I want to move to … Chamkar Morn Village

Wed, 12 November 2008 Melanie Brew Photo by: Melanie Brew This Chamkar Morn villa can be yours to rent or buy. What’s going for it? Chamkar Morn Village is one of the many urban compounds that have sprung up in Phnom Penh over the past few years. Developed in 2004, it’s just a stone’s throw away from Boeung Keng Kang and, although on a busy street, the compound itself feels distant from the commotion of one of the city’s busiest suburbs. Concrete streets with speed bumps and young but growing foliage transform this previously undeveloped roadside neighbourhood into a suburban ideal. The houses are modern with contemporary amenities, and there is 24-hour security to keep the riff-raff out. What’s the catch? Its strength could also be a weakness for some. While close to Boeung Keng Kang, a lack of things to do inside the gates can make the residential compound feel isolated. It could even become a rather claustrophobic habitat for some. The houses are also close together, meaning kids and families play in the streets rather than in their own yards. The houses themselves are also a bit on the Asian-garish side with metal grates, tinted blue windows and heavily lacquered built-in wooden furniture and ornamentation. Getting there, and away Traffic in Phnom Penh is not known for its efficiency. Depending on the time of day, what should be a 10-minute commute could take up to 30 minutes or more, especially on four wheels. On the other hand, this only applies during peak traffic hours between, say, 7am to 8am and from 4:30pm to about 6pm. The same...

At Home With: Him Sivon, singer

Wed, 12 November 2008 Soeun Say Him-Savoran.jpg My favourite part of my home My favorite part of my home is my gazebo and garden. It makes me feel very relaxed to sit with my husband and my children in the gazebo. I like my bedroom too because it is finished in wood and looks very beautiful. The best way to relax at home I relax at home by sewing clothes, and I am also having singing lessons. I like to spend time cooking in the kitchen and I sometimes watch TV. When I feel tired I like to go and relax in my gazebo, although I often end up talking with my husband about my business. When I entertain guests I like to have a party every weekend to entertain my friends and guests. We drink some wine and eat nice food. I like to show them around my home, such as the living room and the bedroom, and take them walking around my garden. We listen to music, and sometimes watch TV. My decorating style In my home, I have decorations in the Khmer style only as I don’t like the Western style of decorating. The Khmer style is much simpler and I don’t like my home to be too cluttered with decorations. I have many pictures on the walls of the countryside, Angkor Wat and my family. And I also like to decorate with Khmer musical instruments. My husband and I designed the look of our home. Things I would change The only thing I would change is my curtains. In fact, I like to change them...

Design: Blending the old with the now to design the future

Wed, 12 November 2008 Melanie Brew 8-Central-Market12.jpg DesignModern communication can help Cambodia mix traditional design themes with modern tropical elements to create something new Photo by: Tracey Shelton Phsar Thom Thmei is one of the country’s best examples of Art Deco’s geometric shapes. Art Nouveau and Art Deco are two highly recognizable themes in Cambodian architecture and interior design. As Cambodia ushers in a new era, these two design concepts can be intertwined with modern tropical design styles to create something entirely new and fresh. Both the Art Nouveau and Art Deco styles originated in Europe during the period that its nations were colonizing the globe. Because of this, both styles are prevalent throughout the developing world. Cambodia is no exception and many examples of Art Nouveau and Art Deco architecture can be found in Phnom Penh and around the rest of the country. Out of France At the turn of the sio century a new generation of artists came together in France and created a style that was contemporary and meaningful for an era born in the industrial revolution and marked by the emergence of a modern lifestyle. The Art Nouveau movement sought to make art a part of everyday life. Everything from architecture to clothes, jewelry and furniture was affected by the new style. This period was highly stylized and ornamental, concentrated around earth themes and mythical motifs. For example, many of the older colonial buildings along Phnom Penh’s Norodom Boulevard have distinct Art Nouveau elements that can even be seen in the elaborate fences surrounding them. War ushers in Art Deco period The onslaught of World...

New office offers discount

Wed, 12 November 2008 Nathan Green An office building under construction on Phnom Penh’s Monivong Boulevard  is offering tenants an early-bird discount to sign on ahead of completion Photo by: Image Supplied An artistic rendering of the VTRUST Office Center currently under construction on Monivong Boulevard. PRIME NUMBERS VTRUST Office Center Monivong Building type Office/commercial Address 705-707 Monivong Boulevard Sangkat Boeung Keng Kang III Chamkamon District, Phnom Penh Property manager: VTRUST Property Architect: Five-Arc Architecture Co Sales manager Opus Floors 8 plus rooftop Floor Space 1080 square metres Usable Area 987 square metres per floor Floor Usage Ground floor street level: Parking Ground floor upper: Reception First floor: Park Cafe and fitness center Floors 2-7: Offices Rooftop: Terrace and common areas Access 4 elevators, staircase, emergency external stairs Scheduled opening First quarter 2009 Lease terms Three year minimum Discounted rentals are available in an eight-storey office building currently under construction on Phnom Penh’s Monivong Boulevard for organizations willing to take over an entire floor and sign on before construction is complete. Phillip Butler, managing director of Opus, which is managing sales for property management company VTRUST Property, said he was targeting embassies, aid organisations, NGOs and multinational companies with the scale to take over one or more floors. “We are not marketing small units,” he told Prime Location. Construction began on the VTRUST Office Center Monivong building in late 2006 and the building is slated to top out in the first quarter of 2009. The discounted rate comes on the condition the tenants meet the costs of partitioning and decorating their office spaces. They will be free to design...

On the market

Wed, 12 November 2008 Post Staff Rural getaway This 50 hectare rural block near National Road 3 is 49 kilometres from Kampot town, 61 from Sihanoukville and just three kilometres from the ocean. It is available as a block or in sections of at least 10 hectares. Owner has hard title and is asking $2 per square metre. Property has access to a man-made irrigation canal 200 metres away. It is currently under rice cultivation but homebuilders are welcome. Rithy Thul, ProCambodia, 015 691 008 Top dollar rental Newly renovated five bedroom and six bathroom villa in BKK for rent. Equipped with air conditioning. Has a large balcony on the second floor, ideal for outside entertaining. Kitchen comes with oven and stove. Khmer-style interiors but landlord open to some alterations. Available from November 22. Far from cheap but probably worth it for the right renters. Rithy Thul, ProCambodia, 015 691 008 Central shopfront This five bedroom, four bathroom two-storey Chinese shopfront is available for rent in Phnom Penh’s Boeung Keng Kang I district, just behind Lucky market. The balcony comes jungle style. Suitable for an office space, home or combination of both. The house is eight by 13 metres and has enough space out front to park two cars. Asking price is $1,100 per month, so Prime Location suggests haggling hard. 011 800...