Picking the best boutique hotels in Singapore is no easy task. It involves throwing back welcome drinks, testing out the beds, walking the neighborhoods, assessing the service, and dipping toes in swimming pools. Ok, you got me, it’s pretty much the best part of this job. Singapore isn’t exactly known for boutique hotels. It’s a city filled with towering buildings, many of them home to iconic hotels like the Marina Bay Sands. Yet tucked away and scattered throughout the city are a handful of little gems, each offering a beautiful place to rest your head.
After rigorous testing, here’s our take.
Best for Couples
With a new train stop set to open a few minutes from the hotel in 2020, The Warehouse might just tick all the boxes for the perfect boutique hotel. Built in a former, well, warehouse, the hotel’s design pays tribute to the building’s nefarious past as a hub of underground activity. And by underground, I don’t mean the tube. We’re talking gambling, opium, and vices too delicate to mention. Lofted ceilings, gold accents, and a mini-bar stocked with items you wouldn’t want your granny to find. Instead of being handed a welcome drink the moment you walk in and being expected to down it before you see your room, you’re given a chip to redeem any time during your stay for one of the hotel’s signature cocktails. With a rooftop pool facing the river, airy, beautifully designed rooms with all the modern conveniences you can think of, and stellar service, it’s hard to find much of anything about The Warehouse to criticize. One tip: best to book the higher level room categories for more natural light. More info is available here.
Six Senses Duxton
Anouska Hempel’s elegant approach to this sustainably-designed hotel mixes elements of Chinese, Malay, and European artistry to showcase Singapore’s multicultural heritage. Rooms are each unique – my favorites are the Pearl Suites with their bright light, marble accents, and clean lines and the Opium Rooms with their rich decor, four-poster beds, and romantic mysteries that transport you to another era. While the rooms are fabulous, it’s the hotel’s other touches that really set it apart. First, there’s the welcome experience. If you’ve never experienced any sort of sound healing or Tibetan bowl meditation, you might have to trust me on this. Standing in a large bowl as the sound vibrates up through your feet, legs, and into your body brings peace that transports you from the streets of Singapore to a mountain monastery. It’s a truly magical welcome. The in-house Chinese doctor is available for patient consultations complete with herbal dispensary, and in the rooms, you’ll find Six Senses’ hallmarks of wellness and sustainability. The neighborhood in which Six Senses Duxton sits is tree-lined and peaceful yet around the corner from vibrant bars and restaurants, a nearly perfect locale. There’s no swimming pool but guests have access to the rooftop pool and other facilities at nearby Six Senses Maxwell. To learn more about Six Senses Duxton, click here.
Best for Families: Six Senses Maxwell
If you’re looking for interconnecting family rooms, the character and service of a boutique hotel, and a few family-friendly touches, skip the monstrous hotels over on Orchard Road and go directly to Six Senses Maxwell. Stepping inside the lobby can be a bit overwhelming with its hushed old-world opulence but when you look closely, you’ll see what an ingenious blend of old and new the hotel is and that it’s not the least bit stuffy. There is no single-use plastic on the premises and on the roof you’ll find an herb garden, beehives (coming soon), and boards announcing the various conservation efforts under way. Rooms are designed to maximize space – always at a premium in Singapore – so you won’t be tripping over each other. I love the Terrace rooms with their private balconies although if you really want to splash out, the two Maxwell Suites with their corner views are hard to top. Those family-friendly touches include an ice cream tricycle that dishes up homemade ice cream and sorbet to guests in the afternoon, a rooftop swimming pool long enough for plenty of cooling off, and babysitting services available. Find out more about Six Senses Maxwell here.
Best Budget Option: Ann Siang House
Singapore is expensive, no matter how you slice it. So when I call this a budget option, I mean budget for those who want a boutique hotel with character, charm, and good service below £200/night in one of the most pricey cities around. Ann Siang House is built in restored shophouses in Chinatown. It’s around the corner from one of Singapore’s most well-known hawker centres and next door to the Michelin-awarded Coconut Club which serves classic Singaporean-Malay dishes without the Michelin price. If you love food, this is a great area to base yourself. The rooms are lovely and include rooms and suites, an eclectic collection of art, and in some cases, handmade furnishings. Breakfast is minimal with only a simple continental spread and there’s no swimming pool or other amenities so I recommend this for short stays. If you’ll be in town a bit longer, it’s worth paying a touch more for the extra comfort elsewhere. Learn more about Ann Siang House here.
Singapore boutique hotels are few in number and while they aren’t all listed here, these are the ones we recommend. If you’d like to know more about any of these hotels or to book a trip to Singapore, get in touch with me at Fleewinter and let me plan your tailormade getaway!