After looking around on the Flyertalk luxury hotel forum, a general consensus seemed to emerge about Singapore: there is a dearth of luxury hotels.
Given that I only needed a room for around 15 hours, it didn’t seem worth it to splash out on the Fullerton Bay or end up well away from the sights at the Valley Wing of the Shangrila (although both sound like great experiences if you have a few days in town).
One hotel that piqued my interest was the Fairmont.
Fairmont is not a chain often spoken about on FT or on the blogs. Their coverage is quite sporadic outside of North America (where there are some phenomenal looking old castles), their London hotel is The Savoy – a bastion of high society and very much a ‘classic’ (it is also the location of the only road in the United Kingdom where one drives on the right).
Nonetheless the Fairmont Singapore has a lot in its favour:
It gets consistently high reviews
It is located near the Marina
It is directly above a mall and MTR station
It is often cheaper than the other chain properties which have poorer reviews
The clincher for me was the fact that I was able to apply for Premier status (via a method which is no longer available) – this gave me $50 of free hotel credit vouchers, a 3rd night free voucher, an upgrade voucher and best of all: a suite upgrade voucher.
The suite upgrade voucher doesn’t automatically give you club access in most properties and in many cases the suites are only one or two categories above the base room.
However The Fairmont Singapore has genuine suites and grants club access.
I was sold.
My first impressions of the hotel were great. I was greeted curb-side and had my bags taken from me. A check-in desk was immediately available. I really like how the decor is both artistic and interesting without being ‘whacky’.
I love that painting!
Check in was a very quick and comfortable process, I was quite surprised that they asked me for my clothing and shoe size. More on that later.
The decor in the hallways is very minimalistic and tasteful.
My suite: 2526.
You know you’re doing well when your room has an interior corridor.
The minibar had some very nice glassware as well as plenty of coffee and water. Exactly what I needed!
The first thing I did was switch on the coffee machine.
A beautiful fruit plate as my welcome gift. The dragon fruit came in very handy as a gastric booze absorber at 2am.
The living room.
The GoPro really gives a better sense of perspective than a regular camera can.
Just off the living room was a huge walk-in wardrobe.
Nothing annoys me more than when hotels refuse to put an ironing board in each room, I’m glad the Fairmont didn’t hold back!
The centrepiece of the entire suite was, without question, the bathroom. Hell, to call this a bathroom is to do it a disservice. I think it would be more appropriate to refer to this as The Bathing Colosseum.
The Bathing Colosseum.
Fairmont hotels have their own signature Le Labo Fragrance. It’s called Rose but actually has a very deep, woody and masculine smell. I really like the Bergamote fragrance used at Park Hyatts but I reckon this one tops it. I have to say, before FT I never thought I’d become an expert on high end toiletries. Now I have enough LeLabo, Aesop, Shanghai Tang, SKII, Shiseido etc. to open my own shop.
Dual vanities and loads of counter space, as well as plenty of room on the shelves.
The shower runs the length of the entire back wall of the bathroom.
After the ludicrous experience of returning to Asia, after only 3 days back in London, this shower massively helped me to clear out the old cobwebs and get ready for a night out!
Extra shower heads and extra toiletries. The suite life.
Compared to the bathroom, the bedroom seemed quite small. However, the floor to ceiling windows really helped to open the space up and of course, there was no need to store anything in here as there was so much storage space in the other rooms.
The most important thing, the bed was superbly comfortable. Like sleeping on a squidgy cloud. Seriously luxurious.
Not the most modern TV and a little awkwardly placed. I never used it though so this wasn’t a huge problem.
I like how they set up this tray with all the hotel info a well as the remote.
Fairmont hotels are part of the same group as the Raffles across the road (along with Swissotel). I was surprised to see how large Raffles actually is.
Located on the other side of Raffles, Naumi is another very highly rated hotel, it is affiliated with SLH as opposed to one of the major chains.
Any idea what these awesome buildings are?
The reason the check-in associate asked for me clothing and shoe size was revealed to me shortly after I got to the room. I heard a knock on the door and in walked a member of staff carrying a wicker basket containing a brand new pair of Reeboks and a full set of Reebok workout gear, sealed and wrapped in paper. This is a fantastic benefit open to ALL members of the Fairmont President’s Club. Where you’ll be lucky to get free wifi at other hotels, Fairmont really goes above and beyond!
An awesome member benefit.
After showering up and diligently photographing my suite for you wonderful people, I headed to the Executive Club to meet a friend of mine.
The Executive Club
The Executive Club is a beautiful and elegant space. Despite being quite full, the clientele was very hushed and polite, a world away from some of the free for alls that I’ve seen (i.e. been a part of) at Hiltons etc.
There was a huge selection of cold cuts, several hot dishes and a very large variety of wines, including Moet Chandon champagne (the “t” is not silent as Moet is a German name, rather than a French one. A great fact to deploy at parties if you want people to deeply dislike you).
10 different wines!
A few hot options (every time I stood up to take pictures people would stare at me, so this is the best I could manage).
The view from the balcony has to be one of the highlights of this lounge.
Out & About in Singapore
After the executive lounge, we headed out with a group of friends for drinks at 1-Altitude, a rooftop bar. It has a huge space with a higher outer level surrounding an inner garden, with a stage for live acts. The satay platters there are also immense.
Another rooftop view.
Some cool street art on our way to the next venue.
Next time, I’ll have to make it during the day so I can come and get some BJJ sparring in. This is one of the most unbelievably well equipped MMA and grappling gyms in the world.
An accurate representation of how I felt by the end of the evening, after the rooftop bar we headed to Club Street, which actually reminds me a lot of Spain; it has a great atmosphere with loads of small bars and restaurants spilling into the street.
These guys were not fighting to a level becoming of a street with this name.
Breakfast in the Lounge
I took breakfast in the executive lounge, I know that the breakfast spread in the main restaurant at 5* Asian hotels can be straight up ridiculous but I wanted to save myself for TPR and Suites. I just needed something quick in a quiet environment, with a great view.
At this early hour, I pretty much had the whole place to myself.
My breakfast table.
The view from this guy’s ‘office’ definitely beats mine.
The coffee was great, the salmon was enormously thick and delicious. The dim sum was distinctly average.
Overall, I really enjoyed my first Fairmont experience. In fact, it was so good that I booked myself in to try the one in Manila, not long after!
The service at the Fairmont Singapore was excellent, particularly in the executive lounge. It’s certainly the first time I’ve seen an omelette station at a hotel lounge too! I loved the bed and also the decor in the public spaces, the gym kit amenity and toiletries were fantastic too. Finally the location was perfect, having a shopping centre, ATMs and an MTR station in the same building – as well as a Marina Bay view. It doesn’t get much better than that.