The Story of Snowbell @ The Bridge

It all started when three friends, Ming, Haijun and Ray, pottering around the crowded streets of Phnom Penh, in one of the cooler evenings of early 2018, saw this:

snowbell @ the bridge


The three friends,

WeChat Image_20181031115354


Sorry, this might be more business-like,



The three friends were impressed by the imposing mass of the giant building and by its shimmering glass curtain walls. So, they went up to have a look. They saw this:

snowbell @ the bridge



And this,



They were further impressed.

Ming was a Hangzhou college Associate Professor with the Hospitality faculty, so they thought it might be a good idea to make a hotel out of it. Haijun is Partner at Tings & Associates, an architects’ firm based in Phnom Penh; and Ray came from finance backgrounds.

They went straight into the deal without much thought, as all Chinese businessmen nowadays in Cambodia seem to do, and business talks with Developer of the building took time. By March, they had reached a deal, acquiring the 28th and 29th floors for their hotel idea.

Keys were handed over, and they received this:

Rather primitive, they thought.


They went home to draw ideas:

hand drawing hotel designcorridor and lobby receptionlarger unitlift lobby


And invited some Cambodian friends to help knocking the walls through:



And invited more Cambodian friends to cut the ceilings open:



The three friends found out that they had spent all their fund purchasing and constructing the units. Work wasn’t complete. They heard that the Chinese had got money these days, so they all travelled to Hangzhou to look for rich Chinese:

WeChat Image_20181031141807


They found some, and made presentations and had sold them the hotel idea:

WeChat Image_20181031150545


So they brought their Chinese friends to Phnom Penh and the Chinese friends brought their money.

Now the three friends had money and invited some Russian friends to make furniture:


And more Russian friends to make beds:



And they imported natural marble from Norway to make table surfaces:

WeChat Image_20181031145505


Soon they found out that making high-quality solid wood furniture and Norwegian marbles cost too much money. They had to ask their Chinese friends for help again. They heard that people from Hainan had got money these days and they loved to invest in tropical countries, so they all traveled to Sanya, to look for rich Chinese.

They found some:

WeChat Image_20181031142736

And sold them the hotel idea.


With the money, they invited some French friends to make the ceilings more diverting:

WeChat Image_20181031140300


It’s October now, and they finally have this:

sdrcofWeChat Image_20181031140620snowbell @ the bridge

Snowbell @ The Bridge, a high-rise boutique hotel of 63 rooms and 12 executive suites, located in the 28th and 29th floors of The Bridge SOHO.

[hotel] Cafe & Bar Area

hotel public space

The Harbour Boutique Hotel, Sihanoukville, Cambodia.

roof bar layout


Updated Jan. 04, 2017, development in reality:

hotel cafe designimg_4124hotel cafe design cambodiaimg_3709hotel design cafe yard

[hotel] modern vaulted gate

minimalist hotel gate design



Modern; industrial; LED lighted vault ceiling.


Updated Jan. 04, 2017, modified and developed in reality:

modern gate made of concreteimg_3720

[hotel] water pipe wardrobe

minimalist water pipe wardrobe




Minimalism; recycled material.


Development in reality, updated Jan. 04, 2017:

554335652773048216img_3642minimalism wardrobe808253976199038884