Rarely have I stayed at a hotel where nearly everything was enjoyable. By and large, I’d have to say the 487-room, 25-suite Conrad Centennial Singapore – located a stone’s throw from the Suntec City shopping and convention complex – scored very high marks.
Upon arrival, a bellhop eagerly opened the door for me to the hotel, setting up what was to be a very memorable stay.
The owner of the hotel incorporated into the lobby design the five elements of feng shui— water, fire, earth, metal, and wood. In this photo, one can imaginatively count three of those attributes; the (red) representing fire in the sculpture, a drop of water causing “waves” into the lobby floor, and up above, the metallic “Christmas tree.”
Nik, one of the hotel manager, gave us a tour of the property. She was charismatic, very easy to chat with, and seemed like a genuinely fun person to be around.
Although my colleague and I had a swift check-in downstairs, being that we had an Executive floor room, we could have also checked-in on the 31st floor. In my opinion, one cool feature about the Conrad Centennial is that they have two Executive Lounges; the one for guests of all ages, placed right next to the pool on the 4th floor, and the 31st floor lounge for guests 12 and up.
Guests staying in Executive Level rooms also can have a buffet breakfast, afternoon tea, evening drinks with hors d’oeuvres, and are able to use the 5th floor business center for two hours per day, among other amenities. Personally, I didn’t avail myself of the meals in either lounge, because my colleague and I had our hearts set on the main hotel buffet restaurant, Oscar’s. More on the food later!
First, let’s visit the room:
A welcome surprise of macarons, camouflaged chocolates, and fruit. For me, two of the most important aspects in a room are controllable air conditioning units without a musty, smoky smell- at least in this part of the world – and suitable internet speeds. Both passed the test with flying colors. And check out the view!…
Never mind those competitors in the foreground, the Conrad Centennial clearly has the superior views!
Ultimately, the room was very comfortable, and came with the requisite robes and slippers. My one main gripe is that I only noticed one rubbish bin in the entire guestroom, which was in the bathroom. Perhaps it was a small oversight on housekeeping’s part? It also would’ve been nice to be able to open a window, but the hotel erred on the side of safety, which is fair enough.
On another positive note, whenever I called to get something replenished/ordered room service, it was quickly actioned and attended to. I don’t always have the best success with room service, but the Conrad Centennial did it well.
Speaking of eating…
The Conrad Centennial has a few eating choices. Golden Peony serves Cantonese food with a Singaporean touch, and counts a celebrity chef among its crew. The Terrace is the fast option, with sandwiches, baked goods, and coffee.
Then we have the Lobby Lounge, specializing in gin-based cocktails. I tried something called Death’s Door, because the menu mentioned that it had a spicy finish:But for us, we were keen on Oscar’s, the international, all-day buffet/á la carte restaurant.
For lunch, Yanping, the hotel’s Director of Marketing and Communications, joined us. He was another amicable member of the hotel staff, cordial, and eager to please. Nik, Yanping, and Senior, a Les Clefs d’Or Concierge member, all appeared to me as if they were truly happy to be working at the Conrad Centennial. Kudos to the hotel HR team!
All of that reading is making me hungry. What is for lunch?
However, due to both my colleague and Yanping not having much of an appetite, I greatly benefited from their ordering. Each dish tasted clean, with a variety of flavors, and warped me throughout South and Southeast Asia with every bite.
So, they’ve got the á la carte thing down pat. But how about the lunch buffet on the following day?
Needless to say, just about all of the foods we tried were quite tasty. That said, service was rather slow, in spite of us sitting right next to a few waiters. The restaurant wasn’t even that busy for the majority of the time we were there, so I was a bit disappointed in the service. Nevertheless, I went back for seconds for many of the dishes…and I’m still feeling full one week later.
If you’re looking for a reliable, clean hotel with mostly friendly staff and good eats, I’d highly recommend the Conrad Centennial Singapore.
(Review photos courtesy of Adam Wynn)