A raffia fan slowly spun as motes fell through the heavy sunshine. Seated in the gorgeous foyer, I was welcomed to the Raffles Hotel first by the immaculately liveried Sikh doorman and then checked in smoothly with a Singapore Sling in hand.
Disclaimer: As a guest of Raffles Hotel I paid a press rate for my suite, but my swooning prose is very much original and unaffected.
After sitting for less than 5 minutes, I was welcomed by Li – my personal butler for the duration of my stay – who ushered me through the marble corridors to my very own suite. She smiled from ear to ear, welcoming me effusively to her home of Singapore.
Staying at the Raffles Hotel has long been a dream of mine – something that I never thought would be realised when I first visited a decade ago – so to walk through their infamous halls as a guest was the crowning delight of my 3 week Qatar / Sydney / New Zealand / Singapore odyssey.
From the moment you walk through the entrance you are treated beautifully. Not so over attentively to make you feel under a magnifying glass, but simply that nothing would ever be a problem.
The doors to the Raffles Hotel Singapore first opened in 1887. Since then, this luxury five-star hotel in Singapore has become an icon that epitomises the romance of the Far East – an intoxicating blend of luxury, history and colonial design. And it was all mine.
Now one of the Fairmont/AccorHotels group (including Savoy Hotel, London and The Palm, Dubai) Raffles has welcomed guests into the city oasis for more than 128 years.
The Gallery Suites are located in the oldest portion of the hotel, retaining the plush colonial style of the times with every modern convenience. (The hotel is currently undergoing a sensitive refurbishment, which I’m intrigued to see how they marry the history and modernity without losing the character.)
In the generous parlour, a comfortable couch and dining table awaited a leisurely tipple and a snack or two from the array of fresh fruit and a chocolate box left for little old me.
Replete with everything a visitor to Singapore could need including a “very important button” that connected directly to Li should I need anything at all…
…my suite was everything I had hoped for in a colonial style, evoking yesteryear (quite a contrast to the modernity of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel) and a romance to the decor.
My suite was perfectly proportioned for any kind of stay, let alone a single evening before I went back to the UK.
Comfort is the watchword.
…closely followed by detail and style, which included Raffle’s own brand of bathroom treats which were used before my inner blogger engaged.
My only regret of the whole trip? Not being able to get a daytime shot of the hotel exterior. But first world problems, right?
I came home to a turned down duvet, an extract from The Casuarina Tree, a collection of short stories set during the 1920s by W. Somerset Maugham, and soft slippers laid ready for my tired toes.
…dreaming of the Singaporean skyline we had enjoyed by boat cruise.
After breakfast in the morning, locking that door for the last time was hard, but made easier by the sweet staff – and their kindly check that I had my passport on me. That sounds a little bit weird, but when you are travelling solo, such a small kindness can make such a difference.
The food and cocktails deserve a post all of their own…
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