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City River Hotel

Spacious tour-group hotel

What we say: 3 stars

On the banks of the Siem Reap River, just a five-minute stroll from the tourist magnet of Pub Street, sits popular and fairly priced City River Hotel. The convenience of this hotel’s central setting plus a rooftop swimming pool and terrace make it a worthwhile choice in Siem Reap.

Simple but it does the job.

Simple but it does the job.

While you won’t spot any actual temples from this vantage point, you can see Phnom Krom peeking out over the rooftops on the horizon. It’s not a bad place to rest those feet and indulge in sundowner drinks with one of the affordable cocktails on offer from the poolside bar after a day clambering over the ancient sites of Angkor. (Avoid the lacklustre “gym”, however — perhaps the desultory effort is actually a sales pitch for the bar?)

Hit the roof's pool

Hit the roof’s pool.

All 65 rooms at City River resonate with classic Khmer design. Wood on the floors? Check. Wood on the walls? Check. However, I’m fully forgiving of this over-the-top traditional Cambodian style since the rest of the decor is balanced by smart enough furnishings, which pull it all together tastefully, albeit simply. If white walls and design chic is more your thing, consider Frangipani Villa Hotel instead.

There’s not much difference between the superior and deluxe room categories; both have private balconies and all the expected mod-cons, such as minibar, coffee and tea-making facilities, cable TV and the like. Superior rooms have “City River Hotel” carefully carved into the (obviously) wooden headboard, lest you forget where you are when you wake up. The deluxe rooms, all located in the new building — not that you can tell from the outside or inside as they are seamlessly joined– instead are a touch more design-savvy and spacious, though I’m on the fence whether this alone is enough to merit the upgrade. There’s also one suite, but it wasn’t available at the time to see.

Where the difference in room choice truly lies comes down to which side of the building the room is on. Opt for the sidestreet side of the property, consisting of all double rooms and two twins, which has more expansive views of the street below and swaying tree tops and yet is no more expensive.

With a tendency for hotels in Siem Reap to claim to be five-star when they’re most certainly not, City River is refreshing in that it recognises its own position accurately as a respectful three-star. The staff I met were charming, attentive and displayed initiative.

Sure, City River doesn’t exude seriously top-notch sophisticated style, but it’s also not asking you to pay for that, with superior rooms in low season (April to September) coming in at a walk-in rate of US$50 — with the staff open to negotiation (“$45 ok!”). Definitely check online for the best deals.

Much like its name then, City River Hotel is not groundbreaking, but at the low end of the price bracket for a proper hotel, it’s a consistent safe bet with comfort, service and amenities in an excellent location at a fair price.

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Contact details:

Acha Sva Street (River Road), Wat Bo, Siem Reap.  T: (063) 763 000 F: (063) 963 963  
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What we were quoted

Type of room Low season High season Notes
Superior - Double 50 USD 50 USD

Added to Travelfish on: 4th August, 2004
Last visited or updated on: 2nd October, 2014

Last reviewed by:
Caroline swapped the drizzle of Old Blighty for the dazzling sunshine of Siem Reap and she spends most weekends cycling the temple-studded terrain that she can call her backyard.
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City River Hotel
Acha Sva Street (River Road), Wat Bo, Siem Reap. 
T: (063) 763 000 F: (063) 963 963

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