Courtyard by Marriott Singapore Novena opened its doors in November 2017 as the first hotel to rise in the Novena area for quite some time. The new property is situated close to Health City Novena and is meant to cater to medical tourists as much as leisure travelers and even those coming to Singapore for business. While the location is not in the city’s central core, the hotel is just steps away from Novena MRT.
I was recently invited to stay at the Courtyard by Marriott Singapore Novena. The property follows a growing trend in Singapore of high lobbies (other hotels with similarly high lobbies include The Westin Singapore, Andaz Singapore and Sofitel Singapore City Centre) with the reception being at Level 22.
The design of the sky lobby takes advantage of the hotel’s obstruction-free view of the surroundings. The windows extend from floor to ceiling which allows lots of natural light to enter. It’s not known to many but there is also an outdoor patio at the lobby level which allow for soaking in the views.
I was quickly given my room keys upon presenting my ID. There is a separate set of lifts that lead to the room which are found from the 23rd to 32nd floors. The property has 250 rooms but all rooms are the same size (22 square meters) with furnishings and amenities accounting for the differences between room categories. Specifically, this is how they differ:
- Deluxe Room – this is the entry-level room
- Deluxe Room With Greenery – same as deluxe room but the window faces the MacRitchie Reservoir
- Premier Room – same as the deluxe room but it comes with a Nespresso Machine
- Premier Skyline Room – this room category has a long couch and rectangular table which replaces the work chair and round table in the lower room types. Guests also get to have free welcome drinks at the Urbana Rooftop Bar, complimentary local calls and free parking. This room also comes with Nespresso machine.
- Premier Corner Room – same as the Premier Skyline Room except that this is a corner room.
During my stay, I was billeted at one of the Premier Rooms. As mentioned previously, the room size is only 22 square meters but it looked larger than it actually is due to the partial integration of the wash area with the bedroom. Sliding doors allow for the sink to merge seamlessly with the rest of the room.
The Premier Room is also relatively clutter-free. The seating option here comes in the way of the work chair with a round glass table replacing the usual bulky office desk. While it may be atypical to those accustomed to the business hotel setup, it’s actually quite apt to get some work done. Power outlets are conveniently located just beside the table to allow for easy charging of devices.
The main differentiating factor between the Premier Room and the lower level rooms is the presence of a Nespresso Machine. Alongside it, guests get to have 3 coffee capsules for them to enjoy a good dose of caffeine from the comfort of their room.
The bathroom is segregated from the rest of the room via two sliding doors. Even when the door’s fully opened, the sink and vanity mirror acts as a barrier of sorts so one never really gets to see the more unpleasant parts such as the toilet from the bedroom. The shower stall is nice and compact, with rainshow facilities and a small sitting area just underneath it.
Toiletries are from the inhouse brand, Nirvae. I thought it was a nice touch that even at a midrange brand such as Courtyard by Marriott, mouthwash is still provided without needing to request.
Given the branding, the hotel does not have much in the way of facilities but the facilities that it carries are done nicely. The Courtyard by Marriott Singapore Novena is the tallest building in the vicinity so the views from the rooftop infinity pool are simply sublime.
There is a small gym by the pool which is pretty modest. There are no weights machines here but you’ll find a complete free weights set plus plenty of treadmills and exercise bikes.
In the same level as the pool, you’ll find the hotel’s rooftop bar – Urbana. It was originally conceptualized to be the club lounge but the hotel probably thought the location was more appropriate for a full-scale watering hole.
Breakfast is served at the hotel’s one and only restaurant, Sky22, which is also located at the same level as the lobby. Probably owing to the hotel’s integration with a nearby medical facility, the venue’s theme is that of local food but with a distinct focus on healthy dishes. I have tried the ala carte dishes on a previous occasion and found them relatively easy and guilt-free on the palate. One of their star dishes is the Nasi Ulam Salad – a mix of wild rice served with a variety of herbs and spices and with an octopus tentacle as topping. Anyway, I digress.
The breakfast offerings continue from that same theme but you still get to find the usual suspects such as burgers and hash browns. Alongside that, there are tons of salad choices. I was also surprised to find the hotel’s signature Camembert Cheese making an appearance for breakfast. There are also three types of soy milk available – the normal one, a chocolate option and an unsweetened version which one rarely finds in a hotel of similar standards. Another interesting item to try is the Chili Crab Omelette available from the eggs station.
While the Courtyard by Marriott Singapore Novena was opened for just a little over a month during my stay, I was quite impressed with how polished the staff members were in terms of service. I was always greeted by name whenever I passed by the lobby and reception even made an effort to walk me to the lift as I checked out. There is a sense of attentiveness that I usually only see in higher-tier hotels. Other than that, I love how well designed the rooms are despite the modest size. The floor-to-ceiling windows and wonderful views are definitely a plus. The hotel is admittedly outside of the CBD but it’s at most just two stations away from Orchard Road.
Courtyard by Marriott Singapore Novena
99 Irrawaddy Road
+65 6250 0303
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