Number 14 goes to The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore! This is the 14th unique property that I have reviewed in Singapore! A surprise glitch or deal brought me back for another staycation. Frequently labelled as one of the best hotels in Singapore, I was keen to finally be able to review it. Housed in the restored neoclassical-style Capitol Building and Venetian Renaissance-style Stamford House which have their roots from 1930 and 1904 respectively. The building is definitely fitting for the renowned German Kempinski brand which was established back in 1897. A boutique hotel with only 155 rooms, the hotel is right in the heart of the city. In the vicinity, you can find the Marina Bay Sands, Chijmes, National Museum and Merlion Park. Plenty of dining outlets can be found in the surrounding Bugis enclave as well. The hotel is easily reachable from City Hall MRT Station making it conducive for both tourists and local staycation guests. After hearing so much about their treatments of GHA Black members and their breakfast! I was excited about the stay!
Booking Process & Pre Arrival
Deals and errors are happening all the time and it is up to some eagle eye dude to chance upon them and spread it around. This time around, it is more of a glitch! Kempinski was having an Unbeatable April Offers Promotion back then where rooms were going for 308 SGD Nett for the Deluxe Rooms and 408 Nett for the Grand Deluxe Rooms. However, the night before the promotion was due to start, the system had a glitch and the second night rate was coded as 0 SGD Nett for the Grand Deluxe Room. That makes it 408 SGD Nett for 2 nights in the Grand Deluxe Room. A deal for Capitol Kempinski. Furthermore, I will be able to enjoy my GHA Black benefits!
A pre-arrival email was sent a week before my stay and it was pretty in-depth. Before that, I have also emailed in to get reservations for the pool and gym in advance. The pool is kinda small here so do make sure to reserve them due to current capacity controls. Capitol Kempinski hosts are known as the Lady in Red and they are super prompt and efficient! The pre-arrival email shows how the hotel went above and beyond. Little touches like asking for your companion name and if they are arriving at a different time. This is what sets them apart!
Furthermore, you can also customize your stay with all sorts of whims and requests, from sweet or salty snacks to a selection of pillows to your liking. You also have an amazing selection of 10 different types of pillows for you to choose from! Horse Hair Pillow anyone? Anti-Aging Pillows, hmmm, sounds about right up my alley!
The hotel called in the evening before my stay to check on my arrival time, I was also accorded and invited to check-in at 9 am with my check out time also extended till 6 pm. I was upgraded to a Stamford Suite, 3 categories above what I booked. This is one of the best benefits of being a GHA Black member. You can technically have a 33 hours stay for a one night staycation! For my case, a 57 hours stay in this awesome suite! The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore have a total of 155 rooms and suites spread across 9 categories.
|Rooms||Evening Cocktails||Bathtub||Size||No. of Rooms|
|Grand Deluxe||No||Selected||50 Sqm||33|
|Executive Suite||Yes||Yes||55 Sqm||4|
|Stamford Suite||Yes||Yes||58 – 61 Sqm||16|
|Bidwell Suite||Yes||Yes||71 Sqm||2|
|Heritage Suite||Yes||Yes||137 Sqm||1|
I arrive shortly after 9 am. The Capitol Kempinski Hotel Singapore have a really discreet driveway, with the entrance on Hill St. Upon pulling up, a staff came over to help me with my bags and the safe entry procedure. The hotel low key yet polished entrance looks really welcoming. It gives me a luxurious, residential apartment vibe.
With a boutique feel, the Kempinski lobby area is small but welcoming. There are a couple of sofas in the lobby and check-in desks. Checking in is a sit-down affair here. I was immediately helped by one of the staff who was polished and polite. I was welcomed as a GHA Black Member and they have also taken note that this was my second visit as well. The process was prompt and efficient. I was further informed of the 6 pm check out timing. For those who are driving, complimentary parking is provided and guest can park at the connecting Capitol Mall. The staff escorted me all the way to my Stamford Suite. Do take note that GHA Black members enjoy a 15% dining discount on all hotel managed restaurants.
While my booking was for a Grand Deluxe Room, due to my GHA Black status I was upgraded to a Stamford Suite, a mid-tier suite. I was assigned Room 326. I was escorted to the suite after check-in and the staff gave me a short introduction to the suite. The Stamford Suite measures about 58 to 61 Sqm. Given that this is a heritage building the configurations differ slightly from room to room. Immediately after entering you can find the bathroom located on both sides of the long walkways. The sliding doors form part of the walkway and can be extended to act as the door to both sides of the bathroom. I love the decor of the place with the use of dark brown finishes and warm lighting. The Stamford Suite can be easily separated into 3 distinct areas, the bathroom, living room and bedroom.
Let me first share about the bathroom. It’s kinda unique for a suite to have the main bathroom located at the entrance, although it makes sense here given the lack of a half bath. What’s even more special is having the bathroom split into two different sides. The bathroom is located on both sides of the entrance with sliding doors that conceals them pretty well. On the left, you can find the toilet as well as the sinks. It is installed with a bidet and it comes with his and her sinks as well. The area is super spacious with an open concept layout.
Salvatore Ferragamo Tuscan Soul toiletries are provided. They are one of my favourites and I love the lingering citrus fragrance of them. Larger size bottles are provided for suites guests. They were generous with it as well with one set by the sinks and one in the standing shower room. You can find some surgical masks and a bottle of hand sanitiser left by the sink, a norm these days in a post COVID environment.
On the right side, the free-standing bathtub immediately caught my eye. It was spacious and huge. This is definitely the highlight of the bathroom. I love how the tap is located in the middle of the tub which allows you to soak easily with your other half. A luffa can be found provided. On the wall, you can even find a small TV installed. Time for some movies time while soaking in the tub with your partner.
The standing shower is located in a separate room and it is the most spacious standing shower that I have ever seen. It comes with a rainforest shower, a fixed shower head on the wall and a removable one. The white marble finishing makes it look extremely comfortable. They were also sweet enough to install a bench inside so it will be easy to wash your feet and legs. The high ceilings here also allows for the rainforest shower to have a cascading feel that mimics showering under the rain as it falls on you. Temperature control was excellent however the water pressure could be much better!
Behind the sliding doors, you can find the cosy living area and this is one of my favourite aspect of the suite. In the living room, you can find a couch perched along one side of the wall with a coffee table. It can fit easily 3-4 pax comfortably. Facing it is the TV and minibar setup.
Complimentary drinks are provided in the fridge for all guests at Capitol Kempinski, you can find juices, soft drinks and sparkling water in the fridge. Do be reminded that the snacks are not complementary. These are replenished during daily housekeeping. In addition, the rooms also comes with a Nespresso coffee machine alongside 4 capsules. TWG packages teas are provided as well. With the lack of a club lounge, these came in handy. Inside the cabinet, you can find a kettle alongside glassware from Villeroy & Boch, a German brand. Bottled water can be found throughout the suite and I counted a total of 14 bottles. Water, tea and coffees are replenished daily and during turndown service.
A little dining table for 2 can also be found in the living room. Left on it is a welcome amenity consisting of a fruit platter as well as some pineapple tarts. Kinda weird to see pineapple tarts at this time of the year but they were delicious!
On my second night, a fresh bowl of fruits was brought over alongside some chocolates.
The living room space was well designed. A huge Smart TV was set up nicely above the minibar area. The TV supports casting from both Apple and Android platforms. Furthermore, they had HDMI outlets designed nicely on the side. The layout makes it conducive for viewing from both the dining desks and the sofa couch. Closing both sliding doors on the sides creates a very cosy private mini movie theatre in your suite. I love this! The TV also comes with a huge selection of cable TV channels. For the avid sports lovers, you will be pleased to know that Bein Sport, Fox Sports and Mio Stadium and Mio Sports can all be found here! Perfect for cheering your team on!
Behind another set of sliding doors, it leads to the main bedroom itself. The high ceilings made the bedroom look especially spacious! Upon entering you can find the classy set up of the plush king-size bed in the middle of the room. The bed was comfy and the pillows were high quality and plush. You can find an ottoman in front of the bed as well. The sheets and beddings were some of the comfiest ones I had ever experienced. The dark walnut brown decor adds up a lot of flair to the entire space.
On both sides of the bed, you can find nightstands with lighting and blinds control easily found. Bottles of water are left here as well. On one side, you can also find an electronic clock with a built-in wifi charger. I love that power outlets can be found near the bed.
Opposite the bed, you can find another high-quality Smart TV mounted on the wall. The entire setup was classy, with little fixtures of vase and books on the side. Perched below the TV is a little platform area as well as power sockets and HDMI port for easy access. Given how thoughtful they are, I wish they could take the approach from MO and left HDMI cables in the room proactively. I’m sure they will be available upon request but it will be really thoughtful if one is left in the room as a standard amenity.
Towards the far end of the room, against the double pane windows. You can find a luggage storage area. The noise insulation isn’t that good after all as construction noise from the streets can be easily heard in the morning.
By the windows, a gorgeous and spacious working desk and armchair can be found. Outlets can be conveniently found near the desk. Sadly the armchair does not provide much back support for prolonged working. You can find a little prop up vanity mirror and hairdryer in the desk. Wi-Fi is strong and easy to connect throughout the property.
On the other side, a wardrobe can be found. It is a little on the smaller side but comes with all sorts of amenities including a huge amount of hangers, bathrobes, bath slippers which were really high quality, a shoe-shine kit as well as a sewing kit. Daily housekeeping and turndown service are provided here.
There was however a slight issue in the night and the aircon was leaking. My shoes were unfortunately right below the leaking spot and were totally soaked. While the staff and manager were concerned and immediately came to check on the room, the service recovery was lacking and unappealing. I had to do a room change the next day which kinda defeats the purpose of doing a 2-night stay, to have more time and not needing to pack up the next day.
The hotel did send up a cheese plate alongside a note on the second day to apologise for the inconvenience. At the very least, I would expect a further upgrade during the room change or my lunch charges either removed or discounted as service recovery.
The pool was recently done up and operational at the hotel. The Saltwater Relaxation Pool is located on the 4th floor in the Stamford Wing. The pool is open from 8 am to 8 pm. Reservations are required currently due to capacity control and can be easily done during check-in or just with a simple email to the Lady in Red. Slots are in 90 minutes interval. I will recommend you to book the pool in advance, especially when staying on the weekends and peak periods.
I love how nicely the area is done up with the greenery on the sides and sunbeds surrounding the pool. The space is not huge but with the current capacity cap, it is just right. There are a couple of sunbeds and sofas for about 10 pax, all on a first come first serve basis. Towels and bottled waters are provided. The pool is definitely on the smaller side and will not be good for doing laps. However, it is perfect for lazing around. We got a couple of drinks from our minibar down and thoroughly enjoyed the jacuzzi.
The gym is located on level 4, just by the pool and it is open 24 hours. Similarly, reservations are recommended although I am sure that if you are visiting on non-peak hours, it shouldn’t be hard to get a slot. While I didn’t partake in the gym, I did briefly check it out and got some pictures. The space looks comfortable and faces the pool. There is a nice selection of equipment which should be suitable for most people needs.
Breakfast @ 15 Stamford by Alvin Leung
Breakfast is something that I look forward to everyday here. This is one breakfast that you should make it a point to set your alarm and get up early during your staycation or holidays. On both days, I left satisfied! Eat and head up for a nap! That is how staycations should be! Breakfast is served in 15 Stamford daily from 6.30 am – 10.30 am. It will be separated into three time slots, with the last at 9.15 am. However, this is loosely enforced unless the restaurant is running at full capacity. The restaurant is pretty spacious as well. Let me just point out how chic and gorgeous is 15 Stamford by Alvin Leung.
Let me first share the breakfast menu which you can find below. While it looks ordinary at first, you will find that it is full of quality offerings. Do note the wording at the bottom of the menu, “Craving for something that is not on the menu? Kindly inform our ambassador and we will be delighted to create a special dish just for you”. I am certainly keen to put this to the test over my stay!
I was ushered in promptly and there is no wait at all. Despite it being peak hours and over the weekend there are still plenty of tables available. The place was busy but that is just how huge 15 Stamford is, furthermore the hotel is not running at full capacity. Drinks orders were immediately taken and I start with a latte as well as an orange & apple juice. While my partner got an earl grey tea and pineapple & orange juice. I love how freshly squeezed juice is offered here during breakfast. This is why you are able to do all sorts of combinations. Check out the froth, that is a sign that they are freshly squeezed. Furthermore, when we request for pineapple juice, the staff didn’t bat an eyelid. Test complected!
Some power shots were also brought over to kick start your day. The shots during my stay were cucumber celery as well as pineapple grapefruit. Wow! It does pack a punch and the celery cucumber definitely gave me a huge perk me up. The perfect start for the feast.
For those who like to indulge a little, I am happy to report that Sparkling Wine is available upon request. The staff are happy to bring you one and refills are offered throughout. I am sure you can do a mimosa as well. They currently serve the Piccini Prosecco Venetian Dress Mondo DOC N.V, perfectly drinkable and it goes for around 40 SGD outside.
Breakfast at 15 Stamford starts with the baker bringing around the daily bakes and viennoiserie selections. These changes day to day but you can find croissants, pain au chocolat, rolls, donuts, cinnamon roll, ciabatta, muffin and sourdough bread. You can choose whatever you want and they will plate it for you. They will also toast it if you would like to. Everything is good and fresh, I particularly like the cinnamon roll and the matcha muffin.
Next up, the Wagon Trolly will come by! The creme de la resistance of the entire breakfast! It is a trolly full of delightful treats for both the kids and adults. Look at this! It is full of Honeycomb, Truffle Honey, Honey, Dark Chocolate Spread, White Chocolate Spread and Passion Fruit Spread. This is what so many people have been raving about here. I got a little bit of everything. Damn, those truffle honey are to die for! I can have that anywhere, anytime. The sweetness of the quality honey with a scent of truffle inside, trust me, I mopped it off with almost anything! Carbs! Bacon! Or simply just scooping it up on my spoon and eating like a lollipop! The staff here were amazing and upon hearing me getting the truffle honey, he insisted on me trying those with some plain yoghurt. According to him, it’s a perfect match! True enough, I might just be a yoghurt fan from now on! I love the white chocolate spread too!
Throughout my stay, we tried a plethora of dishes, here are some of the stuff that we ordered. We got the cold cut plates which were pretty good, definitely not falling off their German heritage.
In my opinion, the Western selections here are better than the Asian counterparts. We tried the Congee, Chwee Kueh and the Prawn Mee. It was alright and normal, at least the pork ribs were rather tender.
Taking one for the tourists, I ordered a Kaya Toast, our local dish to see how it is being executed! I do have to say they do it pretty well. Served hot and toasted, the bread was crisp on the outside and comes with a generous spread of kaya, a form of coconut jam. Being the glutton me, rest assured that I mix things up and added some of that White Chocolate Spread to them as well! Lavish! Some Truffle Honey Kaya Toast? What a life!
The Breakfast Plate was a good test of their basics! We got it with scrambled eggs which were cooked to order and creamy. The bacon was perfectly fried bacon and sausages, both chicken and pork were lovely. Being a hotel with German heritage, I am glad they brought over their traditions.
Service staff however left a mixed bag in my opinion, in fact, only this one particular staff that disappoints. Hearing from reviews that someone ordered Steak & Eggs during breakfast, I gave it a try. I wanted to see if the restaurant could really create a special dish at the whims and fancy of customers. I was however flatly rejected by this guy! On the second try, the lovely lady took my order down but informed me that there would be a slight wait. This is due to the chef preparing everything from scratch, the fried potatoes, the black pepper sauce and resting the steak. I got it with fried eggs. The steak was amazing, well-seared and flavourful. It was perfectly seasoned and the accompanying fried potatoes were crispy! Have it own its own or dunk it in the sauce. Wash it all down with a glass of bubbles. Life is perfect! Let me label this as the best breakfast dish I ever had out of all the staycations I have been to!
It was that good that on the second day, I ordered it again! This time around from another staff. Similarly, she will check before returning to inform us that there will be a slight wait! It wasn’t the best presentation but the dish was equally well executed. I got it with scrambled eggs and avocados as well. But it still irks me that the one guy I encountered on the first day, couldn’t even be bordered to check and do the extra work! That isn’t how hospitality should be in a 5-star hotel and when your menu clearly states so.
We also gave the waffles a try, which was alright but nothing memorable. It is good to go with the truffle honey but nothing special.
Breakfast is so good and an affair here. Most of the staff took pride and initiative, with the exception of one who refuse to even check. The other crew all respond to my request for Steak and Eggs, Avo Toast with “let me check with the Chef and my order was always served”. Fresh Pineapple juice? Sure! Orange mix with Apple juice? Not an issue!
La Scala Ristorante
I got lunch one day during my stay at La Scala, the Italian restaurant. The restaurant is actually located on the Arcade side of the hotel. Named after the famed opera house in Milan, the restaurant serves up authentic Italian food and even have a brick fire oven.
The set lunch is pretty worthwhile and is available on weekdays. A 2-course meal comes in at 21 SGD and 3-course for 26 SGD. Furthermore, I got another 15% as a GHA Black member. The restaurant was pretty busy when we were there on a Friday, I will recommend reservations to be made if you are dining here.
My partner got the Freida Larger which is a tie-up with the German Restaurant next door and I got the Chianti which was amazing as well. Drinks cost 11 SGD each! Drinks prices are extremely fair for a hotel restaurant! Since they are located in the Arcade, it wants to attract non-staying guests as well.
Some breadsticks and focaccia were brought over with olive oil on the side. These were refillable and I love their breadsticks.
We got the soup of the day which was the Pumpkin Soup as well as the Potato Salad with Bacon which was recommended by the staff. Both were alright and the potato salad reminds me more of German food rather than Italian.
I prefer the Pumpkin Soup which was delicious. The dash of cream makes the soup much more smoother. The breadsticks were perfect to dip in the soup as well.
For our mains, we got the Spaghetti Aglio Olio with Prawns. The dish was well executed, pasta was cooked just right and the dash of white wine and garlic carries the entire dish! A good dish for any day. While tasty, I didn’t like that the prawns used were the mash-up version rather than whole prawns.
Upon the waiter recommendations, we got the Roasted Meat of The Day as well which was Roasted Chicken with Peas and Prosciutto. It was amazing! The chicken was well marinated and crispy on the outside. I love the relish that was on top and it goes so well with the chicken. That skin and char were amazing! The better of the two.
We tried both the Chocolate Pudding as well as the Panna Cotta for desserts. Both were alright and nothing memorable. The chocolate pudding was super rich and made with quality chocolates. Suffice to say that desserts are not their strongest suit here. I mean, they were alright, but I could have done without it as well. The meal comes up to about 39 SGD with 1 drink each.
One of the best stay I had in town! Paying 204 SGD Nett a night for an awesome suite with early check in and late check out is unbeatable! I love the decor and design of the place. I would love to try more of Kempinski properties going ahead. I was also well treated as a top tier GHA Black member that makes the entire stay even more sweeter with the 3 tier upgrade, early check-in and late checkout. While the hotel lacks a lounge, the breakfast is hands down the best I had out of all my staycations. It was a close call between this and Shangri-La Valley Wing for the top spot on my list of staycations. With the depressed market rate and frequent promotions right now. It is possible to book this Stamford suite directly at around 500 plus SGD! I’m already looking forward to coming back in June for another stay!
Seeing The World In Steps stayed in Apr 2021