By the time we arrived in Phnom Penh we were a little bit exhausted. We had been travelling for about 4 weeks, through 4 countries and 8 cities so far, and as always, we were go go go go go all the time. In all honesty, I hadn’t done a huge amount of research on Phnom Penh, all I really knew was that it was the bustling capital city of Cambodia, and we were just going to wing it and go with the flow for our visit.
The drive from the airport to the hotel took almost an hour in the peak afternoon traffic, and although we were only getting off a short one hour flight from Siem Reap, everything was catching up with us a little bit and we were just so tired. Our driver dropped us off in front of what looked like a plain white wall in the centre of Phnom Penh and just gestured towards the door at us. Then as we opened the door…
It was like there was a tropical jungle on the other side! It was absolutely beautiful! From the outside you would never guess that there was a luscious jungle right on the other side of that white wall. We were booked in to stay at The Pavilion Phnom Penh for two nights, and from the minute we stepped foot in the door we knew it would be hard to pry us away over the next few days.
The Pavilion offers a complete sense of tranquility and relaxation from the moment you step through the doors. Everything is peaceful and welcoming on the inside. Located right in the middle of the Historical District, you would never know you’re in the heart of the city at The Pavilion.
On our second day at The Pavilion we did try to get out and about and see some of what this unique city had to offer. But honestly, after a couple of hours exploring in the sweltering heat, the Lush Pool was calling us, and we couldn’t help but head back to the hotel early and catch up on some much needed rest and relaxation poolside.
From the minute we got back, we just didn’t want to leave. We found ourselves a huge double sunbed near the Lush Pool – which actually even had butterflies flying around the netting – and loaded ourselves up with food and drinks, our phones and computers to catch up and spend the afternoon hopping between the water and comfy couches. If you’re looking for menu suggestions, I can definitely recommend the chicken fried noodles (I think I had it for lunch and dinner on the same day!), and I think Thom might have tried just about everything on the menu, it was all so delicious.
The Pavilion boasts two huge swimming pools and even four rooms with private plunge pools. The Lush Pool, in front of the reception building, is covered in luscious beautiful greenery, tall palms and trees all around and sits right along side the hotel restaurant and bar – perfect for snacks by the pool. The Sun Pool sits further into the property towards the back and has the perfect space for sunbathing during the day. The bar at the Sun Pool offers complimentary coffee, fruit juices and cakes all day long! Perfect for a morning or afternoon tea.
We stayed in a Superior Deluxe room, which was just huge and located on the second floor, withviews overlooking the Sun Pool. The Pavilion had more amazing features than I could even believe, but just to name a few they offer a same day laundry service, complimentary a-la-carte breakfast at the pool restaurant or via room service each morning, free high speed wifi throughout the whole hotel – letting us stream TV shows, browse social media and even update our blog right by the pool, and possibly THE MOST comfortable bathrobes I have ever worn (literally, I’m pretty sure I lived in mine for two whole days).
Adding to the relaxation (and secretly one of our favourite things about the hotel), is that The Pavilion is an age 16+ hotel. Which means no screaming babies in the room next door and no crazy kids splashing at the pool. YES! Nothing is more relaxing than a kid-free resort. There are also only 36 rooms and suites at the hotel, keeping it quiet and peaceful at all time.
To upgrade your stay, I would highly recommend adding the A Little Pampering pack to your stay. This pack adds a little bit of luxury and an added special touch to your stay, and includes return private airport (or River Port) pick up, a special flower decoration in your room, a free bottle of Prosecco in your hotel fridge, a one hour massage for two at The Pavilion Spa and daily in-room breakfast.
In our slightly exhausted slump, we were so grateful to grab a massage at The Pavilion Spa. This little room off to the side of the pool offers all kinds of spa treatments and lovely relaxing massages. As an added touch, every booking to the hotel includes a 25 minute welcome massage and a free cruise to The Pavilion’s floating restaurant and lounge on the Mekong River. I mean, they just went above and beyond here, it was incredible.
Mekong Floatation River Lounge
One of the only things that could pry us away from the relaxation of the Lush Pool was a sunset cruise on the Mekong River across to The Pavilion’s own floating restaurant and bar. Offered as a complimentary experience for all guests, this little cruise invites you to board a traditional rice boat and takes you across where The Sap and Mekong Rivers join together, to the Mekong Floatation River Lounge to enjoy the sunset, the views and a couple of drinks on the Mekong.
The cruise departs twice a day and can easily be booked through the hotel reception. It will also take you past some traditional floating houses and villages, which gives you a special glimpse into the lives of locals who live right on the Mekong. If you’re hoping to catch the sunset though, make sure you check what time the sun sets to book the right cruise. This is a new experience for guests in 2018, so make sure you get in quick to be one of the first to experience the unique floating restaurant.
If you are planning to get out and about, The Pavilion is located only a few steps from the Royal Palace and Wat Botum (The Royal Pagoda), one of the highlights of the cities and the former home of Queen Kossamak.
Read more: 5 Ways To Spend Your Day In Phnom Penh