As Phnom Penh’s skyline rises and the bars open, we review some of the newest.
With views overlooking the light-streaked corner thoroughfare of Sisowath and Sothearos, classy Le Moon Terrace Bar could well be the most prominent rooftop bar on Riverside. Soft jazz and cosy lounge arrangements attempt to divide up the large roof area into intimate nooks, making it a place to bring a date or a few friends, rather than your lonesome self.
With such pleasant views and a subdued vibe, it’s a shame the cocktails don’t quite match up. A mint julep was overly sweet and overpriced – almost like a non-alcoholic mint syrup. After this, I ordered a more potent kir (white win and cassis) to get my cocktail kicks, while my friend stuck to the safety of red wine and whiskey.
Attentive staff and warm roasted peanuts raise the bar a notch in the service stakes, while the natural air-conditioning of the outdoors and distant Riverside hum make it a natural oasis for foreigners and tourists.
Le Moon Terrace Bar, Amanjaya Pancam Hotel, Sisowath Quay
Eclipse Sky Bar
The Eclipse Sky Bar, the tallest sky bar in Phnom Penh, is a hidden gem in the heart of the city’s business district.
From the roof of the 22-story Hyundai Phnom Penh Tower, the view of the city is breath-taking, and the soft mix of pop music in the background adds to the bar’s relaxed ambiance.
A perfect way to wind down after a long hot day of work (or travel). From the top, we could spy the Royal Palace and other tourist attractions that were lit up. Not bad for a roof that used to be filled with AC units and ventilators.
It’s perfect for a romantic night, family dinner, or even a girls’ night out, enjoying the cool night air while sipping on Singapore Slings.
Plan to come with some serious cash, as the drinks and food served here are a lot more expensive than other local bars. Beers start at US $3 and cocktails range from $7-8. Appetizers start from $6 and set meals range from $22-40.
The Eclipse Sky Bar opens from 4pm to 1am, with a live band from 9pm. Its grand opening is scheduled for Dec 14.
SOO JIN KIM
Eclipse Sky Bar, Phnom Penh Tower, No. 445, Preah Monivong
Tucked inside a guesthouse street a stone’s throw away from the Cambodiana and the Royal Palace, Number 9 Hotel warmly welcomes guests and passers-by into a three-storey building.
On the rooftop terrace, seating is comfortable and abundant on both the lower floor bar and on the top floor next to a Jacuzzi with a wooden decking. Disappointingly, the water looks still and uninviting.
A well-endowed drinks list invites a night of tasteful cocktails ($3). But a vast selection can hardly compensate for the scrimpy quantities served. Still, service is good waiters attend clients quickly to shoot more drinks to the table.
After a long day, enjoy afternoon drinks and let stress fade away on a reclining chair. But if you need to quench your thirst in a flash, act fast: staff leave shortly after midnight.
Guesthouse 9, Street 111