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Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa
Ranked #11 of 74 Hotels in Sihanoukville
Certificate of Excellence
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 5 Contributor
67 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 140 helpful votes
“Restaurant Review Only”
Reviewed May 31, 2011

My friend and I had a tuk tuk take us out to the Hotel Independece because we had heard the beach was lovely and there was a great place, part of the hotel where we could eat near the beach. I kind of wish we had done that, but instead we toured the grounds and ended up eating in the hotel's restaurant. This was a mistake. We loved looking at the old pictures and were looking forward to a fantastic meal, given what we had the previous day at the Sokha Hotel Restauranht. Granted this was now Monday lunch during the rainy season, but the staff, while friendly, appeared quite unexpected to see us.

The wine/spirits menus is not at all at the level or extensiveness one might expect from a hotel of this alleged quality. My choices for wine were white or red and more on that later. They did have some fun things with sparking wines and something named after Jacqueline Kennedy's visit akin to Raffles in Phnom Penh. However, the food menu itself was a shocker....it was grimey and dirty, included almost not first class food, but did have hot dogs and other things available. Despite myself, I ordered the Spaghetti Carbonara and my partner had the Tom Yam soup. We ordered a shrimp appetizer cooked on lemongrass. I asked for a house white wine. Not surprisingly in Cambodia, the starter came out with my meal....this was after a conversation in Khmer that it was meant to be an appetizer/starter. The Tom Yam followed not too far behind. After 15-20 mins we asked about the wine and were told "there was a problem" and that was it. I didn't really expect to enjoy the carbonara, but it was just okay, plain/simple. The Tom Yam was okay for what it was, but my partner was also surprised and said it was more watery than he was used to. When I did get the wine (I had planned on ordering at least two.) It was a good-sized pour in a decent glass, but no apology for the delay or explanation. Needless to say, I didn't ask for another one. When we received the bill, I noted to the waitress that the amount of the wine was incorrect according to the menu. I spoke slowy and repeated myself twice. She was a pleasant person. She brought back my change with no information or reduction in the cost of the wine. Given the wait and the horrible menu we were presented with, I decided that I would ask upon leaving if I could see the menu again and compare the rest of the prices to our bill. I immediately pointed out to the waitress and another fellow standing there that the prices were different and then went through the entire menu which ended up being okay. My comment brought the manager. Since no one would speak to me in English, I had to get a translation from my Khmer partner who said the staff did in fact ask the manager if the price of the wine had changed and he responded by.....not saying anything. I looked at him and said, I've paid the money, but this is not quality service and you have done nothing to make it better the entire time I have been here. Still, no comment which is true in this society when you do not allow people to save face, but I never raised my voice or said anything one would consider mean. If staff is going to interact with foreigners, especially the manager, they need to know how to make a situation right.

After that, we toured the lobby which was beautiful, but we were under continuous observation by management, so decided to leave....originally to go back down to the area by the ocean, but based on our experience decicded to move along to a Khmer beach where the staff was very friendly, helpful and ready to serve. Again, I blame management for bad training......well, and the horrible menu for that class of hotel. I highly recommend Sokha Hotel ovver Independence, although the walk along the rocks is quite beautiful. I can't comment on staying there although I did see the reviews below. I would go somewhere else if that is how management handles problems. And, looking at the reviews management seems to respond with the same answer ever ytime promising that it will never happen again.........address the individual problem, don't be generic....someone had $680 go missing from their room and you really have nothing to add???

Also, I fully realize that walking in with jeans and a t-shirt on and a mixed-race couple can be an issue in some establishments. I rarely encounter it in a place that considers itself "the place to be" and would not have gone in jeans at night or if there weren't signs directing me to the restaurant from the breach.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mowgli415
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PreahSihanouk, Manager at Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa, responded to this review, June 2, 2011
Dear Sir / Madame

I am sincerely thank you very much for kind support to our hotel and given us a constructive comment to improve our products and facilities, I would apologized for all inconveniences caused to you when you have patronized in our outlet. Please give us a chance to serving you again soon. Our email is: fbd@independencehotel.net . We look forward to welcome you back.

Thank you indeed.

Best regards,

Randy SOM
Director of Food & Beverage
Independence Hotel, Sihanouk Ville Cambodia
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Vancouver, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed May 18, 2011

my boyfriend and I stayed here for vacation for two weeks. we first did not get the room we asked for (we asked for a queen bed, but go two twin beds). the service of the front desk is terrible. The receptionists do not at all act like they are working in a high quality hotel. We went into our room, there were gecko feces all over the place and the pillows were stained as well. The next morning we talked to the general manager and he moved us to a different room. We went out that night for dinner, when we came back later that night to take out some money from our room safe, $680 were missing from the stack of cash we had locked in the safe. The general manager not only refused to solve the problem in a professional manner, but continuously called us liars. We, as customers have one set of keys, and the front desk has a set, so it is HIGHLY possible one of the staffs stole from our safe. And according to the hotel IT, the surveillance camera was not working that night, so we have no evidence someone came into our room and we had that money in the first place. We never got our money back and had to take ugly stares from the staff for the rest of the two weeks. The stay there was HORRIBLE and we will never ever stay there again even if they paid us. If you do not want your money to be stolen or want to have a five star hotel experience, do NOT stay at this place.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Mi_nello27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PreahSihanouk, General Manager at Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa, responded to this review, May 28, 2011
Dear Sir/Madam, On behalf of the entire management team of Independence Hotel , We would like to express our heartfelt and sincere gratitude to let us know your negative feedback on our housekeeping cleanliness and your preferences. However , We will look into this matter and improve our service immediately, We also assure that your highlight point will be not happening again.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aarhus, Denmark
Level 6 Contributor
129 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
Reviewed May 12, 2011

Recommendable

We stayed one week in April in the deluxe balconies new buildings, which are nice 3 stories buildings in a garden – which has great potential but right now it seems a bit forgotten with no water in a fountain and according ot our point of views some really awful looking figures as sharks and an octopus that haven’t been maintained for a period. The new buildings are situated approximately 2-3 minutes’ walk from the main building and the swimming pool, but to us this walk was absolutely no problem as there were many beautiful butterflies to look at.

We stayed in the end of a building on the upper floor and had an extra bay to our bathroom which was a very nice shower with natural air-condition through some open holes in the top of the walls. From the bathroom there was a window to the room. The room was great – light colors, clean and with lots of room for storage and it also had large balcony facing sea and the sun set. The balcony could however need a good cleaning as there was left over from the lizards.

Breakfast at the hotel was fine – a buffet for all tastes from Asian food to more traditional western with sliced meats, cheese, croissants, bacon, sausage cereals and fruits etc. But you have to be there early, else it looks very empty.

The hotel is a bit isolated, but there is a free mini bus more times per day and if you don’t catch the minibus back there are plenty of tuk tuks available. The isolation is according to my opinion a great advantage as many other parts of Sihanoukville really dirty and among other things full of plastic waste. The beaches in the area are in nature absolutely beautiful with soft sand and clear water. BUT when that has been said I would also like to say that Ocheteaul and Serendipity are filled with beach stands, chairs, shops, sellars, beggars, flies and dirt (plastic waste) and seen from my point of view they have huge potential but as they are now they are disgusting.

The beach side was so great. Nice chairs, towels, umbrellas and it was well kept – the hotel cleaned the beach every morning for waste drifted into the beach. When we were at the hotel only a few guests were at the place, so the beach was really nice and quiet except for workers building a new bridge.

The beach restaurant was fine, but we found it bit unambitious that the hotel restaurant and the beach bar had the same menu. Prices were a bit higher than what we found in the other beaches but it was definitely much more delicious, clean and we didn’t have to fight hundreds of flies when eating.

The hotel offers free computer/business centre which is recommendable, as there is no free internet and the price of internet is pretty high.

All in all it was a great stay and we can absolutely recommend the hotel - but make sure to book it with Agoda s they have good offers else it is far too expensive for what you get. If you just wish to relax don't hesitate to go there. But we however found Sihanoukville town absolutely uninteresting (and dirty) - we went in there more times to look for the hidden gem - a cafe or restaurant - but we never found it....

Room Tip: Use Agoda - much lower prices than at the hotel
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MorelDenmark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed March 27, 2011

We stayed in the delux 'new block' accomodation, these are tasteful 3 strorey buildings accomodating about 18 rooms per block set in spacious gardens, with all rooms facing the sea. All finished to a very high standard.

Our room was wonderful, large balcony facing sea/sun set. The room was clean and bright with a quiet air con unit and all the mod cons you'd expect in a 4 star hotel room.

The bathroom was well presented with bath + shower over and then a seperate self contained walk in shower room, our only compaint would be that the walk in shower had a tendancy to over flow as the drain couldnt deal with the fast flow of the power shower but that was a minor point.

The room was excellent but for us the main plus of the hotel is the private quiet secluded clean beach which we used every day and absolutly loved.

Breakfast at the hotel was generous with attentive waiters with jugs of coffee constantly topping up the morning brew, the buffet is well presented and accomodates all tastes from asian to tradtional western with sliced meats,cheese, croissants, bacon,sausage cereals and fruits etc

The hotel is a bit isolated about 6-10 mins by tuk tuk to Otres, but there is a free mini bus and getting back there are plenty of tuk tuks available at a reasonable $5.

The beach side restaurant was lovely and the food at the hotel only slightly more expensive than in town and of a high standard. One criticism, the laundry service was excessively over priced per item, so just bundle it up and take it into town for $1 per bag.

Beer was $0.50 to $0.80 in town bars/restaurants and the hotel was $3, which we felt was also an excessive mark up which rendered the hotel bar empty.

The hotel offers free computer terminal access but not free wifi instead you have to buy 24 hour access which is an out of date approach given all the other hotels we stayed in offered free wifi.

All in all though apart from a couple of points it is a clean, attentive luxury hotel well worth a visit if your after a relaxing stay.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank J10c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed March 6, 2011

The hotel is slightly out of the 'centre' of Sihanoukville, but that is not a bad thing! It's a haven of peace, with its own very nice private beach, and the business of 'the city' is only a 5 dollar ride away.
Rooms are very nice and spacious, staff are lovely, the manager was great - every thing was perfect EXCEPT that we had to pay an extra 30 USD per night for a trundle bed for our 2 year old. That was really a big thumbs down for us.
Breakfast buffet, smoothies by the pool and cocktails on the sunset terrace were really good, but for real meals head into town, the food is much better and much cheaper.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lucy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Haifa, Israel
Level 6 Contributor
102 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
Reviewed March 4, 2011

We stayed four nights mid February 2011. To summarize in one sentence: don't book a room in the main (old) building.
We booked a deluxe room long time before the travel and didn't know about the new buildings. We got a room in the 7th floor (in the main building) and were disappointed. The room, although well equipped, is small. And without a balcony!. its large windows were not clean, which make the sea view less impressive than it really is. The room may be suitable for a business hotel in the capital city, but definitely not for a beach hotel. Deluxe rooms in lower floors are a bit larger.
We then "discovered" the new buildings and moved to a deluxe balcony room there. What a difference! The room is spacious, with a large balcony. A real pleasure. Each new building has two floors, six rooms on each. Much better for a beach resort.
The beach is nice and quiet. The breakfast buffet is good, although filling empty plates may take some time...
The free shuttle to downtown is good, but with rooms rate of 190$ I'd expect the shuttle service to be more frequent. There are shuttles at 0730. 1130, 1330, 1730 and 2200.
Overall it's a good hotel if you book the balcony rooms.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Doron_J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bkk
Level 6 Contributor
79 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed February 20, 2011

Cockroaches in room and filth everywhere , bath water brown ,it really needs a good clean, windows filthy bathrooms filthy, 3 good things staff breakfast and beach!

  • Stayed February 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank spacemanBkk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vyrayuth, Director of Sales at Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa, responded to this review, March 17, 2011
Dear Sir/Madam,

On behalf of the entire management team of Independence Hotel , We would like to express our heartfelt and sincere gratitude to let us know your negative feedback on our housekeeping cleanliness section.

However , We will look into this matter and improve our service immediately, We also assure that your highlight point will be not happening again in any other rooms/Suites of the hotel.

Once again , thank you for choosing our hotel during your stay at Sihanouk Ville beach . We will look forward to welcoming you back again to our hotel in the near future.


Regards

PHILLIP TOH
On behalf of hotel management and staffs.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa

Property: Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa
Address: Street 2 Thnou, Sangkat No: 03 | Khan Mittapheap, Sihanoukville 855, Cambodia
Location: Cambodia > Sihanoukville Province > Sihanoukville
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Sihanoukville
#7 Luxury Hotel in Sihanoukville
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Sihanoukville
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Independence Hotel, Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 128
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Independence Hotel Resort & Spa is an oasis of calm and luxury in Sihanouk Ville, Kingdom of Cambodia - one of the finest locations in South East Asia. Unspoiled sands backed by lush vegetation encircle the hotel. The full delights of the resort, spa and private beach are ready for you to enjoy. Set in the charming tropical beauty of Cambodia's premier beach destination, with 35 hectares landscape and 300 meters of private beach, Independence Hotel Resort & Spa provides you a luxurious refuge that opens out onto breath taking panoramas. Provided 8 differences categories of 128 units, with 3 function rooms, 2 Restaurants and 2 bars. The Volley ball, sunset cruises and kids play-ground are available on the beach. Home of Jouvence Spa: Cambodia's Premier Spa ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Independence Hotel Sihanoukville

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