Established in 1887, Raffles Hotel has over the years gained international recognition as a traveller’s paradise and is heralded as one of the world’s top hotels.  Cherished as the legendary symbol for “all the fables of the Exotic East”, few hotels can look back on more than a century of legendary service to so many distinguished guests and fewer still have preserved their past with a more loving attention to detail.

 

In l989, Raffles Hotel closed for two and a half years for complete restoration. The essence of the restored Raffles Hotel lies in the 103 suites, each tastefully appointed with classical furnishings and modern convenience to cater to every discerning traveller.  Residents are pampered in an atmosphere of privacy and intimacy, a harmonious synthesis of 21st century luxury with the style and grace of a bygone world.  The exclusive swimming pool and Raffles Spa set amidst Raffles Hotel’s historic walls and famed gardens provide a sanctuary for renewal and well-being. 

 

The hotel is a complete world in itself, where patrons can enjoy a wide choice of cuisines in 15 distinctive restaurants and bars including the Raffles Grill with its ardent French cuisine, the Tiffin Room with its famed curry buffet, the Bar & Billiard Room with its Champagne Sunday Brunch and the famous Long Bar where the world-famous Singapore Sling was born.

 

The Bar & Billiard Room, once a sanctuary to a spirited tiger, is today a retreat for Champagne brunch on an idyllic Sunday.  The colourful parade of gastronomic pleasures is skilfully paired with vintages from Champagne Billecart-Salmon – an exclusive and privileged boutique champagne house.  

 

Tiffin Room’s décor and ambience reflects the Hotel’s glory days from the turn of the century to the 1930s. The designs of the tables, chairs, and uniforms are all based on early photographs.  Square teak tables – including many Raffles Hotel’s originals – are combined with “palm back” bentwood chairs. For most of this century, a mild chicken curry was one of the few Asian mainstays on the hotel’s daily menu as the partaking of Sunday tiffin curry was an essential aspect of colonial life.  Today, Raffles’ tiffin curry can be enjoyed from a delectable buffet spread for lunch and dinner.   Some signature dishes include the succulent Raan Lamb, Tandoori Mushroom and colonial classics such as Mulligatawny Soup and Butter Chicken.  

 

Dining at Raffles Grill is truly a delightful experience that is long remembered.  The skilfully orchestrated menu at Raffles Grill is a shining chapter to an already illustrious setting.  Every plate is dominated by light and lightness.  Dishes are imaginative yet original, perfectly ensconced in the flavours of classic French. Raffles Grill also prides itself on its celebrated wine cellar. To the traditional sources of France, Italy and Germany have been added outstanding vintages from newer wine regions such as California, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

 

Since the restoration in 1991, the historic Long Bar has found a new home at Level 2, Raffles Hotel Arcade, where visitors continue to undergo one of the true rites of passage of world travel – savouring a Singapore Sling, the legendary hot pink cocktail with a reputation of iconic proportions, having travelled the world since its creation in 1915 at the Long Bar by Hainanese-Chinese barman, Ngiam Tong Boon. Some 2000 Slings are served each day. The earthy decor of the two-storey Long Bar is inspired by Malayan plantation life in the 1920s.  The deep, rich colours and greenery bring patrons back to the edge of the tropical plantation.  In keeping with the relaxed atmosphere, guests are invited to brush peanut shells off the table and bar-top to the floors; quite possibly the only place in Singapore where ‘littering is encouraged’. 

 

The adjoining land parcel, built in architectural harmony with the Hotel, is known as "Raffles Hotel Arcade".  Raffles Hotel Arcade is an integral part of Raffles Hotel, offering a broad range of facilities for visitors to enjoy. It houses 35 regional and specialty shops, indoor and outdoor function areas including The Ballroom and The Lawn and a variety of restaurants and bars including Long Bar where the famous Singapore Sling was created.

 

Also at Raffles Hotel Arcade is the Jubilee Hall, a recreation of a nineteenth?century playhouse which features audio visual presentations, plays, recitals and cultural events. And the Raffles Hotel Museum showcases memorabilia, period photographs and other mementos, providing a fascinating historical glimpse of the Hotel, colonial Singapore and travel in the East.

 

Tropical gardens have always been synonymous with Raffles Hotel. These occupy more than a quarter of the entire estate, providing a tranquil contrast to the bustling city beyond. The delightful sound of singing birds beyond the verandahs and the rustle of palm branches in the breeze recalls the atmosphere of a bygone era and enhances the simpler pleasures of nature usually denied the modern traveller.