Cambodia has managed the COVID-19 situation remarkably well with zero deaths and just a few hundred cases. Borders closed very early and community transmission has been minimal which has left the country amongst the very few not to face a health crisis as a result of the pandemic. However, with toursim being key to the economic growth and fundamental for the employment of many, Cambodia has suffered in a very different way.
With 2020 drawing to an end and the borders still effectively closed, the hotels and businesses that have survived are looking at locals, expats and staycations as a way to remain trading and keep their vauable staff teams employed. This a great news for those of us that call Cambodia home and also means that once tourism is again possible, they will still be there for all to enjoy.
Treeline Urban Resort
This is a true urban oasis in the heart of Siem Reap. The exemplary team are clearly passionate about the visionary concept at this luxury hotel. Treeline Urban Resort embraces art, culture and design and you can not fail to be be impressed by the strong commitment to these key attributes. Public areas boast clean lines and a unique style that is enhanced by impressive installations and artwork that adorns the walls. The rooms and suites are simply delightful with bespoke furniture and beautiful photography, artwork and ornaments throughout. With no single plastic in the guest rooms, it is a breath of fresh air to stay at a hotel with such respect for the environment, whilst the stunning pool which is nestled amongst the majestic, riverside treetops makes for the perfect place to kick back and relax. This is one seriously cool hotel.
Le Méridien Angkor
Located less than 4km from the breathtaking Angkor Wat, Le Méridien Angkor is the perfect option for those who want that combination of luxury and adventure. Spend your time relaxing at the resort style pool surrounded by manicured tropical gardens, before hopping onto one of their mountain bikes and heading into the jungle. Just 1km from the hotel you will find the starting point for the brand new 23km of cycle tracks that have been created to allow your temple exploration to be planet friendly, healthy and oh so much fun. Upon return, expect to be welcomed with a friendly smile and an ice cold towel which will most certainly be required after your self guided, cycle temple tour. For the ultimate culinary adventure, pre book one of the 5 Course Chefs Table experiences. Our Italian feast with Chef Andrea was the perfect blend of traditional Italian cuisine and modern culinary creativity, an Italian foodies tour in the heart of Southeast Asia.
Sadly, since the publication of this article, Le Méridien Angkor has had to temporarily close it’s doors due to the business downturn caused by COVID-19. This highlights just how precarious the situation in Siem Reap is right now and we wish the staff team all the very best in their search for employment.
Angkor Wat cycle paths
As we all take more time to consider the environmental impact of travel we search out more eco friendly tours and activities. There really is no better way to explore the temples of Angkor than on 2 wheels and the recently opened cycle paths are a very welcome addition. Wind your way through the jungle, shaded from the relentless sun and stop wherever you wish to admire the natural beauty of your surroundings such as the picture perfect moat that surrounds Anglor Wat. Priceless.
Templation offers ‘Pool Suites at the Temples Gates’ to discerning travellers who are looking for privacy and exclusivity. The one and two bedroom pool suites are simply divine, the toughest decision you will have to make is if you ever want to leave your gilded paradise. If you dare venture outside, then you can enjoy yoga next to the lagoon pool, a spa treatment at the Bodia spa, or for those of you that are more adventurous, borrow a mountain bike and explore the cycle paths that commence just a few hundred metres from the resort. The proximity to the temples is unrivalled, allowing guests the luxury of viewing the memorable Angkor Wat sunrise (followed by a poolside breakfast) without having to rise at an unearthly hour.
We hope you enjoyed our suggestions and we look forward to bringing you further #openinsiemreap and #openincambodia features over the following months. In the meantime, please support those who are open however you can, as without tourism times are challenging for those that rely on the industry to survive.
Paul Eyers is Founder of Vegan Food Quest. Vegan Food Quest have become luxury vegan travel specialists as they continue to find, eat and write about the best vegan food in the world.