What we say:
Just outside the centre of Siem Reap you hit upon country villages, but none are quite like the refined rural retreat of Sala Lodges, a boutique hotel that ranks very highly for a memorable stay thanks to its lovely design.
Each building nestled amid green gardens exemplifies exactly how to transform something so simple into something so elegant. Traditional Khmer wooden houses in an array of shapes and sizes have been collected from across Cambodia then delicately dismantled before being reconstructed to form a visual delight of a village just 10 minutes’ tuk tuk ride from the Old Market area (Desa Seni in Bali follows a similar concept, with houses assembled from around the Indonesian archipelago.)
In a town that runs on tourism Siem Reap is not short of a wide range of great accommodation options, but this is a small property that stands out for effortlessly oozing personality -- though it does have a price tag to match. Each of the 11 buildings that make up this haven is as individual as the hotel itself. Nine houses fit two to three guests, and an additional two villas work for four to five guests – excellent family options.
Urbanites may particularly appreciate the contrast Sala Lodges can offer from a frenetic city life, where alongside meandering paths rice grows decoratively under lofty palm trees in this very special bucolic backyard.
But the timber houses have not been left completely countrified. Where a kitchen once would have stood you can now expect a clean modern finish to an ensuite bathroom. The houses have been adapted to meet rigorous hotel standards, rather than the rough-around-the-edges appeal of an authentic homestay, so there’s no need to worry about a lack of air-con here despite a homey feel. In contrast to the authentic appeal of the wooden houses, outdoor living spaces reserved for guests and the building housing the main restaurant, The Monolith (open to outside guests), have a contemporary design.
In keeping with the simple nature of the wooden houses, the tasteful room decoration follows a subtle approach as opposed to elaborate ostentation. Your usual mod-cons make the finish far from unpolished, though it would seem out of place to have a giant plasma screen TV so you won’t find one – though they are available on request. Instead make the most of the verandas. Breakfast is included in the room rates.
Though without the full services of a fully-fledged large hotel — there’s no spa on site, but in-room treatments can be arranged — this is a property well with considering if you have a budget to splurge and are looking for some rest and relaxation to slow your pace down. Taking a dip in the infinity pool at the back might just help you.
If rustic chic is your thing, it’s also worth considering Maison Polanka, a Khmer estate consisting of two revamped large wooden villas and spacious gardens.
Make a reservation online now
Contact details:Salakomreuk no. 498, Siem Reap. T: (095) 838 799
What we were quoted
|Type of room||Low season||High season||Notes|
|Bungalow air-con private b'room||275 USD||275 USD|
Added to Travelfish on: 7th November, 2013
Last visited or updated on: 10th November, 2013
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Sala Lodges map
Salakomreuk no. 498, Siem Reap.
T: (095) 838 799
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