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Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra golf resort and spa

Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra golf resort and spa

Old Apr 16, 10, 3:16 am
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Thumbs up Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra golf resort and spa

My deepest apologies for a lengthy report, and I have left some things out (not because they were negative, there wasn’t anything negative to say) but otherwise no one would be able to read the report. I have also made it easier to find topic’s by bolding these at each paragraph so here we go:

Another hotel highly recommended by prominent FT member Goldorak so I (we) had no other choice than to try it out.

Booking: Booked the hotel on accorhotels.com, again stay 4 pay for 3 nights, but forgot to enter my A-Club number at the time of booking due to pure eager. As some of you regulars to the Accor FT forum might recall, I posted a few comments earlier on the problems with A-club and missing A-Club number entry while booking so I’ll leave that out for this time.

Had pre booked transportation from REP (Siem Reap Airport) to the Angkor Wat Sofitel directly by mail with the hotel. A return trip for 4 PAX came to USD 24 and was a bit of an experience in it self.

Airport Arrival / Transfer: When we arrived at the REP there were quite a few planes coming in at the same time so the arrivals hall was quite full. What surprised me was how few people actually had gotten their Cambodian Visas on beforehand so the queues at the Visa purchase desk were quite long. We had done this from beforehand so we just flew through without any problems. This is a small airport but looks very new and seems very efficient. Got our bags a few min later and walked out of the international arrivals to be greeted by a Sofitel representative who straight away took our bags, had us seated in a little secluded area at the exit, gave us small cold wet Jasmine soaked towels to refresh and bottles with ice cold water which was very welcoming in the unbelievable heat (38C). The Sofitel airport “host” made some phone calls – which we didn’t hear, but I guess he called the Hotel to “pre-warn” our arrival. We were asked if all went fine with the flight and if there was anything he had to sort before we left the premises. Nothing to fault so when we were ready, we were escorted a few meters to the mini bus who took us to the hotel. During the drive, the driver made sure to ask us if the temperature was ok for us (aircon temp in the car) and asked us if our flight was fine. I later learned there were two roads that lead to the hotel from the airport, one short cut through a village type road and the little longer which takes you past the main entrance to Angkor Wat which the driver took. This was amazing to actually see the entrance of this world heritage site on your way to the hotel, a very nice touch in my opinion ^

Hotel Arrival: Pulled up to the magnificent Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra golf resort and spa and was greeted by the bellboys (is this the correct name?) with smiles all over. One of our bags were very heavy and I did my best to give them a hand but this was no way allowed so we were escorted to the foyer of the hotel. Again we were greeted by a hostess who made sure we were comfortable in the sofas and got our passports. Again we got the cold jasmine soaked towels and a non alcoholic welcome drink while we were checked in. The paperwork returned and we signed the papers. Again, we were complimentary upgraded ^

Room: The room was spacious with dark wooden floors, a huge bathroom with shower and bath tub (which I still don’t understand as I’m not a bath tub person), a standard TV with 60+ channels, a fresh fruit arrangement with watermelon, bananas (the little ultra sweet ones), dragon fruit, grapes etc, stationary with our names printed on the headers as well as the envelopes The bathroom was again filled to the brink with L’Occitane products (as you know my body no rejects anything else) loads of towels etc. Our room was facing the lake at ground level and had it's own little terrace, but the temperature made it impossible to sit outside for more than 5 min at a time :-) My brother got a 2nd floor room with a larger balcony than the other rooms, but facing the road but made no difference to them... What a fantastic experience so far (and better it gets) ^

The turndown service gave us a nice surprise every evening by a little evening gift for the both of us. These included flower bouquet for Mrs. Cupart and a jasmine flower lei for myself, box of handmade chocolates, Khmer Scarf’s (great for hot days), little bags of pepper (Cambodia is famous for pepper corns) and lastly CD's with the history of Angkor Wat. New cold water bottles placed next to the bed with a new clean glass, slippers and towel placed by the bed, clothes folded neatly etc.

We were also given a bottle of complimentary red wine which was a nice touch :-)

Pool Area: My dear friend Goldorak did tell me that during the day it would get so hot that one would spend quite a time at the pool, but being who I am I didn’t quite think that would be the case. Was I ever so wrong. The blistering heat moved us away form the temples of Angkor to one of the most magnificent pools I’ve ever been to before (this includes the great pools of Sun City in South Africa). The water temperature was just a little lower than the air temperature and daily the water status (i.e. pH, Temp, Cl- ppm etc) was updated on a black board by the pool bar. Again, the second you made yourself comfortable on one of the sun beds a pool attendant came with a tray of the cold jasmine soaked towels and made sure everything was fine. Tears were close to burst out, but we kept them back. The pool is not blue but has a greenish tint due to the tiles used which is done very cleverly to blend the look in with the lake opposite of the covered walk way which separates the two areas. Only negative thing to put a finger on is that all your white bathing suits / trunks turned yellowish when in the water for more than 20 min (we stayed up to the wrinkly finger point of 60 min+) but came off when washed. The pool closed early at 20:00 but I guess this was not to disturb guests who had rooms facing the pool area. Still we did plunge after the hour, and the pool staff never said a word (we were very quiet) and they made sure there were towels for us when we got up ^^^^ We did talk a lot to the bar/pool staff which was great…

Eating: Breakfast was included in the rate we got, and was pretty amazing. I have never stayed at a hotel where there were dedicated fruit carvers (actually there were two people carving fresh fruit) and a bartender walking around amongst the tables serving the shaken fruit cocktail of the day (or should I say morning) which was explained in detail by the same. Again, we (and he) took our time to talk to each other which was great… There was a full selection of your standard European selection (emphasise on French bread and patisserie) as well as your full American and Asian selection. The waiting staff, AGAIN, were out of this world. They remembered us and knew where we wanted to sit and made sure we got the best suited tables and got the hot beverages we had asked for earlier. The coffee were served in Stelton stainless steel thermos (which are by far cheap) which keep the temperature perfectly. Now, Cambodian coffee is excellent and can’t be faulted so another ^ Btw, all bread is baked onsite and is FANTASTIC… We didn't have any other meals at the hotel, but went out for dinner every dinner. Madam Butterfly is highly recommendable on airport road run by a French gentleman who had come over from St Martin after 18 years ^

Getting around: When ready to go out, the bellboys will get you what ever type of transportation you require. We exclusively used tuk-tuk’s and found one particular good one (drivers name was Naari) who we used though out our stay. We had some great laughs with Naari and he took us places off the beaten track as well. We choose to pay him USD 20 for a full day (i.e. 8 hours) which I guess was a little more than the standard rate. These people doesn’t have an easy life so please don’t try and save a dollar or two.

Departing: Leaving the hotel was very difficult. The service level had been taken to a totally new level and what struck us the most was that it came natural and not with the “usual” fake smiles you get other places. Maybe this is a Cambodian thing as the rest of the world could learn a thing or two of Cambodians.

Payment: I did part pay with a couple of Vouchers. These were in EUR but changed into USD. At the time an EUR 40 voucher was worth USD 50. One interesting thing was that the receptionist said I would get the points less the voucher value (discussed earlier here), but as the points never got posted, I sent in the full paid invoice and got the full points added to my A-club account.

Verdict: Sofitel Angkor Wat has set a new standard in my opinion and I find it hard to believe that anyone can beat it in the this category. We’re going back without question ^^^

Last edited by Cupart; Apr 16, 10 at 3:27 am
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Old Apr 16, 10, 4:37 pm
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Great report Cupart ^^^ Thank you
I'm glad you enjoyed my favourite hotel in the world. Reading you, I was feeling I was there (and I was there only 2 months ago !) and also nostalgic (I WANT TO GO THERE AGAIN ).
Now you understand why I go there every year. The hotel staff is really one of the greatest
Did you enjoy the temples ?
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Old Apr 17, 10, 3:17 am
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My oh my Cupart, sounds like you were pampered all the way on this trip. Thanks for the review. ^ Sounds like a great place to visit.

Out of interest, what was the daily rate?
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Old Apr 17, 10, 5:07 am
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Failed to mention, congrats for starting the 300th thread, and they said it couldn't be done when we requested our own Accor A-Club forum
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Old Apr 18, 10, 2:01 am
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Originally Posted by starflyergold View Post
Out of interest, what was the daily rate?
The rate at time of booking was USD 101.25 pr night excluding b'fast. The listed b'fast on the booking mail was quoted at 18.00 pr person but when we added this at checkin the price was around USD 15.00 per person.
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Old Apr 18, 10, 2:04 am
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Originally Posted by Cupart View Post
The rate at time of booking was USD 101.25 pr night excluding b'fast.
Excellent value
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Old Apr 18, 10, 2:30 am
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Originally Posted by starflyergold View Post
Excellent value
I was very surprised my self to be honest, as the Sofitel Saigon was USD 149 pr night excl breakfast (only got the free b'fast because of the room upgrade). I know you shouldn't really compare the two hotels I was staying in during my Vietnam as they were directed at different types of guests but the Sofitel Angkor Wat blew me away (the rest of my fellow travellers).

A sofitel night at USD 100 (or even USD 149) is a steal if you think about what a Mercure room will set you back in Paris I know not quite comparable, but still, makes you think...
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Old Apr 19, 10, 7:19 am
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So, 2 great hotel reviews recently.. Hope Accor keeps ths trend on .. for the benefit of their elite clients and themeselves..^
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Old Apr 19, 10, 8:03 am
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Originally Posted by abhilife2001 View Post
So, 2 great hotel reviews recently.. Hope Accor keeps ths trend on .. for the benefit of their elite clients and themeselves..^
Could also depend on where in the world you are staying. I don't believe you can get the same kind of service we got in Vietnam and/or Cambodia in so many other places around the world, as it's the staff (in my opinion) who makes the service a hit or miss.

Still, that said, a certain level of service should be expected at any Sofitel anywhere in the world...

All the little things we were given were great, but could have been with out to be honest, but smiley and genuinely happy people around you is priceless ^
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Old Apr 19, 10, 9:49 am
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Originally Posted by Cupart View Post
, but smiley and genuinely happy people around you is priceless ^
Guess.. most folks in the most countries are too busy running in the rat race to be geniunely happy... I recall a saying..''problem with the rat race is even if we win, we r still a rat ''
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Old Apr 22, 10, 2:07 pm
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I give the Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra a big ^ as well. Stayed there for three nights in January and it was easily one of the best hotels Ive ever stayed in.

I can confirm all that Cupart says about the Sofitel Angkor Phokeethra - they really deliver in the service department. One thing I really appriciated was being able to use the spa and pool in the evening on the day of departure before going to the airport after a long day of sightseeing the temples. It is one thing to be able to store your luggage when you have an evening flight - quite another thing to be able to use the pool and spa to freshen up before going on a intercontinental flight. ^^^

Temperaturewise, I can fully recommend going there in January instead of later on. The temperature was a mild 30 degrees and making it a pleasure to see all of the different temples in the area followed by coming back to the hotel in the evening to enjoy the magnificent pool.

The only annoyance was the usual one - you always have to chase the a-club points when staying outside Europe. Still havent gotten the promo points three months after the stay

Svantevit
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Old Apr 22, 10, 4:24 pm
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Originally Posted by Svantevit View Post
The only annoyance was the usual one - you always have to chase the a-club points when staying outside Europe. Still havent gotten the promo points three months after the stay

Svantevit
Nothing new there then

Cupart, have your points materialised yet?
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Old Apr 23, 10, 5:33 am
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Originally Posted by starflyergold View Post
Nothing new there then

Cupart, have your points materialised yet?
Funny enough, the Sofitel Siem Reap points did not register, so after 3 days after my return back to Dublin I scanned a copy of the full invoice and got the full amount of points, including the USD 100 I was told I would not get points for as these were part voucher payments ^
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Old Apr 23, 10, 12:28 pm
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Great report Cupart,
it also brings back some memories of my stay back in december 2007.
i am not used to 5 stars hotels/Sofitel (only 5 stays in Sofitel) and was very very impressed by the property and service provided.
At that time i hold a Sofitel Privilege card and got an ugraded room, which was bigger than our appartment , a welcome drink, fresh fruits everyday and the dvd.
i also remember having a nespresso machine ^ in the room, which i am very fond of.
I read this Sofitel was one of 22 best hotels in the world !!!

i hope one day i will go back there.
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Old Feb 12, 11, 9:49 am
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Smile 6th stay in Sofitel Royal Angkor

Dear all,
I just completed my 6th stay in this wonderful hotel, the best hotel of the world IMO. Despite that 30 staff members are now working in the newly opened Sofitel Phnom Penh (see my review in another thread : http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/accor...l#post15850886), there are still many staff members who know me and are always showing signs of being happy to see me again. It’s almost like staying with family. Check-in was good as usual. I was upgraded instantly to the upper category room facing the huge pool area. I was given the welcome drink voucher to be used at the bar (valid for everything including champagne) and a huge fruit basket was waiting for me in the room. In the evening, apart for the turndown service, they bring me a complimentary bottle of red wine (I had this also the previous year). Almost every night, during the turndown service, a gift was placed on the bed (pack of Kompot pepper, scarfs, pack of curry spices, etc) : a very nice touch.

The hotel was very busy during the 1st part of my stay, as it was the week of the Chinese new year. So there were a lot of Chinese, the French being the 2nd most important group in the hotel. It’s something that I will remember : do not visit Angkor temples during the week of Chinese new year. I’ve never seen so much people around. Thousands of loud Chinese people visiting the temples in groups . There were even huge traffic jams on the road around the temples. A nightmare. This was the 1st time I was seing this, being a frequent visitor there. Ta Prohm temple was impossible to visit in a correct manner. Thanks to my favourite tuk-tuk driver (I have the same every year ), I was able to escape this nightmare and find a way to see these wonderful temples in a satisfactory way.

FYI, every year I use some A-Club vouchers (in USD) to pay part of my bill in this hotel, without any problem. This year, I used 10 vouchers !

I’m always extremely sad to leave this hotel (the tears are never far, especially this year as the staff is nicer and nicer with me at each new stay, and one ever told me I was their preferred customer due to my loyalty). Many hotel staff in the world should learn from those of Sofitel Angkor ^.

So, for those of you who never visited these wonders of the world that are the Angkor temples, do not hesitate to go there and stay at Sofitel Royal Angkor, the best hotel with the greatest staff to enjoy the Cambodian friendliness. and kindness
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