Phnom Penh’s Stylish St 240
Phnom Penh, the capital and largest city of Cambodia, is famed for its historical war remnants and cultural attractions, such as the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek and Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum.
Slowly but surely however, the city is gaining various high rise buildings and increased modernity while still retaining the beauty that made it a Paris of the East before 1970. Street 178, just north of the National Museum, is known as Artist Street and has many interesting boutiques. Not far away, funky boutiques and classy eateries adorn the stylish Street 240, the epicenter of the Cambodian capital’s makeover. Just across the street from the National Museum, The Reyum Gallery (No 47 Street 178) showcases a constantly evolving exhibition aimed at addressing a wide variety of topics, not only in the visual arts but within broader realms of culture and society.
To sample some of Phnom Penh’s best cuisine, head over to The Wine Restaurant (No 219 Street 19) which is famed for its extensive wine list and fine Gallic menu, with highlights such as duck liver poele and beef Rossini. This stylish restaurant is abuzz at night, so come early to avoid disappointment.
The Meta House (No 6 Street 264), located opposite Wat Botum, is an art-gallery, bar, mini-cinema and production house all rolled into one. High-quality foreign and Cambodian films is shown regularly at night for free, in the bar-lounge on the roof.
If you are looking to splurge, the Pacharan Bodega (No 389, Sisowath, entrance on Street 184) is an excellent restaurant offering authentic Spanish cuisine. The ambiance is romantic, overlooking the riverfront next to the Royal Palace.1 The Water Lily Creation (No 37 Street 240) is a boutique filled with boxes of colorful beads, nature-inspired necklaces, brooches, earrings and rings.
Couleurs D’Asie (No 33 Street 240) offers a large selection of Cambodian silk home furnishings, from bedspreads to place mats to pillow cases and more. Funky colors combine with earth-inspired teak decoration making this a funky place to shop and get inspired.
For lunch, drop by The Shop (No 39 Street 240), where you can tuck into a selection of sandwiches, quiches, salads and freshly baked goods. Prices are very affordable, and the courtyard seating area is cozy and quiet.
The Brown Coffee and Bakery (No 17 Street 214), next to Old Pencil Supermarket, serves great coffee and perfect espresso shots for you all the time. If you’re still hungry, the sandwiches are also worth trying out.