The hotel has a refreshed new look, offering guests a mix of culture, heritage and serenity
May 31, 2022: Reopening after almost three years, Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor has an illustrious history as one of the oldest and most iconic heritage properties in Southeast Asia.
First opened in 1932 and widely celebrated as La Grande Dame de Angkor, the hotel has seen famous faces – from Charlie Chaplin to Jackie Kennedy and Michelle Obama – in its historic hallways.
Designed by French architect Ernest Hébrard in a style that combines Khmer art and furnishings with Art Deco influences, the Grand Hotel first opened in 1932 with just 63 rooms, all with private bathrooms - a rarity in its day. The property, along with its sister heritage hotel, Le Royal, in Phnom Penh, was taken over by Fairmont Raffles Hotels International in 1997 at the invitation of Cambodia’s King Sihanouk.
The hotel underwent a delicate transformation in 2019. The façade and entire exterior of the hotel now shines white, rather than its former cream-beige hue.
The guestrooms feature lighter and brighter interiors as well as the addition of Segafredo coffee machines, USB charging stations and Simmons pillow-top mattresses. The French windows, which swing open to views of street scenes or the plantation-style grounds of the hotel, have been upgraded, and each room now has a writing desk and vintage rotary telephone.
All bathrooms have also been upgraded with new Italian tiling and rain showers. The traditional ceiling fans remain.
General Manager, Dennis de Groot, said, “The Grand Hotel is a national treasure, and its storied history is testament to Cambodia’s colourful past. It was originally built as a rest stop for archaeologists and adventurers seeking to explore the ancient kingdom of Angkor Wat. As we prepare to celebrate the hotel’s 90th anniversary this year, we are delighted that this hotel can continue to set the standard for luxury hospitality, where travellers arrive as guests, leave as friends and return as family.”
Named after the year that Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor first opened, 1932 is the hotel’s latest signature restaurant, serving traditional Royal Khmer cuisine.
The hotel’s original teak and wrought iron cage elevator remains, as does the vintage ambience of the Elephant Bar and the checker-tiled lobby.
Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor is situated a mere 20-minute drive to the doorway of the UNESCO Heritage temples of Angkor. The Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor offers an enticing series of Raffles Curated Journeys and Resort Programs designed to infuse local experiences with worldly elegance. Guests can explore the ancient Angkor Archaeological Park on an iconic Vespa, before being one of the first travellers of the day to enter the temple. Embark on a local tuk-tuk tour for a journey through the Silk Road of Angkor, visiting the beautiful Banteay Srei Temple and Golden Silk Farm.
Food aficionados can taste Siem Reap on an exclusive Culinary Hidden Gems, while shopaholics saunter Siem Reap’s Kandal Village neighbourhood with the assistance of a Raffles Butler, and culture lovers can enjoy a majestic performance of Cambodian dances in the Apsara Terrace.
On-site activities include monk blessings, Angkor Sling masterclasses, botanical and culinary garden tours, and a tour with the hotel’s resident historian.