Phnom Penh is where Cambodia’s ancient past meets its present. The country’s capital city is teeming with life, from its vibrant markets to its busy riverfront. Here, you can explore centuries-old temples, stroll past French colonial architecture, and try delicious Khmer cuisine all in one day and still not scratch the surface of everything Phnom Penh has to offer!
This city sits where two rivers meet, the mighty Mekong and Tonlé Sap, and has been a hub of trade and empire for centuries. The Khmer Empire and French colonialists both left their mark on the city, and you can see evidence of both cultures everywhere you go. From the marvelous Royal Palace to the Art Deco-style Central Market, the towering Silver Pagoda, and the fascinating National Museum of Cambodia, the city drips with history and interesting things to see.
But Phnom Penh is not just a city for history buffs – it’s also a place where you can enjoy the present. The riverfront is always abuzz with activity, day or night. You can take a leisurely cruise down the Mekong, enjoy a meal at one of the many riverside restaurants, or just watch the world go by from a street-side café.
You can also find some of the best food in Cambodia here! Remember to try the country’s national dish, amok, which is a type of curry usually made with fish or chicken. Taste samlor machu trey, a type of soup with fish, rice noodles, and vegetables, or kuy teav, which is a rice noodle soup with pork and shrimp. And don’t forget to wash it all down with a refreshing glass of sugarcane juice or coconut water!
When it comes to places to stay in Phnom Penh, you’re spoiled for choice. From restored French colonial villas to luxurious boutique stays, the hardest part is choosing the perfect one! So we created this list of the 12 best boutique hotels in Phnom Penh to help you plan an amazing getaway!
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Where to Stay in Phnom Penh
Because there’s so much to see and do in Phnom Penh, you need to choose the right place to stay so you can make the most of your time in the city.
Doun Penh (or Daun Penh) is at the top of our list. This district is home to many of Phnom Penh’s most popular attractions, including the Royal Palace, Silver Pagoda, and the National Museum. It’s also convenient to the Riverside area and Central Market.
Being a tourist hotspot, it’s easy to get around, and English is widely spoken here. That being said, if you choose one of the many hotels that line Doun Penh and the adjacent Riverside District (Sisowath Quay), you may be kept up till the wee hours by one of the area’s many nightlife venues.
A bit south of Daun Penh is Chamkar Mon (which is home to the popular BKK1, BKK2, and BKK3 neighborhoods). This area is similar to Daun Penh but slightly less crowded and a bit more affordable. Chamkar Mon is also home to Aeon Mall, which is Phnom Penh’s biggest shopping mall, as well as many restaurants, cafes, and bars.
The residential Tuol Tompoung area is further south of the river but still close to the city’s center. What makes this area so unique is that it’s much more local than the more touristy and well-trodden parts of town. The Russian Market is also located here. This is the place to go for souvenirs, clothes, and anything else you might need!
The 12 Best Hotels in Phnom Penh
Palace Gate Hotel & Resort is easily one of the most unique Phnom Penh hotels. It’s actually a restored French colonial villa, which shows through details like the high ceilings, wrought ironwork, and grand staircase. The hotel is adjacent to the Royal Palace, so you can wake up to views of the palace grounds!
The rooms here are spacious and comfortable, and most have views of the pool or river. The outdoor swimming pool is a great place to relax after a day of exploring, and the rooftop bar is perfect for enjoying a sundowner while watching the sunset over the city.
The Palace Gate Hotel & Resort is also conveniently located near the city’s top landmarks. So near, in fact, that you can walk to the National Museum, Silver Pagoda, Kandal Market, and Independence Monument! We love how you can do some serious sightseeing on foot and be back in time for a dip in the pool.
One of the coolest Phnom Penh hotels is definitely the Rosewood Phnom Penh. This hotel sits on top of the Vattanac Capital Tower, which is 188 meters tall! The elegant suites have floor-to-ceiling windows, so you’ll be waking up to endless city views.
The views from the Rosewood Phnom Penh are absolutely breathtaking, especially at sunset overlooking the Mekong River. The hotel is home to Sora Sky Bar, which is the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail while looking over glittering Phnom Penh at night.
Expect nothing but premium amenities, from the ultra-soft beds to the immaculate bathrooms with rainfall showers. All rooms also have a coffee machine, which we think is a thoughtful touch!
The best part of the Rosewood Phnom Penh, however, is its location. The hotel is near Wat Phnom, Riverfront Park, Sisowath Quay, and the Royal Palace. You can easily walk to all of these attractions or take a quick tuk-tuk ride if you like. The staff will happily arrange everything you need during your stay, so don’t be shy about asking for help!
This charming gem of a hotel is tucked away on a quiet street in Chamkar Mon. The iRoHa Garden Hotel & Resort is a beautifully restored 1930s mansion that’s been turned into a 27-room contemporary Khmer-style boutique hotel. It’s as private and glamorous as it sounds, with four-poster beds, private balconies, and pagodas where you can sit and enjoy the peaceful garden views.
The hotel’s grounds are extensive, with a huge swimming pool, meticulous landscaping, and night lamps that cast a romantic glow over the property. If you’re hungry, you can order room service from their in-house restaurant, which serves authentic Asian fare along with Western comfort food. So everything is super convenient!
Speaking of convenience, the location of the iRoHa Garden Hotel & Resort is excellent. It’s a 5-minute drive to the Royal Palace and Riverside and a stone’s throw to Chaktomuk Conference Hall and Aeon Mall, so you can easily do some shopping or catch a movie while you’re here.
The PATIO Hotel & Urban Resort is located in the historical heart of Phnom Penh, Chamkar Mon, and a short walk to Riverside. You can literally walk to Phnom Penh’s top attractions from the hotel, like Wat Lang Ka, the Phnom Penh Night Market, and the Cambodia-Vietnam Friendship Monument. It’s the perfect location if you only have a couple of days to explore the city!
The rooms here are cozy and complete with all the amenities you can think of, from big beds to rain showers. We love how the hotel has kept some of its original architectural details, like the high ceilings and huge windows that let in so much light.
One of our favorite parts of the PATIO Hotel has to be the rooftop restaurant and pool with spectacular views of Phnom Penh. Order from their restaurant menu and enjoy a romantic dinner while watching the city lights twinkle below.
Or, go for a swim in the pool and relax with a cocktail in hand. Since the hotel is so centrally located, it’s surrounded by bars, cafes, clubs, and restaurants. You’ll never be bored here!
Hotel Emion Phnom Penh is easily one of the most unique boutique hotels in Phnom Penh. It’s a Japanese-run luxury hotel that’s a slice of Japan in the capital of Cambodia. Minimalist yet warm and inviting, the hotel has huge rooms loaded with high-tech features that are so uniquely Japanese. Think toilets that can sing, warm up, and sense when you’re approaching!
Aside from the rooms, there are plenty of other things to love about Hotel Emion Phnom Penh. The lobby has a spot where you can get free coffee and tea 24/7. On the roof is a massive infinity pool that overlooks the junction of the Mekong and the Tonlé Sap rivers. The views are sensational, especially during sunset!
The international breakfast buffet is one of the finest hotel breakfasts in Cambodia. Whatever you’re craving, there’s a good chance you’ll find it here, from waffles and pancakes to eggs and bacon to congee and noodles. It’s all beautifully presented, too.
Last but not least, the location is excellent. It’s within walking distance to the center of Phnom Penh and most key attractions, like the Royal Palace and National Museum. You could easily check off everything on your sightseeing itinerary within a day – that is, if you can force yourself to get out of the gorgeous infinity pool!
Raffles Hotel Le Royal is one of the oldest and most iconic hotels in town, and it’s highly regarded as one of the best boutique hotels in Phnom Penh. It was built in 1929 and has been frequented by celebrities, royalty, and writers over the years. Jackie Kennedy even stayed here!
The hotel has a beautiful colonial design, with Khmer and Art Deco influences. Many of the original features have been preserved, like the polished tiles, bookcases, and bureaus lining the corridors. Be sure to check out the walls: they boast historical black-and-white photographs of the hotel and its famous guests!
Its address is as golden as its reputation. It’s located on a peaceful boulevard bordered by towering trees, stately embassies, and important government buildings. The National Library is also nearby!
Staying at the Raffles Hotel Le Royal places you in a strategic sightseeing location. You can easily walk to Wat Phnom and Riverside Park, or take a short tuk-tuk ride to the Russian Market, the Royal Palace, and the National Museum.
Finally, Raffles Hotel Le Royal knows how to pamper its guests. Its Elephant Bar is a city favorite, and we recommend ordering the Femme Fatale cocktail, which was created for Jackie Kennedy in 1967! The royal treatment also continues at their Restaurant Le Royal, the only place in the city where you can indulge in Royal Khmer cuisine.
Want to feel like a celebrity while you’re on vacation? Then we can’t recommend the Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra enough!
This is the kind of place that has hosted VIPs like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, world leaders, and other A-listers, and it’s obvious why from the facade alone. The architecture is French Colonial affluence with modern Khmer touches, so it’s got that classic appeal, but with an added sense of modern luxury and comfort.
The hotel’s VIP treatment starts the moment you arrive, as Sofitel Ambassadors check you in and give you cool refreshments while they help with your bags. Rooms are large, with tall ceilings and full windows so you can watch the sun sink into the city skyline from your bed. The amenities are luxurious: in-room products from Hermès and Lanvin make sure your stay is extra fancy.
If you need to work out, there’s an exclusive sports club with professional squash and tennis courts, a fitness gym, a gorgeous swimming pool, and a range of free exercise classes. You can even get post-workout protein shakes and green smoothies at their lounge.
The location is unbeatable, as it’s just a 5-minute walk from all of the main attractions like the Independence Monument and the National Museum. A few blocks in either direction and you’ll find yourself in a charming neighborhood with lots of small local shops selling delicious treats.
The Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra sets the bar high for the best hotels not just in Cambodia but in Southeast Asia!
The minimalist Blue Lime Phnom Penh is serious about being a peaceful retreat. Children are not allowed in this adults-only hotel, making it a wonderful place to take a break from the kids or just meet other adults on your trip! If you’re looking for a truly relaxing retreat, this is hands down one of the coolest boutique hotels in Phnom Penh.
Spring for the top-tier rooms, and you get four-poster beds, concrete love seats, and your very own private plunge pool. The common pool area is beautiful, too, with leafy plants and cabana beds surrounding a crystal-clear pool where you can soak under the shade.
The busy Tonlé Sap riverside area is just a short distance away, as is the Royal Palace. You’ll love how it’s so calm yet so near everything!
As one of the best Phnom Penh hotels, this hotel exudes luxury from every corner, starting with the grand entrance. The Hyatt Regency Phnom Penh is actually a restored French colonial villa, and you’ll see that history in details like the arched doorways, wooden shutters, and intricate tile work.
We recommend splurging on the Palace View suite for awesome views of the Mekong River to the east, the Royal Palace to the south, and the Phnom Penh skyline to the west. The suite is huge with an oversized sofa, a massive 65-inch flat-screen TV, and premium features like a Google Chromecast for streaming content from your phone to the TV. The marble bathroom is so luxurious as well and boasts a standalone soaking tub and rainfall shower.
If you’re looking for a truly regal experience, head to their FiveFive Rooftop Restaurant & Bar on the hotel’s 14th floor. Relax with sunset views as you enjoy pre-dinner cocktails, then choose from their curated menu. They have terrific vegan dishes, which can be hard to find at most restaurants.
Location-wise, you couldn’t ask for more. Like all hotels on this list, staying at the Hyatt puts you squarely in the middle of the action. Whether you want to go to the Killing Fields, the Royal Palace, or shop at the Central Market, the amazing staff can help you get there quickly and easily.
10. White Mansion
Formerly the home of US ambassadors to Cambodia, the White Mansion is now one of the best places to stay in Phnom Penh. The entire place looks and feels sophisticated with its monochromatic color scheme, marble floors, and dark wood furniture.
The rooms and amenities are just as plush. We’re talking huge and soft beds, a lap pool, a working station inside the rooms for digital nomads, daybeds, and garden views. If you’re traveling with children, they’re going to love the video game corner, and you’re going to love the nanny service offered by the White Mansion!
Our favorite part of this boutique hotel has to be the Parisian-style bakery, Le Café. All of their French pastries and breads are baked fresh daily, which you can pair with their authentic Italian coffee. They also serve breakfast, light meals with international and Khmer dishes, degustation platters, cocktails, and other goodies.
The White Mansion is located at 240 Street, one of the hippest parts of Phnom Penh, so you’re surrounded by landmarks, places to eat, and shopping spots. If you’ve ever dreamed of living the mansion life, this hotel is as close as you can get!
You can’t go wrong with a stay at the Plantation Urban Resort & Spa, with its perfect blend of classic vintage hotel charm and contemporary luxury. As soon as you step through the large wooden gate into the courtyard, you’ll be transported to a different era with its pond and six Angkor-style lions. If you’re looking for luxe places to stay in Phnom Penh, Plantation Urban Resorts is the best of the best.
It’s a mix of time periods, too: the lobby is located in a 1930s French villa, most of the rooms and the pool are located in a Khmer building from the 1960s, while the rest of the rooms are in a new modern block with incredible views.
The amenities are as upscale as you’d expect. There are two pools, but the bigger 20-meter one is exclusive to hotel guests. This lovely pool is surrounded by sun loungers, cabanas, and lush greenery and is steps away from the Plantation’s bar and restaurant. They also have their own spa where you can get pampered with manicures, facials, scrubs, oil massages, and more.
Because the hotel is so centrally located, you can go to almost all of the city’s key landmarks just by walking. The Royal Palace is directly in front of the hotel, while the riverfront and National Museum are a quick stroll away.
While there are tons of nice restaurants in the area, reserve time for a meal at the hotel’s La Pergola restaurant. It’s an authentic French fine dining experience that you won’t want to miss!
From the team behind PATIO Hotel & Urban Resort (which we mentioned earlier) comes the Aquarius Hotel, another standout among the best hotels in Phnom Penh. This time, they’ve upped the ante with an infinity pool on the rooftop that has sweeping views of the city. It’s easily one of the most Instagrammable spots in all of Phnom Penh.
It’s clear that they thought of all the details, including the little things like wall controls right beside the bed, hot water sinks, tons of shelving where you can put away all your things, and hooks to hang towels. The large beds also come with several pillow sizes, which is not something you see in most Phnom Penh hotels.
The location is just as great, too, and only a block away from the shops on Street 240 and a quick tuk-tuk ride to the riverfront. Once you’re done exploring the city for the day, head straight to their Sky Bar to enjoy dinner and delicious cocktails. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture some of the most unforgettable Phnom Penh views!
That completes our list of the 12 best Phnom Penh hotels! Did we miss any cool boutique hotels in Phnom Penh? Comment below so we can add them to the list!
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