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Raffles Singapore to undergo refurbishment in 2017

Raffles Singapore exterior
Raffles Hotel Singapore, the iconic luxury property managed by the award-winning international hospitality group, Raffles Hotels & Resorts, has announced that it will embark on a careful and sensitive restoration programme. The refurbishment of this acclaimed heritage hotel, owned by Katara Hospitality, the globally recognised hospitality owner, developer and operator, will be conducted over three phases to ensure every detail of the programme is approached with careful consideration.

Phase One of the programme will begin in January 2017 and see the Raffles Hotel Arcade undergo restoration works while other areas of the property operate as normal. The Raffles Hotel Arcade is an integral part of this landmark building, with regional and specialty shops, indoor and outdoor function areas including The Ballroom and The Lawn and a variety of restaurants and bars, including The Long Bar, home of the Singapore Sling - devotees will be pleased to know that the famous gin cocktail will continue to be served in The Bar & Billiard Room during the first phase and second phases of restoration.   

Phase Two will begin in mid-2017 when restoration efforts will concentrate on the main hotel building, the Lobby and some of the hotel suites. The hotel will then close for the final phase near the end of 2017 before a grand reopening in the second quarter of 2018.  

“Raffles Hotel Singapore has always evolved to stay distinctive and relevant, moving with the times and adapting to the changing needs of today’s traveller. We have a rich and colourful history and are about to begin a new chapter in our ongoing story – a sensitive restoration that will enable us to continue to offer what our guests expect and value,” said Diana Banks, Vice President, Raffles Brand and Luxury Sales, Raffles Hotels and Resorts.  

The restoration project will be led by Aedas Singapore which is one of the world’s leading global architecture and design firms. The company is behind some of the world’s most prestigious restoration projects including the London Coliseum and the revitalised Mallory Street/Burrows Street in Wan Chai, Hong Kong. The interiors of the project will be handled by award-winning designer Alexandra Champalimaud who has worked with many high profile luxury hotels around the world including New York’s The Plaza, Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, The Dorchester in London and The Carlyle in New York to name a few.

“This restoration is designed to ensure that we retain what is so special about Raffles– the ambiance, the service, the charm and the heritage of the hotel. We have always changed and evolved to keep in step with the needs and expectations of our guests - this has been one of the secrets of our success for more than a century.  This extraordinary undertaking will also reimagine the facilities, spaces and experiences within the hotel to delight the well-travelled and the community,” added Simon Hirst, General Manager.  

Declared a National Monument by the Singapore Government in 1987, Raffles Hotel Singapore has through the years gained both local and international recognition as an oasis for the well-travelled, with its evocative blend of classical architecture and tropical garden setting. Raffles Singapore is considered a national treasure among Singaporeans who deeply value its historical significance and unique heritage.  

The last restoration was undertaken from 1989 to 1991 when the hotel closed for two and half years. Raffles has 103 individually designed suites – 84 Courtyard and Palm Court Suites, 12 Personality Suits, 5 Grand Hotel Suits and 2 Presidential Suites.  

“We are pleased to embark on the meticulous restoration of Raffles Hotel Singapore, a distinctive hotel that is emblematic of Katara Hospitality’s commitment to creating extraordinary experiences on the backdrop of iconic heritage hotels and unsurpassed service to our esteemed guests,” said Mr. Hamad Abdulla Al-Mulla, Chief Executive Officer of Katara Hospitality.  

“Since opening its doors in 1887, Raffles Hotel Singapore has maintained a lasting legacy as a landmark hotel, hosting some of the world’s most famous personalities. As a National Monument of Singapore and one of the few remaining 19th century hotels in the world, the hotel’s restoration is a testament to our continued pursuit in preserving portraits of historic charm, while growing Katara Hospitality’s portfolio of iconic properties in key destinations. Raffles Hotel Singapore is no exception, with its carefully implemented restoration programme that is poised to unveil contemporary charm and elegance; befitting the luxurious splendour of Katara Hospitality hotels,” added Mr. Hamad Abdulla Al-Mulla.

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