An Interview with our CEO

Published on February 4, 2016

Jef colour

Our CEO & Founder Mr. Jef Moons was recently interviewed by on views from Knai Bang Chatt. We are delighted to share some excerpts from this interview.

What makes Knai Bang Chatt’s views so perfect?

Our views connect your to a beautiful region. We are a sea front property located on the west side of Kep where you can experience breathtaking sun sets.  We do not have yachts or Jet ski’s which can obstruct your views, we just offer local traditional fishing boats, local fishermen throwing out their nets and several beautiful islands overlooking the gulf of Siam. Our location is a very authentic spot which we call the ” million dollar view”.

When (season, month, day, night) is this most perfect view best enjoyed?

All rear round, our view is timeless however there are some other factors to consider.

– November / January:

Dry & green (Nice to be part of harvest in the countryside)

– Feb / April:

Dry & hot / Great for people who need lots of sun.

– May / June:

Start of low season in Cambodia, but still perfect time to come over.

– July / August :

Get ready for showers between 4.30pm – 5.00 pm.  These months are very warm but great when you are water front.

– Sept / Oct.:

Take the risk: Cambodia is back to green but you might have heavy rainy showers during your stay.

With temperatures of 25-30 degrees, it is still a great experience for people looking for a more active holiday. (Nature is awesome.)

How should one experience Knai Bang Chatt vistas in a truly memorable way?

Bare food luxury / Real experiences for Real People / Authentic traveling.

Leave your ego behind and come as yourself. Knai Bang Chatt will automatically connect you the beauty of our region and its people. Experience our great food, our superb Spa & yoga sessions, sign up for a cooking class experience and certainly book one of our excursions. We invest so much in our excursions and we have so wonderful local guides that booking one of the experiences will be memorable.

As well as a range of day trips and excursions we offer two exceptional dining experiences. A private five course wine paired dinner on top of our iconic blue house with sweeping views of the gulf of Siam, ideal for star gazing. Our private 3 course floating dinner at the end of the jetty is so special and so romantic, both these experiences will give you a lifetime of memories.

Our local community matters to us and you may wish to find out more information about the support and sponsorship we provide to the karma weavers, schools and students at a nearby village

Any particular room(s) or hotel division(s) you would like to highlight for its perfect views?

All rooms are designed with a concept of “less is more”. All rooms are very energetic and with a connection to local identity and culture, to the past of the region and to the history of Cambodia.  I call our rooms “Hip” & “Timeless”, but certainly not fashionable. Some of my favorite rooms are #13 and #15 (sea & garden view), every room is unique. Honeymoon couples should go for our suite and couples with kids should go for rooms 1 and 2 which are adjoining.  Even the single room #5 is smaller, but it is one of my favorites. (Know that at Knai Bang Chatt, there are no rooms which are not good.)

Why should visitors choose to stay at Knai Bang Chatt when planning a visit to Cambodia’s coast?

First of all you do not know Cambodia by going to the temples.  When visiting the temples you are connected to the past of Cambodia.  What we do at Knai Bang Chatt (only 3 hrs from the temples of Angkor) is to connect you holistically to the Cambodia of today (recent architecture / art / antiques / beautiful people / local culture / great countryside / great food / excursions and activities  … and we do this with a very strong international management team.

You should experience Knai Bang Chatt because we offer not a room, but one of the best private coastal / cultural experiences.  After your stay at Knai Bang Chatt you are fully connected to the Cambodia of today, that’s what travel is all about.

It looks like there is a touch of simplicity in everything you do, a sort of “less is more” philosophy. Can you please elaborate further on how you envision a perfect stay in Kep?

Simplicity:  yes we have a wabi sabi concept showing you the beauty of not being perfect.  We have 80 staff for 18 rooms, but we are never up front or in your face. We feel that luxury is staying behind and to know care and service are there just when you need it. Our clients are all well traveled, well educated and they are looking for authentic travel experiences. I believe that one of the biggest mistakes in the travel industry at this moment is that most are offering too much. Travellers do not know anymore how to connect to the beauty of a certain region or its people.

Less is more:  Yes, but you have to make it up and see that you tease each individual with a more profound experience and with a personal touches they have never experienced before.  You have to connect in full to things THAT MATTER.

A perfect stay:  We tailor in full. We have a product where we welcome you and we listen to your needs.  All people are different and all of us have special needs. Besides offering perfect location, high-end services and great connections.  Knai Bang Chatt offers full privacy for all.

We were amazed by the beauty of Phnom Chhnork caves – it only reminded us how little we know about this Cambodian region. How should we spend a week at Knai Bang Chatt?

Day 1: Arrive and discover  (dinner at “The Strand”)

Day 2: A day on an island (half or full day excursion, this one’s up to you)  / Dinner at Sailing Club

Day 3: Morning natural walk in Kep National Park  / Cooking session with our Ex. Chef  / Afternoon beach activities

Day 4: Countryside tour (Half day excursion)  / Private dining “Top Roof  Blue House” or “Jetty Floating dinner”

Day 5: Relax and connect you further to all our services and our beautiful staff. Treat yourself to one or more of our spa treatments.

Day 6: Cave & Secret lake excursion (Half day)  / Sunset cocktails & dinner at Sailing Club

Day 7: Realize that you will never forget your stay at Knai Bang Chatt

You may wish to take advantage of our complementary morning Yoga and Meditation sessions

There are less and less places that preserve its original culture. What can we learn from Cambodia and Cambodians?

  • Cambodians cannot survive alone (no individualism)
  • Cambodians never talk about the past / only the future matters
  • Cambodians will always welcome you in full.
  • Cambodians still have a dreams and are working hard to make them come true.
  • Cambodians are all young people and 70% are aged under 27 years, connect yourself to young spirit with no judgment

How do you interpret luxury at Knai Bang Chatt?

Being able to be the way you are and to experience something that you have never experienced before. Luxury is connecting you in a beautiful way to a local region and its people.   Luxury is to let you fully rejuvenate in a natural way and to give you lasting memories to bring home.

Travelers who stay at Knai Bang Chatt realize once they back home what real luxury is.  We humanize our product, we do not leave anybody behind.  We invest just as much in our local people, our staff and our environment as we invest in our guests. It is because we do not want to only build up economic capital, but also social and nature capital so that we can serve you in a very special way.

Our concept is about all of “us”, not about “me or you”.  This is what I call luxury in a modern world. I think this is pretty unique and because we reach out our hands to staff and local people, get ready to receive great services with a smile.

 Could your describe your unique selling points

  • Concept: 5* “Barefoot Luxury”
  • Location: Kep / 2.25 hr. drive from Phnom Penh / 1.25 hours drive from Sihanoukville / 3 hours from Siem Reap
  • Rooms: 18 deluxe rooms housed in 5 villas and pavillions
  • Rejuvenation: Daily spa, Yoga & Rejuvenation packages available
  • Others: Manicured gardens, Infinity pool, Community activities
  • Dining options: The Strand offers fine dining in a private setting on the beach
  • The Sailing Club: The perfect place to enjoy local seafood, cocktails & dramatic sunsets
  • Coastal Culture & Adventure: Sailing, surfing, Canoe, Paddle boards, Cycling, Biking, Beach volleyball, …
  • Excursions: Discovery tours, Countryside tours, Fisherman tour, Caving, A day on an island, …
  • Knai Bang Chatt is sustainable travel:  Enjoy Luxury with a conscience.  We are “Green & Glamorous”.  We have a strong community engagement.