What a lovely property - the three sister properties (the B&B, the resort and the Superior Hotel) offer a range of rooms and buildings, all sharing the same tiled lanes and main reception. We stayed in the Superior overlooking the salt-water pool, and it was perfection. The stairs that others have mentioned are private to your unit and are at a good pitch but not as steep as some at the ancient sites - consider it good prep. This place hits way above its weight for the price range.
Just a short note on the hotel-types of services which stood out. I made a mistake and did not do a final confirmation of the room - I sent a last minute email just before boarding our plane to Siem Reap. They had a tuk tuk meet us and the manager was there ready at the hotel to explain they were sold out. No need for all the details, but the end result was very fine accommodation had been arranged for us that night and a room was ready back at the Banana the next morning at eight am. Very gracious handling of the situation, which we appreciated.
The joy here though is experiencing some of real Cambodia and its people. The proprietor was orphaned as a toddler, sent abroad and determined to returned to his people to help rebuild. The Golden Banana is the vehicle he's built to achieve his vision. The staff are from all over, hired not for their education but attitudes and willingness to work - this is a real-life on-the-job training site in hospitality, language and business. A great feeder pool for the future of the country. And they their customers for helping them achieve it. Feels like it really is the other way around.
This isn't a proselytizing place - it's a hotel and you only need to dig into these extra nuances as much as interests you. For those who feel the pull, some ideas on where a few extra bucks would help Khmer families are offered.
Overall - extremely gracious hospitality, great amenities, a fantastic pool, fine location...and we loved the Khmer people we got to chat with as a major bonus.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Private, free-standing, pagoda-like, authentically Khmer stylish ENSUITE rooms with A/C in room, most rooms have high ceiling fan creating a cool environment, hot water showers ensuite. Their is a garden & courtyard where you can spend a few hours reading beside our fish pond. Laundry service, friendly & capable staff who can speak various languages. Breakfast is included in your room rate. We have 2 swimming pools and a sauna with steam room. Our swimming pools are open to non guests who wish use our excel restaurant. Gay friendly, owned & operated and open to guests from all walks of life. The Golden Banana is centrally located in the old colonial area of Siem Reap Down Town, built in the tranquil secluded Khmer Village and only a few minutes stroll to the Old Market, shops, Pub Street, restaurants & nightlife. Only 10 minutes drive to the world-famous temple of Angkor Wat, Siem Reap International Airport & Tonle Sap Port. We can organise all manner of exciting tours ... more less
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