In 2020 we partnered with Meridian International Holdings and Thalias Hospitality Group, the name behind the well-loved Khéma, Malis and Topaz restaurant brands, to provide fresh dining experiences to Phnom Penh’s growing class of self-starters. The Room Architecture and Design helped Thalias expand its palate with the opening of the third Phnom Penh branch of the free-flow favourite Khéma, its takeaway equivalent Khéma Go, as well as a brand new concept, a classy steakhouse and wine bar called Siena. Located on the 27th and 28th floor of the much-anticipated Flatiron by Meridian building, both restaurants will overlook a sprawling Phnom Penh through an impressive and all-encompassing glass facade.
The particular challenge for Khéma, as a recognized restaurant and brand in Cambodia, was to strike the balance of fresh but familiar – to respect its warm, home-like ambience made for comfort food and a kind of quaint nostalgia but update it for the ultra-modern city block and fast-paced business customer. The goal was to replicate the look and feel of the original Khéma restaurants, both ground floor establishments located in fairly intimate spaces. We chose good acoustics, ambient lights, comfortable seats and earthy colours. Khmer bricks and a dark hardwood floor, key features of both Khéma La Poste and Khéma Pasteur, are tastefully contrasted against the glass walls and dazzling city views.
Khéma Go is a capsule version of Khéma that sells ready-packaged gourmet sandwiches, salads and baked treats as well as hot and cold drinks. Tucked in a corner of the ground floor lobby, this small, delightful establishment posed a particular design challenge as it needs to reflect the Khéma brand in an open space.