Shinta Mani Club – Serene Urban Oasis in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Footsteps from the tranquil riverfront, Shinta Mani Club at Siem Reap is a sleek and stylish hotel that places an emphasis on responsible tourism. Located not far from the famed Angkor Wat temples, this boutique hotel is for culture vultures who want to stay right in the middle of a peaceful oasis but not far from the vibrant tourist sites.
I took a little longer than usual to draft out this article on Shinta Mani Club because there were just so much to say and so many photos to share. It forms the bulk of my experience in Cambodia and I truly enjoyed my stay there. From the moment we stepped into the club, the the staff were friendly and obliging, making our stay a magical one.
On arrival we were greeted with a glass of bubbly as welcome drink and a scent infused towelette to freshen ourselves. The hotel provided us a mobile phone encouraging us to call and seek guidance if required and a detailed book of Angkor Wat that will certainly makes our sightseeing the next day more informative.
Apart from Complimentary Wifi available throughout the hotel, the hotel invested heavily to provide guests premium Illy coffee and Harney & Sons Tea in every rooms. There is even a very chio coffee machine for me to practise my barista skills. Haha! I’m kidding, you don’t need any skills to make coffee, just press a button and that’s it!
The minibar in the room is also FREE and replenished daily. Angkor beer anyone? (while I continue to watch the handsome man on TV)
The most important factor when staying in a hotel is comfort. Shinta Mani’s bed is indeed very comfy. There is also ceiling art found directly above the king-sized bed and terrazo bathroom with rainshower.
The architecture is a highlight and so is the menu at Kroya. Shinta Mani Club’s restaurant, Kroya, serves up an innovative menu of mouth-watering Khmer delights prepared using fresh ingredients and local herbs and spices. The Cambodian soft rice noodles with fish broth and mixed vegetables is excellent, I also like the tender braised beef noodles with bean sprout and bok choy.
Besides oriental taste, they also have western breakfast such as eggs benedict on brioche, pancakes with honey etc. We love the outdoor dining area so much that we kept bringing our food out to take photos! Shinta Mani Club also conducts cooking by homegrown chefs, where you can learn how to cook traditional Khmer dishes, minus the hard work and sweaty brows.
The hotel also has a superb restaurant located in the Old Market Area called AHA restaurant. AHA serves tapas style starters as well as main dishes – both complemented by an international wine list. I will share more about it in my upcoming blogposts.
After a heavy breakfast and a busy morning of sightseeing, I went back to the club to indulge in a massage at the serene spa. Their popular Shinta Mani Spa Signature Massage combines a selection of four aromatic oils and special massage techniques, leaving me rejuvenated after the session.
The quiet and leafy setting is something that will charm your socks off. The interiors are designed by acclaimed architect Bill Bensley, who is described as the king of luxury resorts, combines western style with Khmer influences for the club. By the evening, I like to sit at the tranquil courtyard, either doing a cooling dip in the pool or enjoying cocktails, smoothies, juices, coffees, teas or snacks at the adjacent grey hued pool bar.
We had 7 set Khmer Tasting Menu which follows the seasons and the local harvest. The appetizer was interesting as we were presented with tamarinds chicken dip with crispy frangipani. Yes, frangipani deep fried till golden brown. I didn’t know we can eat frangipani! Then we were presented with a beautiful set which consists of Khmer organic white rice and brown rice, banana bud and chicken sour soup with holly basil, grilled prahok in banana leaves and traditional crudites and wok-fried prawn and fresh kampot pepper corn and mixed herb. Khmer tasting menu costs USD 31 per person. The band will play relaxing tunes from 6.30pm to 9.30pm.
Shinta Mani strongly supports responsible tourism and community outreach through the Shinta Mani Foundation. USD5 of your nightly room rate will be donated to the Shinta Mani Foundation to provide free hospitality training to less fortunate members of the Siem Reap community, and create a positive impact for the people of Cambodia.
Every Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday from 4-9 PM, Shinta Mani is having Well Made In Cambodia a new weekend market & street fair, an extension of their community outreach. You have the opportunity to purchase fine quality artisan products & luxury goods that redefine what it means to be made in Cambodia today. Each item for sale has been produced by a new generation of talented Cambodians. The greatest benefit of Well Made In Cambodia will be to these Cambodians, including many in need, through both direct income and skills development. Live entertainment, artist workshops and wholesome food will round out the market’s festive & diverse offerings. It’s free and open to public!
Thank you Shinta Mani for making my stay such an enjoyable one!
Shinta Mani Club
Address: Oum Khun St/Shinta Mani St, Siem Reap 00000, Cambodia
Phone: +855 63 761 998
Prices start from USD150