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“Can I get the Fish Amok recipe?”

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Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap
Ranked #39 of 353 Hotels in Siem Reap
Certificate of Excellence
Bovina Center, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Can I get the Fish Amok recipe?”
Reviewed 30 April 2011

Reading reviews on TripAdvisor is so dangerous. You see litanies of mind-numbing, scrappy moans, and you wonder nervously (bearing in mind you have no way to know, and are likely booking from a distance) whether there's veracity in this nit-picking; it sows seeds of doubt. What you don't get to see (or hear) is the people who are complaining. If you did you might gain perspective. I've never written a review before, but felt compelled on this occasion. It's roughly like this: if you're a low-key, normal, cheerful sort of person looking to have a delightful time in a beautiful place, not looking to antagonize anybody or establish your superior guest credentials, not looking for reasons to gripe ... then you'll have a wonderful time at the Golden Banana. It's completely lovely. The staff could not be more sunny and sweet, the rooms are spotless, spacious, the pool salty, clean and refreshing. It's a shining little oasis. However, if you're miserable and wear your misery like sackcloth and ashes wherever you go, then you'll probably find cause for some complaint or other. But that likely has more to do with you than anything else; perhaps the cost of the hotel would be better spent on therapy? Or (if you have the money) stick to Mandarin Orientals, where the entire modus operandi is geared to mollifying misanthropes and curmudgeons. Everybody else? Go to The Golden Banana, I think you'll be very happy.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled on business
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Helpful?
5 Thank LookStranger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (223)
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Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
103 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2011

Golden Banana is a nice little hotel situated down a lane the other side of the river from the Old Market. The area is OK, a bit dark at night (GB have their own street lighting as Siem Reap don't provide much street lighting outside of the main town area). The road to the GB is paved up to a point and then it's like a dirt track so it's a bit tricky after heavy rain (lots of mud and puddles).

The day we arrived we got two rooms one above the other (M and L), but the air con in M wasn't working so they moved us to a ground floor room (C) which was near the pool. As it turned out, we might as well have stayed in M because there was a storm around midnight and the power to that part of the town went off until about 9am next day so no lights, no a/c and worst of all for us, the drains backed up and the bathroom in C got flooded. In the morning when the power came back on, there were thousands of little wriggling things on the bathroom floor in the mud - tadpoles? tiny fish? I don't know what they were, but wasn't keen to stay in that room again after that in case there was another storm. Please be aware if you go there, C isn't the best room - it's dark and dingy and if possible get a higher up room as you'll have a nicer time.

Anyway, the a/c man came out and fixed the a/c in M and we moved back there and were much happier after that.

The GB staff assured everyone that the power going out like that was very rare but as it happened again during a storm 2 days later, I think they were stretching the truth slightly!

The rooms were clean and well looked after, the breakfasts were OK (3 choices, all vegetarian). We ate lunch there and that was fairly average - they mentioned in their room info that their chef was one of the best, but I can only assume he doesn't start work until the evening - we didn't eat there in the evening so I don't know what the food was like then.

The pool is small but that's all you need really - just a quick dip to cool off. The prices in the restaurant and bar were similar to most mid-range restaurants in the town and the staff were happy to help out with organising tuk-tuks, temple visits, horse riding trips etc.

I would mention that as it's dark and badly lit around that part of town, solo female travellers might be best to think about getting a tuk-tuk home (even though it's walking distance from town). I walked back with my teenage daughter one evening (about 9.30pm) and we had strange groups of guys calling to us, one group offering us drugs.......nothing too threatening but it did seem quite seedy, especially around the riverside area on that side.

People with mobility problems would have to go for a ground floor room I think as the stairs to the upper rooms were quite steep. It's not very stroller friendly either.

To sum up - it was a nice looking hotel but I think they need to invest in a generator and for that reason I'd probably stay elsewhere if I went back to Siem Reap.

Room Tip: Avoid the ground floor standard room (C)
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank BigSis2112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
worldtraveller062, General Manager at Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap, responded to this review, 17 May 2011
Dear Miss BigSisSingapore,

We like to thank you for leaving here your review about our Resort.
This is always very helpful so we can improve our services and comfort where necessary.

Regarding your remarks we like to reply with some small comment to make sure there are no misunderstandings.
Golden Banana Boutique Hotel and Resort are indeed situated on the other side of the river in a quiet pedestrian street 5 minutes walk away from the hustle and bustle of the centre.
During anytime (day or night) we can organize a Tuk Tuk who will bring you in a very comfortable way to any place you prefer, normally for one dollar.
Especially during night time we advice our guest to use this service not because it is unsafe, but the streets are not lit and can be a bit dirty.
Cambodian people are used to offer many services, mostly legal and do it normally in a very friendly way.

About the long power cut you experienced we want to apologize, this really happened in my entire life of 5 years in Siem Reap only one time before, shorter power cuts can happen but are unusual in our neigbourhood. That it happened that period of time had to do with the very early start of the reainseason . we assume that the power authorities were not prepared for that yet.
At this moment we are waiting on some price quotations for placing a generator but it’s a very dirty option for normally a small problem in Siem Reap, that unfortunately happened when you were there a few times. Most (smaller) hotels do not have a generator in Siem Reap.

The remarks you made about our room C are clearly a reflection of a more personal impression which off course we respect.
This is a room we specially created for older people or people with disabilities or children who request a room on the ground floor without stairs. It has its own private garden and is indeed a bit lesser bright room because the it is situated in a corner of our property where we have lots of lush greens growing.
Many guest like this room because of that, because it gives the room a more intimate and cosy character, but that’s personal.
If we find out (like in your case) guests don’t really appreciate this type of atmosphere we are more than happy to provide an other room.

About the water that came back trough the drain because of the heavy storm; this is rather unusual, but I have to admit that I have found some life fish on the streets after heavy rains that must have flushed from the rivers into the systems. It is very unusual and we really haven’t had this kind of inconvenience before in our property.
Our engineers had a look to it after and cleaned the total draining system so this would not happen again.

Again we appreciate you informed us about those issues and hope these didn’t ruin your holiday too much.

With most kind regards,
Tommy
General Manager
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Vancouver, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 April 2011

Stayed here for 4 nights and loved everything about it. The staff become friends, the pool is divine, the poolside area became our own personal livingroom where we'd order drinks from the bar in the late afternoon and chill after a long day of temple-seeing. Each room has it's own separate entrance, more like individual suites than a hotel room feel. Our room was large & clean with a great patio overlooking the pool area, and a safe to keep our valuables in. Breakfast was included and ordered off a menu with decent selections, or for an extra couple of dollars you could choose from additional items. Staff were extremely accommodating and friendly, and there's a free computer in reception for guests to use. Town was a short 5 minute walk away (maybe 10 if you're strolling) or there's always a willing tuk tuk around when we wanted a ride. I would stay here again, without hesitation, and almost don't want to recommend it to others for fear it will become too popular when I next return. Don't even bother looking elsewhere. This place is perfect.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank anothernusadua
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore, Singapore
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 March 2011

Even though it's tuck away in a small lane, but it's very near to the old market area (Just 5 mins), very convenient to many places. Being tuck away turns out to be a plus point, away from noise and you can truely enjoy a good rest in tranquility.

I personally tried the 2 Storey Villa. And I must say it's remarkable! Considered alittle steep in price, we paid USD480 for 5 nights, however, Golden Banana comes in a different selection of rooms at different prices. B&B, superior rooms, villas.

Only downside I did not like was that bfast served. It's generally very good food, but maybe the quantity could be alittle more, considering most, in fact all guests are actually going to visit Angkor area. It will be good to be able to start the day with a hearty bfast.

Nonetheless, good place, very cosy, very convenient, very friendly service staff, gay friendly, good food at the cafe even though is alittle steep as compared to the restaurants at old market area.

Will definitely recommend this place!

  • Stayed March 2011
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank GoshPrincess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 March 2011

Location is perfect - up a very quiet lane very close walking distance to town but out of the busy part. Resort is lovely - could live there! Staff are excellent and could not do enough for you. We had a great time and would stay again in a heartbeat!

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank narelle0z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Midland, Texas
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 March 2011

When we arrived in Siem Reap, my wife, daughter and I met the nicest cab driver in the world. When we told him what hotel we booked, he laughed and said "you will not like the golden banana". We went anyway with an open mind. Upon arriving, we found a seedy hotel located in the worst part of Siem Reap. We went to the front desk which was manned by two young boys. After 30 minutes, they found my reservation and said that it was fine to cancel the reservation. The hotel was completely unsuitable for anyone with a family. Which is fine, I just wanted to cancel. As soon as I returned home, I discovered that they billed my credit card anyway. After numerous emails I have given up. Do not stay at this hotel, you will regret it. The name alone is enough to make you nervous. We ended up staying at the Hotel De La Paix, a great hotel in a fun city.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank lucky41054
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
worldtraveller062, Owner at Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap, responded to this review, 17 April 2011
We would like to thank the writer for this review but want to clarify a few things.
If a driver wants you to stay in another hotel then the one you booked, it is mainly because they get commission to bring you there. Golden Banana does not pay commission to drivers and will never do. People choose to stay with us based on other criteria then the bribes we pay to drivers, we hope. When that same driver laughs about Golden Banana it is also because we are gay friendly, open for every one, but we demand respect for every one staying with us. In Cambodia a gay friendly business is unusual and often frowned upon, that's why it is very much needed, for staff and guests.
In guests arrive we ask for the booking print out when booked through an agent or booking site. When not presented right away it is difficult to find the right booking, especially when you are at the wrong Hotel, maybe because of that same helpful driver. When the staff of the neighbouring Hotel found out, the guest already wanted to leave and never contacted the staff of Golden Banana Boutique Resort.
We do appreciate reviews and take this serious but when not showing up at the right Hotel we have to consider this as a simple no show.
Maybe next time the guests can see how the real Boutique Resort looks like and that families are very welcome indeed. This guest will then also get a free nights stay.

Dirk de Graaff
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B.C.
Level 6 Contributor
122 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 March 2011

My partner and I stayed at Golden Banana Boutique Resort mid-February 2011 arriving from Hanoi. What a relief and pleasure it was to find such a hotel - quiet, away from the main roads and crowds. The service was impeccable from the front desk, serving and cleaning staff. The hotel room and surroundings were beautifully landscaped and clean - most importantly it was safe with a guard in duty on the evenings. The Old Market was a 5 minute walk away and the availability of restaurants and bars endless near the market. No hesitation in recommending this hotel - the salt water pool was great, an in-hotel massage room available and the restaurant had above average food. I would like to keep this gem hidden but it would be unfair to the owner and staff who work hard to make all guests feel welcome!

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank WorldTravellerBC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap

Property: Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap
Address: Wat Damnak, Krom 10 | Rambutan Lane, Siem Reap, Cambodia (Formerly Golden Banana Boutique Resort)
Phone Number:
Region: Cambodia > Siem Reap Province > Siem Reap
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Siem Reap
#12 Romantic Hotel in Siem Reap
#14 Business Hotel in Siem Reap
#35 Family Hotel in Siem Reap
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap 3.5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Rambutan Resort - Siem Reap (formerly known as Golden Banana Boutique Resort) is located in a quiet pedestrian alley only 5 minutes walk from the old market and Siem Reap city center. It consists of Khmer style Villas and Deluxe Suite Rooms build around a salt water pool with waterfall settled in a lush tropical garden. Each room comes with an alfresco stone outdoor bathtub located on your own private balcony or terrace. The Resort is designed in a modern Asian style and consists all luxuries that you expect from a Boutique Design Resort. On top of all this we have: a pool-bar with unique selection of signature cocktails and new world wines, a restaurant with well trained cooking team that serves your preferred selection of Local and Western dishes, a fully functional Front Desk who can help you organize al your tours and travels and there are Spa treatments available on request! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Golden Banana Boutique Hotel Siem Reap
The Golden Banana Hotel

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