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Phnom Penh: Where to Go

At work at Yumi, an izakaya-inspired restaurant.

Photo: Jason Michael Lang


The city’s best boutiques converge on Street 240 near the Royal Palace. New York–based Elizabeth Kiester, a former Jane magazine editor, brings her breezy cotton tunics, dresses, and bags to the capital with a new branch of Wanderlust (21 St. 240; 855-23/221-982). Stock up on wicker bangles and bright krama (Cambodia’s ubiquitous checked scarves). The voile kaftans and dresses at nearby Bliss (No. 29 St. 240; 855-23/215-754) are a perfect match for the city’s steamy climate, and a 10-room spa specializing in herbal treatments offers a welcome mid-shopping respite. For candy-colored, hand-loomed silks made into quilts, swing by Tendance Khmer (4A St. 278; 855/1258-4661) in the Wat Langka neighborhood. Around the corner is Smateria (No. 8Eo St. 57; 855-23/211-701), an Italian company that creates messenger bags and totes from recycled materials. Artisans d’Angkor (No. 12 St. 13; 855-23/992-409) trains young Khmers in traditional crafts such as stone-carving and silversmithing; the group’s new two-story shop across from the central post office sells pumpkin-shaped bronze boxes and lacquered rice bowls. Cambodia-based designer Eric Raisina (28 Sihanouk Blvd.; 855-23/997-590), a native of Madagascar, opened his namesake boutique in June to showcase his light-as-air cocktail dresses and scarves made with Cambodian silk. Looking to hone your bargaining skills? Stop at the Russian Market (St. 320) on the city’s south side. You’ll find mountains of silk and cotton krama; stall No. 810–811 has stylish clutches and wallets made from Vietnamese rice bags. Also worth a stop: the lively Central Market (St. 53), located in an Art Deco building and filled with goldsmiths and trinket sellers.


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