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Posts from the ‘Travels’ Category

First Look at the New Look Raffles Singapore

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Raffles Hotel Singapore

Raffles hotel in Singapore has today reopened following a two and a half year, multi million dollar refurbishment. Here’s what to expect from the revamp by interior designer Champalimaud and architect Aedas.

The grand lobby has a fresher feel and a new, stunning take on a chandelier. Afternoon tea will now be served here rather than being side lined to the Tiffin Room (more on which later). The heavy wooden reception desk with pigeon holes behind has been replaced by a more inviting desk and chairs, more in keeping with luxury 21st century hotels.

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Grand Lobby at Raffles Hotel Singapore

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Reception at Raffles Hotel Singapore

 

Off the lobby, the Grill restaurant has been replaced by a new venture from chef Anne-Sophie Pic whose restaurant in France holds three Michelin stars.

The room is almost unrecognisable from the former Grill with softer tones and furnishings though the white columns and French windows overlooking the Palm Court remain.

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La Dame de Pic at Raffles hotel Singapore

It’s also gratifying to see that the alcove tables in the restaurant still in situ, albeit with a more modern edge. Statement lighting abounds here too.

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La Dame de Pic at Raffles Hotel Singapore

On the other side of the lobby the Tiffin Room, serving Northern Indian cuisine, has re opened. This too has been given a transformation with the addition of open shelving displaying tiffin boxes (naturally) and Chinese porcelain and again, statement light fittings. The new furniture with a nod to colonial style (dark wood and rattan) is said to be inspired by the hotel’s archives.

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Tiffin Room at Raffles Hotel Singapore

Elsewhere in the hotel, a new Alain Ducasse restaurant in the Bar and Billiard room and Yì by Jeremy Leung are due to open in September.

All the suites have been restored and look lighter while retaining a heritage feel. The separate parlour room has been retained in the Stateroom, Promenade, Courtyard, Palm Court and Personality suites – a good choice since it’s so synonymous with guest rooms at Raffles.

Updated technology and bathrooms also figure with Peranakan inspired tiles in the latter – in homage to the Chinese Malay settlers in Singapore.

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Courtyard Suite at Raffles Hotel Singapore

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Courtyard Suite Parlour at Raffles Hotel Singapore

To celebrate the opening Raffles is offering two special rate packages:

Opening Package
From now till 31 October 2019 guests may upgrade their stay for S$120 plus taxes
per night including additional privileges of daily breakfast for two either in their suite, on the verandahs poolside or at Tiffin Room. They will also receive a $100 daily
credit for spending at the Raffles Spa or at one of the restaurants. A commemorative Raffles heritage souvenir and guaranteed late checkout until 3.00pm is also included.
Staycation Package
Available to residents of Singapore, this staycation offers a 50% reduction
on an adjourning suite for families to stay together. The package includes daily semi
buffet breakfast for two adults at Tiffin Room, where children can dine for free (for
two children aged 12 and under), S$50 Raffles Spa Credit per adult per stay, Raffles Children Customised Programme, Complimentary souvenir for children from the Raffles Boutique, guaranteed late check out till 3pm, early check in at noon, subject to availability, 10% off Raffles merchandise at the Raffles Boutique. Adjourning suites are subjected to availability of interconnecting suites.
More details on offers are available at www.rafflessingapore.com and enquiries
or reservations can be made via singapore@raffles.com

Castle in the air

Alila Fort Bishangarh

Alila Fort Bishangarh, Rajasthan

UPDATE: Alila Fort Bishangarh in the Aravalli hills, Rajasthan, will open in February 2017.

http://www.alilahotels.com

Chanel Couture’s Japanese Style

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Chanel haute couture Spring Summer 2016

With Paris Haute Couture week upon us again, Chopstix takes another look at Chanel’s Spring/Summer 2016 couture show.

While some at the time described the set as “a doll’s house” or a “spa”, Chopstix sees it more as a traditional Japanese house. Which reminded us of an architectural tour of the Aman Tokyo, designed by Kerry Hill Architects.

The Japanese traditional house, we were told by an Aman spokeswoman, is designed to embrace nature; “We love nature and seeing the changes of the seasons.” Thus the importance of gardens, and in the absence of those, gardens are brought inside as at Aman Tokyo even with its urban tower location. Trees are brought inside such as the one used as a focus point in the lobby (below) and the tiny foliage displays that adorn the corridors leading to the guest rooms.

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Aman Tokyo

The houses are also designed to be opened up, as the Chanel one was, which again brings the outside – and therefore nature – in. In the suites at Aman Tokyo a sliding “hatch” door of traditional camphor wood and washi paper in the bathroom (below) opening on to a plant in the living area conveys this sentiment.

 

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Aman Tokyo

The Chanel couture set was the perfect backdrop for Karl Lagerfeld’s Japanese influenced collection including balloon sleeved jackets, long length pencil skirts and cork wedges reminiscent of okobo shoes.

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Chanel haute couture spring summer 2016

http://www.amanresorts.com

The Only Way to See the Taj Mahal

Oberoi view from balcony

If like the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge you’re planning a visit to the Taj Mahal, there’s only one way to do it in style and that’s by staying at the Oberoi Amarvilas, Agra.

Not only does this glamorous, film set of a resort have a bird’s eye view of the iconic monument from most of its rooms and terraces, it’s also the only hotel in Agra to have private access via golf buggy right up to the gates.

http://www.oberoihotels.com

William & Kate’s hotel in Mumbai

Taj Mumbai exterior

Lucky Will and Kate staying at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai. Chopstix thoroughly enjoyed its stay at this grand, colonial hotel overlooking the water and the iconic Gate of India.

Inside does not disappoint: the lobby leads through to a courtyard dominated by a large circular swimming pool. Throughout the day, the colonnaded cafe hums with the throng of Mumbai’s gilded youth. And the space really comes into its own in the evening when the pool and stunning surrounding architecture is flood lit.

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You’ll want to book a room in the historic wing to get a real sense of the grandeur. Plus the striking staircase that leads to the historic rooms.

There’s a vast choice of restaurants including Wasabi by Morimoto and the top floor Souk that overlooks the Gate of India.

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And then there’s the shopping – a whole arcade of carefully curated objects to buy right inside your hotel. We could go on, but please do book and see for yourself.

https://taj.tajhotels.com/en-in/taj-mahal-palace-mumbai/

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