Settle into a secret garden retreat
Secreted away in lush, sprawling gardens, hidden behind high walls on a dirt track tucked behind Wat Polanka, the intimate boutique property Maison Polanka is my favorite Siem Reap sleep. Of all the accommodation I'm experienced in Temple Town, this is easily my favorite stay and it's partly because it feels like a secret, a tranquil oasis hidden away from the busy outside world and yet it's warm and welcoming, sophisticated and exclusive. It's also distinctively Cambodian. The accommodation is in two traditional Khmer timber houses decorated with an eclectic mix of antiques, retro reproductions, and a few modern pieces thrown in. The Cambodian-French owner, Nathalie Saphon Ridel, who owns Khmer Attitude and Galerie Cambodge, is a woman of exquisite taste and the property, her former family home, is beautifully designed and decorated. The Cambodian cook, who has been with the family forever, also serves up some of the most delicious local food you'll find anywhere. While it can seem far from the center to first-timers, it's actually only a 10-minute tuk tuk ride to the Old Market area. It's also just a two-minute stroll to the riverside and one of the most local neighborhoods (and my favorite) in Siem Reap.
By Lara Dunston
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