Great Singapore hotels for a staycation
Sometimes you don't need a getaway to get away. Transit time, flight details, immigration and debating what footwear to pack into your carry-on can be avoided by staying right at home.
Here are our top hotel recommendations for those who want to leave town, without ever really leaving.
For the hip: W Hotel, Singapore
It's an awful word -- 'hip' -- but it best sums up the W Singapore.
W’s over-the-top rock star-esque style is weaved into every element of the resort. From the LED-lit lobby and the abstract horn chandelier at Skirt to the DJ-helmed W lounge and the 240 rooms (Wonderful, Spectacular, Fabulous, AWAY, WOW, and Extreme WOW) facing the yacht-filled marina.
Creature comforts aren’t in short supply at the W. There’s a heated outdoor pool (an oddity in Singapore’s tropical clime), in-room BOSE sound systems and fairy-lit daybeds all around the resort –- all that pampering can be exhausting.
If it gets to be too much, guests can dive into the pool and splash away to music piped in via 24 underwater speakers, or divert to the rainforest-themed AWAY spa where the mosaic-tiled pool with body jets is aimed at easing all stresses.
Rooms from S$388 (US$320). 21 Ocean Way, near Sentosa Cove;+65 68087288; www.starwoodhotel.com
NB. All prices exclude tax and service charges.
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For the art lover: The St. Regis Singapore
A stay at the St. Regis is akin to sleeping in an art gallery.
Keen eyes will pick out William Zorach’s “New Horizons” underneath the grand staircase, while bulbous sculptures by Chua Ek Kay are positioned by the pool and the hotel’s driveway, with smaller works by big names -– Fernando Botero and Pablo Picasso –- placed in resting areas for all to admire.
Inside the 299 art-deco style rooms, expect silk paneled walls, leather bedheads and mirrored TVs in the bathroom. For a view overlooking the leafy Nassim and Tanglin Road area, ask for the Grand and Deluxe range of rooms.
Because no staycation would be complete without a bit of self-indulgence, Remede Spa offers the world-famous Bastien Gonzalez manicure and pedicure service -- exclusive to the St Regis.
Come evening time, guests are invited to sample the hotel’s wine collection with French cheeses at Decanter.
Rooms from S$432 ($354); 29 Tanglin Road; +65 6506 6888; www.stregissingapore.com
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For the honeymooners: Capella Singapore
For land-scarce Singapore (and Singaporeans), an escape to the Capella Singapore offers city residents the ultimate luxury: space.
Spread across 30-acres of lush grounds, the colonial-style hotel plays off its old world-meets-modern day charm.
Hotel guests check in at one of two historic bungalows dating back to the 1880s, while chauffeur-driven golf buggies transport them around the 111-room resort (62 rooms, 11 suites, 38 villas).
The villas come with a plunge pool or rooftop Jacuzzi. For those not so lucky, the resort’s triple-tiered swimming pool with a view of the South China Sea isn’t a terrible compromise.
The complimentary mini-bar, Nespresso machine, Pratesi linens and five-piece laundry pressing rounds are nice, small touches.
Come sunset, the open-air Bob’s Bar with spacious daybeds and menu of potent cocktails is the place to be.
Rooms from S$729 ($597); 1 The Knolls, Sentosa; +65 63778888; www.capellahotels.com/singapore
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For a once-in-a-lifetime experience: Resorts World Sentosa's Ocean Suites
You may not get a wink of sleep at the new Ocean Suites but it’ll be well worth it.
The 11 double-story coral green and aquamarine Ocean Suites have floor-to-ceiling windows that look right into the Marine Life Park’s Open Ocean Habitat, where 50,000 fish of 70 different species swim about.
The outdoor deck area, the restaurant (Forest) by award-winning chef Sam Leong, the on-site ESPA spa or the Simmons “Cool Max” Luxe Mattress and 400 thread count sheets may be attractive but the big sell is kicking back in the Jacuzzi.
This is not your average bath tub. Ocean Suites' sunken Jacuzzi offers views of the stingrays and sharks. Glass of wine optional, but highly recommended.
Rooms from S$2,440 ($2,000); 39 Artillery Avenue, Sentosa; +65 6577 8888; www.rwsentosa.com
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For the nature lover: Shangri-La Hotel
While other local hotels add big name art works or build pools in the sky, the Shangri-La Hotel relies on the allure of nature’s attributes to draw guests.
After undergoing a S$68 million dollar ($55.8 million) renovation, the ever-popular Garden Wing has been given more than just a lick of paint. All 158 rooms and suites come with a balcony overlooking the Shangri-La’s gardens or the swimming pool.
If you consider a staycation an excuse to hole up in your room, the three Premier Balcony Suites include a barbecue, sun loungers and outdoor Jacuzzi.
New to the hotel is a Waterfall Garden Café and Singapore’s first CHI spa, where the Singapore Waves massage blends a variety of Asian massage styles, and an Atrium garden where more than 100 plant varieties are displayed.
Rooms from S$435 ($356); 2 Orange Grove Road; +65 6737 3644; www.shangri-la.com
For the glam packer: Kam Leng Hotel
For a non-cookie cutter hotel stay, check into Kam Leng.
Designed by Singapore’s local creative collective Farm, they’ve revived the old Kam Leng Hotel, which first opened in 1927.
Keeping with the retro charm of the 1920s, the shuttered windows have been kept, as have the walls and mismatched floors to more accurately reflect “a strong Nanyang style mixed with Chinoiserie influences.”
Aside from its affordable rate and central location, the hotel’s allure lies in the details: colorful but simple furnishings, Peranakan style light fixtures and an old signage from the original hotel.
From S$84 ($79); Kam Leng, 383 Jalan Besar; +65 62399399; www.kamleng.com