Sometimes a Chain Hotel is the Best Idea.
Singapore is home to some of the most gorgeous and unique hotel properties in the world. They offer stunning views, amazing roof top cocktail bars, and the chicest of design. So why on earth did we opt for the Holiday Inn Express on Orchard Road?
In short? We didn't think we'd be in any hotel long enough to appreciate any special features. Arriving late at night from Bangkok, we'd literally be in the room just long enough to sleep before heading out to explore early the next morning. We needed something that was centrally located, close to public transit, clean, safe, convenient, and EASY. It didn't exactly scream hip Singapore style, but it included free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, and rang in at around $150 - not our greatest deal ever, but still a respectable bargain for the city.
Turns out our humble room had a number of clever design features that I had a chance to appreciate after all! I loved how our well designed, compact bathroom had a curved swinging door that worked as both shower room door and main washroom door. I loved that there was a retractable clothesline in the shower itself. The queen sized bed had clean, soft linens and clever pillowcases that identified which pillows were soft and firm. There wasn't much space to spare but there was a long, narrow desk with tea, instant coffee, and complimentary bottled water and a funky bright yellow armchair in one corner.
The next day, the standard chain hotel breakfast awaited us and we were perfectly happy with the coffee, juice, and pastries provided. A breakfast-to-go packing station was a nice added touch that I bet a lot of travellers greatly appreciated. The very friendly staff were happy to store our luggage for the day while we explored the city and, just like that, we ended one of our shortest hotel stays ever -about 8 or 9 hours from check in to check out!
In the end, we had only one concern and it had more to do with our lack of planning than the hotel itself. We hadn't anticipated that the airline food would be anything less than gourmet (shocking, I know!) and we landed in Singapore a bit on the peckish side. We assumed that a major hub like Orchard Road would have plenty of late night food options but nothing could be further from the truth. Ryan managed to successfully track down some pizza while I contemplated the lessons of making assumptions where carbs are concerned!!!
If you're looking for an affordable, comfortable, convenient hotel for a short stay in Singapore, a chain hotel is well worth checking out. There is no shortage of them in the city and third party bookers often have sales you can combine with coupon codes. It pays to carefully note your hotel's address - apparently there's more than one Holiday Inn on Orchard Road and it was just good luck that we arrived at the right property!
I'd love to hear from you! When has a regular 'ol chain hotel worked out for you?
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