After a 20 year wait to get to Cambodia we stayed at this beautiful hotel for five nights. We flew from Bangkok on Bangkok Air, first time of using this airline for many years as the scheduling suited our timings.
I booked transport to meet us from the hotel,and Tang met us directly after customs with our names very clearly displayed. On getting into the car he gave us cold towels and water, an impressive start. On route to the hotel he gave us plenty of information about Siem Reap and Angkor Wat.
Although remorks (as the Tuk Tuks are called in Cambodia) are available at the airport if you are arriving with a couple of suitcases it would be a very tight squeeze, so the small cost for the hotel transport is good value for money.
As we arrived quite early in the day our room wasn't quite ready so we were accommodated in the Naga Lounge and given complementary coffee, and updated as to how soon the room would be available by the very helpful front desk manager Cheava.
Cheava took us to our corner suite which was a lovely room, with separate lounge and bedroom area with large tvs in each which could be separated by sliding doors, floored throughout with a beautiful teak floor and rugs. The bathroom was very well equipped and there was an additional separate toilet. Nice additions of surround sound speakers, 'Mood CD provided, and an aromatic oil burner were included along with copious bottles of complementary drinking water, and probably the best bowl of daily fresh fruit that I have experienced over the years. Free WiFi included in this room.
The Naga lounge is provided for guests in suites from 10am to 4pm daily for complementary soft drinks, tea and coffee and afternoon tea, on our first full day the heavens opened and the lounge was a good bolt hole for part of our first day! We also ate lunch in there at a very reasonable cost for this standard of hotel
Unlike some 'club' facilities in Starwood hotels there is no provision of complementary laundry or evening cocktails, but the suite is very good value nonetheless. I book direct with Starwood as this is the best way to get the best price, and if you join their loyalty programme -starwood preferred guest- you can use the points gained to either get upgrades,free rooms or transfer to other loyalty programmes like Ba airmiles.
The hotel pool is extensive and surrounded by small lotus ponds in which are colourful little fish which will give your hands or feet a 'fish massage' if you so desire! The grounds are very extensive and you can see many colourful birds and butterflies. The Spa is also located in this area and whilst more expensive than those offered outside the hotel it was very good value.
The choice for breakfast is very comprehensive with western and asian food of all types on offer, there are ready cooked noddles and rice or you can select what you want and it is cooked fresh for you, as well as fresh fruits and home made yoghurts. This dining area is wonderfully lit with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the gardens.
The staff in the hotel were, without exception, incredibly friendly with a real 'can do' helpful attitude.
The door staff are more than happy to assist with whatever transport you want to take, in our case we chose to take the remorks which wait outside the front of the hotel on the road. The hotel staff summon one of these for you and then you negotiate where you want to go and the price. At the time of our visit Siem Reap was heavily flooded and the centre resembled Venice with about a foot or so of water on the roads. Flooding at this time of year is common although heavier than normal this year, but worth bearing in mind if planning to visit in late Spetember. The mopeds that pull the passenger part of the remorks (more of a covered trailer effect than the rigid tuk tuk of Thailand) have a remarkable ability to travel through quite deep water! The Temples are unafftected by the flood water and their are far fewer tourists at this time of year.
We were luck to happen across Mr Bundit (No 11) who was a very helpful young man, with a god knowledge of the area. We prefer to see things at our own pace rather than a prearranged tour, and decided on what were must sees to us in the available time.
There is one place to get your passes to the temples, these come in 1-day, 3-day, and seven day passes. The 3 day and 7 day passes last for stipulated days over a set period of time so you do not have to use them on 3 consecutive days. These are purchased from a ticket booth on the road to Angkor Wat, 1 day $20;3 day $40;7day $60. Best paid for in US$ cash.
Mr Bundit took us to our chosen locations each morning, and then onto our chosen place for lunch, the best food to be had is the food stalls outside the front of Angkor Wat. On the left side as viewed from the moat are restaurants designed for the tourists, but much better food, if more basic tables and chairs are to be found on the opposite side of the road, fresh cooked and cheap, where the Cambodians eat. For 5 or so hours Mr Bundit asked $10 for each day, extremely reasonable price and $2 to go into town in the evening, we did of course tip this price. He took us to where we wanted to go with no attempt to take us to anywhere else, unlike one called Mr CHON (no 10) a rather well built chap with lots of bling on beware of this man - he was the only person on our visit who poorly represented himself.
Good food available in the centre of Siem Reap and cheap prices,please see separate review.
Recommend to take small denomination US$ bills which are readily acceptable in restaurants and paying for transport - the exchange rate for £ to $ we got in Cambodia (plenty of money changers and banks in town - better rate than airport) was much better than in UK.
All in all a fantastic experience with this first rate hotel in a wonderful country with breathtaking historic sites.
More than happy to give more information regarding visiting this area so please do contact me.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Le Meridien Angkor tempts guests to discover the preserved sites of ancient Cambodia. Designed with the contemporary traveler in mind, the hotel is comfortably modern with touches of Khmer motif. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Le Meridien Angkor Hotel Siem Reap
- Meridien Siem Reap
- Le Meridien Siem Reap
- Siem Reap Le Meridien