Go on a getaway where you can feel like a Crazy Rich Asian for a day or two.
There’s no lack of luxury hotels in Singapore – tourists usually dream of staying at Marina Bay Sands (Insta-famous infinity pool), Raffles Hotel (colonial grandeur), or impeccably styled boutique gems like Warehouse Hotel. But there’s one thing about Sentosa island that makes it first choice for a staycation in Singapore: you can get a view without the Singapore skyline.
Sentosa Cove: mingle with mbillionaires
Unlike the other hotels on Sentosa, W Singapore Sentosa Cove is located in Sentosa Cove, a “billionaires’ hideaway” on the eastern end of the island built from reclaimed land. This gated community is where the ultra-rich of Asia add to their collections of multi-million dollar mansions and fancy yachts, hidden away from the hoi polloi by a long, winding drive.
I was thrilled when my partner sprang the staycation on me, not least because I’d been scrimping and saving for my dog’s medical bills and for other big trips. The W brand is youthful and cosmopolitan, and here at Sentosa Cove they’ve got shiny fixtures and neon-colored highlights everywhere. It feels more fun and upbeat than a typical resort or business hotel, but doesn’t go over the top.
First things first: this staycation happened because my partner had signed up for Sip and Indulge, which is supposedly a invite-only membership program. Unfortunately, when booking our room, the staff couldn’t explain why our preferred date was blacked out. It was only after making a complaint that we settled for an upgraded room on another date.
Upon arrival we were checked into the Spectacular AWAY Room, which is slightly bigger than the standard AWAY room: we had a bigger closet area and workspace, as well as a very fancy bathtub that opens up to the private plunge pool.
The AWAY rooms are part of the AWAY Spa on the ground floor and the interiors feature more natural elements like wood, compared to the signature W rooms. And beyond the partition…I had to resist the urge to dive into the soft white bed. Luckily there were plenty of other distractions to indulge in. Like our own Private AWAY pool with jacuzzi.
Since we had this, we didn’t bother to head out to the WET pool (which is pretty glam with floating loungers and WET Bar and all). Instead, we sprawled on the daybed after splashing in the pool and enjoyed champagne and bon-bons…or rather, umeshu poured into champagne glasses and snacks from Cold Storage 😛
One minor gripe is that the room had an outdated Bose sound system with a dock only for older iPhone models, so we couldn’t play our music – hopefully this has been updated with newer Bluetooth speaker systems. The rooms also have keyless mobile check-in and room entry.
One downside of being allocated the first room (Room 120) was that the foliage wasn’t dense enough – especially at the side closest to the building entrance – to prevent passersby from spotting us in our private pool. Perhaps they could add more plants.
While the room was well-appointed, what made this staycation really delightful wasn’t really the hotel so much as where it’s located.
Strolling along Quayside Isle with docked boats gently bobbing to the breeze, I could actually pretend I wasn’t in Singapore and let the tranquility seep into my bones. There’s a great selection of cafes, pubs, and even supermarkets here as well.
W Singapore Service
Throughout our stay the service was rather inconsistent. While the concierge and the head waiter at The Kitchen Table were stellar, the waiter at SKIRT restaurant the waiter was inattentive and our server, though sincere, mispronounced the names of the dishes (I do expect luxury hotels to pay attention to even the finest details).
What I Loved
The bathtub has got to be my favorite part of the Spectacular AWAY Room. It’s perfectly sized for couples to have a nice hot soak together, and the electronic blinds open up to offer direct access to the private pool!
My stay was surprisingly rejuvenating, perhaps because it was on weekdays so the hotel wasn’t crowded with guests. If you’re looking for tranquility and exclusivity (and good food), W Singapore Sentosa Cove ticks those boxes.