A Spot Of Green
Foliage is important to us. Sarah and I both seek out places where lots of greenery (via a mini garden, or an abundance of potted plants) has been incorporated into the overall design of a space. We do so partly because we just like lots of plants, and largely because public outdoor areas with grass and trees in Phnom Penh are few. The latter is unfortunate because such spaces allow people the opportunity to disconnect from the grind of city life, and connect with nature instead; they help us relax and energise when car fumes and construction noises make us frazzled and fatigued. In other words, green spaces have a positive impact on one's overall wellbeing, and we wish we had more of them here. Until we do, here are a few spots in Phnom Penh we like for all the lush leaves they've got going on - enough to provide a little rejuvenation and respite from the dusty hustle and bustle of Phnom Penh. They are also places you can grab a coffee, a bite and a cocktail, so, win win win!
Relatively new on the block, Kinin is a fresh addition to the increasingly "happening" Toul Tom Poung scene. A dynamic little space has been created here with layers of foliage and trees at varying heights and angles, and a range of seating areas - including one spot specifically designed for lounging under the canopies. A deli is situated on site, and a wine shop is opening soon!
The French Institute
The French Institute isn't just an exhibition space, a library, a cinema and a restaurant! It is also a garden. This venue is open to visitors six days a week, and has a really lovely and peaceful green space with tall leafy trees, and plenty of places under shade to sit (or recline!) and relax.
Truly and oasis in the Penh, Kabiki hotel has enough of a garden to have a little walk about in. Situated under a lush canopy is a refreshing viridian-tiled swimming pool - the color of which, combined with the vibrant vegetation, reminds one of some blissfully verdurous spot along the Taitai river.
Eleven One Kitchen, BKK1
Eleven One Kitchen not only has lots of beautiful fresh foliage - it also has shade, and fans! (Hooray!) Pops of colour are to be found too, from the hibiscus growing in the corners, to the carnations sweetly placed on the tables.
Farm To Table
Farm To Table is home to many trees and plants - some of which are edible and buyable. There are also a few chickens wondering around from time to time, which is usually amusing (occasionally stressing, if you take your dogs along, as I do!) The animals and the small garden patch make for the farm-like vibe. It's a kiddie-friendly, chilled-out, refreshing place to be.
Botanico Wine & Beer Garden
The entrance to Botanico - a winding pathway lined with palms and large leaves in varying shades of red and green - is one of my favourite things about this venue. Once you are in, more palms line the walls and fill the corners while others emerge from a small water feature situated to one side. It's a cosy venue, where one is never too far from all the many hues of tropical foliage.
If you know of any other green spaces in the Penh that we haven't included here, drop us a line and tell us about them! We'd love to know of more!
Cover image via Kinin