When driving down Phnom Penh’s Street 99, it’s impossible for one to miss the colourful pink and red buildings standing out from the drab grey buildings surrounding them.
These two whimsical structures are home to a restaurant, a boutique and a cosmetic shop; all owned by the celebrity power couple Kong Chansreymom and Kem Seyha.
Known for their glitzy and lavish lifestyle, the successful actors-turned-entrepreneurs decided last year to launch a food and beverage business providing the taste of Vietnam in Japanese inspired kawaii (cute) surroundings.
The little restaurant is named Momo Food and Drink after the couple’s 9-month-old daughter, with the vibrant multi-coloured decor a reflection of her fun and lively personality.
The interior is a serious hit of kawaii, with a rainbow and an adorable baby poking its tongue out painted on the walls, topped off with cute cupcake seats and bright colour lamps.
Sitting on a bench shaped like melting ice cream, Chansreymom tells The Post: “The name and the styling is based on a girly childlike concept because I’ve done all of this for my daughter. This business that I’ve built with my husband will be given to her.”
For Sreymom, the atmosphere of her restaurant is a way to communicate to her fans and diners who she is. She described the concept as trendy and energetic.
But far from being just about outlandish decor, Chansreymom insists that her food is a top quality offering of homemade, delicious Vietnamese cuisine.
“At home, my mother loves to experience different food and we all love cooking. When we make something delicious, we would call up our friends to gather and eat together. Every time they joined me for a meal at my house, they would wholeheartedly suggest that I open a restaurant,” says the actress, originally from Battambang province.
But of course opening a restaurant requires more than just compliments from friends, so the couple spent several months designing a menu of mainly Vietnamese dishes.
Momo’s weird and wacky menu includes woven rice vermicelli called Banh Hoi, delicately balanced on a three-tiered high tea tray, more commonly seen at venues like the Ritz in London.