HYATT LA PAIX
The big hotel story floating around the high levels of the Siem Reap hospitality scene is that the Hyatt group has purchased management rights to the iconic Hotel de la Paix.
“Sources familiar with the deal” have confirmed this, but no one is going on the record at this stage.
The Hyatt Group has not replied to an email query about the deal. Apparently, a name change will be involved. Word is that the Hotel de la Paix will become the Park Hyatt Siem Reap, and not the Hyatt de la Paix as some suggested. More details will be divulged when more details are disclosed.
ELTON TIPPED TO HIT TOWN
There are hot rumours around town that his cuddlyship, Sir Elton John, will appear in concert at Angkor next November.
The word is that reconnaissance men for Elton’s proposed tour were holed up last week at Sokha Angkor Resort to do the logistics and check the joint out in preparation for the big occasion.
But this is not the first time a proposed concert by his Eltonship has been flagged for the Kingdom of Blunder.
On October 14, 2008, Queer Cambodia fell over itself in excitement over a proposed tour. Queer Cambodia reported, “Yes queer folks, there are gossips that our big sister will do a benefit concert here in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
"Elton John the sister of all. Lol From what I’ve heard, the concert is for the AIDS something. For sure, its going to be a must-see, especially for us queer folks.
"Hope we can bump him at Blue Chilli…lol.”
This followed a report on Monsters and Critics.com on October 9, 2008, which said, “Sir Elton John, British superstar and heavyweight activist in the fight against HIV/AIDS, has told a US magazine he is planning a visit to Cambodia. Sir Elton and partner David Furnish have raised more than $150 million for projects to assist people living with the virus through the Elton John Aids Foundation since it was set up in 1992.
‘This year, we look forward to travelling to Cambodia to visit projects in that country,’ Kansas City-based Camp Magazine quoted Sir Elton as telling journalist and gay rights activist Mark Segal.”
The concert never happened, but it appears that Elton was in the house, so to speak, in a sneak visit to the Kingdom. On November 8 last year, the Tim Roxborough blog reported, “It's the question on everyone's lips: did superstar Elton John stay at a 2-star guesthouse while in Cambodia a couple of years ago? According to the proud owner of the Fancy Guesthouse in downtown Phnom Penh, it most certainly was Elton John who decided to forgo his traditional penchant for 5-star luxury and settle for something a bit more budget conscious. Maybe Elton was going through a rough patch financially? "More likely, according to Mr Fancy, he was tired of being recognised at the plush hotel across town and enjoyed the privacy, comfort and more reasonable price of the Fancy Guesthouse.”
In fact Roxborough discovered a signed photo of Elton John at the guesthouse which says “To Fancy Guesthouse, Thanks for all.”