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Singapore Hotel Review: The Fullerton

Fullerton-Hotel-Singapore-overlooking-the-Singapore-River
The Fullerton Hotel Singapore as viewed from a bridge spanning the Singapore River, which runs past the hotel. Photo Credit: Accidental Travel Writer.

Visit Singapore

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore is a full service, five-star hotel overlooking the Singapore River. Housed in neoclassical landmark that was gazetted as a National Monument in 2015, it sits at the heart of the Fullerton Heritage Precinct.

Built in 1928, the landmark structure formally housed the General Post Office, the Exchange Room and Exchange Reference Library, and the Singapore Club.

The building was named after Robert Fullerton, the first governor of the Straits Settlements. The General Post Office was originally the building’s anchor tenant. The Singapore Club rented space on the building’s upper floors.

The building was used as a hospital in the finals days before Britain surrendered Singapore to Japan in 1942. After the war ended, the building was recognized as a public monument.

It served as headquarters of the inland Revenue Authority from the 1970s through 1995. The Singapore Post Office vacated the building in 1995. It was gazetted as a conservation building in 1997.

The Fullerton was acquired by Sino Land (Hong Kong) the same year. Nearly S$300 million was spent converting the building into a 400-room hotel.

The exterior of the building was restored making minimal changes to the facade. Height restrictions immediately behind the hotel were imposed so that the hotel would not be over-shadowed when viewed from the opposite side of the river.

Most of interior spaces, however, had to be altered in order to accommodate guest rooms and food and beverage outlets. But there WERE a few exceptions, as I was to find out during my two-night stay at the historic hostlry.

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore opened as a hotel on 1 January 2001.

Accommodation

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore has 400 rooms and suites. Because the hotel was created within an existing heritage structure, there is an unusually large selection of room sizes and configurations.

Rooms measure from 377 ssquare feet, or 35 square metres, to 764 square feet, or 71 square metres. Suites measure from 700 square feet, oir 65 square metres, to 1,173 square feet, or 109 square metres for the Presidential Suite.

Rooms have complimentary unlimited wired and wireless broadband Internet access, complimentary use of a Handy phone with complimentary local calls and complimentary IDD calls to 15 countries.

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I stayed in a Straits Club Courtyard Room (pictured above), which measured 388 square feet, or 36 square metres.  

I had a king size bed and a comfortable work space. The bathroom was furnished in beige marble with chocolate brown marble counter tops. There was a separate shower and bathtub.

Best of all, perhaps, was the spectacular view of the Singapore River from my hotel room window. The view through this window had a magnetic effect on me.

One look outside, however, and I wanted to explore the very fascinating neighborhood that the hotel was situated in.

If it had not been for this view, I might well have spent my entire stay within the comfortable confines of this very charming hotel, migrating between my room, the spa, the swimming pool, the fitness centre, and the executive lounge, which was just down the hall.

Straits Club

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The Straits Club, as the hotel refers to its executive lounge, is one of the few internal spaces that was kept largely intact.

There were the lavish breakfast buffets, the yummy afternoons teas, and the free flow of champagne at happy hour. The scones served with clotted cream during afternoon tea were without doubt the best scones I have ever had. 

Because I was lucky enough to be put up in a room with access to the Straits Club during my stay, I was torn between hanging out at the club and exploring the fascinating neighborhood in which the hotel is located.

Through careful time management, I was able to manage both, taking full advantage of the club at breakfast, afternoon tea, and happy hour - and exploring the neighborhood in between. 

Food +Beverage

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The Fullerton Hotel Singapore has six food and beverage outlets. Each one has a different menu and a different vibe.

Town Restaurant – an all-day dining restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner buffets featuring both Asian and international dishes.

Satay by the River is served from 5 pm to 10.30 pm daily. Themed buffet dinners are served daily from 6.30 pm to 10.30 pm.

There is a Seafood International Buffet with Heritage Food Wednesday to Saturday, Singapore High Tea Buffet Saturdays and public holidays, Sunday Champagne brunches, and daily al fresco happy hours.

A la cart menus are also available at breakfast and lunch.

During my stay, there was a special promotion featuring Singaporean street food.

This is where I had lunch shortly after checking into the hotel. Lunch was yummy, but even better was getting to reconnect with a couple of very dear friends, one of whom I hadn't seen in several years.

Jade – a fine-dining Chinese restaurant featuring Cantonese cuisine. Open for lunch and dinner. Dim sum is served 11 am to 3 pm on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays.

The six-course Peking Duck and Lobster Feast is highly recommended.

The Lighthouse Restaurant and Rooftop Bar – an Italian restaurant with gorgeous views of Marina Bay and the Singapore skyline serving authentic Italian cuisine with produce from Campania, Sardinia, and Sicily. Open for lunch and dinner. The rooftop bar remains open until 11 pm.

Post Bar – the former post office has been re-purposed into one of the most stylish cocktail lounges in town. There is a private Music Room as well as al fresco seating.

The Courtyard – located in the hotel’s atrium lobby, this lively restaurant serves buffet lunches, serving Japanese buffet lunches in the North Courtyard and curry buffet lunches in the South Courtyard as well as afternoon tea and daily happy hours.

The Fullerton Café Boutique – sells cakes, cookies, sweets, jams, chocolates, and takeaway bento boxes.

Facilities

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The Fullerton Hotel Singapore has a 25-metre long outdoor infinity swimming pool that overlooks the Singapore River.

The swimming pool was constructed in such a way that it is not visible from the street while offering hotel guests using the pool sweeping views of the river, which it overlooks.

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore has a sumptuous spa, which offers a full menu of spa treatments and therapies.

The 90-minute Asian Heritage Signature treatment is highly recommended. I’d like to go into detail, but I slept through it, awakening rejuvenated and refreshed.

The spa has saunas and steam rooms. Products are all from Aromatherapy Associate

Location, Location, Location

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Located within the heart of the Fullerton Heritage Precinct, The Fullerton Hotel Singapore surely has one of the best locations in town.

Overlooking the Singapore River, the hotel is just a few steps from Boat Quay (pronounced KEY), a series of renovated shop houses from the colonial era.

The historic structures have been beautifully renovated and now house mostly food and beverage outlets. Many of the restaurants have outdoor seating along the river.

Some of Singapore’s other top tourist attractions are within a few minutes’ walk, including Merlion Park (less than four minutes), Asian Civilisations Museum (less than five minutes), National Gallery Singaore (less than seven  minutes) and the Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay (less than 10 minutes).

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore is a five minutes’ walk from the Raffles Place MRT station and less than 30 minutes from Changi International Airport.

The Fullerton Hotel Singapore is a member of the Preferred Hotels and Resorts group.

A Mini Guide to the Fullerton Heritage Precinct is coming.

Where

The Fullerton Hotel, Singapore – 1 Fullerton Square, Singapore. Telephone: (+65) 6733-8388. Click here for room rates, guest reviews, and special promotions: TripAdvisor - Hotels.com - Expedia

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