Hotel Be Angkor

Old Market Area, Siem Reap, Cambodia Book from

A 3-room hotel dedicated to local artists in the entertainment hub of Siem Reap; a truly unique experience
This is a different experience, even for the boutique traveller who prefers intimate service to cookie-cutter hotel rooms. There’s nothing mass-produced at Be; every detail's a one-off, with its 3 spacious rooms designed by Cambodia’s most cutting-edge artists. The brains behind it is American businessman Martin Dishman, who lives in Siem Reap and who crossed our radar when he created a one-room hotel (sadly no longer in operation).

Set in The Passage in Siem Reap’s entertainment district, the hotel is in an enclave of good food and bustling bars filled to the brim with creative types. Its renovated 3-storey shopfront offers Cambodia with style - and without the mammoth room rates of the 5-star brands now infesting this city. On the ground floor there's a super-cool Cambodian tapas venture, AHA, that, when combined with the attached McDermott Gallery and Hotel Be’s bohemian Linga Spa, creates the perfect one-stop shop to lay hip heads.

Highs

  • There's intimate, personalised service from the hands-on owner and smiling hotel staff
  • The commitment to local artists and designers in the rooms and retail shop is impressive
  • The Terrace Suites have impressive rooftop balconies for city viewing
  • The spacious room configurations are well thought-out, with Bose iPod docks and complimentary WiFi
  • The proximity to the best bars of the area means a mere stumble home

Lows

  • There's no on-site pool to cool down in when this city gets hot (and it gets hot), but complimentary access to one nearby is available for guests
  • As you're on one of Siem Reap's main streets you may hear the noise of passers-by, though sound insulating panels completely seal the rooms from exterior noise
  • Water is solar heated which means it's not always hot
  • Some may be disheartened by the lack of bathtubs
  • Not immediately easy to find, be sure to get clear directions

Best time to go

Cambodia is divided into a wet season and a dry season. The wet season peaks in July to September; the dry runs from October to April. May and June are ideal times if you want to avoid dust or mud.

Our top tips

Angkor Wat needs time - 1 day isn’t enough, 5 days and you’ll get temple-itis. Go in the morning for the early light, rest during the heat of the day and return at dusk for sunset light. Six sojourns taken over 3 days will give you a solid experience, and if that’s still not enough then fly over in a helicopter to get a feel for the whole scale.

Great for...

City Style
Eco
Foodie
Spa
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 3
  • Restaurant + bar (open daily)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Concierge Service
  • Bicycles Available
Room: Bamboo Room

Rooms

Three rooms, 3 totally different experiences. Hotel Be feels like you’ve entered the home of a friend who has far better taste than you can ever hope for. The overhanging steel bridge that connects one room to the hallway, the exposed concrete floors, the light-filled atrium... it's all been designed to create a feeling of maximum space. It’s ingenious stuff in a lane that's small, a shophouse that's small and a hotel that, if it weren’t for The One Hotel, would be the smallest in the city.

The Deluxe room (Saffron) is all about golden mocha hues and the fun tongue-in-cheek artwork of Filipino artist, Loven Ramos. His multi-dimensional prints of monks are an exercise in cheeky serenity. Saffron is also all about wood: exposed streamlined slats are complemented by concrete and steel. Add a sitting area filled with suede box seats in shades of clay, a sunken rain shower, and a balcony with dining setting and you’ve got most relaxation elements covered.

Bamboo (one of the Terrace Suites) is for lovers of sculpture. Local artist Sopheap Pich has woven raffia, twisted bamboo and created dividing walls of replicated tree branches. It’s bold, exotic and playful. Natural hues, aqua-greens and rich reds extend from the sleeping area into the open-plan bathroom with its rain shower. The 2-storey pied-a-terre has a delightful roof terrace, complete with a rattan sun lounger for sunset viewing.

John McDermott is a photographic legend in Cambodia and the second Terrace Suite (Sepia) showcases his finest work. This sophisticated 2-storey suite has streamlined white stairwells and steel-hued mosaic tiles in the bathing area. Adorning the walls are McDermott’s portraits of Angkor Wat. It’s more New York than Asia, with a cool roof terrace and sun lounger overlooking The Passage.

All come with WiFi, flat-screen TVs and iPod docking stations (Bose, naturally).

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Bathrobes
  • Dvd player
  • Extra beds
  • Hairdryer
  • Internet access
  • Ipod dock
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Toiletries
  • Tv
  • WiFi
  • Wifi internet

Eating

Within the hotel, guests can dine at AHA, an uber-fabulous Cambodian-style tapas lounge. It has a delicious menu designed for sharing, and is described as 'beyond Khmer cuisine'. Expect the likes of green mango and dried snake salad, or grilled prawn and radicchio with duck confit.

The décor is streamlined and clean, with warm woods and loads of curved lines. Lighting is funky, with cool umbrella-style hanging lights and a 30m wave of lighting above the dining tables. With two entrances, an alfresco area and a separate wine bar with extensive regional wine list, this is the premium dining experience in Siem Reap. It’s warm, friendly and relaxed, with attentive service and a good atmosphere - refreshing in the mayhem of Cambodia.

Hotel Be makes use of Linga Bar's kitchen to serve its breakfasts. Choose eggs cooked to your preference, muesli with fresh fruit or fried yellow noodles with a choice of chicken, pork or vegetables. While the majority of guests prefer to eat in the restaurant, breakfasts can also be served in your room on request, as can AHA’s lunch and dinner menus.

If you'd prefer to eat out, you couldn't be better placed; Hotel Be is mere steps from some of the best food on offer in Siem Reap. Reception can recommend places.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Cooking classes
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Restaurant
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
  • Vegetarian menu
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Two words: Angkor Wat. The jewel in the Khmer crown and truly a wonder of the world, this 100-acre ancient city can take days to discover on foot, by bicycle or air-conditioned car
  • Local photographer John McDermott is closely associated with the hotel. Guests can spend time viewing Angkor Wat with him as a photographic guide
  • The John McDermott Gallery attached to the hotel is great for creative perusing
  • Shop, shop, shop at the night markets, just a short walk from the hotel
  • Visit the hotel's community-based projects through its Shinta Mani Institute association
  • Guests can get perfectly pampered in the Linga Spa, which offers a range of relaxing treatments, from traditional Khmer massage to body scrubs
  • The Linga Bar opposite the hotel is also owned by Hotel Be; it serves cracking cocktails and has outdoor seats where you can watch the Siem Reap world go by

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cooking classes
  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Museums / galleries
  • Nightlife
  • Private guided tours
  • Shopping / markets
  • Traditional cultures
  • Well being

Kids

This is probably not the ideal haunt for kids, but older children will be impressed by the magical qualities of Angkor Wat. Children aged 12 or younger are welcome at no extra charge.

Family friendly accommodation:

The Terrace Suites each have a single sofabed.

Kid Friendly: Bamboo

Our guests' ratings...

8/
Rooms
8/
Food
10/
Service
9/
Value
9/
Overall

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