November 15, 2011

Song Saa Private Island opens in Cambodia’s untouched Koh Rong

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In Cambodia’s Koh Rong Archipelago, two pristine islands lie side by side.  They are known locally as Song Saa – Khmer for ‘The Sweethearts’.  Song Saa Private Island will be as seductive as the name implies; an intimate private island retreat in an undiscovered paradise.  

Most of Cambodia’s islands - scattered across the sapphire waters of the Gulf of Thailand – remain undeveloped but offer deserted oases of virgin rainforests, tropical reefs and glistening white beaches.  Guests to Song Saa will be amongst the first foreigners to experience this untouched world, reminiscent of Thailand’s islands before its tourist boom.

The resort spans the islands of Koh Ouen and Koh Bong, connected by a footbridge over a marine reserve that has been established to safeguard the islands’ reefs and marine life including dugongs, seahorses and exotic species of tropical fish.  27 luxury villas are being built from sustainable materials and in perfect harmony with the natural environment; uncompromising on design that reflects the beauty of the natural surroundings.

Adopting a ‘rustic chic’ design, the resort is inspired by Cambodian fishing villages with features such as over-water buildings, thatch roofs, rough-hewn natural timbers and drift wood furnishings.  Guests will enjoy uninterrupted sunrise or sunset views from their Overwater, Beach or Jungle Villas, complete with private pools and all the creature comforts Robinson Crusoe could only fantasise about.  Each villa promises a sanctuary where guests can shower looking out over the ocean, sip cocktails whilst watching the sun set from their private deck or have the resort’s chef treat you and your guests to fresh seafood under the stars.  A 2-Bedroom Royal Villa has its own private jetty for speedboat arrival and offers exceptional luxury and privacy, for those in search of an exceptional discrete island hideaway.

At the resort’s heart will be a world-class restaurant and lounge spectacularly positioned over the ocean to take in dramatic sunsets, seascapes and starry nights. Executive Chef Neil Wager, worked previously at the highly acclaimed six-star North Island in the Seychelles where he cooked for a host of international royalty and celebrities. Neil said, “in Cambodia our team has found a culinary adventure most chefs can only dream about”. With a commitment to paying homage to traditional Khmer food practices in a contemporary and sustainable way, the kitchen will source locally grown food, with seafood selected from Cambodia’s growing community of sustainable fishermen.

A Spa & Wellness Centre will be situated on its own island with a Yoga & Meditation Centre on the eastern shore and a host of guest activities will be offered to authentically showcase the surrounding Archipelago, its staggering scenery and innately friendly people.  Kayaking up fresh water estuaries, hiking through virgin rainforest, snorkelling with the resort’s marine biologists, Khmer cooking lessons and visits to local fishing villages will all be part of the Song Saa experience. 

For Australian couple, Rory and Melita Hunter, becoming the first to develop a private island in Cambodia, according to Rory, “brings exciting opportunity but also an incredible responsibility to set a benchmark in sustainable development, to pave the way for future development in this untouched region of South East Asia”.  Central to their vision is their commitment to conservation and community programs with a triple bottom line model which ensures the protection of the natural environment and simultaneously supports the needs of the local people.

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