Shinta Mani Siem Reap
Shinta Mani Angkor is a lovely boutique hotel in Siem Reap in Cambodia. It is completely designed by famous architect Bill Bensley and showcases 39 contemporary designed rooms in Khmer inspired design.
Shinta Mani Angkor is perfectly located if you plan to visit the famous Angkor Wat Temples in Siem Reap, Cambodia. The temples are just a short tuk-tuk drive away.
Shinta Mani first opened its doors in June 2003 as an 18 room Guest House. After renovation in 2012, by hotel architect-designer Bill Bensley, Shinta Mani was relaunched as Shinta Mani Angkor with a 39 room upscale designed boutique hotel serving guests from all over the world. Following the success of Shinta Mani Angkor, the sister property Shinta Mani Shack opened its doors in 2013.
In Bangkok, I stayed at a property that was designed by Bill Bensley. The hotel was called The Siam and it was just perfect. The location was amazing, the design incredible and the staff members helpful and friendly. So when I heard that Bill not only designed but also owns a hotel in Siem Reap, I immediately knew I have to visit it. He’s special touch in decorating in designing is one of a kind. Bill Bensley is known as the king of exotic luxury resorts and he designed and renovated more than 200 hotels in 26 countries. In Shinta Mani Angkor, Bensley has created a cool, sophisticated laid-back oasis cheered by funky art, ancient vintage sculptures and beautifully handcrafted lotus flower displays.
I have to mention the foundation of Shinta Mani, as I think it is an amazing thing what they are doing. Shinta Mani supports the less fortunate in their community through education and by providing working spaces to ensure a bright future for the people of Cambodia. A percentage of the daily room rate will be contributed to the Shinta Mani Foundation to support their activities. They train young people in the hospitality industry and provide them with jobs once they complete the program. They are also active in other projects like health and dental care, village schools, and small businesses.
I had the pleasure to stay in a beautiful Deluxe Poolview Room on the upper floor. The room was spacious with a large king size bed, working area, separate closet, terrazzo bathroom with rain shower and balcony overlooking the pool and the garden area. The room was incredible and wonderfully designed! Interior was chic in black and white, with handcrafted lamps and lovely decorations and one of the best things was the ceiling with an image of the temple. Amazing!
Shinta Mani has one main restaurant called Kroya which means “food” in the Khmer Royal language. The restaurant’s menu blends international as well as local products, fresh ingredients, native herbs, and spices. The food is delicious! If you wish to try different dishes, be sure to experience the 7 set Khmer Tasting Menu which includes a rich selection of courses highlighting the cuisine of the region. This was definitely one of the best meals I had in Cambodia!
If you wish to enjoy a few drinks after a long day at the temples, be sure to visit the Bensley’s Bar, named after the hotel’s architect Bill Bensley. The bar is located on the second floor and overlooks the courtyard. Another place where you can enjoy a refreshing drink or a light snack is at the Pool Bar. The pool bar is located in a tranquil internal courtyard where you can enjoy and relax after a long day.
The Shinta Mani Spa has one spa suite and three double treatment rooms. Treatments are based on traditional Khmer healing rituals and proven modern therapies to reduce stress and reset the inner balance. I decided to take a relaxing whole body massage and it was wonderful. One of the signature treatments is also Khmer Coffee Scrub which combines white clay and organic Cambodian coffee beans to create an aromatic rejuvenation. Either way, you decide, you will surely feel relaxed and stress-free afterward.
If you visit Siem Reap you are probably gonna visit the Angkor Wat Temples. If you are not sure which temples to visit or have a special request, just talk to the concierge at the Shinta Mani and he will organize the perfect tour for you. On my first day, I decided to go on a small circle tour which included some of the most interesting sites in the Angkor Archaeological Park. In the morning our driver and our guide picked us up in front of the hotel and the tour started with the most famous temple of all – Angkor Wat. Angkor Wat is the world’s largest sacred building and architectural masterpiece. This magnificent temple represents Khmer civilization at its best. After spending some time at the temple we continued our journey to Prasat Bayon – a temple of the mysterious stone face towers. Along the way, we saw a 350 meter long ‘Terrace of the Elephants’ and the mysterious ‘Terrace of the Leper King’. Our last stop was Angkor Thom Temple, where the famous Tomb Rider with Angelina Jolie was filmed.
My second day started early in the morning as I wanted to visit Angkor Wat to witness the magnificent sunrise. The hotel staff organized a breakfast basket so that we enjoyed our breakfast with a view of the great temple. We continued our journey to Banteay Srei about 16 kilometers north-west of Siem Reap The temple is also called the pink temple because of the color of the earth. On our way back to the hotel we stopped at the Pre Rup temple which offered the magnificent panorama views. All the temples were breathtaking, but you should know that they are a bit crowded.
Shinta Mani Angkor is a perfect place to stay if you are visiting the famous Angkor Wat temples. The hotel is beautiful, the rooms incredible and the food is simply delicious. The staff members will arrange everything for a smooth stay and they will organize the tours to Angkor Wat for you. So, if you are looking for an exceptional hotel in the city of Siem Reap, then look no further… Shinta Mani is a place for you!
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OurWorldTravelSelfies would like to thank Shinta Mani for welcoming this review. The opinion is as always, our own. Photos are courtesy of Our World Travel Selfies.