We arrive. I close my eyes, take a deep breath and let my senses take over. The smell of fresh, lush green grass, flowers and the scent of lemongrass are the air. I can feel the rays of the warm evening sun dancing on my face, I hear the wind in the surrounding trees and some frogs and crickets in the far distance. I feel at peace and grateful to experience something only a few travelers get to experience.
After a long day, this place is a hidden gem – a sanctuary welcoming us to relax and experience the highlight of the day: sunset cocktails and dinner at Villa Chandara, just west of the ancient city of Angkor Thom. We have arrived after our rural discovery tour, Countryside Senses.
The staff warmly greet us and offer us sundowners, cocktails and snacks. It’s a beautiful modern but traditional style Khmer house surrounded by rice paddies and vegetable and herb gardens.
Local musicians have gathered to entertain us with traditional Khmer music while we finish our drinks. About half a dozen tables are set up for dinner – widely spaced. It is a perfectly romantic set-up but also ideal for private parties and events.
The villa specializes in Traditional Khmer food and offers an experience like no other in Siem Reap. The chef has gone all out and prepared eleven dishes that are served over five courses throughout the rest of the evening. From mouthwatering young mango salad, traditional Amok, to Siem Reap soup, and cashew chicken with vegetables our dinner is more than delicious. There is a free flow of wine throughout dinner and for dessert, a piece of heaven: banana flambé glazed with a honey passion fruit sauce!
This has been a great evening and it is a perfect ending to a perfect day in the countryside.
About 40 minutes from downtown Siem Reap, locals and visitors alike can enjoy and experience five star dining like nowhere else in town. Depending on the season, you can arrive by boat or by road with transportation arranged by ABOUTAsia Travel. Contact one of ABOUTAsia Travel’s Senior Travel Advisors for more information.