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Raffles Singapore
© Ralf Tooten
CityHotelReview

Raffles Singapore: Old charm in a new dress

Old charm in a new dress - Raffles Singapore has remained a place of longing for time travelers even after its careful renovation.

13 May 2022


Raffles Hotel Singapore
Address: 1 Beach Road, 189673 Singapore
Tel: +65 6337 1886
Web: raffles-hotels.com
Price: Suite from 970 euros

WHY BOOK?

Raffles is one of the most beautiful colonial hotels in the world. It still occupies an entire block on Victoria Street and, after extensive renovation, presents itself as a 19th-century hotel icon in the midst of a world of skyscrapers. The reception of hotel guests has also remained the same. They arrive at the colonial jewel via a red carpet lined with thick golden cords and are greeted by "The General," an Indian brand ambassador in a gleaming white parade uniform with a turban. The journey through time can begin.

©Ralf Tooten

ROOMS & SUITES

Interior designer Alexandra Champalimund and her team have given the suites a makeover. Everything is now a bit brighter and airier, yet the patina of bygone days shimmers through discreetly. Among the gems are sideboards in the shape of old wardrobe trunks, which house the minibar and glasses. Also beautiful are the four-poster beds with dark wood, free from heavy drapes. The new bathrooms feature locally sourced Peranakan ceramic tiles and classy Victorian-style fixtures. High-tech has moved in with tablets displayed in each room. Guests can use them to control all functions - from the air conditioning and light settings to operating the blinds.

The smallest suites are the Studio Suites with 46 square meters of space, four-meter high rooms and verandas overlooking the palm garden. The two Presidential Suites present themselves as 260-square-meter apartments offering every conceivable luxury in regal style. The twelve suites, named after famous people who have visited Raffles over the past hundred years, offer a special charm. They feature unique memorabilia in the parlor and bedroom. The suite dedicated to Somerset Maugham, for example, features a personal letter from the writer that includes his legendary quote about the hotel, "Raffles Hotel stands for all the exotic wonders of the East." Other suites are dedicated to Ava Gardner, Charlie Chaplin, John Wayne and Rudyard Kipling. And then there is also the Raffles butler service that guests of all suites enjoy. 

©Ralf Tooten

FOOD & DRINK

Behind the new gastronomic concept are proven culinary artists Alain Ducasse and Anne-Sophie Pic. Mediterranean delicacies are served at Osteria by Alain Ducasse. The new design, with two curved arches above the open show kitchen, symbolizes the Mediterranean coast and the Mediterranean itself. Decorated with three Michelin stars, Anne-Sophie Pic is one of the best chefs in the world and is making her debut in Asia with her restaurant at Raffles. She pampers her guests at the very highest culinary level. With the "Butcher's Block", a first-class steakhouse, and the "yi by Jerome Leung" with refined Chinese cuisine, Raffles has further excellent gastronomic outlets. And then there is the thoroughly modernized Tiffin Room, part of Raffles' special history since 1892. Here, North Indian dishes are served in the popular Tiffin boxes for interactive enjoyment.

A real tourist magnet is the home of the Singapore Sling, the "Long Bar". Queues form there, and as ever, peanut shells end up on the floor. The new "Writers Bar" is a surprise, a stylish retreat with a solid brass bar, textured walls and a mesmerizing chandelier. The bar pays homage to the many literary figures who once stayed at Raffles. The cocktail menu comes from bar manager Paul Hammond and travel writer Pico Iyer in the form of a leather-bound travel magazine, bringing exotic time travel to life.

©Ralf Tooten

SPA & FITNESS

The Raffles Spa pampers with a hydrothermal bath, sauna, steam bath, vitality pool, beauty treatments and massages. Special offers include mindfulness meditation and programs to revitalize and restore mental balance, as well as special sound and healing therapies. The gym, equipped with state-of-the-art equipment, is open around the clock.

©Ralf Tooten

TIP FROM THE EDITORS

The traditional Afternoon Tea in the thoroughly renovated Grand Lobby is still celebrated. Following the British model, delicious scones and sandwiches are served on etagères with black tea, and of course, a glass of champagne is also allowed. When the wonderfully restored Grandfather Clock, a relic from the old days, chimes on the hour, the experience is perfect.   

©Ralf Tooten

Raffles Hotel Singapore
Address: 1 Beach Road, 189673 Singapore
Tel: +65 6337 1886
Web: raffles-hotels.com
Price: Suite from 970 euros

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