Riverside Phnom Penh, situated on the banks of the scenic Tonle Sap and Mekong Rivers, is the beating heart of Phnom Penh’s entertainment industry. Starting on the river banks of the Cambodiana/Himawari Hotel and stretching 1.5km up to Wat Phnom and the ferry terminal, the Riverside district also stretches a few streets back until Norodom Boulevard, a main street of Phnom Penh named after King Norodom, who ruled Cambodia from 1860 to 1904.
As the main entertainment hub, Riverside boasts some of the best restaurants such as K-West, Friends – The restaurant and FCC. From the night market to its parks to their variety of bars and rooftop entertainment options, Riverside has become the number 1 destination tourists and a frequent meeting ground for expats with a common attraction of its easy relaxed lifestyle by the waterfront.
Riverside Property Market Insight
Riverside has quickly changed over the years from being the seedy part of Phnom Penh after the turn of the century to now a vibrant, bustling, premier destination for tourists and locals alike. With the growing attraction of foreigners to the Riverside area, it is going through a gentrification phase of restoring and converting the old buildings and apartments to more modern stylish properties. This can be seen by the continual supply of newly renovated apartments on the market and new apartment buildings/hotels being developed.
The traditional French architecture of this area sees many shophouses where owners run their business downstairs and live upstairs with their families. Standard size’s of these shophouses are 4m wide and anywhere from 15m to 30m in length and typically have 2 or 3 floors above them. Typically, built with high ceilings to let the air flow in this climate.
As space is limited in this district, there are not many villas and houses in the Riverside part of Daun Penh.
Renovated apartments/flats in the Riverside district of Phnom Penh start from $35,000 for a studio and $45,000 for a 1 bedroom, though supply of properties in this price range have becoming more scarce. In 2014, rental’s for standard 1 bedrooms range from $300-$350 and in 2015, they start from $350+. 2 bedrooms typically start from $400. Regardless of the type of property chosen, you can expect a return of 6% – 12% on your investment.
Many factors affect the rental yield such as its location, renovation style, access to the apartment, furniture provided and so forth. Needless to say though, the returns are much more attractive than what banks and other property markets offer
With the continual popularity of the Riverside district and growth of Phnom Penh as a city, the demand creates continual growth in the property market. Without any public data available with regards to property prices, it is difficult to pinpoint a number on the capital growth, however, from our experience of what has sold, renovated property prices range from $800-$1,100/m2 in 2013 and in 2015 ranges from $1,000-$1,500/m2 (excluding direct river front properties).
If you are looking for long term fantastic capital growth, the 1.5km riverfront stretch of Sisowath Quay would stand to benefit the most from the coming boom of Phnom Penh. As this stretch is already limited in size, the available properties on this boulevard has been brought by hotel groups and developers over the years, eventually creating a lack of supply and huge demand for the highly sought after river front space any city desires.
Riverfront property prices start from $1,700/m2 up to $3,000/m2 for above ground properties with an expected rental yield of 3-5%.
With the Royal Palace being the most iconic attraction, Riverside hosts most of the cultural activities related to the Kingdom. From the traditional ploughing ceremony to start the planting season through to the most popular of all, the Water Festival to celebrate the turning of the tides of the Tonle Sap river, Riverside is always full of life and activities.