Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor Unveils New ‘Curated Journeys’

Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor Unveils New ‘Curated Journeys’

Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, the iconic luxury hotel on the doorstep of world-renowned ancient Khmer archeological sites, has unveiled a series of exclusive ‘Curated Journeys’, offering guests new ways to experience the region’s rich culture and history, along with an extraordinary new on-site ‘Resort Program’.

Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor

The curated journeys include a ‘Bespoke Temple Dinner’ served by candlelight at the magnificent temple complex of Angkor; a ‘Lost Civilisations of Angkor by Vespa’ tour, where the ancient world meets the here-and-now; ‘Meet the Elephants of Angkor’, a memorable visit to an elephant sanctuary where guests can get up close and personal with these gentle giants; ‘Khmer Culinary Discovery’, which offers a deep dive into the culture and traditions of authentic Cambodian cuisine; ‘Siem Reap Art Tour’ explores the city’s flourishing art scene; and ‘Reflections of Angkor’, which offers a unique opportunity to develop one’s photography skills.

The Bespoke Temple Dinner offers a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience, uniquely set within the ancient temple complex of Angkor, a place of legend, myth and deep spirituality. The scene is set with blazing torches that cast flickering shadows around the ancient relics of the Khmer Empire. The specially designed meal is inspired by the hotel’s original 1936 menu first served in this historic setting, and the evening’s entertainment includes a performance of traditional Cambodian Apsara dance against a backdrop of the mystical temples.

Lost Civilisations of Angkor by Vespa features an off-the-beaten-track chauffeured ride on the back of a motorbike through the Angkor Archeological Park. The adventure explores areas not easily reached by foot, or too narrow or overgrown with forest to access by car, to appreciate the splendour of the centuries-old edifices. The journey begins at dawn to watch the sunrise at Angkor Wat, followed by a Raffles breakfast picnic at the edge of the temple complex. Highlights of the tour include Angkor Wat, Ta Prohm, Bayon, Angkor Thom and other lesser-known architecture marvels.

Meet the Elephants of Angkor

In Meet the Elephants of Angkor, guests travel to the idyllic foothills of Kulen National Park, home to a local sanctuary for the last remaining elephants of Angkor. This immersive, educational outing into the wilderness includes hands-on experiences with the majestic creatures. After the encounter, guests are served a picnic in the jungle curated by chefs at Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor. The cost of the experience is donated to the elephant sanctuary for the conservation and protection of the area’s community forest and endangered wildlife.

Khmer Culinary Discovery involves a nighttime tour of Siem Reap’s best-loved restaurants. The excursion, curated by local culinary expert Evi-Elli, includes a welcome drink, art gallery tour, three-course meal at three destinations, transportation by ‘tuk tuk’ (a traditional rickshaw) and a souvenir to bring home.

The Siem Reap Art Tour offers an insider’s look into the talented community of artists and ateliers in Siem Reap. The outing is guided by Robina Hanley, the curator of the popular Siem Reap Art Tour, who has been working with local artisans for more than two decades.

Reflections of Angkor

Reflections of Angkor presents a one-of-a-kind opportunity to enhance one’s photography skills while discovering hidden gems at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor. Veteran photographer and curator Régis Binard leads this unique cultural exploration that will leave guests with heightened photography skills that will remain with them for years to come.

In addition to the Curated Journeys, the new onsite Raffles Resort program features seven memorable experiences within the resort grounds. These include ‘The Untold Stories’, an encounter with the hotel’s resident historian, Mr. Mouth Saravann, to uncover the vestiges of the past through a history tour of the hotel. ‘Sommelier Sessions’ include an intimate class with the hotel’s resident sommelier, Ms. Eat Socheata, who shares insights into terroirs, seasons and grape varietals in a sensory journey of the magnificent world of wine.

‘The Art of Lotus Folding’ delves into the secrets of hand-folding delicate lotus leaves and outer petals into charming decorative blossoms. ‘Legendary Libations’ is a masterclass on the iconic Raffles cocktail, the Singapore Sling, first served at Raffles Hotel Singapore in 1915, and its newer (more local) iteration, the Angkor Sling. The ‘Royal Residence Tour’ is hosted by the hotel’s Resident Curator, Mr. Pat Sambo, who introduces some of the renowned Angkorian leaders who shaped modern Cambodia.

‘Rise with the Sun’ is a mindful Yoga Asana session at dawn designed to release tension and revitalise the body and soul. In ‘Spiritual Awakening’, guests receive a monk’s blessing with fragrant jasmine water and special chants. The ceremony is performed under a pagoda bell that was unearthed after the war and gifted to the hotel as a sign of peace.

“At Raffles, we remain steadfast to our heritage and traditions, the cornerstone of which is the curation of meaningful experiences,” said Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor General Manager Joseph Colina. “Residents are invited to immerse themselves in a collection of cultural discoveries designed to forge a deeper connection with the destination.”

For more information on Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, or to make a booking, please call +855 23 982 598 or visit www.raffles.com/siem-reap/.

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About the author

Thomas has a university background in the UK and in Latin America, with studies in Languages and Humanities, Culture, Literature and Economics. He started his Asian experience as a publisher in Krabi in 2005. Thomas has been editing local newspapers and magazines in England, Spain and Thailand for more than fifteen years. He is currently working on several projects in Thailand and abroad. Apart from Thailand, Thomas has lived in Italy, England, Venezuela, Cuba, Spain and Bali. He spends most of his time in Asia. During the years Thomas has developed a great understanding of several Asian cultures and people. He is also working freelance, writing short travel stories and articles for travel magazines. Follow Thomas on www.asianitinerary.com

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