There is something about Singapore’s Chinatown district that makes it a perennial favorite. Beyond the tourist trap bazaars, I have always admired the well-preserved shophouses and stately clan houses in this area which in recent years have been transformed into hipster cafes, underground bars and offices for start-ups. A hotel in Chinatown automatically gets plus points in my book just for being there. While most options these days are boutique properties, large full-facility hotels have also sprouted up lately, the most notable being Dorsett Singapore. Located just above Outram Park MRT station, it is conveniently located with Bukit Pasoh Road’s numerous restaurants located just next door. During one recent weekend, I had the opportunity to check out the Dorsett Singapore via a staycation.
Coming from Outram Park MRT station, there is a lift with Dorsett Singapore’s label on it that brings guests close to the hotel lobby. As I made the short walk, I could not help but notice the many dining options at the hotel’s doorstep. Dorsett’s entrance is at the end of the block. My check-in was straightforward and quick. I had actually arrived a few hours before the standard check-in time but the front desk was nice enough to inform me that my room was already available.
My room for this particular stay was the Loft Room, a space maximizing concept which only a few hotels in Singapore have employed despite the increasingly shrinking hotel room sizes in the country in general. While my room was advertised as just 25 square meters, it definitely felt much larger than that due to the 2-storey concept. For a weekend at least, I could imagine that I had a flat in Singapore’s Chinatown.
At the “ground” area of the loft were the living spaces and the bathroom. A couch graced one corner while a huge flat-screen TV decked the other. There was a workstation just under the TV with power outlets conveniently located at the side to prevent all the wires from being jammed at the table top.
The bathroom on the other hand was a nice transition from the living quarters, with a cabinet that opens two ways – from the side of the living area and from within the bathroom to ensure clothes can be stored and picked up easily. There was no bathtub in the room which was totally alright and this was compensated by a strong rainshower which I always prefer using.
One thing hard to miss when inside the Loft Room are the stairs. Instead of having them as a customary eyesore, the hotel actually integrated the Scandinavian-themed stairs well into the overall look of the room, such that the stairs become a bit of a design fixture, with glass beams and light wooden steps.
It led to the queen bed which was placed on the top level. There’s another TV up there for those wishing to watch their favorite programmes in greater comfort (such as myself) as well as an alarm clock.
If hotel pools are your thing, then the swimming pool at Dorsett Singapore won’t disappoint. While the pool seems to be shared with the adjacent Dorsett Residences, I found it to be much less crowded than the usual hotel pool without sacrificing on the size. What I particularly loved about the pool here are the artificial islands filled with frangipani trees that remind me of the pool at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport. There’s also a small gym right beside the pool with necessary fitness equipment for a short stay.
As the property does not have its own F&B, it’s outsourced to the nearest restaurant – Pappasan. The restaurant was visually stunning, with oversized paintings, a triangular buffet station and lots of fancy lighting. The breakfast was simple and consisted of the usuals – noodles, bread, egg, salad and dairy products. It was a mix between local and western food.
For a sub-$200 a night hotel (for the entry-level non-loft rooms), it’s hard to find another hotel that has the same balance between location, aesthetic value and room quality as Dorsett Singapore. Again, I’m partial to hotels in Chinatown in general but that being said, it’s a nice location if you’re coming here as a tourist with the MRT station just below and places such as Sentosa, Harbourfront and obviously, Chinatown just nearby. The loft room is about $80++ higher per night which is a good deal for the much bigger space. For staycation-ers, the hotel is comfortable and cozy if spending the entire day inside the room is the agenda while many good restaurants and bars are just nearby.
333 New Bridge Road
Tel: +65 6678 8388
My stay was sponsored by the property. However, all opinions are my own.