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Is Rajabori Villas any good?

Rajabori Villas

Rajabori Villas is basically the number 1 hotel/resort in Kratie. Except for one thing, it is not in Kratie, but located on the hidden gem that is Koh Trong. Sadly it is also a bit of a let down.

Rajabori Villas swimming pool

Table of Contents

Koh Trong you say?

Koh Trong is an island directly opposite Kratie Town, you could pretty much walk across. Although with the boat costing 25 cents, no real need to walk.

You get the boat to Kratie from Jasmine Restaurant.

You can read my ultimate guide to Koh Trong click here .

What’s in a name?

Soriyabori Resort is the brand new name. At the time of coming the sign still said Rajabori Villas. It is still listed on booking.com as Rajabori Villas. The sign outside said the same. So, if you are looking for the best resort in Kratie and see Rajabori Villas, you are getting Soriyabori Resort. I hope that clears everything up!

What’s the hotel situation on Koh Trong?

Soriyabori Resort/Rojabori Vilas is the only luxury type resort in Koh Trong. EVERYTHING else on Koh Trong is a home-stay, with the exception of Arun Mekong Guesthouse. Oh and that is currently closed. Can’t really review it but they have rooms for $25, when they are open.

Homestay number I AKA Homestay number 1 has an AC room for $20 and seems to be run by a really nice lady. She even gave me a pomelo. But then so did everyone. Homestay number 1 Koh Trong, I truly wish I had picked you.

So on to  Soriyabori Resort!

What’s so special about Rojabori Villas/Soriyabori Resort

It;s the only resort on Koh Trong and has an amazingly clean and fresh swimming pool.

The rooms are pseudo-Khmer style and high end, but i’ll get to them soon.

What are the rooms like at  Soriyabori Resort

Well we got there very quickly didn’t we! They are traditional Khmer style huts/houses, but done in a deluxe fashion. They are huge on stilts, have a patio type area and are decorated with old Khmer tools. Need to grate a coconut during your stay? They got you covered.

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And they have a bathtub? Great  right. Well it would be if they provided hot water. There was no hot water. No TV, which is fine, but no fridge? For 50 bucks i’d expect a fridge.

There’s also basically 3 plugs in the room. What is it with hotels that just don’t provide enough plugs?.

There is technically WiFi, but it doesn’t work in the rooms. It also barely functions at the bar. I essentially had better service and more plugs in a $4 homestay.  Pomelo Homestay (remember that name)

Rajabori Rooms

How much are the rooms at Soriyabori Resort?/Rojabori Villas

These are corona times, but one room will still knock you back $50 minimum, not exactly cheap. The one slim saving grace is staying here will save you $5 for using the pool.

Essentially the rooms are lovely, but when you factor in all the stuff that doesn’t work? If the hot water functioned and the WiFi worked, not bad, but they didn’t

The food at Soriyabori Resort/Rojabori Villas?

You do not visit Koh Trong for dining. In fact there are very few restaurants, or cafes and even the ones that did exist are largely closed. It is very sad to see the affect on tourism that Covid-19 has had in these smaller touristic areas.

Although the home cooked meal I had at Pomelo Homestay was frankly amazing.

To read about Pomelo Homestay Click here .

So, Soriyabori Resort with a western and Khmer menu is by far technically the only thing even close to fine dining on the island.

In fairness by resort standards the prices are decent, although not cheap by Khmer standards. Fried rice will set you back $5, noodles with pork $5.50 and a Loc Lak $6.50. Again far from outrageous

The western menu though is particularly well priced with great dishes. There are not too many places where beef stew Burgundy Style, or beef tongue with spicy sauce and steamed potatoes can be gotten for $12.50. And with pasta dishes coming out at $6, again no real issues, in theory.

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Well, no issues with the prices. All in all there were 11 decent dishes on the menu. Overtime I tried to order something, they would reply “no how about the chicken”. The only thing available on the western menu was chicken. Overall the whole “available” menu consisted of a few Khmer dishes, and the aforementioned chicken. Oh and some pasta. I did not trust asking for no mushrooms, which after my order was screwed up U think was a smart choice.

Desserts were wonderful value too ranging from $2.50 for a fruit plate to $4 for Fried Bananas, bananas that are not only grown, but can be picked from the trees around the resort. Again sounds great, fried banana with honey! Except they did not have honey. Are you seeing a theme here? I’m glad I didn’t order desert.

How was the food at Rajabori Villas?

Chicken with sautéed potatoes and Lok Lak were ordered. It took 90 minutes, impressive when you’re the only customers. Potatoes were cold. Chicken mediocre and the Loc Lak? Had I ordered it from a street vendor i’d have been happy. This was not a street vendor. Extremely small and the beef slightly overcooked.

I’d eaten street food for $1.25 earlier in the day in “Koh Trong Town”. It was by far a better meal. There technically isn’t a Koh Trong Town either. I kinda made it up, much like I invented Bir Tawil Town.

Wanna read a book about Bir Tawil? Click here .

In fairness the previous day I’d had the $5 fried rice which was OK. At $5 though I don’t want OK.

And then there’s the breakfast.

Breakfast consisted of Khmer style, or “European”. Fruit plate, tea/coffee/ and eggs/pancakes. Having not booked via app it was “free”. As a free breakfast it was adequate. Had I had to have paid $7 (the list price), I would not have been happy.

And the drinks at Rajabori Villas?

Again 2 bucks for a can of Angkor, but with the ability go and buy for 50 cents and drink in your room (a room without a fridge). Cocktails ranged from $.2.50 to $5. Although $4.50 for a Gin and Tonic is a bit much. This is not a cocktail, it is a mixed drink. I feel strongly about these things. $5 for a Rajabori Villas Cocktail.

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It was OK, when it arrived with the food an hour later. The funny thing was I then requested another cocktail, only to be told that the bartender had gone home. It was 21.05 after all. I ordered an overpriced beer, to help wash away my shame.

Essentially resort prices without the ambience, service, or even ability to stay open after 9 pm. Remember Pomelo Homestay? There was a shop close enough that I could have gotten 50 cent beers after 9. Again, there’s a theme here.

And the swimming pool?

To be fair this is the highlight. Kept in pristine cleanliness and an absolute dream. And they only charge $5 for non-residents to swim here. In hindsight I wish I’d not stayed here and simply took that deal.

Pool

Overall on Soriyabori Resort/Rojabori Villas?

OK, so I love Koh Trong and my initial thoughts on Rojabori Villas were very good. The choice to stay here was a thoughtful one. They had WiFi and residents did not need to pay for the pool.

I have no issues with resort prices for resort services. I’m the street food guy, yeah, but I do love a stay at the Hilton for example.

To read about Foshan Hilton click here .

This was simply not the case here. I understand coronavirus has screwed with things, that’s OK. But, if you cannot provide a resort service then lower your prices, and give people realistic expectations. It really is quite that simple.

If you decide to visit Koh Trong, id suggest the following. The smart option would be to stay in the AC room of Homestay number 1, get a home cooked meal and simply pay the $5 to use the pool here.

The pool is lovely and the rooms are great,but Rojabori Villas is not a resort currently. To play devils advocate I’m sure things will get better in the future. We need to give everyone some credit on these tough times. The staff were nice and they at least tried.

Do though visit Koh Trong, it truly is a hidden gem in Cambodia.

Written by Gareth

Gareth Johnson is the founder of Young Pioneer Tours, a published writer, and all round entrepreneur. He enjoys street food, and encourage others to get paid to travel the world.

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