Capitalizing on its location in the Telok Ayer / Amoy Street area, The Clan Hotel is a carefully branded new property by Far East Hospitality that pays homage to the numerous clan associations in the vicinity. Enshrouded in an air of mystique, The Clan Hotel is peppered with dark moody colors, staff uniforms that seem to take inspiration from exclusive clubs of yore as well as a strong tea culture unlike any other hotel in Singapore.
The Chinese word “自己人“ meaning “our own people” is firmly embedded into The Clan Hotel’s logo, showcasing their emphasis for community and a sense of belonging. Unlike the other Far East Hospitality property Amoy Hotel a few steps away, The Clan Hotel is no boutique property so the execution of this proposition does not seem as clear cut as first. With 324 rooms, the staff here looks after a relatively large “community of guests” they call their own and there’s extra effort placed in order to make folks feel treasured during a stay. For instance, the clanging of a gong marked my – as well as any other guests’ – arrival into the hotel. I thought it was a bit theatrical but it piqued my interest as I walked into the beguiling halls of the hotel.
Another rather theatrical element – the tea ceremony – has received rather positive responses from guests since the hotel opened. However, with recent measures, the tea ceremony has become a DIY affair that guests do in-room. The hardware is still there. Guests receive a rather picture-worthy tea set with tray. The tea – an oolong brew from Pryce which they call “Nanyang Ritual” – came with some Tau Sar Piah. This differs from another Pryce tea that one can find in the minibar called “The Ritual” which is a Tie Guan Yin with osmanthus blend. A couple of mainstream media that reviewed the hotel previously incorrectly described the Nanyang Ritual as the Tie Guan Yin tea instead.
The hotel has just 3 room categories. The base level room is the Deluxe while the other two are the Premier and Grand Premier. The latter two are classified under the hotel’s Master Series of rooms which have the following extra amenities:
- Customized in-room refreshments – guests can choose among 5 items – imported snacks and beverages plus the hotel’s own craft beer.
- Handmade soap selection
- The Clan Keeper service which includes a local precinct tour, pressing, etc
- The Clan Daily Special – an exclusive menu of local food available for in-room dining (chargeable). This perk was originally conceived for international guests.
The clan keeper can be thought of as a butler or personal assistant of sorts. One of their value-add is they hold these local precinct tours in the afternoons for guests staying in the Premier and Grand Premier rooms. I will cover more of that tour later. They can also be asked to perform pressing services (2 complimentary pieces per day), shoe shine services and to draw baths for the Grand Premier room guests.
Before my stay, I was handed a questionnaire with my choices of enhanced welcome amenities. This is a feature of the Master Series and I was able to select up to 5 from items like Pipers Crisp Co. potato chips, Luscombe sparkling juice and Simpkins candy.