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Slices of Siem Reap

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Opening in January 2003, the Paul Dubrule Hotel and Tourism School, on National Road

6 near the airport turn off, is a non-profit organization that trains Cambodians

in the skills needed for the ever-expanding tourism industry in Siem Reap. Students

are able to choose from one of five specialties; Cooking and Cuisine, Front Office

and Reception, Housekeeping, Restaurant and Bar and Travel Agency Services. Many

students are offered full scholarships for the nine month programs while many others

are sponsored by individuals or their employers. The school is a joint effort between

Accor co-founder Paul Drubrule, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Royal

Cambodian Government. A personal donation of $1.2 million by Paul Dubrule was used

to build the school on land donated by the Cambodian Government. The school is open

for lunch Monday to Friday.

** There must be at least a hundred travel agencies in Siem Reap, with every second

internet cafe doubling as one. Having had to

make a few forays from Siem Reap in my time here, as well as hearing the many stories

from ex-pats and tourists, I have no hesitation in recommending World Express Travel

as a professional and competitively priced travel

agency. They sell all airline tickets, many tours, hotel reservations and bus tickets.

Contact them on 012 755 590 or drop into their office next to the Old Market.

** A strange thing has been happening on Bar Street. Two of the bars seemed to have

replicated themselves and set up on the same street.

The Buddha Lounge a well established drinking hole, has opened up another Buddha

Lounge across the road, looking disarmingly similar. Temple Bar is opening a new

club only a few doors down on the same side called Temple Touch. Opening night for

this new bar is 18th September.

** Located on the corner of Wat Bo Road and the turn off for Wat Bo, Viroths Restaurant

has a very relaxing alfresco dining area offering a wonderful array of Khmer cuisine.

Although a relatively small menu, each dish is unique with its own flavors and textures,

unlike many Asian eateries with a thousand dishes all tasting, unremarkable the same.

The very traditional Sour Soup is on offer as well the tourist favorite Amok Fish

Curry. For the wonderful ambience and service received, the prices are very reasonable

with all mains $2.50 to $4. This restaurant is highly recommended.

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