The best desserts in Siem Reap

The best desserts in Siem Reap

Whether you’ve spent the day discovering ancient temple ruins or simply relaxing by the pool, the intense heat that Siem Reap enjoys just about year-round means that a sweet, preferable cooling treat is often more than welcome. Thankfully, temple town is blessed with an array of great spots at which to tuck into delicious local and international desserts. Here’s our pick of some of the best spots to indulge your sweet tooth in Siem Reap.

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Planning to stay with us at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel? The secret when booking is to book direct! Book your stay at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel direct on our website and enjoy:

  • The best deals on tours and transport
  • Savings on extra services
  • The best prices on room rates

We look forward to seeing you soon! Or kun cheran.

Gelato Lab

‘The nectar of the gods’ is just about the best description we have heard of the delicious goodness served up by Gelato Lab, located on the small lane of Alley West, along from Pub Street in Siem Reap’s Old Market area. This ice cream joint has a rightfully loyal following, and the extensive selection of ice creams and sorbets are freshly churned in-house each day, resulting in flavours and textures that we reckon are just about unbeatable.

Choose from the likes of salted butter ice cream, as well as outstanding, vegan-friendly sorbets such as the Cioccolato organic 80% Papua New Guinea dark chocolate, Siem Reap mango and dragon fruit, sweet mandarin from southeastern Cambodia’s Kandal province, passion fruit from the Mondulkiri mountains in the east of the country, and strawberries from Chiang Mai in neighbouring Thailand. It’s these dairy-free sorbets that also earned Gelato Lab a deserving place in our round-up of Siem Reap’s best places for vegan food.

Daily, 9am-11.30pm; Alley West (behind Pub Street); 085-757-590; www.facebook.com/gelatolabsiemreap

Bang Bang

This new arrival on the Siem Reap foodie scene is dead serious about desserts. Taking its name from the Khmer word for ‘bread’, Bang Bang is a new venture from the folks behind Siem Reap favourite The Hangout, and turns out expertly baked western-style breads (including some spectacular sourdough loaves) and a daily changing menu of delicious, homemade cakes, including – music to our ears – a great selection of vegan options.

Wednesday to Sunday, 9am-7pm; Taphul Road (opposite Idea Decor, and along from Hotel Angkor 89); www.facebook.com/bakerybangbang

Malis

Widely recognised as one of temple town’s finest restaurants – and so deservingly in our list of Siem Reap’s best Cambodian restaurants – Malis serves up not just top-notch Cambodian curries and other time-honoured dishes, but also a short but stunning selection of desserts. This is the place to get a taste for some of Cambodia’s famous local desserts – like jasmine-infused mousse with crunchy rice and coconut ice cream, and young palm fruit cooked in coconut milk and served with coconut jelly and vanilla ice cream – as well as modern Asian fusion sweets such as taro dumplings with durian ice cream, and a Kampot pepper and coconut milk crème brûlée with jasmine ice cream, all in the grand surrounding of this plush restaurant.

Daily, 6am- 10pm; Pokambor Avenue; 015-824-888; www.malis-restaurant.com

Bloom Cafe

It is indeed possible to do good while stuffing your face with cupcakes, and Bloom is a case in point. This non-profit café (run by NGO Bloom Asia, which aims to empower poverty-stricken Cambodian women) turns out an amazing range of cupcakes that taste just as incredible as they look, all while providing worthwhile hospitality industry training for disadvantaged locals. Impressive larger cakes are also available to order for birthdays and other occasions. Bloom is the perfect way to while away an afternoon of coffee and cake in air-conditioned comfort – and it’s within walking distance of the Old Market area and countless other gorgeous boutiques, just in case you’re still in need of some additional retail therapy.

Monday to Saturday, 10am-5pm; Mondul Road (off Central Market Street); 017-800-301; www.bloom-asia.org

Sister Srey Cafe

Sometimes we should eat non-processed sugars that won’t expand the waste line! That’s why we love heading to Sister Srey Cafe. With a reputation for being the heart of Siem Reap’s yoga community due to gorgeous healthy food, Sister Srey is also a social enterprise. The must-try dishes for clean eaters who have a sweet tooth is the raw passionfruit cheesecake. Gluten free, vegan and processed sugar free, this divine cake is also guilt free! Sister Srey also offer a few other raw sweets options, along with an ever-growing menu of healthy, clean-eating options for breakfast, brunch and lunch.  They also do great coffee, but you probably already knew that!

Tuesday to Sunday, 7am-6pm; Near the Old Market; 097-723-8001; www.sistersreycafe.com

Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel

Back at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel, our own food and menu – encompassing both local specialities, healthy dishes, and international comfort foods – includes a number of delicious Khmer desserts that serve as the perfect introduction to the sweet end of Cambodian cuisine, alongside some much-loved international favourites that we just couldn’t leave out. Look out for our fabulous temple pumpkin custard, a slice of steamed Cambodian sweet pumpkin stuffed with coconut egg custard, and our delicious sesame-battered local banana fritters served with ice cream and all the trimmings.

Find out more about our tropical garden restaurant here.


Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Where to stay in Siem Reap

Looking for a Siem Reap hotel from which to explore the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants that Siem Reap has to offer, while also being within easy reach of the famous Angkor Wat temples? Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel is waiting for you – click here to take a look at our relaxing rooms, all with free breakfast (including vegan options, of course!) and use of our gorgeous swimming pool.

Where is your favourite place to eat dessert in Siem Reap? Let us know in the comments!

Photos by Gelato Lab; Malis; Bloom Café

Introducing our artists in residence at Baby Elephant

Introducing our artists in residence at Baby Elephant

We are thrilled to welcome two new artists in residence – In My Name Silver and Tamara Venn – at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel, adding to the creative dynamic and nourishing environment for guests at our Siem Reap hotel. Together with the arrival of these artists, we are thrilled to have expanded our exhibition and art space to include a business centre for guests, complete with printing and co-working facilities.

Excellent Deals Direct

Planning to stay with us at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel? The secret when booking is to book direct! Book your stay at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel direct on our website and enjoy:

  • The best deals on tours and transport
  • Savings on extra services
  • The best prices on room rates

We look forward to seeing you soon! Or kun cheran.

 

In My Name Silver

Silversmith Claire McKenzie and her apprentice Srey Neap are together In My Name Silver. They have now settled in as our first artists in residence. In My Name Silver is running two-hour silversmithing workshops at Baby Elephant – in which you can learn to make your very own sterling silver band ring.

Claire and Srey Neap also take commissions for silver jewellery lovingly handmade and designed from a specially chosen range of Khmer words – the perfect memento to remind you of your time in Cambodia, or as a gift for a loved one.

Discover more about In My Name Silver here.

Tamara Venn

Illustrator and painter Tamara hails from London, and our new artists-in-residence programme brings her studio right home here to Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel. Tamara is responsible for the beautiful wall mural that brightens up our stunning tropical garden restaurant, as well as countless other artistic additions to the hotel’s fun and lively ambience.

As well as working on new pieces in her studio at Baby Elephant, Tamara will have prints of her various work available for sale on-site.

See more of Tamara’s fabulous work on her web site.

Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Where to stay in Siem Reap

Looking for a Siem Reap hotel from which to explore the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants that Siem Reap has to offer, while also being within easy reach of the famous Angkor Wat temples? Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel is waiting for you – click here to take a look at our relaxing rooms, all with free breakfast (including vegan options, of course!) and use of our gorgeous swimming pool.

Baby Elephant featured in the Independent’s Siem Reap city guide

Baby Elephant featured in the Independent’s Siem Reap city guide

We’re over the moon to be featured in the Independent’s exciting round-up of Siem Reap’s reinvention as a pioneering ethical tourism destination for city breaks and longer escapes.

Excellent Deals Direct

Planning to stay with us at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel? The secret when booking is to book direct! Book your stay at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel direct on our website and enjoy:

  • The best deals on tours and transport
  • Savings on extra services
  • The best prices on room rates

We look forward to seeing you soon! Or kun cheran.

In her Siem Reap city guide: How to spend a sustainable weekend in north west Cambodia piece, Jessica Allen describes our ‘lovely saltwater pool’ and praises Baby Elephant’s ‘ethical approach to hospitality’ and commitment to ‘supporting its staff – employees receive a fair wage, free meals, and access to savings plans’.

The article continues: ‘As part of its ongoing Go Green! initiative, the hotel has planted an organic kitchen garden and sponsors “clean up your neighbourhood” days.”

The Independent piece highlights the growing number of responsibly managed, scene-invigorating tourism and hospitality businesses in Siem Reap. We’re honoured that Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel is included alongside such prestigious and worthy Siem Reap destinations and organisations as Kandal Village, Marum, New Leaf, White Bicycles (available at Baby Elephant), Phare The Cambodian Circus, and more – including, of course, the inimitable Angkor Wat temples themselves.

As to why Siem Reap is a destination you need to visit right now:

‘Beneath the dusty streets of Siem Reap, green things are growing. Several social enterprises have recently sprung up, offering travellers who care about giving back lots of ways to do so. It’s never been so easy to eat a delicious meal while supporting disadvantaged young people, or to participate in the #refillnotlandfill movement by grabbing a reusable water bottle from your hotel’s lobby. At long last this city is stepping out from the shadow of the temples of Angkor and into its own light, as a destination for sustainable tourism.’


The SR Monthly #9: the best of Siem Reap

The SR Monthly #9: the best of Siem Reap

The SR Monthly is a hand-crafted e-mail round-up of the latest goings-on in Siem Reap and at Angkor Wat, Cambodia, as well as news from Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel, curated by our passionate team and delivered to your inbox once a month – all designed to make your next trip to Siem Reap extra-special.

Excellent Deals Direct

Planning to stay with us at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel? The secret when booking is to book direct! Book your stay at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel direct on our website and enjoy:

  • The best deals on tours and transport
  • Savings on extra services
  • The best prices on room rates

We look forward to seeing you soon! Or kun cheran.


This edition was sent on 07 July 2017. Want to be in on the action next time around? Subscribe for free right now – just click here.


Go Green! Baby Elephant joins Plastic Free July

Being green is a big part of the Baby Elephant mission, and we’re making good progress with our monthly initiatives to reduce the hotel’s footprint, become more eco-friendly, and contribute in a positive way to our local community. This July, we’re joining forces with other socially conscious Siem Reap businesses to ditch plastic packaging and reduce the amount of waste produced in temple town. Take a look at our new blog post to discover more of what we’re doing as part of this planet-friendly drive.
Read more…


Real Food Real Weightloss Retreat

The Baby Elephant team will be supporting Real Food Real Weightloss with our personnel, faciltiies and beautiful rooms for the RFRW Retreat this September. The RFRW Retreat is one of the best retreats in Southeast Asia with some of the most experienced facilitators available. If you invest in transformative travel, you will not want to miss this!

Baby Elephant is getting a lot of attention from the wellness travel community lately for our exceptionally wholesome food, relaxing facilities and wellness services. With a spa, an active yoga community and some of Siem Reap’s best teachers we can offer amazing support to retreat leaders to deliver transformational travel for your clients.
Read more…


Discover Muslim communities and food in Siem Reap

Ramadan and Eid might have just passed, but it’s not too late to learn something new about the pockets of Muslim culture and communities right here in Siem Reap! While Cambodia’s premier tourist town might be best known for the Buddhist-Hindu temples in the Angkor Wat complex, Siem Reap – and the country more widely – are also home to numerous Muslim communities. Our new blog post gives you the inside track on these communities and how to find out more about them and, just because we’re incurable foodies, where to dig into some of their delicious culinary influences on our little town.
Read more…


Run for your life in a Siem Reap marathon!

Calling all marathon junkies! Siem Reap is home to its fair share of challenging and charitable runs, and there are more on the way. Taking part in a marathon in Cambodia’s temple town is the perfect way to check out the city’s bucket-list-worthy sights, and end shopping and eating possibilities, while accomplishing the latest rung in your fitness journey. Best of all, before and after your run, the Baby Elephant team is here to pamper you with fabulous spa treatments, delicious meals in our restaurant, rejuvenating pool time, and of course luxurious bedrooms for that all-important rest and relaxation. Read our new blog post to find out more about Siem Reap’s upcoming marathons and our great-value packages.
Read more…


Lemongrass Garden Spa opens at Baby Elephant with a bang

At the start of June, we hosted a stylish launch for our brand-new Lemongrass Garden Spa at Baby Elephant, in conjunction with Siem Reap’s leading independent day spa. Take a look at all the photos from this happening evening of fun and festivities, then come down and see us for a rewarding, energising and all-natural treatment in the surrounds of our luxurious spa.
Read more…


Cocktail of the Month
Dragonfruit Gin Fizz ($4.00 or 2-4-1 during Happy Hour!)

It’s no secret that we’re fans of gin cocktails and opportunities to create new flavours with a focus on botanicals. This month’s cocktail is a gin fizz, with a house-made dragonfruit syrup made by our assistant manager Seyha. The Dragonfruit Gin Fizz combines Gordon’s gin, lime juice, soda water and a dash of dragonfruit syrup. Dragonfruit is tipped as the next superfood loaded with antioxidants and other healthy stuff, so what better opportunity? Follow us on Instagram for other holiday inspiration!
Enjoy for $4.00 or 2-4-1 during Happy Hour every day from 5-7PM!

News Bites


A belated congratulations to manager of Baby Elephant Ravy and the directors of Lemongrass Garden Spa on the birth of their healthy babies! We’re all in love here at Baby Elephant.


We are pleased to welcome In My Name Silver to Baby Elephant! Founder and silversmith Claire has moved in with her apprentice Srey Neap. Sliver-making workshops and silver jewellery now available at Baby Elephant. Watch this space for more detail!


See you at new Siem Reap hot spot The Republic this Friday night? Baby Elephant’s very own Adam Scott will be DJing from 8PM.


Congratulations also to front desk supervisor Kim on presenting her thesis last week! All set to graduate from SE Asia University with a Bachelor of Hospitality Management. We’re really proud of you.


About Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel

Baby Elephant is an evolving independent boutique hotel in Siem Reap, providing premium budget and affordable luxury accommodation alongside all the facilities and services of an international hotel. We are proud to be a 2017 TripAdvisor Travellers Choice hotel.

We are an inclusive, family-friendly and LGBT-welcoming property offering a dynamic, creative and nourishing space for guests. Our sustainable and ethical business model is focused on opportunities for our team of Cambodian staff, while creating rewarding and memorable experiences for our valued guests. Read more here.

We offer the best deals when you book direct!

Get the latest goings-on from Siem Reap and news from Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel once a month – click here to subscribe to the free SR Monthly e-mail newsletter.

Discovering Muslim communities – and their food – in Siem Reap

Discovering Muslim communities – and their food – in Siem Reap

Cambodia might be a predominantly Buddhist country, but that’s not to say there aren’t significant religious minorities – among them, a Muslim community that makes up around 1.6% of the total population.

Excellent Deals Direct

Planning to stay with us at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel? The secret when booking is to book direct! Book your stay at Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel direct on our website and enjoy:

  • The best deals on tours and transport
  • Savings on extra services
  • The best prices on room rates

We look forward to seeing you soon! Or kun cheran.

Alongside enriching visits to the Hindu-influenced Buddhist temples of the Angkor Wat complex and elsewhere, with a little digging you can also use your visit to Siem Reap to discover and learn about Siem Reap’s Muslim communities, as well as tasting their delicious influences on temple town’s culinary scene.

The Cham people

The Cham people are a predominantly Muslim Austronesian diaspora who long ago inhabited the Champa area of central and southern Vietnam. Many sought refuge in Cambodia following Vietnamese conquest – many still remain today, particularly in and around Kampong Cham province (the name of which means ‘port of the Chams’) in central-southern Cambodia, though numbers dwindled as a result of the Khmer Rouge genocide, in which it is believed almost half the Cham population perished and over a hundred mosques were destroyed. These days, along with those of Malay descent, the Cham make up the majority of Muslims in Cambodia.

Siem Reap’s Muslim Village

Located close to Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel, Siem Reap’s Steung Thmey village is the heart of the city’s Muslim community, and the epicentre of Siem Reap’s and home to the canalside Masjid Al-Nikmah mosque (also often referred to simply as Siem Reap Mosque), the school alongside it, and humble local family homes.

The wider area around Steung Thmey, particularly close to Psar Krom local market along from Baby Elephant, is also home to many Cham people from Kampong Cham province. And a mosque at the Cambodian Cultural Village is intended to represent Cambodia’s Cham and wider Muslim community. 

Where to eat great Muslim food in Siem Reap

Siem Reap is loaded with more spots to tuck into great Muslim-style dishes than you might expect. We love our Khmer food as much as the next person, but sometimes it’s nice to mix it up with the delicious flavours of the Cham people’s and other Muslim groups’ influences on Cambodia’s cuisine. Here’s where to get your fix in Siem Reap:

Masakan Ibu

This new opening in the Kandal Village area serves fabulous, home-cooked Halal Malaysian and Singaporean dishes like beef rendang, char kway teow, mee goreng, and Roti John.

Friday to Wednesday, 11am-9pm; 673 Central Market Street; 012-673-630; www.facebook.com/masakanibu.siemreap

Muslim Family Restaurant

Especially popular with visiting Malaysians, this simple restaurant behind the Neak Mah mosque is one of a number in the area around the Steung Thmey village (including, confusingly, many with the same English-language name). It serves a menu of Khmer and Malaysian-style Halal dishes, from beef lok lak and fish amok to satay and tom yam – and even the irresistible Malaysian teh tarik pulled tea.

Daily, 11am-9pm; 74 Steung Thmey Village; 012-946-220

There are also a number of Indian restaurants around the Old Market area in Siem Reap that serve Halal food.

Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia

Where to stay in Siem Reap

Looking for a Siem Reap hotel from which to explore the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants that Siem Reap has to offer, while also being within easy reach of the famous Angkor Wat temples? Baby Elephant Boutique Hotel is waiting for you – click here to take a look at our relaxing rooms, all with free breakfast (including vegan options, of course!) and use of our gorgeous swimming pool.

Where are your favourite spots to eat Halal and Muslim-influenced food in Siem Reap? Have you visited the Steung Thmey village or Cambodia’s Kampong Cham province? Let us know in the comments!

Photos by Adib Wahab and e_chaya.

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