Phnom Penh’s most fabled lodge has relaunched with independent wings for ASQ visitors and staycationers.
Phnom Penh, Cambodia — Raffles Lodge Le Royal, celebrated for additional than 90 yrs as one particular of the “Grandes Dames” of Southeast Asia, has reopened its northern wing as an ASQ (choice state quarantine), giving an exquisite choice to inbound travellers.
“Guests will be accommodated in a stand-by yourself wing of the resort, with stringent wellbeing and protection protocols,” mentioned Hotel Manager Dennis de Groot. “We are committed to presenting a sanctuary of unparalleled comfort and ease for individuals undertaking the mandated 14-working day quarantine.”
The move arrives at a time when Cambodia has been commonly praised for its handling of the pandemic and its productive vaccine plan. It also exemplifies Le Royal’s spot in the country’s record, not only as an oasis of serenity but as a secure haven, a job the hotel famously performed in the turbulent 1970s when it was remodeled briefly into a Crimson Cross facility.
Created by architect Ernest Hébrard in French colonial fashion, Le Royal was initially released in November 1929 with an opening ceremony that was attended by the King of Cambodia and bundled an orchestra. It was an era when daring couples danced the Charleston, and the sight of an automobile in the dusty streets of Phnom Penh would provide little ones working.
Lured by tales of the unique East and the mysteries of Angkor, a lot of global travellers and adventurers started to established sail for Indochina all over this time.
Among the the superstars who would be spotted basking in the wicker chairs and leather sofas of the hotel’s chic Elephant Bar had been Charlie Chaplin and his entourage novelists André Malraux and Somerset Maugham French President Charles de Gaulle and in the 1960s, previous US To start with Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.
In 1997, at the invitation of Cambodia’s King Sihanouk, the Raffles team was invited to acquire over Le Royal, along with its sister heritage house, the Grand Lodge d’Angkor, in Siem Reap.
Every single of the 175 rooms and suites at Raffles Hotel Le Royal underwent a total refurbishment as aspect of a meticulous one particular-year restoration undertaking in 2019.
Returning visitors will right away see lighter and brighter interiors, accentuated by spotlights. Segafredo espresso equipment, USB charging stations, and Simmons pillow-prime mattresses are amongst the new capabilities that insert modern appeal.
Traditionalists will be relieved to know that the coronary heart and soul of this vintage landmark lodge has been lovingly preserved. The hardwood floors have been polished to a squeak the age-old ceiling enthusiasts however whirl and the outdated brass rotary telephones keep on to ring.
All loos have been extensively renovated with Italian tiling and rain showers, while some keep their considerably-beloved claw-foot bathtubs. Bathroom facilities will henceforth be provided by Sodashi, an Australian manufacturer of large-general performance skincare products and solutions produced with the purest botanical extracts.
The courtyard remains the centerpiece of the assets, its two swimming pools surrounded by tropical gardens of frangipani, and shaded by big century-aged trees.
“Always going with the instances and in line with the substantial anticipations of our visitors, the restoration method has breathed new life into this iconic resort,” reported Resort Manager de Groot. “We have strived to keep what is so exclusive about Raffles – the character, the superlative company, the heritage – though offering the enhanced services and experiences that discerning travellers aspire to.”
Amongst other substantial variations, Café Monivong, in the hotel’s west wing, has now been retired and changed by a youthful all-working day dining location named “Le Phnom 1929”, inspired by the Parisian-type brasserie, and specializing in French and Western delicacies.
It is below that Govt Chef Joel Wilkinson crafts French classics this sort of as escargots, liver parfait, beef bourguignon, duck confit and onion soup, all paired with good wines. Primary cuts of imported steaks, a seafood tower, and a soften-in-your-mouth beef or salmon tartare also adorn the menu. Diners could also opt for convenience meals, Asian delicacies and vegetarian dishes.
But when the lavish menu at Le Phnom 1929 will be restricted to place service only for ASQ guests, the cafe will be accessible to all company and leisure guests who are to be hosted individually in the hotel’s famed Heritage Wing.
Certainly, Raffles has absent the further mile to guarantee that visitors arriving from overseas are afforded a range of contactless in-area selections: “virtual” courses for little ones birthday parties masterclasses these kinds of as cocktail-generating and family members cinema evenings are all component of the ASQ itinerary.
“Each space at Le Royal has a charming balcony overlooking tropical gardens and swimming pools exactly where company can read publications, love afternoon tea and sundowners, or just basically unwind,” claimed Mr de Groot.
“Visitors remaining at the resort as element of the ASQ software can anticipate non-public airport transfers, a whole-board eating practical experience, 24-hour medical expert services, PCR checks, and a certainly relaxed and memorable keep.”