Arrival/Check-In: I stepped into the main house of the iconic Raffles Singapore and was immediately transported to a grand world of the past. The receptionist welcomed me warmly and was excited to hear it was my first time at the hotel. She promptly checked me in, and I was escorted to my room. On the way, I asked a few questions about the main guesthouse and was truly impressed. The hotel first opened its doors in 1877, and the iconic main house remained the same since its opening in 1899. I was looking forward to exploring the pristinely kept grounds of the hotel.
Guest Quarters: Walking into my courtyard suite was like stepping into a piece of history. The entrance doubled as a private sitting room with dining table, small television and sitting area that could be closed off by a lush curtain. In the main portion of the room were a beautiful rug and British colonial-style furniture. The bathroom was spacious and luxurious. The entire hotel was ornamented with a gorgeous collection of oriental rugs, teak flooring and exquisite antique pieces.
Services/Amenities: The hotel’s plethora of restaurants and shops, as well as its extensive grounds, are fun to explore. I hosted a business meeting in the Writers Bar, but all the venues are great meeting spots, as I have found locals and visitors alike always enjoy a reason to come to Raffles.
I also had a phenomenal meal at the historic and stunning Tiffin Room. The sommelier paid special attention to make sure we were happy with our wine choices and they paired with our dinner selections properly. I loved the history that went along with each restaurant. The Tiffin Room has a silver serving trolley used before World War II and buried by the staff during the war so it would not be destroyed. After the war, they restored it to its current splendor. I also couldn’t leave the hotel without having a Singapore Sling at the infamous Long Bar, a treat I enjoy on every visit to Singapore.
The gym was small, but the rooftop pool was beautiful and a great hideaway spot to catch some sun in tropical Singapore. The boutique shops in the arcade range from Tiffany & Co. to Jim Thompson Thai Silk. There is also a small museum documenting the hotel’s history, which I highly recommend. While the majority of the guests were on holiday, any business request I had — from printing documents to restaurant reservations — was promptly handled.
The Experience: The hotel is a special piece of history that I would love to share with a loved one. It was fun knowing I can now add myself to the historic list of writers, celebrities and political figures who have graced the hotel and those sure to visit after me. Being on a business trip, I liked knowing all the facilities of a resort were at my fingertips if I had time. As Singapore is not a large city, Raffles is at a great location and an easy taxi ride anywhere in town. The Old World luxury at Raffles is a unique experience, one I hope to have again soon.
- Reasonable arrival-to-room time
- Separate tub and shower
- Large vanity
- High-quality towels
- Large, flat-screen television
- Large desk with convenient outlets
- Complimentary WiFi
- Ample lighting
- Quality bed linens
- Choice of pillows
- Powerful, unattached hair dryer
- Iron and ironing board
- Easy-to-set alarm clock
- On-site restaurant and bar
- 24-hour room service
- Coffeemaker in room
- Large, complimentary laptop safe
Raffles Hotel Singapore
1 Beach Road
tel 65 6337 1886
After driving through the arts and entertainment district of Delray Beach, I was expecting the lively and vibrant energy to follow me to my doorstep at Crane’s Beach House that evening. I was pleasantly surprised when the spirited rumble of a night downtown halted right at the front gate. As I walked the pathway to the front office for check-in, I was welcomed by a quiet rustle of the greenery and flowers that guided my walk, strung with lights and colorful, tropical décor. At check-in I was provided with a complimentary parking pass; although I would only be there for one night, I much appreciated this unexpected perk. I received my room information, including a pass code that would open my door. Keyless entry was a nice touch.
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