Which Singapore Hotel

Jun 23rd, 2007, 02:04 AM
Original Poster
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Which Singapore Hotel

We are dithering between Marina Mandarin and Shangri-La, for a three night stay in Singapore. The gardens at Shangri-La are an attraction for us. Any experiences with these hotels?, or any other options to throw into the pot. Thanks.
LeighTravelClub is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 10:18 AM
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Not sure on your budget but i stayed at raffles last time i was there and it was simply FANTASTIC.....Service was truly superb and the rooms was huge. the gounds are lovely.
Smeagol is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 12:45 PM
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True, it's hard to beat Raffles, but the prices are high. The only downside to the Shangri-La is its location. I find that the most important factor in location is whether the hotel is close to an MRT startion, as that's such an easy, convenient, clean air-conditioned way to get around. Raffles the Plaza is ideally located above Raffles CIty shopping center and an MRT station. The Marina Mandarin also is not close to an MRT.
Kathie is offline  
Jun 23rd, 2007, 01:43 PM
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When we were deciding where to stay in Singapore, the Marina Mandarin seemed pretty good at first, with good prices and facilities. But, upon further research, it isn't so well liked by guests, rooms are small and below average in size unless you get one of the higher grade ones...which puts your price up with the better hotels in the city.

The Shangri-La is well liked. Location is about 10-15 minutes walk to MRT. Taxi is easy to find and cheap to use in Singapore. What we found that we didn't like about the Sha-La is that the garden wing rooms are looking a bit dated, the tower wing is unappealing to us (rooms are smaller unless you buy up again), and the Valley Wing seems to be the best in terms of size and service. But, the Valley Wing is very expensive. The hotel is very big, so others have said that the pool gets very crowded as well, and that's important to us.

The Mandarin Oriental harbor/sea view rooms are supposed to be good. Club floor is said to have the best service, but you pay extra for that. It has gotten some bad service reviews.

Four Seasons rooms are big, the hotel size is small in comparison to the other lux picks, and the service is said to be the best of the lux hotels. Location is very near to MRT, access through mostly AC shopping/Hilton hotel if you don't like heat. We got a rate there that beats all the booking sites for part of our stay by direct booking very much in advance. The other part of our was also booked directly until www.asiabesthotel.com had a better rate for only that part, and I changed the boooking. Four Seasons was fine with that change and easily processed the change. It's in a quieter, greener part of the city as well, set back from Orchard Road. The only problem might be that the rooms have not been updated recently, so they aren't that fashionable modern style that you'll find at the MO or Ritz Carlton. We really care about service, though, and while reviews of the top hotels in Singapore often had servcie glitches, the Four Seasons consistently had service praises.

The Fullerton would be a good pick IF you could stay in a Loft Suite or better. Many rooms face intot he courtyard and are small in size. The Loft Suites have balconies, bedroom upstairs, living downstairs, and great views of Marina Bay. Service here seems to be mixed.

There is quite a bit of information about SIN luxury hotels on flyertalk.com. http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=220 is the luxury hotel board. You can either scroll through, or search for singapore. Also http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=510.
KimJapan is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 12:05 AM
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Have to say that I like the Quays area. We have stayed off of Orchard Road and I didn't like the fact that I had to take a taxi everywhere.
A hotel next to the MRT is a must- I agree.
fiona is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 12:53 AM
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I'm a big fan of the shangri la and would suggest a premier room on the horizon floor if you can afford it.

IMO it well deserves it place as one of the world's best hotels.
Walter_Walltotti is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 03:09 AM
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I am in Singapore this weekend in between trips and for meetings on Monday. I also used to live here. I would agree that Raffles would be a good choice, as would the Shangri-La. I would agree that the Mandarin would not be such a good choice, it is not part of the Mandarin Oriental group if that is what you were thinking. It is a little run down, IMO.

I have to say that if you want to spend time seeing bits of Singapore other than just Orchard Road shopping, I would not opt for the Shangri-La; much as I like it, as you will spend a lot of time in taxis. The gardens are nice, but not really, IMO the reason to choose the hotel, although the service and rooms are very very good of course. I also would not stay at an Orchard Road hotel. I would pick the Raffles or actually the Intercontinental which is in a great neighborhood for walking to some of the most interesting parts of Singapore like Arab Street and Little India, or the other direction to the colonial areas like the Padang. I only saw the lobby and public areas this weekend, and they seem very nice, the lobby lounge area has a lot of colonial charm like the Raffles. If you had a room on a high floor you might have some interesting views. I have not seen the rooms so can’t comment on them at all. The location however is superb, IMO for walking to the great areas of street life in Singapore, and it is also at the Bugis Street MTR stop which makes it convenient for getting to other areas. (Please don’t go to the ersatz Bugis Street which they have created, however, indoor shop houses under glass with a food hall and chain shops, would not surprise me if they pay transvestites to come out at night…so not what Bugis Street used to be….You can also walk to these areas from the Raffles or even from the Ritz-Carlton (where I am staying), although it is a longer walk from the Ritz. The Ritz has superb views of the harbour and city from most rooms and I would put it on your list. The Raffles has no views, but does have tons of charm, history and very nice rooms. Some of the rooms have no windows to speak of, as views are completely interior.

Singapore is so much more than just the shopping on Orchard Road, and it would be very nice, IMO, to be able to walk to the areas which represent more of the traditional Singapore. Great little street restaurants as well, mosques and Hindu temples, the textiles and rug shops on Arab Street and the bangle bracelets and saris on Race Course Road in Little India. To be able to stroll to and from these and see the shop houses would be more interesting IMO, than the gardens of the Shangri-La.

Cicerone is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 03:14 AM
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Have to agree with you re Singapore not being for shopping. We loved being able to walk to Chinatown and Little India.( mind you, it was a hot walk!!)
fiona is offline  
Jun 24th, 2007, 03:15 AM
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oops( wish there was an edit button!) I should have written " not just being for shopping"
fiona is offline  
Jun 29th, 2007, 08:16 AM
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If you are strictly choosing between those two, and are staying in standard rooms, go with the Shangri-La. It's a bit more central to Orchard and the facilities, grounds, etc. are lovely. My husband and I just stayed in the Marina Mandarin in June for four nights total and we were on the Meritus Club floor. Our services/room were great but we were in Club facilities (through a deal on Travelocity) and I have heard worse things about standard rooms (and definitely saw different front-desk treatment for standard customers). The pool at the Mandarin is nice but the location -- not near a MRT, on the Marina, which is more dead at night -- is not as good as the SL.

If you can get beyond these two hotels, there are probably better choices in the price range...with good recs above.
fletch07 is offline  
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