At the Teav Boutique Hotel & Spa in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, the aquamarine pool is the first thing you see when you enter the courtyard lobby. Pink lotuses float in shallow vases and there’s always a smiling staffer waiting to greet you.
But those aren’t the only reasons this hotel has our heart. Its Bassac location is walking distance to countless restaurants, shops, and sights. The rooms ($125 to $189 USD) are large and modern, with playful touches like Khmer line drawings on the wall above the bed. (Tip: For the best natural light, ask for a room on a higher floor.) Robes, slippers, a kettle, mini bar, drinking water, blowdryer, in-room safe, and decent toiletries are all accounted for. The A/C works well, the beds are comfortable and pimped out with a generous number of pillows, and the rainfall shower is well-pressured and hot (too hot sometimes!). The laundry service, while not inexpensive, was turned around the same day, with everything soft and nice-smelling. Breakfast—including both Western and Cambodian options—is excellent, too. The croissants are buttery and fresh, the eggs perfectly poached, and the soups spicy and rich in flavor.
From the stellar housekeeping staff to the warm reception desk, service is attentive and efficient. Workers are helpful in arranging tours to Tonlé Sap, Tuol Sleng Museum (S21 prison), and the Killing Fields, or wherever else you want to go. They even helped us procure Vietnamese visas ($65 for a two-day turnaround). Where Teav stumbles is the internet. It lags and lags and laaaaags and makes you want to throw your computer out the window. Opening an email took five minutes; booking a plane ticket almost an hour, FFS.
Bottom line: Teav is a fine choice if you’re visiting Phnom Penh strictly as a vacationer and plan to be out for most of the day. But if you’re on a working holiday and require reliable WiFi, you best be getting to know the neighborhood cafes.
#30, Street 09, Tonel Bassac, Phnom Penh, Cambodia; +855-0-23-98-28-28.
#14, Street 310, Boeung Keng Kang I, Phnom Penh, Cambodia; +855-0-23-98-18-18.