A common cliché is to say that staying at Raffles is like stepping back in time - it's not (and who wants to go back in time anyway, Singapore without air conditioning would be utterly unbearable). Rather, staying at Raffles is about experiencing a charm and style that is devoid in most modern hotels. There are better quality hotels in Singapore but Raffles remains amongst my favorites.
For me it's mostly an aesethic appeal (and unless you stay in one of the palm court rooms I think you would forego this experience). Service levels are of course excellent and there is a real sense of occasion staying here.
There are some drawbacks, the fittings and amenities are a little dated, the bed is amongst the hardest I have slept on and prices for hotel dining and drinks are definitely on the high side - although they do make an excellent martini at the Writer's Bar, after two of these you tend to lose track of cost.
Despite the drawbacks I still feel compelled to provide Raffles with a five star rating merely for the experience provided.
If I were a regular visitor to Singapore I would most likely stay at a more modern establishment, but for infrequent travel or as an overnight stop over there is nothing better.
As an aside, I feel obligated to qualify my review by acknowledging that my experience is based on staying within the palm court section of the hotel. I regrettably feel the ratings would not be so high for other rooms which I was able to view.
Despite those hard beds I'll definitely be staying at Raffles again - which in itself says a lot given the vast quality alternatives available in Singapore.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Raffles Hotel is one of Singapore's most graceful landmarks. More legend than hotel, this luxury Singapore hotel celebrates a tradition of unwavering service excellence spanning more than 125 years.Immortalized in the novels of Somerset Maugham and Rudyard Kipling, Raffles Hotel, Singapore’s colonial-styled architecture and lush tropical gardens exude an atmosphere of timeless elegance. 5 restaurants and bars beckon, including the Bar & Billiard Room - new temporary home to the world renowned Singapore Sling; Tiffin Room, which continues the tradition of Afternoon Tea at Raffles and Raffles Grill, serving up the best Sunday Brunch in town. This luxurious Singapore hotel lies in the heart of the city, in close proximity to the banking and financial districts, Raffles City Convention Centre, Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre (SICEC), as well as leisure attractions including the casino at Marina Bay; the cultural sights of Arab Street and Chinatown and shopping at Raffles City shopping mall and Orchard Road shopping belt. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Singapore Raffles Hotel
- Raffles Singapore
- Raffles Hotel Singapore