway, to cut a long story short, that's how we ended up in Sojourn. Was planning to stay at another bed & breakfast actually but as we were booking our first night at The Villa (their sister hotel in Siem Reap), they gave me a great introductory rate of $80/night for their Apsara Villa, which i thought was a great deal since i was told they were going to start charging their regular rate of around $200 for it after October (i hope they don't!).
Since we booked our morning temple tour thru The Villa, they offered to just transfer our luggage to Sojourn while we were at the temples so that when we check in in the afternoon, our bags were already waiting for us in the room. I thought this was very nice of them and we appreciated this very much. Just like with The Villa, bookings were made thru email and all inquiries were answered promptly by the ever-so-patient Rachel. :-) (I always appreciate excellent service that begins with booking so this was definitely a bonus for me!)
Upon arrival from the temples, we were greeted with cold towels perfect for the afternoon heat, and while i was busy speaking to our tuktuk driver regarding arrangements for that evening, one of their staff played with and watched our little boy and even wiped his face with the cold towels to refresh him. It was very sweet of her! :-) After checking into the room, a tray of cold welcome drinks (and even a special one for our little boy!) was brought in together with a snack of coconut pancakes. Beautiful welcome! :D
We fell in love with the room! It was spacious, clean and well-furnished! We even had a daybed by the window and a little office/desk by the corner that was perfect for checking emails and doing a bit of work while we were there. The bed was large and comfy! Our bathroom was lovely! And when I saw that we had an outdoor rainshower, I immediately asked if we were in the right room cause I knew we had booked for the Apsara Villa which didn't have an outdoor rainshower and we were told that we had been upgraded to the Temple Villa at no extra charge. Pleasant surprise and I love them even more for this! :-) (does not affect the review whatsoever as i would still have the same good thigns to say about them without the upgrade ;p) I loved their Orange Blossom shampoo and their Lime Basil shower gel. Smells divine! :-) Water pressure in both the outdoor rainshower and the regular shower inside the bathroom was excellent! :-)
Another thing to note: when booking, I casually mentioned that we were travelling with our 3-year-old and when we got there, a cot/playpen was set up in the room. :-) Though we never got to use it since our little boy was a little too big for it, I thought that it was very thoughtful of them to do that without any request from us. :-)
Pool was just great! And our little boy easily spent the whole afternoon swimming and hanging out by the pool bar. When he asked one of the staff if he could watch Cartoon Network while he was by the pool bar, the staff gamely turned the TV on for him so that he could watch. (Now, our little boy wants us to install a TV by our pool! ;p) They had sunbeds all over and even nice little daybeds for big groups. The bonfire they lit at night was beautiful to look at and makes swimming at night an even more itneresting experience!
We fell in love with our room, the staff and the place so much that we cancelled all our plans for that afternoon and decided to stay in and hang out at Sojourn for the rest of the day! :-) We still headed out to town for dinner though since we found some of the items on the menu a little too expensive for our liking (mains were priced from $4.5 to $7). :s which is understandable since i guess it's convenient to just order room service or eat at the resort but we went out mostly because we wanted to grab some ice cream from Blue Pumpkin at the Pub Street again! ;p
Going into town especially at night was slightly inconvenient. :s First, a return tuktuk costs $5 and even more if you wanted to stay out late and takes about 15 minutes but what makes it more inconvenient is that the roads going to town & back are hardly lit and full of potholes (really bad if youre riding a tuktuk!) and can get a little scary. But this is about the only thing we didn't like about our stay there.
Another thing I loved about them is that I felt that they had a sincere commitment to help out the villages surrounding them. While we were there, they were collecting donations from other guests who would like to help so that they can send them to the people affected by the recent typhoon & floods. I can also see that their staff are well taken care of since they had such big hearts for service! and you can always tell when people love what they're doing and i think the owners inculcated that in their staff. :-) Helps too that we saw how hands-on the owners were. We met Anthony & Fiona a few times with their cute little son while we were there and they were always so pleasant and ready to help with anything. :-)
Also good to note that they had very interesting tours. Even if you're not staying with them, you should definitely atleast book your tours through them. They can even arrange temple packs for you to eat at sunset! Nice! :-) We will definitely join these tours the next time we're in Siem Reap! :-)
Booked our van to Phnom Penh thru them and while they offered it originally at $80, they gave us a discount and charged us only $65. Driver was very nice and got us to Phnom Penh after 5 hours, just as promised.
Before leaving for Phnom Penh, I asked if it would be possible to use their computer to print our boarding passes and they didn't even hesitate to let me use the computer in the lobby. I don't think their staff can ever say no to anything. ;-)
Complimentary breakfast at Sojourn was great! Only thing I didn't like was my banana crepes as the crepes were too gummy. :( But The Mister's Khmer rice porridge was excellent! and so were our lattes! We also got a bread basket with a choice of 2 spreads: butter, jam, peanut butter, or vegemite; and a seasonal fruit platter each! :-)
On the other hand, just a few not-even-so-negative comments:
- we had problems with some channels on our TV. :( when we told front desk about it, they said they would come and fix it but they never did so we're not sure if it was a misunderstanding or if they forgot. :s we left for town shortly after so it didn't bother us anymore but when we got back, the tv was still not fixed but we were too tired so we just ignored it.
- potholes & no lights on the roads. would not recommend going out at night.
- wi-fi was very slow. :( could use it for basic surfing & skype but not for sending data or uploading photos. then again, it was the same everywhere we went in Siem Reap / Phnom Penh so maybe it is the Internet situation in all of Cambodia. :s
These, i think, are still a small price to pay for the lovely experience we got while staying at Sojourn. :-) Sorry for the long review. Just have so much to say about this place but bottom line is: for $80, we got so much more than we paid for! And it was easily one of the most pleasant accomodations we ahve ever come across in Southeast Asia ever! :-)
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.