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Reviewed 11 August 2009

I stayed here to break a long haul flight to Australia. The service is impeccable. The rooms are spacious and very comfortable. The room smelt musty ( do all Singapore rooms smell that way?).
Breakfast is good value and the atmosphere relaxing. I also recommend the High Tea in the Tiffin Room and the Long Bar for a Singapore Sling.
Raffles has its own group of shops and Restaurants, which can be very relaxing in the oppressive Singapore heat.
Raffles City is opposite and offers lots of western brands and restaurants.
Raffles is a little bit of history in a very modern City. It is a shame that it is now overshadowed by lots of tall buildings. It looks slightly lost. However, the service is still of a high standard and the staff very welcoming.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled solo
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4  Thank Tamworthy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2009

During our stay in Singapore in part of our ASIA-TOUR-2009! we stayed at the Marina Mandarin Hotel ( see our review here at Tripadvisor ) and had taken the opportunity to stroll to the world-famous Raffles Hotel for our second time after Nov. 2002 we can now add July 2009 in our memory book as well! First we saw the picture postcard front of the Raffles and visited the lobby which can only be done - by none-guests - on certain times and you can not wear short' s or too sexy and revealing clothing as well, or it' s a no from the amendable door-man. The lobby in itself was stunning and very colonial in color scheme and tone incl. white and brown plus plush seating and a massive concierge table and a real cashier plus a nice standing clock from historical times which was standing already there when Somerset Maugham visited here way back in time, how romantic to know! After this we strolled further through the hotel and enjoyed the Raffles Courtyard and the gardens plus fountains and we saw not one but two wedding celebration' s going on at the hotel. Having been our second time at this famous hotel we know why you would have your wedding celebration here! A visit to the Raffles is not named simply visit it is named pilgrimage! Our visit to the original Raffles Giftshop was obligatory for us! We bought incl. postcards, t-shirts, a nice book-mark which tells us the Original Singapore Sling receipe, we bought several books incl. the ladies and gentlemen behind the hotel and a history book about the hotel! The bill came at 200 Singapore Dollars for the whole lot! Well worth it! After this very nice past-time we strolled more through the massive romantic grounds of the hotel and visited the world-famous Long Bar located on the first floor of the hotel and he enjoyed the world-famous Singapore Sling ( which was first mixed-up here more than 100 years ago in the same Long Bar in the Raffles Singapore ) priced at 23 Sing. Dollars plus a mango juice and she enjoyed a really old receipe of the Old Fashioned Cocktail here plus a refreshing apple juice and the complementary peanuts we eat and simply throw the peanut shell to the ground like the greats would do before us in another time incl. Kipling and Conrad and and and. The furniture was classical colonial and the atmosphere was upbeat and many people incl. us had taken photos from this world-famous Bar. After this we enjoyed the Raffles Museum on the 3rd floor of the hotel which gives you and us a perfect overview of the complete history of the famous hotel incl. original letters from former famous guests incl. George H. W. Bush ( No. 41 ) and others plus historic photos of the hotel and many artifacts about the hotel incl. the very first mixer set of the Singapore Sling and a photo from the Gentleman who has shot the last free wheeling tiger of Singapore at the Raffles' Billiard Room! The Billiard Table can also be seen there! There were also more newer photos about the recent restoration of the hotel in the 1990' s available to view! All in all a real must when you really want to understand how the Raffles came into being and why it is still with us today! This was our second time visit also to the Raffles Museum and was well worth it, hopefully we can do it a third time and much more in the long-term future! At the end of our second tour of the Raffles we enjoyed ice-cream at the Raffles Creamery ( which is new and was not even there on our first tour in 2002 ) and is operated from the Seah Grill ( in which we had lunch in Nov. 2002 - very nice american fare incl. the famous macaroni and cheese! enjoy! ). We enjoyed at the Raffles Creamery the following drinks and ice-cream incl. a non-alcoholic refreshing tropical colada, one forest berry smoothie plus the following ice-cream combinations incl. she had gianduja kit-kat, rocky road, macadamia nuts and oreo cookies and he had incl. tahiti vanilla, white chocolate, gummi bears and chocolate sauce! A perfect stop when at the Raffles! Especially after such a fine day in Singapore' s foremost historic Landmark Hotel founded in 1887 by the Sarkies brothers from Armenia! Well done! Now we have the hope after our second visit to this hotel that we can eventually stay here at least one night in our lives in the future to even more experience the Raffles Hotel plus the charm and the superb facilities on offer! However a third visit would be also on the cards as you would expect when in Singapore! Happy travel and Happy love! So do not forget to FLY!STAY!EXPLORE! MORE! and be more than happy to have the opportunity to even visit such a fine City and hotel! Travel on!

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Flyers007Dublin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2009

Like most travellers who research their trips I knew that Raffles is a must-see place in Singapore. We boked on the Raffles website at an early purchase rate which still worked out at about £250 a night for a Palm Court suite.

I had read the reviews on tripadvisor with interest prior to booking and it seemed that the only downside appeared to be the attitude of the front desk. Check in for us was civilised with check-in in the room. The suite was not ready and they had given us one right next to the maids storage room - one of the pleasures of a vacation is getting up at whatever time you wish right? They were however prepared to upgrade to a celebrity suite at no extra cost which was near a fountain [you either get rooms overlooking a green area with palm trees or a fountain at the front of the hotel]. The front is too noisy so stay away from this area. We declined the upgrade due to the noise from the fountain and the front road which is busy.

The room we got was in colonial style but it felt tired. I had just come from the Mandarin Oriental in Bangkok - so I wasn't really prepared for it. Colonial here means an excuse not to remedy defects in the room, I am sorry but you don't pay hard earned money for anything that isn't up to scratch.

The hotel occupies a large area, at the time of construction it was built out horizontally rather than the vertical dimensions of the modern constructions which is why it is a novelty. It is so much a symbol of opulence in Singapore you get the distinct feeling that staff feel that it is your honour to be there rather than their honour to serve you. There was no specific incident to suggest that but you do feel it. My attitude is I am paying money so please understand that without travellers like me you don't have a job.....

Breakfast was included in the room rate and there was a mix-up which meant we saw people arriving after us getting served. There was a nice apology but still it doesn't feel nice to ask where your food is.

We had drinks at the famous Long Bar there were two complimentary singapore slings and there are monkey nuts in bags so you crack them open and throw the husks on the floor - alot of fun!

There is an arcade with alot of nice shops in the hotel complex and a mall which is adjacent. Just a tip for those who are visiting for a short time - do the night safari, it is amazing. Taxis are cheap in Singapore so just get a taxi out there.

Overall, I must say that the experience was mildly disappointing and when I go again I wouldn't waste my money here. If you do want to come here to say you stayed at Raffles then book in advance on their website - I believe there is a 30 and 60 day advance purchase rate which has free breakfast and is much cheaper than closer to your travel dates. Again do not expect upgrades here, take the hotel for what it is - a landmark and don't expect a great deal more.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank avelautham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2009

My husband and I spent two nights at Raffles. I initially had some reservations about staying in a hotel that was itself a tourist attraction. I was relieved t discover that, while there are restaurants, bars, and shops that are open to the public (and quite touristy), as a hotel guest, you need not experience any of this unless you want to. The guests' entrance and lobby is completely separate from the entrance to the tourist venues. I think the hotel does a very good job of providing a wonderful, peaceful, and historic retreat for its guests, while also providing an interesting, if touristy, experience for visitors who are not staying at the hotel but want a bit of a Raffles experience.

Rooms are wonderfully comfortable, beautifully decorated, and the service excellent.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DCtravler244
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 July 2009

If you like staying in old colonial hotels then try for the one night. Otherwise just go for a drink. It's hugely overpriced. Unless you're willing to pay top whack and get a suite in the old wing (but they cost a bomb) the rooms are rather horrible. The food in the garden court area was inedible. I sent it back and refused to pay. The Tiffin curry restaurant was better. But there is so little choices for places to eat. It's either a curry or a an upmarket expensive long drawn out restaurant. Unfortunately it also rather like staying in a zoo as all day long there is a procession of sightseers gawping at the hotel wandering in and out of the lobby and the bar. They have also now got trapped into then making money from this. Milking it for all it's worth with giant gift shops, t-shirts and souvenirs. They should concentrate more on the actual guests and less on the tourists. It could be incredible. But it isn't. I was expecting so much more.

  • Stayed: January 2009, travelled on business
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7  Thank boomsnap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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