Monday, April 22, 2013

A Weekend Staycation at Shangri-la Hotel, Singapore

If there's one personal belief that I hold dearest to my heart, this is that vacations and staycations are always good for you. Even the famous chocolate bar Kitkat would agree with me that once in a while, we really have to kick off our shoes and to have a break. As much as it may be nice to live a fast-paced, highly productive life, we always have to bare in mind that our brains, spirit and body need to slow down every so often and after that break, you'll see how much life and energy you'll have again to get into the daily grind.

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Well, that's what Paul and I did this weekend. For the past months, we both have been extremely busy adjusting to our new life here. Every weekend is normally spent fixing up our new room, refilling our kitchen pantry cabinet and familiarizing ourselves with our new surroundings. Thus, I was so happy when I received an invite from Shangri-la Hotel, Singapore inviting me to have a weekend staycation which is the best excuse to leave our weekend errand list behind and to just RELAX. 

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It also helps that I am a fan of Shangri-la Hotels. For me, the name is synonymous to top hotel quality when it comes to giving you the most comfortable rooms, complete amenities and really good food. Back home, I've mentioned a number of times how my family loves EDSA Shangri-la Hotel that we would have our Sunday Afternoon Tea at the lobby every single week. For Paul and I, we are regular patrons of Makati Shangri-la's Shang Palace. In fact, we had one of our last despedida meals there before relocating here. This came about when Paul was asked the question: "If there's one meal that you'll surely miss when you leave Manila, what will it be." After a few minutes of pondering, Paul simply answered: "Shang Palace".  There you go! So that's how we had our final Dimsum Plus lunch with my sister at Shang Palace! 

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Anyway, here's a little bit of trivia. Did you know that Shangri-la Hotel, Singapore is the very FIRST Shangri-la hotel in the world? Built in 1971, this deluxe hotel started out with just one wing called the Tower Wing. Years later, two other wings -- the Valley Wing and the Garden Wing were added to answer to the growing demand of its loyal guests. For this stay, Paul and I were given the Garden Wing Deluxe Pool View Room (approximately S$510 / Php. 17,000).

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I love how spacious the room was with a king sized bed, complete bathroom amenities, a ceiling fan + air conditioning system, a nice balcony over-looking the pool and a small living room area. The look of our room gives us this resort-feel. It reminds us of the beautiful beach resorts we have back home. I loveeee our  very comfortable and super inviting king-sized bed. Doesn't it make you want to just jump in and sleep all day long? Well, that's what I did. :) 

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Take a peek at our bathroom. I love how it has a nice bath tub where we got to unwind and relax as well as a pretty shower area. There was also no need for us to wait for the other one to finish brushing his/her teeth as we did it together with the double sink set-up! :)

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The room also had a big dress cabinet, a mini safe and lots of drawers with items for all your needs -- shoe shining, laundry, hair drying, you name it!

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Lastly, I couldn't help but snap up a photo of the mini bar! Cute Grey Goose bottles! We didn't get anything from the bar though. 

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A few minutes after settling in our room, someone was knocking at our door. When I opened the door, it was a friendly staff carrying this Chinese-looking box. How sweet! It was their Welcome Drink -- the second that we had that day as we were previously served with a very refreshing glass of Lemon Jasmine Tea when we were checking in at the lobby. I love tea and I'm glad that Paul is starting to appreciate it too. We tried this one and both liked it. The flavor was very mild and calming. 

We went down to have lunch at Shang Palace which I believe deserves its own solo entry later on.

After our lunch, Paul availed of a signature massage treatment at the famous Chi Spa while I just had a short nap.

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The name Chi Spa goes hand in hand with the Shangri-la brand. While Shangri-la speaks of top quality hotel service, Chi Spa holds the title of being one of the best spas in the world. They have the usual massage line-up but Paul went for The Singapore Wave (S$185/60 minutes) treatment. He has been complaining about his aching back and it's a good thing Chi has this treatment where it's a mix of traditional Asian massage and therapeutic massage techniques that will surely banish all your stress knots away!

I met up with him an hour after and he has been raving about how experienced his massage therapist was and that his back doesn't hurt anymore.

Here are some photos that he took inside the Chi Spa:

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the cozy looking reception lobby where you can hang out as you wait for your scheduled massage

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the spacious shower and changing area

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Paul's locker that's complete with a bath robe, slippers and more toiletries

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Lastly, his massage room where he said: "one of the best massage treatments that I've had in my life."

His treatment lasted for an hour but you can also opt to get the 90-minute Singapore Wave massage. After his massage, he was given a cup of tea which I was surprised to hear that he liked it! This is coming from someone who never liked drinking tea throughout his 30+ years of existence in this world. That must have been a special blend of tea.

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Here's one of the highlights of our stay -- All guests staying at the Garden Wing can avail of the Afternoon Cocktails at the Lobby from 5 to 7PM. We checked this out and enjoyed the canapes and light snacks available. We can also have any drink of our choice thus I had a glass of Mojito while my super-relaxed-fresh-from-his-massage-hubby had some Orange Juice.
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I really loved the Spicy Prawn Cakes, the Smoked Salmon with Dill Sauce and the Veggie Stick with Pesto Sauce. So yummy!

We didn't do much this weekend except to just relax. I slept so sounded that evening and has been taking naps on and off throughout the day. This just got to be one of the best staycations that we've had which was no surprise as this is the Shangri-la Hotel after all. 

Location-wise, the hotel is not very accessible especially to travelers who commutes around. The nearest bus stop is about 300 meters away and the MRT station even farther than that. This then means that you either have to take the cab or you walk. It's a good thing that they provide a shuttle service that can take you to either the Orchard MRT or to Takashiymaya Department Store. You just have to note the schedule though and do plan your itinerary wisely as the coaster always comes on time. However, the shuttle service runs until 8PM only so do expect to do a little walking from Orchard road should you expect to head back to the hotel past that hour. We actually walked to and from and back again to the hotel during our stay. Good thing that we're pretty used to walking now so the distance was doable. For those with kids or elderly in tow, I would suggest just taking the cab for your convenience.

Before I end this entry, let me share with you more information about the hotel. The three towers each have its own theme and actually caters to a slightly different set of clients. The Tower Wing is the highest building in the property and this is where the Horizon Club Lounge is also located. Thus, business travelers would normally opt to stay in this wing for easy access to the lounge, the bar and even to Shang Palace that's located at the Ground Floor. The Garden Wing, where we stayed this weekend, has a very resort-feel. Each room has a ceiling fan and a balcony. Some rooms even have its own jacuzzi! The interiors made use of wood and neutral shades. This is the choice of wing for most families especially with kids as it has the easiest access to the pool. Lastly, the Valley Wing. This is considered to be the most premium wing amongst the three and this is where most heads of state/presidents would stay during their visit. It has it's own entrance to ensure the security of it's VIP guests and their entourage.

As I write this, I can't stop reliving how fun our weekend was. It was indeed one that we both needed as we have been running around like a tiny hamster on its wheel for the past months. I'm so glad that I had the opportunity to take a break and to enjoy the amenities of Shangri-la Hotel, Singapore.

Shangri-la Hotel is located at 22 Orange Grove road, Singapore. Visit their official website to make your reservation. 

1 comment:

  1. What a great staycation!! Love the spa and massage.


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