Sorya Shopping Center is less colourful than the traditional markets, but it is air-conditioned and contains a range of cheap fast-food outlets as well as a well-stocked supermarket named Lucky Supermarket. It is a westernized shopping center and contains a number of fast food restaurants.
If looking for Sorya Shopping Center, go south of the Central Market. It’s on a north-south street on the west side. Asking anyone in the Central Market will be futile, however they do understand “Sorya”.
(NB: Don’t leave a moto with the Sorya parking people, who are well-known for stealing helmets, and doubling the parking charges on a whim.) On the south-west edge of town is the even newer Sovanna mall. Freezing air-conditioned and modern shops make this popular too.
When the gleaming westernized Soriya Shopping Center first opened in 2003, the idea of a shopping mall in Phnom Penh was still an incongruous idea.
For example, it wasn’t the Nordic air-conditioning or the five floors of stores that got Cambodians talking, it was the escalators.
The moving stairs in the shopping center provided an endless source of humor and trepidation for locals more accustomed to the Byzantine walkways of nearby Psar Thmey.
Many took one look at the motorized risers and then dashed for the stairs. Others would stretch out a nervous toe before freezing and opting out. Scrums gathered as people waited on the undecided. Soon enough, Soriya hired attendants to help visitors on and off the Kingdom’s only escalators. Now, Seven years later, the people are used to it. The place is packed every weekend.