Container Markets’ Fever Continues in Phnom Penh With New Opening

Phnom Penh to turn into a popular last-minute week-end destination with the removal of visas?

Phnom Penh wants to emulate Bangkok or Singapore with cool, trendy containers’ markets. After a first site being opened earlier this year, two more markets are being added to the Phnom Penh night scene…

In March of this year, Phnom Penh moved a bit closer to the status of a trendy Southeast Asian capital as the concept of “Container Market” made its way. Jet’s Group, the owner of this first “Container Market” set near to AEON Shopping Mall, had invested $400,000 for a facility containing 224 market stalls, all booked in just a few weeks with its mix of shops, restaurants, bars and live music.

Success has been tremendous and Jet’s Group had to expand its facility in July, The expanded area added 16 modified 12-metre shipping containers, adding 92 new stalls.

In August, Phnom Penh got  its second large-scale container market, this time in the Boeung Kak neighbourhood. Standing over what used to be the largest city lake in town, the newly  Art’s Container Market wants to be more hip than Jet’s Container Market, targeting Phnom Penh emerging middle-class. The Art’s Container market is only about food and drinks as well as spaces for artists.

The market is smaller in size with a total of 80 stalls, with restaurants and bars offering mostly Khmer dishes. Every stall is decorated with contemporary art, from street art to more classical paintings as well as sculptures.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Market owner Bun Seng in front of The Warrior sculpture. (Picture: Hong Menea, Phnom Penh Post)
“It is great for us artists,” explained to the Phnom Penh Post artist Chhoun Vichheka, with the Cambodia Doodle Club, who was hired by the market owner to design and build sculptures. “Artists do not earn much from their work, and this market gives us an opportunity to make money and to show our talent.” Some actors also opened restaurants with themes while music bands come not only to entertain crowds but also to get recognition. A stage is in the middle of the cmarket welcomes nightly concerts as well as special events.

Another container market is now planned for November in the capital while they are also plans to open similar venues in Siem Reap and Sihanoukville.

Some Singaporean investors have announced plans to launch the biggest container market in Phnom Penh, with the 500-stall food and retail complex in the vicinity of the capital’s original container night market.

However, it will be this time more than a night market as it will be open 24 hours a day. According to one of the Singaporean investors, ” 2040 Container Market” is developed in the vicinity of the Sofitel Hotel in  Tonle Bassac district. The market should open its doors  in early November and will be divided into four sections for shops, food outlets, coffee shops and pubs – with stores operating around the clock.

The owners of 2040 Container Market wants to target an even larger public than the ones visiting for now the Night Market. Families, expats and tourists would be the targeted consumers’ group. According to information from the Phnom Penh Post, 70% of the stands were already booked. Competition among Container Markets will turn hot in Cambodia’s capital city!