Welcome to another series in The Hotel Life! Seeing The World In Steps staycation adventures never ends! I do sometimes wonder what is so fun about staycations. An amazing Accor sale a couple of weeks back got me into Grand Mercure Roxy. A recent addition to the local hotel list approved by STB for staycations. While it is a very old hotel, the interior was refurbished a couple of years ago. It should be rather nice to check out given this price point. Located in the Katong / Marina Parade neighbourhood, you have a plethora of F&B options around the hotel. It is surely refreshing to get out of the usual Orchard or Marina Bay area where most hotels in Singapore are located. Accessibility wise, it is rather inconvenient for the general tourists and you will probably rely mostly on taxis and private hired vehicles. The situation should get better in the future when the Thomson-East Coast MRT line is completed.
Booking Process & Pre Arrival
Back last month Accor was running an awesome promotion in partnership with Mastercard where they were offering 33% off when booked before end of July. Accor Plus members get an additional 10% off. This 4-star hotel is definitely not the fanciest in town, it is also located out of the city centre. Rates were running at 64 SGD with the discount. That brings it to about 75 SGD Nett for my one night stay. The rates were even available on weekends, making it even more attractive. I book it for the National Day long weekend to check it out. One more review added to the list.
The hotel does provide free parking for hotel guests. Grand Mercure Roxy Singapore has a total of 576 rooms spread across 6 categories. It is a rather huge property. All rooms and suites here come with a bathtub so you do not have to worry about missing out on a soak during your stay. Rooms are mainly 32 Sqm in size and differ in view. There is also a good number of suites here.
|Rooms||Executive Lounge Access||Bathtub||Size||No. of Rooms|
|Junior Suite||Yes||Yes||50 Sqm||13|
|Studio Suite||Yes||Yes||52 Sqm||12|
|Business Suite||Yes||Yes||54 Sqm||12|
I called the hotel the night before my stay and was informed that my room will be ready at 11am. It was pretty quiet despite it being a weekend. There is no bellboy service and help with bags. I was warmly welcomed and ushered thru the safe entry process by the staff. The check-in process was smooth and polished. I was informed that I am being upgraded to one of their Studio Suites and my late check out was extended till 4pm. 29 hours in this room is fantastic! Especially given the rate I paid for the room during the 33% off Accor sale with MasterCard partnership previously! This is a hotel that comes with its age and it goes without saying that the exterior of the hotel looks extremely dated but thankfully the interior is much nicer.
I was assigned a studio suite located on the 15 floor which was just around the corner from the lift. The common corridors are decent but too dim for my liking. It will be much more welcoming with more light. You can still see some stools placed outside the doors, a sign that they have not got it cleared after being a dedicated SHN hotel.
The Studio Suite is considered a premium suite here, one tier higher than the lead in suite. However, it is more like a junior suite rather than a full suite given that both the living area and bedroom are located in the same room. It also does not comes with a half bath. Despite measuring a modest 52 Sqm, it definitely provides much more precious property space than the rooms.
Immediately upon entering, there is a little walkway created by a partition. This adds up some privacy and decor. I am glad that the entire room doesn’t seem visible from the entrance. However, the space could be better utilised with a little bench or platform. They could also install a full-length mirror here. This will be nice for guests to check on their dressing before leaving. The suite has sort of a reverse configuration with the bedroom area nearer to the entrance rather than the living area. Alongside the wall, you can find the TV mounted and this is one electronic gadget of the previous era! It was small and of poor quality. Netflix and chill disapproved! It will also be nice if they can mount the TV on a swivel bracket such that it can be pivoted towards the sofa area. I do love the platform below the TV which sure comes in handy for placing your suitcase. It makes it easy to take things out and the extra space is very much welcomed.
Next to the platform, there is a working desk alongside an armchair. The space was sufficient and the chair was comfy for short periods of working. Outlets are nicely appropriated here. The wifi is fast and easy to connect.
On the desk, there is a personalised welcome letter and a gift consisting of a little pernakan spoon and a magnet. Quite a nice touch!
The king size bed is located in the middle and surrounded by nightstands on both side. The bed and sheets were pretty good and I was surprised to find such quality bedding here. It is on the firmer sides which offers great back support. I am also glad that the pillows weren’t paper-thin.
I had a good rest despite the super cranky thermostat for the air conditioning. It is hard to get the room cooled even at full blast. Lighting controls can be found by the bed. Do note that only one side of the bed comes with a power outlet. So, pillow fight it is!
The couch area was located at the far end of the room. I really appreciate having the extra space. This is definitely super useful during this period with no dining out allowed and you are going to have all your meals in the room. The area is sort of bare as it simply faces a full-length mirror which seems out of sorts here. As I pointed out earlier, it is better suited for the mirror to be installed near the entrance.
There isn’t much of a view to speak about since the suite was one of those that faces the residential buildings behind the hotel. It would be nice if you get one of those that face the East Coast Park direction which comes with a sea view.
Later on in the afternoon, the staff brought over a welcome amenity consisting of a bottle of red wine and some cookies. The red wine was pretty good. In fact, this is the same one that Hilton is serving in the lounge right now.
Alongside the wall, towards the bathroom, this is where you can find the wardrobe as well as the minibar area. The offerings are pretty bare with only some instant coffee and lipton packaged tea provided. You can also find a kettle and a mini-fridge which is left empty in the cabinet.
The wardrobe is pretty spacious and you can find bathrobes and bath slippers provided inside with an ironing set and a safe. I am not a fan of those hangers that they are providing. Those hangers that are fixed to the wardrobe inside. In this decade, where credit card deposits are taken, there is no need for such “style” of amenities.
The bathroom is a good size and comes with both his and her sinks. The mix tap does show the way of life of our ancestors where you come up with your own blend of temperature. Amenities are house-branded and generously provided. They are alright. You can find a bathtub, as well as a separate standing shower with a wall mounted shower head. For those who have a thing with Colgate, you will be glad that they provide them rather than those knock-off AME versions.
The showering area was really spacious and easily good enough for two but the temperature control and water pressure was extremely bad. What would really be nice here would be a rainforest shower.
The walls are a little thin here leading to bad soundproofing isn’t good. You can frequently hear noise from people passing by. The thermostat of the aircon was also cranky and it is hard to cool down the room even with the air conditioning on full blast.
The gym is located on level 4. Sadly, due to the tightening of COVID-19 measures during my stay, I wasn’t able to check out the gym which is closed at the time of my visit.
The pool is located on level 4 and reservations is required. You are able to make it prior to check-in too. You can do it here. Do plan ahead if you want to use it as slots do get taken up due to the small size of the pool. The pool is quite lovely and there is a good number of chairs and sunbeds by the side. It is a good setup for getting some sun. The pool is quite small though.
64 SGD is an awesome rate for a 4-Star chain hotel in Singapore. This is even sweeter if you are an ALL member and able to stack on the status to enjoy your benefits. The location might not be ideal but with affordable transportation, this might be a good place for extended business stays. It was a good stay for me and I lucked out with a nice upgrade. It is sure refreshing to get out of the typical Marina Bay and Orchard area. This is definitely not the first choice for most locals staycation and with international travel still being restricted it is hard seeing them survive. Perhaps it will be a good time to do some refurbishment which they are very much in need of. If not, SHN facility might be a better business strategy. A great getaway and another property in Singapore under the belt. Next up, I will be checking out YOTEL Singapore. Stay tuned for that!
Seeing The World In Steps stayed in Early Aug 2021 during Phase 2 (Heightened Alert)
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