Hilton Singapore sits at the fringe of Singapore’s famous shopping district – Orchard Road. This is where one can find shopping malls and big department stores. The hotel has been at this location since its opening in the 1970s. There are no lack of shopping options in nearby the hotel in Orchard Road to suit everyone’s budget, ranging from luxury boutiques to budget $2 shops. There are also several 24 hour convenient shop next to Hilton Singapore as well as tons of dining options within mere minutes walk from the hotel. Hilton Singapore is a mere 3 mins walk from the largest upscale shopping mall in the country – Orchard Ion, and 5 mins walk from the nearest MRT station which visitors can use to explore the country. The location makes Hilton Singapore a great place to stay when visiting Singapore.
The Family Suite
I originally booked the Executive Suite for this staycation and was assigned to the Family Suite upon check in. The two suites are the same except for some subtle differences. The Family Suite is furnished with a sofa bed in the living room instead of the usual couch and the work desk is located in the bedroom instead of the living room compared to the Executive Suite. Other then these, the two suites are the same. The newly renovated Family Suite in Hilton Singapore has a massive floor area of 69m², occupying the corner of each floor.
An elegant entryway greets the occupants of the Executive Suite as one steps into the suite. The entryway separates the living and the sleeping space in the suite. A marble top small wooden table is placed at the entryway, which is ideal for guests to place their keycard or place small items such as their masks. The addition of a single drawer in the wooden table by the entryway provides extra storage space for guests in the Family Suite at Hilton Singapore. A powder room is located next to the table in the entryway. This huge marble laid powder room serves as a guest toilet and is furnished with one toilet bowl and a single basin. Incidentally, guests in the Family Suite can find the only wall power socket for shavers (which is is not available in the main bathroom). The design of the powder room screams old school despite the suite was being renovated a few years ago.
The living room in the Family Suite is located to the left from the entryway. Here is where guests can find the minibar, a dining area and a lounge area. Opposite the powder room, etched into wall is where the minibar is located. This is where guests can find a Nespresso machine, coffee capsules and TWG tea on the bar top of the cabinet. The electric kettle can also be found placed neatly on the marble cabinet top. Other than a couple of mugs and glass, the drawers where the other glasswares such as champagne flute and wine glasses remains empty due to the pandemic. This gives rise to additional storage space for residents of the Family Suite in Hilton Singapore. Guests can find an empty mini fridge nicely hidden in one of the cabinets at the minibar area. I like the idea of the empty fridge which allows guests to bring their own beverages without having to consume the overpriced hotel drinks. I used this fridge to chill one of the six bottles of water found throughout the suite.
Diagonally cross from the minibar area, placed by the wall of the powder room rests the dining area in the suite. The glass top round dining table, furnished with four comfortable chairs, is perfect for guests to enjoy takeaways from one of the nearby restaurants or from the room service menu. The dining area is well lighted thanks to the individual hanging light over the dining table. The inclusion of a full length mirror at the dining area not only make this part of the suite look bigger, it also serves for guests to tidy themselves before heading out to explore the sunny island of Singapore. There are however, a lack of trash bins in the entire Family Suite for guests to trash their leftovers or the packaging. The only placed in the living where a trash bin is found is in the powder room (the other two small trash bins are found in the bedroom and the bathroom).
Further into the living room, past the dining area is where the lounge area is located. I find the decor of the living room a tad boring due to the golden halfway design facing the couch., This part of the living room feels sparsely furnished, partly due to the size of the suite and partly due to the lack of paintings and TV consoles. The centrepiece of the lounge area in the living room is a three seater couch, which I find a tad hard compared to other sofas. This three seater couch is a sofa bed, which can be turned into a queen size bed for families with kids. Initially I am rather disgruntled about the hotel assigning a Family Suite instead of the Executive Suite due to the hardness of the sofa. As I spend my time in the suite, I came to appreciate this sofa bed. We found additional pillows in the bedroom and also requested duvet and blanket. We turned this sofa bed into a day bed, which is very comfortable for us to laze on in the day while watching the numerous programs (about 55 local and overseas channels) from the 55″ LED mounted on the wall in the living room. A small coffee table is placed in front of the couch, which is light enough for residents of the Family Suite to move without much effort. The absence of a TV console, replacing with a trunk looking stool makes the entire living room look sparse. This stool, which was placed beneath the TV doubles up as a stool for the residents of the Family Suite to entertain more guests.
Beside the three seater couch, tucked in the far corner of the living room and in front of the floor to ceiling glass in the suite sits an armchair which a whimsical lamp behind it. Guests in the Family Suite can choose to watch the TV from this armchair or read a book from here or simply laze on this chair and watch life passing by Orchard Road below.
The bedroom of the Family Suite in Hilton Singapore is roughly the same size as the deluxe room. The decor of the bedroom has a retro vibe with the choice of the furniture, guests can also find hints of contemporary in some of the furnishings. A leather cushioned fixture sits quietly to the right of the entrance to the bedroom, acting both as a place for guests to stow their luggage and as a seat where guests can rest on while putting on their shoes before heading out. Further into the bedroom, a large King bed occupies the bulk of the real estate in this part of the Family Suite of Hilton Singapore. The King bed is no doubt comfortable with the right firmness, however the pillows that accompanies the bed is a tad too soft for my liking. Those who prefer softer pillows are assured of a good night sleep on the bed, while those who prefer firmer pillows who struggle to find excellent sleep quality. Hilton Singapore uses two different styles of bedside table in the bedroom. The left bedside table is modern and minimalistic, while the larger right bedside table looks retro. There are more storage in the right bedside table, being a larger of the two. Guests would find no problems in getting their lifestyle devices charged at either of the bedside tables. There are USB points and power outlets with international sockets on both side of the bedside tables. I like the way Hilton Singapore designed their reading lamps, being part of the headboard of the King bed, this design frees up space in the bedside table for guests to stow more items.
There is a large three panel wardrobe to the left of the entrance to the bedroom, tucked onto the wall beside the bed. Clad in dark brown colour, the wardrobe with two door panels allows guests to hang ample clothings during their stay in the hotel. Hilton Singapore provides generous amount of hangers in this part of the wardrobe for guests to hang their clothings. The in-room iron and board is neatly stored in this part of the wardrobe. The right single panelled wardrobe with open four-tier shelving provides more space for guests to stow away small items and additional clothings. However, only three of these shelving can be use as one of the shelve sits the in-room safe.
A retro wooden cabinet is strategically placed opposite the King bed in the bedroom of the Family Suite. This cabinet provides additional storage space for guests to put away small items. The wooden stand along cabinet also doubles as a TV console where the second 55″ LED TV, same as the one in the living room of the Family Suite, can be found. The placement of this TV allows guests to watch the same 55 local and overseas channels as the one in the living room comfortably on the King bed.
A glass top work desk sits solitarily at the end of the bedroom just short of the floor to ceiling glass windows, which is not obtrusive in the bedroom. The way Hilton Singapore furnishes the work desk area makes sense, which is rare in most hotels. The minimalistic work desk is free of clutter that maximises the amount of desk top space for guests of the Family Suite to do their work on. In fact the other other things that are on the work desk is a telephone and a desk top lamp. The work desk in Hilton Singapore is larger then what one would find in some other hotels, coupled with fast and reliable wireless internet enables guests of the Family Suite to do their work. The very well situated power outlets by the wall next to the desk provides power for guests to charge up their laptops. Hilton Singapore pampers guests who wants to get some work done in the suite by furnishing the work desk with Herman Miller ergonomic chair.
Occupying the other corner of the bedroom by the same floor to ceiling glass windows in the bedroom is a retro looking armchair, accompanied by a large floor lamp that shines directly over the chair. This armchair is perfect for guests to read a book on or watch the TV from as it is angled to face the TV.
The main bathroom in the Family Suite is very spacious and can only be accessed from the bedroom. It is this bathroom that shows the age of the hotel. Despite being very well lighted, the entire bathroom is laid with different shades of brown marble that was popular for luxury hotels from yesteryear. The first thing that caught my eyes as I entered the bathroom is the double vanity sink top with a huge mirror. In the centre of the mirror is large round vanity mirror with built in light. The space on the sink top is not overly huge, but is still decent enough for guests to place their toiletries on. I always like dual vanity sink tops as both guests do not have to fight over who to use the sink first. The weird thing about the bathroom is that there are no power sockets for guests to plug in their shavers or the hairdryer found in the suite.
The bathroom is well segregated into bathing area and toilet area. To the left of the sink area is the bathing area, where guests can locate a bathtub and a walk-in shower. The bathtub is rather small and shallow, that seems to be a fixture from yesteryears. I did not enjoy my soak in the bathtub due to the shallowness. The walk-in shower on the other hand is very spacious and is equipped with both a rain shower and a regular shower head. The toilet is located to the right of the sink area that is hidden behind a wooden door and is very spacious compared to other hotels in Singapore. It is the toilet that shows the age of the hotel. Other than a toilet bowl, Hilton Singapore still retains the separate bidet instead of installing an integrated bidet. Hilton Singapore provides its guests with bath amenities from Crabtree & Evelyn, from shampoo to shower gel to body lotion and even the dental kit, that leaves guests feeling refresh and smelling good.
The service rendered in Hilton Singapore is generally good, except for some black sheep in the Hilton team. The staffs at the front office are generally welcoming. I was checked in by Hung, the Assistant Duty Manager, who rendered exceptional service during my entire stay. Hung was very detailed in explaining the amenities and the measures that was in place due to the pandemic. He even gave us a call after we were in the suite to check if everything was okay. Hung would always check with us if we were comfortable in the suite and strike up a conversation whenever we see him in the lobby. I raised my concerns in the cleanliness of the suite when I spotted a lump of hair in the walk-in shower and a strand of long hair that clearly does not belong to us as well as the in-room slippers that seemed to be reused to Hung on the second day before we head for our breakfast. I showed Hung photos of the problematic areas, instead of being defensive, Hung was empathetic and listened to my concerns with patience. He organised the housekeeping team to do a thorough deep clean during housekeeping, and offered to upgrade our reservation for our second night to the suite (we booked the deluxe room for our second night stay). Hung even personally brought a couple of cakes to the suite and apologised for the condition of the suite during our check-in. During one occasion, I requested for a blanket from Hung so we can use the couch in the living room as a day bed, Hung took the initiative to organised the housekeeping team to bring up a duvet as well as the blanket, which made us feel very comfortable when lazing on the couch watching TV.
In terms of amenities during this pandemic period, I was surprised to found out from Hung that Hilton Singapore does not provide care pack (usually comprises disposable masks, a small bottle of hand sanitisers and disinfecting wet wipes) like the other hotels that I have stayed so far during this COVID period.
The team of housekeeping staffs that serviced the floor I was assigned to were very pleasant. They would voluntarily greet us whenever we bump into them along the corridor. The warmth and personable can be felt even though everyone was wearing a mask. One of the housekeeping staff left a deep impression on me. Eswari who cleaned up our suite during our stay was very friendly. I arranged for housekeeping at 1pm on the second day and Eswari was there ready to clean up our suite. Eswari kept our suite clean and even helped to tidy the sink top. When we returned to our suite, not only we were happy with the cleanliness of the suite, we were also pleasantly surprised at the towel art Eswari took the effort to create. We did not bear to destroy Eswari’s creation until the day of our check-out.
The staffs at the Executive Lounge rendered great service during our visit, it is a pity that I did not get their names. We were warmly welcomed by the staffs and was promptly shown to our seats the moment we entered the lounge. The staffs sprung into action bringing out the canapés as soon as we settled into our seat. They took the time to explain what each item was and also took the time to recommend drinks for us. The observant staffs quickly offered more drinks the moment they saw our glasses are empty. They took note of our comments on how we enjoyed drinks and offered to pack some for us to enjoy in our suite. The staffs packed lemongrass drinks and two cans of coke for us to enjoy in our suite.
It is a shame that the level of service rendered by Hung, Eswari and the team at the Executive Lounge was not replicated by the staffs at Opus Bar and Grill, where breakfast was served. The service at Opus Bar and Grill is dependant on who we met at the restaurant. We had good service on the first day during breakfast where the staff voluntarily brought us bread and fruits while we wait for our breakfast. Our orders were taken promptly and we did not have to wait for too long for our food to be served. However, the breakfast experience was not the same on our second day. We had to wait for 20 mins after being seated before any staff came and took our orders for breakfast. Food was slow to be served and I observed some other tables were served their food before us despite these guests were seated after us. There were no bread and fruits offered until these were being requested, even the condiments we requested did not come. Requesting items from the staff feels like we are bothering them, who seem impatient. We were not impressed with the service at Opus Bar and Grill on the second day of our visit.
The suite that we booked comes with complimentary breakfast. The famed Breakfast@Hilton was served at Opus Bar & Grill situated on the ground floor, next to the check-in lobby. Guests can choose only one of the sets in the menu, unlike other hotels where breakfast is served ala carte buffet style. Despite stated in the menu that unlimited rounds of continental selections can be chosen, the staffs seem to be too busy to retake orders. There isn’t any changes to the breakfast menu, I opted for the Nasi Lemak set in the first day and the Signature Hilton Breakfast set on the second day. Although I am no foodie, I do find the breakfast to be a tad mediocre. The rice in the Nasi Lemak set is a tad too damp and the so-called Signature Hilton Breakfast set to be a tad too normal with nothing specular about it. There was some inconsistencies in the breakfast service, on the first day we were served with fruits and bread, while on the second day, there was no fruits and the bread comes on request.
The Executive Lounge in Hilton Singapore is located on 23rd floor in the hotel building. Due to the pandemic, the Executive Lounge is only open during evening cocktail timing and guests who have access to the lounge are to make their booking for lounge access from one of the two evening cocktail slots at the lobby. The Executive Lounge feels very earthy and cosy with the brown themed decor and is a great place to relax during the day. The ambience at the Executive Lounge in Hilton Singapore is perfect for guests to wind down and relax, especially in the evening with the excellent choice of warm lighting and the colour theme in the lounge. It is ashamed that the lounge is only open to guests during two hours of the day. The choices of food offering during evening cocktail is a tad limited. The friendly staffs at the lounge served up a platter of small bites during our visit with a choice of drinks to choose from. I am not too sure if the food can be replenished, but the drinks are indeed free flow, which the friendly staffs are happy to top up for guests.
Hilton Singapore as a rooftop swimming pool. The swimming pool at Hilton Hotel Singapore is situated on the 24th floor of the hotel and can only be accessed from the 23rd floor of the hotel via a dimly lighted flight of staircase. The swimming pool is a tad small is seemed aged. Nonetheless, the pool still allows guests to get some decent laps out of it and is very well maintained. Due to the pandemic, the hotel has limited the number of guests that can use the pool at any one time. There are limited number of sundeck chairs, all well-spaced out at the pool. The swimming pool at Hilton Singapore is a perfect spot for guests who wanted to get a good tan, thanks to the rooftop placement at the absence of trees and shades. Guests using the pool are to make booking via scanning a QR code upon check in. Guests are allowed one booking of 60 mins of pool usage per day.
The gym at Hilton Singapore is located on 23rd floor of the hotel. The gym is one of the largest I have seen, occupying a bulk of the entire floor. The gym is well equipped with machines and equipment that one can find in a standard fee paying gym. From cardio machines like Elliptical machines, treadmills and spinning bikes to strength training machines and equipment as well as a corner for guests to practice yoga, the gym at Hilton Singapore ensures guests get a great workout. As with the swimming pool, guests at Hilton Singapore are to make booking from the QR code that will be presented during check-in and each room can only book a 60-minute slot per day.
Despite its age, we were very comfortable with the Family Suite. I was a little perturb initially when I found out that we were assigned to a Family Suite instead of the Executive Suite that we booked. However, the couch when made into a sofa bed in the living room proofs to be very comfortable, especially with the duvet and blanket Hung organised to be delivered into our suite. The Family Suite is very spacious and comfortable with functional areas despite its age and some minor flaws (such as no power socket in the main bathroom). The facilities in Hilton Singapore is fantastic, especially the large gym. Service is generally good with the staffs we met during our stay, however the service that I received at Opus Bar and Grill is inconsistent and is dependant on who we met. Overall I enjoyed my stay in the Family Suite at Hilton Singapore despite some minor hiccups.