South East Asia, Stay, Travel
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Leaving the airport during rush hour on a sunny morning in Singapore, it was our taxi driver that gave us our induction to this spectacular city. Cruising down the road with not a sign of traffic insight (a bizarre sight for such a cosmopolitan city), coming from the desert of the Middle East, I was pleasantly surprised by how green our commute was. ‘It’s a crime to cut down trees in Singapore’ our taxi driver quotes ‘it is harder to get a permit to chop down a tree than extend a house’ – he shortly concluded by saying that planting trees was encouraged, and anyone at any time can plant a tree anywhere in the city they want – it was that moment that made me fall in love with this truly special city.

A fine city and for good reason, Singapore is also the most eco-friendly city I’ve ever visited – their efforts towards global warming, all showcased in the impressive Gardens of the Bay, are truly remarkable. A city that is tough on crime and surprisingly clean – be warned, you can be fined, and even jailed – for breaking seemingly draconian laws like throwing chewing gum or cigarette butts on the floor, smoking in or near a restaurant or eating on the underground. The difference it makes on a city is unreal and as a result, Singapore is one of the cleanest cities I’ve ever visited! And when visiting this clean, green, shopping machine of a city, there is no better place to stay than the Mandarin Oriental, one of the cities oldest and most prestigious hotels located in the heart of Marina Bay.

#MOSingapore – truly an urban escape! 🌴

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Placed perfectly close to the Central Business District, with easy access to luxury boutiques and entertainment venues, the hotel’s impressive atrium will make you fall in love with the Mandarin. Designed by famed US architect John Portman, his atrium design evolved from a theatre concept where guests standing anywhere in the atrium can enjoy unobstructed views – and believe me, it works wonders. Alongside the decadent architecture, art plays a major part in this multi-talented hotel! Gracing the entrance of Mandarin Oriental, Singapore is a beautiful sculpture by Antoine Poncet titled “Fleur Marine” or Marine Flower whilst the hotel’s third level is dedicated to “A River Runs Through it”, a permanent acquisition of the hotel’s collection of artworks, known as “The Art of the Orient”.

There are 527rooms and suites in the multi-storey hotel and our Marina View room with stunning views of the bay and Marina Bay Sands was aptly sized with all the modern amenities. The bath might be small but the bed is amazingly comfortable. Offering the ultimate in privacy and featuring panoramic views of the city skyline, the Oriental Club Lounge on the 19th floor, available for every Club guest, is the epitome of luxury and exudes a contemporary and stylish design, providing the legendary five-star Mandarin Oriental experience. Other Club guest privileges include guaranteed late check-out till 4pm, high speed internet access, free local calls, luxurious amenities, choice of newspapers and bookings for Esplanade’s performances upon request.

To accompany the expansive and impressive Oriental Club Lounge, there are five restaurants and two lounges at Mandarin Oriental, Singapore, which include Cherry Garden – specialising in authentic Cantonese cuisine presented in a modern style; Dolce Vita – a poolside restaurant, offering Italian cuisine with a selection of fine grape and Melt Café – an all-day restaurant with international cuisines. Both Axis Bar and Lounge and BAY@5 (an outdoor lounge by the pool), offer panoramic views of the city skyline and are ideal for evening cocktails, whilst Morton’s The Steakhouse, America’s premier fine-dining steakhouse, opened its first restaurant outside of the United States in the hotel. Teppan-Ya, our favourite eatery, offers a refreshing new take on contemporary Japanese cuisine amidst magnificent city views – the dim sum collection is fantastic and the service was truly outstanding – if there is one to try, this is it!

If there is something that must be done during your visit, it’s taking a trip to the stylish 25-metre outdoor swimming pool, an area surrounded by lush tropical landscape, raised to different levels to emphasise spectacular views of the Singapore city skyline. Visually stunning, the area also includes private cabanas, a bubble-jet children’s pool, a large cabana for intimate gatherings and private events as well as wet decks which allow guests to sunbathe while they enjoy the coolness of the water.

Once you’ve spent substantial time splashing around outside, head down to The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Singapore – a sanctuary of tranquillity offering relaxation and calm. The intimate space has been transformed to include six treatment rooms, including two couples’ suites, a separate manicure-pedicure section, a reflexology area, a tea lounge for relaxation and one-to-one consultation areas. The spa offers a range of relaxing and results driven treatments, including Mandarin Oriental Signature Spa Therapies and product line – my favourite, the Oriental Bamboo Massage, is the perfect way to switch off from the city, which believe me, you’ll need after a few hours of pounding the streets! And once the pampering is over, the same bliss will remain throughout your stay in the hands of the hugely capable team who make staying at the Mandarin Oriental, Singapore that bit more comfortable!

A sanctuary from the city but still in the thick of it, the hotel is a step away from The Singapore Flyer and Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay; and a short stroll to Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre and Sands Expo and Convention Center. It is also across the road from Makansutra Gluttons Bay, the city’s best street food market, and is close to Marina Bay Sands, Gardens of the Bay and more! The hotel is also minutes from Orchard Road shopping district; and only 20 minutes’ drive via the expressway from Changai International Airport and the Singapore Expo.

This is a view we will always love! #MOviews #MOSingapore

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