The trend for small-scale heritage hotels in Singapore continues as the city gets set to welcome new boutique digs, forged from a heritage godown, or warehouse, on the banks of the Singapore River at lively Robertson Quay.
Scheduled to open in December, The Warehouse Hotel is the first accommodation venture for Singapore’s Low & Behold, the group behind some of the city-state’s smartest restaurants, including the Tanjong Beach Club and trendy Odette at the National Gallery Singapore.
The hotel’s 37 guestrooms are housed in an 1895 warehouse along a stretch of river that was an important trade route linking to the Straits of Malacca and once rife with secret societies, opium dens and underground distilleries churning out toddy and arrack.
The Warehouse Hotel is proud to be 100 per cent Singapore owned, designed and operated. The pared-back but very stylish fit-out by local agency Asylum pays homage to the area’s industrial roots and many of the hotel’s accessories have been locally sourced, including the staff uniforms, bicycles, artwork, guidebooks and coffee and tea supplies.
Several guestrooms have double-height ceilings; all will feature free high-speed Wi-Fi access, Bang & Olufsen Bluetooth speakers, custom pillowtop mattresses and eco-certified Ashley & Co bath amenities while minibars are stocked with Singapore-sourced edibles. The premium loft-style Riverview Suite is located on the top floor and features a soaring doubleheight peaked ceiling and original beams.
The hotel’s location should prove a popular lure for visitors hankering after a more authentic Singapore experience; Robertson Quay offers a lively blend of residential and commercial buildings with plenty of cafes and restaurants and is equidistant from the city’s CBD and the Orchard Road shops. DON’T MISS: A dip in the rooftop infinity pool affording great views of the river and surrounding heritage shophouses.
DINING IN: The hotel restaurant Po is the work of self-titled “mod-Sin” (modern Singapore) pioneer Willin Low, founder of Wild Rocket at Mt Emily Park, listed as one of Asia’s 50 best restaurants. His dishes offer a modern spin on traditional Singaporean flavours.
DINING OUT: Within walking distance of the hotel you’ll find some great cafes and eateries, such as Toby’s Estate, Common Man Roasters, Super Loco, Chopsuey Cafe and PS Cafe Petit.
ASK THE CONCIERGE: Cocktails will be mandatory at Po, where the lively drinks list is inspired by the hotel’s history, including libations courtesy of the 19th-century spice trade, house-crafted spirits straight from the underground distilleries or something a little more flashy, inspired by the building’s most recent incarnation as a disco.
CHECKING IN: Special opening rates from $S220 ($207), excluding taxes. More: thewarehousehotel.com.
ALSO TRY: Ovolo 1888 Darling Harbour, Sydney; The Thief, Oslo; Brunton Boatyard Hotel, Fort Cochin, Kerala.
CHRISTINE McCABE Anantara Kalutara Resort has opened on Sri Lanka’s southwest coast, one hour from Colombo, in a building originally designed by legendary local architect Geoffrey Bawa; there are 141 guestrooms, suites and pool villas affording excellent views from private balconies or terraces • The newest Design Hotels member has opened in Lisbon; the 41room Memmo Principe Real is a new build in oak and glass with city views and limestone bathrooms kitted out with Hermes unguents • QT Hotels & Resorts has announced its third hotel in NSW, part of the 8 Phillip Street apartment tower under development in Parramatta and scheduled to open in 2020; the hotel will feature 257 guestrooms and suites and a dramatic three-storey lobby • London’s fabled Savoy Hotel, managed by Fairmont, has opened a spectacular Royal Suite composed of an enfilade of rooms spanning the entire riverside of the fifth floor and offering guests a butler greeting at the airport, a Rolls-Royce at their disposal and access to a full complement of staff, from chef and bartender to personal stylist and make-up artist • Perth’s COMO The Treasury has scored big in Conde Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards, being named best hotel in Australia and New Zealand, No 2 worldwide and the only Aussie property listed in the Top 50.