Mini-Marts I Know and Love – Camko City

Cambodia is changing. On the way out are the wretched, the desperate, the runaways, alkies and deathpats. They don’t suit the new ‘developed’ status that the country now is hell-bent on portraying, albeit fairly unsuccessfully. Out with the beer guts proudly displayed protruding from wife-beater vests! Out with the flip-flops/sandles/thongs!…

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Is Eric David Erdmann a falsely accused victim of mistaken identity, or a lying fugitive child sex offender?

In late March, a new Khmer440 poster with the username “sniper_m4” started a topic in our discussion forums about “Being Followed.” Sniper_m4 expressed concern that a tuk tuk driver recently told his wife that he was being followed by Actions pour les Enfants (“APLE”), a well known pedophile-hunting, child protection NGO.

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Restaurant review – Topaz

It was with slight trepidation that I went to Topaz a couple of weeks ago. On one hand it is consistently mentioned as one of Phnom Penh’s best restaurants; on the other hand a semicolon barely separates that statement from it being Phnom Penh’s most expensive restaurant. It was Wednesday,…

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Restaurant review – Il Forno

It’s disappointing when you go into a restaurant expecting to love it, and come away underwhelmed. That’s exactly what happened when I took two loved ones to Il Forno recently. Everything about the place, a relatively new upscale contemporary Italian restaurant which, after doing well in Siem Reap, opened recently…

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Charlie Chaplin’s Cambodia

Charlie and Paulette were big news, the reporters descended, and Charlie entertained them “with much courtesy and charm” in the hotel bar (presumably the Elephant Bar). Phnom Penh, he said, was charming, the palaces and pagodas delightful, the Cambodian houses picturesque. He felt he had to question whether French Colonial villas (the ones the Europeans lived in) were perhaps a little suburban and uncomfortable, but the wide boulevards, built over newly-reclaimed canals, were the equal of those in Paris. Asked if he might consider making a movie in Cambodia, he didn’t rule it out, but also didn’t see it happening in the immediate future. He would, however, undertake to publicise Indochina as a tourist destination on his return home.

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Phnom Penh’s urban artistic renaissance

Phnom Penh is enjoying an urban artistic renaissance, a revitalisation of Khmer contemporary music and art culture which is as fast and exciting as the development of the capital itself. The reasons for this revival are numerous and complicated, but it includes the influence of the increasing presence of international artists, a vibrant local art and music scene and numerous organisations who aim to encourage and rejuvenate Khmer artistic expression.

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The hidden gems of Toul Sleng

Between the main expat hubs of BKK1 and Russian Market there is the Toul Sleng area – a neighbourhood with a diverse mix of Khmer, Vietnamese and barang inhabitants. There, you’ll find a handful of underrated and unknown restaurants and cafes. Mostly, they are family-run establishments serving homemade fare to ardent regulars.

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Restaurant review: Armand’s revisited

In a city where food options abound and where restaurants and cafes open and close almost daily, it takes something special to keep doing the same thing year after year and remain successful. Focusing on developing a good formula that people like, and being renowned for consistent quality is a recipe for success. It’s something Phnom Penh institution Armand’s has been doing for years. And long may it continue.

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