Raffles Hotel has finally launched its Summer Staycation Package 2013! If it’s history, luxury and impeccable service you’re looking for, Raffles Hotel is definitely the place to enjoy a Singapore staycation!
The Raffles Hotel is really an exclusive hotel! Guests are known as “Residents” at the hotel and every person that passes through the main lobby will be screened. Non-residents can only view the classy lobby from the doors of the hotel…
Here’s a low down of our itinerary for the staycation at Raffles Hotel
- Check-in (Relax and enjoy the facilities of the hotel)
- Dinner at Raffles Courtyard with its newly revamped Italian menu
- Drinks at Long Bar (with Singapore Sling demonstration)
- Breakfast @ Tiffin Room
- Tour of the hotel by Resident Historian Mr Leslie Danker
(Inspired us to write the post about “10 Interesting facts You never knew about Raffles Hotel“)
- Famous Northern Indian Curry Buffet @ Tiffin Room
- Raffles Spa Experience
- Dinner at the Empire Cafe
- Sunday Brunch @ Bar and Billiard Room
- Relax and late check-out @ 6pm!
Rich History combined with colonial luxury at the Raffles Hotel Singapore
Courtyard Suite of the Raffles Hotel
For our readers who are still not aware, Raffles Hotel only has suites! There are 103 suites including Courtyard Suites, Palmcourt Suites, Personality Suites, Grand Hotel Suites and the Presidential Suites. Suites starts at about $700 per night to as much as $10,000 per night for the Presidential Suite (floor area of 280 square meters)!
We were pleasantly surprised by our Courtyard Suite. It had a dining space, a living area, the huge room and an even more surprisingly big bathroom! All with a high ceiling and colonial style decorations!
Tour of the Courtyard Suite of the Raffles Hotel
The entire suite exudes charm and class. The attention to details can be seen from the porcelain lamp stands, porcelain elephant in the bathroom, colonial era cabinets and of course the signature 14 foot high ceilings. There were actually 2 televisions in the room. The only comment is that the TVs are granny TVs. We found out from our hosts that the TVs were actually the top of the line in 1991. The cabinets were also custom made to fit the TVs. If you notice, the TVs are actually flat screens as well. We’ll be sure to look out for the upgrade during the next renovation!
Beside our suite is the hall of fame…
Celebrities and foreign dignitaries often check in with the Raffles Hotel. These famous people include the Queen of England, Netherlands, Prince William and Kate Middleton, Michael Jackson, Sting, Michael Bolton, Karen Mok, Maggie Cheung and Jackie Chan!
Staycation for the Kids @ Raffles Hotel Singapore
If you’re wondering what will the kids be doing during their staycation at the Raffles Hotel, fret not! There is a suite of activities inside the “My Adventure Passport”, specially created to keep the kids entertained!
Kids will be on mini quests whereby there will accomplish missions such as taking a photo with the doorman of the Raffles Hotel. For each mission completed, a stamp is given and upon completion of a number of missions, they will be rewarded with ice creams, pizza making sessions and more!
Facilities of the Raffles Hotel Singapore
The Raffles Hotel is huge! 300,000 square feet in land area and 25% of it is dedicated to its lush greeneries
It is actually very possible to get lost. Or to take a long time to find your way around. For instance, Kate and I actually got lost when we tried to locate restaurants of the hotel! Whenever, we wanted to find the Lawn, it almost always seemed illusive. Maybe we’re just blind – directionally.
The Raffles Hotel has all the facilities you’d expect of a luxury class hotel that includes a beautiful swimming pool, a gym, sauna, steam bath and also a in house spa known as Raffles Amrita Spa.
Swimming Pool of Raffles hotel Singapore
Dinner at Raffles Courtyard
After a relaxing check-in, we headed to the Raffles Courtyard to check out the new Italian menu.
In addition to our previous trip to Raffles Courtyard, we would like to highlight the carpaccio, lasagna as well as the vanilla ice cream!
The beef carpaccio tasted really refreshing! Although it was our second time trying it, the fresh taste of the herbs, lime and beef once again caught our attention. The lasagna was strongly recommended by our host and it did not disappoint. The rich flavours of the marinated beef together with the cheese complemented the fresh pasta to give us that “Oh” reaction. (“Oh” means “Oh, this is quite good!”). Last but not least, the vanilla is the real deal. Try it and you may just get addicted to it. Maybe the next time you walk past Raffles Courtyard, you’ll be tempted to take away a scoop of the vanilla ice cream…beware of its charms…
Cocktails and Singapore Sling at the Long Bar Raffles Hotel
Long Bar is home to the original Singapore Sling. Created around 1915 by Mr Ngiam Tong Boon, the drink was created to allow ladies of that time to have a drink under the disguise of a fancy coloured cocktail.
There was also a demonstration set up just for us to show the concoction of drinks named after the countries where Raffles Hotels are…
How to make the Original Singapore Sling
Our favourite was Seychelles and the Singapore Sling. You must try the Singapore Sling! Frankly speaking, we have not tried anything like it. All the other “Singapore Slings” that we have ever tried, does not even come close to the original one!
Breakfast and Lunch at the Tiffin Room
Tiffin Room is a classy restaurant (dress code to go along) that offers good food with exceptional service. I mean, our waiter actually remembered what we ordered the day before!
The breakfast at Tiffin room is a semi-buffet where you can order some main courses from the menu and enjoy the rest of the buffet from the spread…
Our favourite has got to be the egg benedict. Really makes us wonder how the chef can create such a complex dish from such a humble ingredient. Firm on the outside but runny on the inside (the yolk literally exploded when we went in). Remarkable control of the temperatures!
The Northern Indian Curry Buffet from the Tiffin Room is also a famous main stay of the Raffles Hotel.
The curries, sweets and desserts have made a name for themselves. Our favourite was the raisin ice cream (aka raisin kulfi)
The tea after lunch served up in colonial era tea pot added a touch to the stylish buffet lunch!
Tour around Raffles Hotel
Mr Leslie Danker, the resident historian with more than 40 years of experience took us on a tour around Raffles Hotel.
The Raffles Grill was redecorated to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth in 1953. The cabinet (at the end of the Grill) as well as the design was done to celebrate the event. In the Grill, there is also a story about the Silver Wagon which was buried during WW2 to prevent it from being taken by the Japanese. It was then re-discovered and now displayed prominently in its former glory, in the Grill.
The famous story of a tiger shot dead under the Bar & Billiard Room of the Raffles Hotel is TRUE! In 1902, there was a travelling circus near beach road. In those days, beach road was really close to the beach and a tiger escaped from the circus and went for a dip.
After the dip, the tiger rested BENEATH the Bar and Billiard Room of the Raffles Hotel. One of the hotel staff saw the tiger and went to a school opposite to ask the principal (Mr Charles Phillips) to help kill the tiger. Charles also happened to be a hunter.
Initially, Charles declined because he attended a function that evening and got a bit tipsy. But since it was a matter of life and death, he agreed and went over, still in his pyjamas. On his first attempt, he took 3 shots and COMPLETELY MISSED THE TIGER! Well, partially due to the alcohol and also that it was quite dark.
Then the tiger turned over. With its eyes gleaming in the dark, Charles took another shot and this time it went right between its eyes. This news was true and was featured in the local newspapers in 1902.
But people often mistaken this story to have taken place beneath the billiard table in the Bar and Billiard Room. (The tiger was shot beneath the room, not the table) Today, you may still find many visitors peering beneath the billiard tables, trying to find out the truth to this story…
Thanks to Mr Danker and his tour, it inspired us to write about the 10 Interesting facts You never knew about Raffles Hotel.
Presidential Suite of the Raffles Hotel Singapore
As part of the tour, we were shown the Presidential Suite (also known as Sir Stamford Raffles Suite) of the Raffles Hotel! All the bloggers went trigger crazy!
Tour of the Raffles Hotel Presidential Suite
The Presidential Suite was simply luxurious! Now we know how the rich and famous really live it up in style and class! :p
Dinner at the Empire Cafe Raffles Hotel
The Empire Cafe is famed for its local delights. We were introduced to the dim sum, curry as well as its famed laksa that even Jackie Chan craves for!
Of the dim sums, we really enjoyed the siew mai and the seafood spring roll. The siew mai had an additional seasoning that made the overall taste that much sweeter. The seafood spring roll was fresh on the inside and crispy on the outside. Not oily at all.
The chicken curry was not as rich as we expected. However, it was also adequately salted unlike many curries that would be too salty. As with most curries, the gravy went well with the rice that was served. The laksa had another story to it…
According to our host (Kenny), the laksa at Empire Cafe is Jackie Chan’s favourite. When Jackie Chan enters Empire Cafe, his colleauges would tell him “Your Mr Chan is here…”
Jackie Chan would then proceed to consume his laksa and even go for seconds with just the gravy and tau pok. With the fresh ingredients, the laksa was good. But we prefer the rich tasting ones, think Katong…
The important thing about this dish is ability of the sago to retain its small granular texture. This sago did. After taking the advice from Kenny to mix all the coconut and gula melaka in, the sago did taste quite good. Not the best we’ve had but good nonetheless.
Sunday Brunch @ Bar and Billiard Room Raffles Hotel
On our 3rd day, we went for the highlight of our staycation – the Sunday Champagne Brunch @ the Bar and Billiard Room.
To us, this was definitely the Best Sunday Brunch Champagne Buffet in Singapore. Here’s why…
1. Variety. It is quite impossible to try all the foods at this Sunday Brunch. It boasts of a huge selection of foods from appetizers to carvings to pastries to mains to sea food and even a huge dessert buffet! If you ever get to try all the dish from this buffet – Respect man.
2. Quality. Having tasted many cuisines worldwide, it is not easy to “wow” us and at this buffet, we were “wowed” several times! The lamb, pork, oyster, foie gras, ravioli and dessert spread were some of the food that caught our attention.
3. Bubbly. Since we are on words that end with “y”…The Champagne added a touch of class to this Sunday Brunch. It is no ordinary champagne but the Billecart-Salmon Champagne. This champagne has a rich history that complements the rich history of the Raffles Hotel and the class of the Bar and Billiard Room.
4. Classy. The colonial decoration, excellent quality of food and personalised service really made this Sunday Brunch stand out from its competitors. A class above.
If you’re thinking that you may be priced out to enjoy a staycation at Raffles Hotel, here’s great news for you! The newly launched summer staycation package costs only $550++ (per suite per night) and includes the following
- Children below the age of 12 stay (using existing beddings) and dine for free with their parents at Hotel-operated restaurants (adults must dine at the restaurant)
- Welcome Singapore Slings and fruit upon arrival, while children will enjoy fruit smoothies and cookies
- Complimentary breakfast at Tiffin Room on the first morning
- Complimentary Buffet Dinner at Bar & Billiard Room or Tiffin Room (once during the stay)
- Complimentary in-suite internet access
- 24-hour Butler Service
- Complimentary S$500 Raffles Hotel Arcade Shopping Discount Vouchers
- Complimentary late check-out until 6pm
- Complimentary parking
The special rate is extended to residents in Singapore, including Singapore Citizens, PRs, and work pass holders. The Suite Package will be valid only during the Weekends from 1 September 2013 onwards.
After calculation, it is actually quite hua (worth it) to enjoy the staycation package at the Raffles Hotel. The welcome drinks and smoothies will cost about $100 (for a family of 5 inclusive of 3 kids / Singapore Sling costs $26++). Breakfast at Tiffin is usually $45++ per person. While dinner at B&B is $75++ per person.
Conclusion : If you include the meals of a family of 5, the suite is practically free!
What are you waiting for? For enquiries or reservations on the Staycation Package, please contact the Reservations Department at (65) 6412 1244 or email email@example.com.
For your convenience, we have arranged for the best hotel deal at Raffles Hotel Singapore right here!
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So go on. Pamper yourself to a relaxed staycation at the Raffles Hotel and tell us what you think about this Grande Dame of Singapore!
**Special thanks to the great people @ Raffles Hotel for making this staycation possible!