Andaz Singapore — Singapore, Singapore
It’s been a long time in the works, but the Andaz group has finally landed in South East Asia. The location, in Singapore’s historic Bugis, cleaves close to the brand’s MO of opening in a buzzy, culturally-rich quarter. Visually, the decision pays off handsomely with remarkable views of the colourful rooftops of the area’s fin-de-siècle shophouses, a dollhouse silhouette that’s made all the more stark against the looming skyscrapers.
Occupying the top 15 floors of Duo, a massive mixed-use development that its architects Buro Ole Scheeren have conceived as a honey-combed curvilinear twin-tower, the interiors of the 342-room hotel are the work of André Fu.
Here, the Hong Kong-based designer cannily references the area’s spice trade, cultural and architectural heritage without slipping into obvious clichés. And so, the colour palette echoes the shades of spices, narrow corridors – a by-product of the building’s polygonal cross-section – are quietly refashioned as alleys, elevator signals bear the palimpsest of ancient streetlamps, and old letterboxes are reimagined as room-number plates, whilst a towering installation of stylised Singaporean landmarks by André Mendes rears up through the central atrium.
The diversions are modestly restricted to an outdoor lap-pool that overlooks IM Pei’s grand Gateway towers, the goal being to nudge guests into the local neighbourhood for spa and fitness options. Gourmands, though, will thrill to ten food and beverage outlets, of which the rooftop Mr Stock bar and lounge, on the 39th floor, offers thrilling wraparound views of the island.