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Man about town: 15 November 2013

Man about town: 15 November 2013

Madame Butterfly restaurant’s highly successful Wild Dinner held on a sparkling night in October has now been made into a ‘movie’ – or at least an eleven-minute YouTube feature with Parisian Michelin-starred chef Gilles Choukroun in the lead role and backed more than adequately by fellow cast members, executive chefs Kimsan Sok and Kimsan Pol from the Angkor W Group of Restaurants, the owners of the revamped Madame Butterfly.

Dutch-born CEO of the Majestic Oriental Hotel, Rob Doeven reveals that he has completed the renovations and change of management at the hotel. He says, “In the last years the four star hotel wasn’t active in the market and a lot of agents didn’t want to visit the hotel because of mismanagement.”

He says he is happy that he has now completed the “face lift” of the hotel, with the Majestic Oriental in full operation again complete with “signed long term agreements with leading travel agents.” He adds it was impossible to achieve the renovations without a motivated new team and announces that a new general manager, Chor Phyrun, has now been installed.

Hotels are quick to trumpet tidings of any awards they win, but Victoria Angkor Resort and Spa’s assistant sales and marketing manager, Vat Is Pirath, decided to trump the lot and simply list ALL the awards the hotel has won in recent history.

Accolades received by the hotel this year include a listing in Tripadvisor’s Top 25 Hotels in Cambodia, plus Tripadvisor’s Top 25 Luxury Hotels in Cambodia list. The honour for Best Hotel in Cambodia was bestowed by the International Hotel Awards, and the Best Family Friendly Hotel ranking was given by Smart Travel Asia listed the Victoria as one of the Top 25 Leisure Hotels and Resorts, and a further listing came from Conde Nast Traveller, citing the hotel as one of the Top 20 Resorts in Asia in its “Readers' Choice Awards.”

Over the years the Victoria has also notched up many prestigious awards and listings. In 2009 Condé Nast Traveller listed Victoria’s restaurant, Le Bistrot de Siem Reap, as “best French restaurant in town.” In 2010 the hotel was listed by Tripadvisor as Number 1 Best Family Hotel in Cambodia and in the Top 10 in Asia, plus the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism gave it a Green Hotel Award.

In 2011 Condé Nast Traveller listed the hotel in its Top 20 Reader’s Choice Awards, and Smart Travel Asia, listed it in its Top 25 Leisure Hotels and Resort wrap up. The Victoria was also included in that list last year, plus it received a Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence.

Holy Tunes: Diners at Café Mie last Sunday were regaled with what may well have been Siem Reap’s first Christmas carol of the season – Bing Crosby’s I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas is now firmly on the restaurant’s music play list.

Air Services: South Korea’s Air Busan launched a new flight between Busan and Siem Reap on November 6. There are four flights a week, on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, leaving Siem Reap at12.20am. Meanwhile, from January 1 next year Cambodia Angkor Air’s evening flight to Bangkok will pushed back” by two hours.

Barbecue Nights: Yan Piseth, the personal assistant to the general manager at Prince D’Angkor advises that the hotel has recommenced its popular pool-side barbecues on Tuesday and Friday nights during high season.

Water Festival Curiosity: The Water festival has been cancelled again this year, but perhaps no one’s told potential contestants. Crews are busy all over town doing up their boats and presumably they’ll be hitting the water?


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