Plate glass windows overlook the intersection of Sothearos and Street 178, and gentle lighting illuminates the soft, natural furnishings inside Corner 33 Cafe.
"When we met the owners, they said they were looking for something very contemporary, but also comfortable and welcoming," says Bronwyn Blue of Beyond Interiors, who was responsible for the interior design.
"We wanted to have a feeling of something that is ubiquitous, that you would find in any city, but we also wanted it to be special because it was Khmer and the owners are Australian Khmer so we wanted it to feel Cambodian. I mean, we are in Phnom Penh and there's a fabulous view of the palace right outside."
The number three is one of the central motifs of Corner 33 Cafe, recurring throughout the cafÃ©. "The Cambodian three is exactly like the English three but it's flipped over, so we thought we'd just play with that," Bronwyn says. "We actually ended up with all these great shapes and great combinations, and that's how all those printed windows came about - it's just the number three flipped around and colored like stained glass."
Natural colours of mocha and cafe latte contrasted with red constitute the bulk of the color scheme, helping to soften the space and make a reality of the owner's original desire to create a comfortable, welcoming spot.
One of the defining elements of the cafe is the internet station. "I thought this was a really great idea," Bronwyn says.
"We have these columns in all of these buildings, but then they don't really get used and just become space wasters - by designing the internet station around the columns it actually incorporates what was previously a design hazard into the space."
BY MELANIE BREW/ PHOTOS BY TRACEY SHELTON