Whether they’re kind to the environment or keyed into the local community, these sustainable stays strive to help you tread lightly in the capital of Cambodia. Book your stay now on Culture Trip.
We’re all becoming increasingly sustainably minded: whether that’s packing reusable totes, water bottles and utensils in our luggage to minimise our plastic footprint, we’re also factoring in the ecofriendliness of a hotel when it comes to deciding where to stay. Luckily, Phnom Penh is filled with environmentally aware stays that take sustainability seriously. Here are the ones to check out.
Located near the Boeung Keng Kang (BKK) market, this hotel bills itself as the only social-enterprise hotel in the city. Besides having used reclaimed wood to construct the property, it also harnesses solar energy, composts food waste and pays its staff a fair living wage. Rooms are cosy and come outfitted with colourful modern furnishings, a “green” laundry service is offered, local products are used, and many green plants create a calming atmosphere.
For a stay that blends luxury with sustainability, look no further than Plantation. The sprawling boutique hotel is located within a restored French-era mansion and offers stellar amenities – including an expansive central pool surrounded by lush tropical foliage and an art gallery that showcases local creatives. Plantation strives to keep its waste and plastic use to a minimum, hosts an NGO-supporting shop that sells products produced in Cambodia and offer tours that take you behind the scenes of traditional Khmer art and culture.
Located in the popular BKK1 district, this fun-loving, community-minded hostel is the perfect place to meet fellow travellers. Both shared and private rooms are available, and the hostel also offers a range of activities for guests – such as pub crawls and sunset tours of the riverside (be sure to grab a cocktail at the rooftop bar before you head out). Besides minimising its waste and using local materials and suppliers wherever possible, Mad Monkey’s team also participates in eco-geared community initiatives.
Need a brief respite from the hustle of the city? This idyllic retreat along the Mekong River, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, has 18 high-end suites that feature either a private courtyard or wooden-decked balcony and come furnished with Cambodian artefacts and fabrics. The Balé strives to be as ecofriendly as possible, offering water coolers for guests to use in place of plastic bottles. But it’s also part of a wider group that takes a front-footed approach to community engagement, employing local people, supporting orphanages and enabling charitable events.
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Situated near the heart of the city, this gay-friendly resort has everything you need for a fun and relaxing stay. Rooms are spacious and kitted out with vibrant modern furnishings, while the entire resort is filled with pleasing tropical greenery. Standout amenities include an outdoor saltwater pool with an attached waterfall. The resort does its part to be ecofriendly by using locally sourced organic produce, packaging meals in boxes made out of compostable sugarcane and participating in city-clean-up events.
Although it’s smack in the middle of the city centre, this boutique hideaway boasts just 31 rooms spread out on a spacious greenery-filled site – making it the ideal spot for rest and relaxation. The resort strives to embody a sustainable ethos and features a central swimming pool surrounded by a landscaped garden filled with flowers to encourage native wildlife. Rooms are tastefully decorated with modern, minimalist-style furnishings, some featuring balconies that offer a glimpse of the greenery outside.
Sandwiched between the Independence Monument and the Royal Palace of Cambodia, this stately stay is perfect if you’re looking for an elegant space to call home. Rooms are stylishly furnished with locally made furniture, and the hotel does its best to minimise waste. The saltwater swimming pool is perfect for lounging in the sun, and culture lovers should keep an eye out for the art shows and concerts that sometimes take place.
This cosy boutique hotel is a tranquil oasis amid the bustling city. Rooms are minimally furnished with modern decor, with some featuring a balcony or patio overlooking the picturesque pool area. Relax with a poolside massage, or try your hand at making traditional Khmer dishes at a cooking class. The hotel also offers bicycle rentals for guests who wish to explore the city in an environmentally friendly way.
For a stay that’s steeped in history, check out Pavilion, a 1920s-era mansion that was once the private palace of Queen Kossamak. Today, the hotel is a stone’s throw from the Royal Palace and Royal Pagoda, which makes it a great choice for those who want to do some cultural sightseeing. Guests will be treated to two large pools and smaller plunge pools, as well as plenty of lush greenery throughout the stately site. The hotel prioritises sustainability and community across its operations, including a shop that supports Cambodian crafts and free bikes to borrow.