Travelling out of Singapore for a holiday seems to be out of the question. If you are experiencing travel blues, a staycation is the best remedy. Only hotels certified with SG Clean and approved by STB will be allowed to receive guests for the purpose of leisure during Singapore’s ‘Phase 2’ of reopening. The SG Clean quality mark provides more assurance when we head out to enjoy leisure activities. For instance, all approved hotels in Singapore set the most stringent hygiene measures and operational protocols to ensure the safety and well-being of guests.
I had the chance to stay at Sofitel Singapore City Centre again but this time to experience what hotel stay will be like in the new normal; many of which will change from what we typically used to.
Sofitel Singapore City Centre is located above Tanjong Pagar MRT station within Guoco Tower, a mixed-use development skyscraper in the CBD area. At the entrance, you will be welcomed by Lasvit’s 9m crystal chandelier, inspired by the dance of leaves carried in a gust of wind which seamlessly blends the concept of the iconic Plane trees in Paris with the Tembusu leaves in Singapore. From level 1, you will need to take the lift to the main lobby on level 5 for check-in formalities and take another separate lift to your room.
Apart from hygiene measures, safe distancing, temperature check, SafeEntry QR codes and filling up the health & travel declaration form will be the norm to instil public confidence. 2 days prior to my stay, I was asked to complete the online check-in and provide my estimated arrival time to ensure that my room is ready upon arrival. This is actually a common practice, but Sofitel has implemented staggered check-in timings to reduce capacity and intermingle at the lobby.
Be it a staycation, dining or gathering with friends, please continue to abide the rule of 5 (max 5 persons per room) when inviting any guests.
Sofitel Singapore City Centre has 223 rooms across three room categories; Luxury Room, Prestige Suite and Joaquim Suite. At 38sqm, the Luxury rooms are considered spacious. My favourite part of the room is the signature Sofitel MyBed™ which has set the standard for luxurious sleep. You will notice the room looks slightly different than usual. Use the slider to compare the images taken during pre-COVID vs the new normal stay. The hotel has to keep amenities to a minimum to ensure everything is sanitised. No more of the Colouring The Lion City activity book too!
Tips: Request for a corner room (partial view of the sea & Pinnacle at Duxton) or room facing Chinatown.
Rollaway bed can be requested for the lead in room category for additional SGD 110 (ex taxes) per night inclusive of breakfast.
A complimentary care kit with a hand sanitiser and masks was provided. A full list of items such as bathrobe, slippers and etc., are available on request.
Luxurious Marble bathroom with bathtub and rainfall shower.
By default, only essentials such as towels and Lanvin bath amenities will be made available. You can request the wooden bath tray if you are planning to have a relaxing bath.
You can expect minimal interaction with the hotel staff. A big change especially for a 5-star property like Sofitel. Housekeeping services operate on an ‘opt-in’ basis. Nevertheless, I enjoyed lounging on the day bed while looking out at the floor-to-ceiling window framing the views of CBD and Chinatown. You can connect to the Bose speaker via Bluetooth to enjoy your favourite music playlist.
View of Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown shophouses.
No Turndown Service
Sad to hear that evening turndown service have been suspended for now. The complimentary selection of minibar is also available upon request. Bedroom slippers were placed by the side of the bed. A box of chocolates and decaffeinated black tea, TWG Midnight Hour was specially prepared for enjoyment before turning in.
Breakfast at Racines
Self-service buffet is not permitted for now, but you can expect your breakfast spreads revert to à la carte format. With social distancing, the number of tables was reduced and digital menus being implemented.
Ordering via the online menu is seamless and the breakfast menu selection is actually quite decent. Head down early to avoid the crowd, especially on weekends.
Say Hello to the AmBEARssadors!
A clever idea to use the social distancing AmBEARssadors around the hotel’s lobby, instead of the usual ‘X’ or ‘Reserved’ signage.
Booking of Recreational Facilities
The infinity pool and SoFit at level 6 are open between 7am and 10pm. Prior booking is required for swimming pool and gym usage. Sofitel has implemented time blocks with user limits to allow both social distancing and disinfection between each block. You have 45 mins to exercise in the gym and 1hr 30mins to do your laps at the 30m long infinity pool. On a brighter note, you don’t have to worry about the crowd!
In a Nutshell
While staycation is still possible, they may never be the same again. Domestic tourism is the first facet of leisure tourism to recover. The hotel staff are ready to deliver a service of Magnifique experience, but it doesn’t feel like a 5-star hotel experience that I am expecting for. This is perhaps due to less human interaction and restrictions. Nevertheless, staycation is here to stay; to take a break from WFH and do absolutely nothing!
- Located above Tanjong Pagar MRT
- Modern rooms with splendid city view
- Nice infinity pool
- Plenty of cafes around the area
- No complimentary parking
- Club Millésime is relatively small
- Catered towards business rather than leisure due to the location
- The pillows are too soft to my liking
Do check out The Hotel Experience Package for the Luxury Room from $338.99++
Eligible for redemption of SingapoRediscovers Vouchers!
Sofitel Singapore City Centre
9 Wallich Street, Singapore 078885
(Enter via Peck Seah Street)
+65 6428 5000
Check In: 3:00 PM | Check Out: 12:00 PM