48 hours is nowhere near enough time to explore Singapore. Despite being just half the size of metropolitan London, the city-state is bubbling over with luxury hotels, creative cocktails, eco-first gardens, and more than 50 Michelin-starred restaurants. As of this month, there’s one further addition to that list: a new Quintessentially hub, opening today. To mark the occasion, we’ve curated the below itinerary to ensure you get the most out of a brief Singaporean sojourn – and do check in with our new office should you require assistance whilst visiting.
Where to stay
One of Singapore’s oldest hotels, Raffles has heritage. The 19th-century mansion is dripping in colonial-era details such as marble columns, cathedral ceilings and an antique grandfather clock, all of which were sharpened during a recent facelift. Its Long Bar is also where the Singapore Sling was invented; aptly, you’ll be served one as your welcome drink, or alternatively, utilise the butler service to enjoy one in your room. The other hotel to consider is – of course – Marina Bay Sands, Singapore’s glittering monolith to modernity. It’s worth booking a stay here purely to swim in the world’s largest infinity pool, but 80-or-so restaurants make it ideal for gourmet travellers, too.
Marina Bay Sands & Raffles
Nature of the future
As a city smothered in greenery, it’s unsurprising that Singapore’s ‘Garden City’ ethos is omnipresent. It’s perhaps most prominent at Gardens by the Bay, where futuristic ‘supertrees’ collect solar energy to power a nightly light show. Escape the afternoon humidity by slipping into its blissfully air-conditioned conservatories (the Cloud Forest is particularly lovely). Another green-themed jaunt to keep on your radar is The Singapore Botanic Gardens. Founded in 1859, its winding paths are tranquil in the most natural sense and, as such, form the city’s only Unesco World Heritage Site.
Singapore’s ‘Garden City’
Drinks on top
For a city of skyscrapers, it’s unsurprising that Singapore lays claim to a couple of the ‘world’s tallest’ titles. Case in point: LeVeL 33, the world’s tallest microbrewery. Perched 156 metres above ground level, a table on the window side begets gorgeous views of the glittering Marina Bay – and you’d be missing a beat if you didn’t order a craft beer, brewed in rose gold vats on site.
Begin your second day in Singapore by exploring colourful Katong in the city’s east. It certainly delivers on aesthetics: its main Joo Chiat Road is lined with pastel shophouses, whilst murals are splashed across almost every alley wall (look out for the Peranakan motif wings on Medley Alley). It’s also a hotspot for Peranakan culture, whether a steaming bowl of laksa (noodle soup) or traditional artefacts on display at Katong Antique House.
Singapore is well-regarded for its street food, which more often than not is served at hawker halls. To say these communal eating areas have an atmosphere is an understatement: as soon as you enter, you’re assaulted with a wave of aromas, people and stalls, most of which have used the same recipes for generations. Two for your list: Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle and Liao Fan Hawker Chan, the world’s first street-food stalls to win Michelin stars (although the latter unfortunately lost its star in 2021).
Singapore's Street Markets
Well represented on best bar lists both in Asia and globally, there are a plethora of places to get a good drink in Singapore. In Chinatown, Jigger & Pony is one such list-topper, with communal-style seating, a magazine menu and even the option to take a bottled edition of your favourite cocktail home (we recommend the Sakura martini). Elsewhere, art-deco bar ATLAS stocks the world’s largest selection of gin within a 26-foot tall, gilded gin tower. It also possesses a champagne room that houses a 1907 Heidsieck & Co, salvaged from a shipwreck.
Jigger & Pony
To find out more about Quintessentially Singapore, please contact your lifestyle manager. Not a member? Request more information.