This boutique hotel in Phnom Penh is the perfect retreat from the buzz and hum of the city. For people who want to stay in the city centre but also enjoy a spot of quiet relaxation, Blue Lime Phnom Penh is ideal.
As with most cities, many of the hotels in Phnom Penh city centre are soulless, corporate chains, charging an arm and both legs so you can get the same cookie-cutter experience you would anywhere around the world.
And then there’s Blue Lime Phnom Penh. It couldn’t be any more central but it has unique character and style that you won’t find anywhere else.
Staying at Blue Lime, I loved that it was an easy walk to the best restaurants in the city, to the central market, and to the riverside. Best of all, I loved how easy it was to come back to the hotel in the middle of the day and retreat to the sanctuary of the wonderful outdoor pool.
If you’re looking for a stylish Phnom Penh boutique hotel that won’t break the bank, book Blue Lime.
What we loved at Blue Lime Hotel Phnom Penh
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The prime location. Within walking distance of most of Phnom Penh’s major attractions, like the Royal Palace and the Central Market, the location of Blue Lime couldn’t be better. It’s hidden down a narrow alley which keeps the traffic noise to a minimum but allows easy access to restaurants, sights, and nightlife.
Perfect pool relaxation. The hum and bustle of Phnom Penh life can be invigorating but it’s also exhausting. I couldn’t think of a single enhancement that would make Blue Lime’s leafy pool deck better.
Lie back in your cabana sipping an award-winning cocktail, only rousing yourself to take a refreshing dip in the cool blue water. Blue Lime has an over-16s policy too, so you won’t have your peaceful afternoon interrupted by a pool full of kids.
Plentiful breakfast. Before I even had a chance to look at the breakfast menu, the waiter had brought me a plate of mini pastries from Eric Kayser, a French bakery that has become a worldwide phenomenon. A large fruit plate quickly followed, accompanied by the à la carte breakfast menu. If you like a big breakfast, Blue Lime will not leave you hungry!
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Unusual extras at Blue Lime Phnom Penh
Lyly ice cream and sorbet. If the heat gets too much for you, cool off with a scoop or two of Lyly’s luscious handmade ice cream. Made in Phnom Penh with no preservatives, artificial flavours or colouring, and also available in dairy-free flavours, Lyly’s treats are a must-taste when staying at Blue Lime.
Blackout curtains. God only knows why blackout curtains aren’t a standard part of every hotel room but until they are, hotels that do include them deserve a medal. If you’re getting over jet lag or if you just naturally wake with the sun, like I do, Blue Lime’s blackout curtains will help you sleep in!
What we didn’t love at Blue Lime in Phnom Penh
Noisy evenings and mornings. My room was right at the front of the hotel, overlooking the alley. There was a live band playing until 11pm on Friday night and the noise of local life starts around 6am. Request a room in the back of the building where you’ll get a balcony overlooking the pool. Or, if you really want to splash out, book one of the exclusive rooms with private plunge pool.
Environmental and Social Responsibility at Blue Lime
Blue Lime, and the group of hotels they belong to, Maads, runs training programs for their staff, in subjects such as English, management, and accounting. They also hire from within the organization whenever possible, promoting staff to more qualified positions at their various hotels.
Guests are encouraged to immerse themselves in Cambodian culture and arts — Maads partners with and promotes local artists and artisans.
Environmentally, the group is involved in various green initiatives at their properties and they participate in the Cleaner City trash clean-up program.
Finally, Blue Lime has a strict no-visitors policy. This is important because, in Cambodia, sex tourism is a big problem. If your hotel doesn’t allow visitors, it means they are actively working against sex tourism.
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What’s in the neighbourhood?
Just outside of Blue Lime’s front door is a small alleyway that holds a few other hotels, restaurants and bars. A few minutes’ walk away, you’ll find lots of other restaurants and nightlife.
Phnom Penh’s most popular sights, like the National Museum, Cambodian Living Arts, and the Silver Pagoda, are all just around the corner. A 10-minute walk will take you to the central market or the riverside.
Where to eat near Blue Lime boutique hotel
If you need a quick bite, these restaurants are all less than 10 minutes’ walk from Blue Lime.
Blue Lime. The restaurant at Blue Lime, overlooking the pool, offers a small menu of dishes based on Cambodian street food. I didn’t eat here because they didn’t offer much for vegetarians but if breakfast is anything to go by, the food will be excellent.
Okay Boutique Hotel. Next door to Blue Lime, the restaurant at Okay Boutique Hotel serves a range of upscale Asian dishes.
Friends the Restaurant. Part of TREE Alliance, a social enterprise that works to train disadvantaged youths to work in the hospitality business, Friends is an unmissable part of your visit to Phnom Penh. The Friends menu is an international take on tapas, serving sharing plates from around the world. As in all of the TREE restaurants I’ve visited, the service is impeccable and the food very tasty. They offer plenty of vegetarian options, too.
Tacos Kokopelli. The closest restaurant to Blue Lime, Tacos Kokopelli might satisfy a craving for Mexican food if you’ve been in Asia for a long time. Expats seem to rate it highly but I wasn’t impressed with my black bean burrito, which cost just as much as a burrito in the west but was half as good.
Dine in the Dark. If the idea of dining the dark by myself wasn’t quite so creepy, I would definitely have had a meal at Dine in the Dark. Not only does it provide a new way to experience food but the servers who lead you through the meal are all visually impaired, so you’re contributing to a social enterprise while you dine. Vegetarians needn’t worry, there is a veggie menu available.
Book your stay at Blue Lime Phnom Penh
Tours in Phnom Penh
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♥ Happy mindful adventures, Stephen & Jane
I was a guest at Blue Lime Hotel Phnom Penh, but as always, I only stay in and recommend accommodation that I think you’ll truly enjoy! Some of the links in this post are our personal affiliate links which means, if you use them to book a tour or hotel we get little reward at no cost to you. It helps keep this blog afloat — so thanks in advance!