Hotel Nine/ Nine Lime CafeJuly 18, 2011
Living in Phnom Penh we never stay in hotels here, although I am often asked by friends, family or other visitors to Cambodia where a good place to stay is. So when Hotel Nine decided to do their Crash Test Dummies soft opening promotion last week it sounded like a good break for a weekend.
The only other time that we stayed at a hotel in Phnom Penh was the Cambodiana and that was only because we won a free weekend in a raffle or something at some ball or another we attended at The InterCon, but the less said about that disappointing weekend stay the better (Lack of Soundproofing and the natives suite above the damn Pilipino Band, thank Good Queen Bess that we were not paying the $200+ rack rate for the room … )
Anywho, back to the freshly opened Hotel Nine, their usual room rates will be US$ 55 per night for this new boutique hotel, however for their soft opening week this price was slashed to US$ 9 – including breakfast, free WiFi and a swimming pool. Amusingly called ‘Crash Test dummies Week’ the idea was to put the staff through some training with ‘real’ customers and create some word-of-mouth advertising among the expatriate community.
Crash Test Dummies Week has now finished, however, during their first ‘official’ month, May 2011, they are offering a 30% discount (bookings via their website)
The mini swimming pool was great at 10PM on a very hot Friday evening, after a tough evening at Raffles watching the Royal Wedding, drinking much fizz and enjoying a rather fantastic barbeque buffet.
One pleasant surprise was the al fresco Lime Nine Café: lazy poolside dining. A relatively small menu at present, consisting of; Salads, Tapas, Pizzas and Panini – along with a small Children’s Menu.
(select three or more for $4.50 per plate)
Peking Duck Pancakes
Peking duck wrapped in pancakes with cucumber and spring onions served with plum sauce. These were by far our favourite over the weekend we managed to eat four plates of them between the two of us, ordering them as a starter as well as part of a tapas selection, the serving consists of four ready rolled pancakes filled with the duck, cucumber and spring onion, with a serving of plum sauce for dipping, excellent !
Smoked Salmon Cones
Smoked salmon served with Cambodian waffle cones filled with Guacamole
Nice smoked salmon, however the surprise star were the guacamole filled little cones, the guacamole was creamy and the cones filled to bursting with it, will definitely return for more of them.
Lime Nine Sliders
Mini Burgers, choose from either Beef, Chicken or Pork
We opted for one of each of the three types of mini burger, I was a little disappointed with the pork one, quite bland, not much flavour. The chicken one was much better, it was tender and moist, unfortunately I did not get to try the beef one, the eating machine known as My Much Better Half beat me to it
Goyza style dumplings served with a shitake mushroom sauce.The dumplings were nice, nothing out of the ordinary; however the shitake mushroom sauce was good, forcing me to mop it up off the plate after the dumplings were gone.
Panini BLT US$ 5.50
Crispy Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato with barbeque or tomato sauce – add a fried egg for US$ 0.25
The crisply toasted Panini was good, the absence of mayonnaise and the addition of barbeque sauce made me happy, as I loathe and detest mayonnaise in all its slimy snotty blob-like incarnations (may Louis-Francois-Armad de Vignerot du Plessis, duc de Richelieu and all his victories be damned forever).
We also added a side dish of a bowl of French Fries – served with garlic aioli and tomato sauce US$ 2.50. Aioli is of course some bastard variation of mayonnaise, but that was served on the side so in no way endangered the very nice, crisp French fries.
The menu was not particularly large or extensive (yet) but we still have a list of things to try on our next visit, such as:
From the Tapas Menu
Stir fried garlic prawns
Hopefully, it does exactly what it says on the tin …
Served with a Napoli sauce
Ah, bless the good citizens of Naples for their non-mayonnaise sauces.
Fresh spring rolls
With soy and spring onion dipping sauce
You have to love a good spring roll.
From the Panini Menu (Fresh or Toasted)
Chicken Schnitzel US$ 5.50
Lightly crumbed chicken schnitzel topped with fresh lettuce
Ham and Cheese US$ 5.00
Smoked Ham and Cheddar Cheese; optional seeded mustard and gherkins
Curried Egg US$ 5.00
Curried Egg and Lettuce
The standard rooms include; air conditioning , 22″ LCD TV, Cable television channels, Mini Bar ($1.50 Anchors) Room Service, Complimentary bottled water, electronic safety deposit box, toiletries, et cetera.
To be honest, we did not actually spend much time in the room, preferring to lounge around the poolside most of the time, ordering drinks and food and taking the odd dip into the waters to cool off.
The standard rooms were also a little on the small side, all clean and shiny and new, nicely decorated and all that, but much more than a weekend and I suspect that I would start to feel slightly claustrophobic after a while.
Did not see inside one of the larger suites, but I am guessing that they are bigger.
The views in this column are entirely those of Lord Playboy (of Phnom Penh, Sonteipheap and that muddy patch of ground next to the school;) they are in no way are representative of Khmer440, its editors or staff, of any Ministry of the Royal Government of Cambodia who employs Lord Playboy, of sour puss NGO Whale Women drunk on Chardonnay in Ruby’s on a Friday evening , of anyone who considers the Daily or Phnom Penh Post real newspapers, or the management of a certain international Service Logistics Company who refuse to live in Cambodia because it is not Singapore. Damn, things will be different when I am running the Country