One of life’s simple pleasures is going for a staycation. We’re truly blessed with SO many irresistible options for staycation in Singapore. This year alone, there are about 10 new hotel openings. Out of these 10, YOTEL Singapore is the one I’m most keen to check out.
First of all, what exactly is YOTEL? For those of us who do not live in New York, London or Amsterdam, we probably have not heard much about the brand. YOTEL is a hotel chain that largely operates in airports, including London Gatwick, London Heathrow, and Paris Charles De Gaulle.
Additionally, YOTEL concept is based on technological innovation. By integrating the elements of luxury hotels into smartly designed spaces, YOTEL aims to provide a seamless and intuitive guest experience by giving guests everything they need and nothing they don’t.
YOTEL Singapore, the first YOTEL in Asia, opened its doors to guests on 1 Oct 2017. With a wide variety of rooms (known as cabins) from Premium Queen to VIP View Suite, there is something to suit every budget. There are 610 cabins across 30 floors that are equipped with signature YOTEL features such as adjustable SmartBedTM with super comfortable Serta Gel mattresses, Technowall with mood lighting and HD Smart TVs.
There are 7 cabin types in YOTEL Singapore:
- Premium Queen (13sqm)
- Premium Queen View (13sqm)
- Premium Queen with 1 Bunk (13sqm)
- Premium Queen View with 1 Bunk (13sqm)
- Premium Queen View Deck (13sqm + 5sqm balcony)
- First King Deck Cabin (26sqm + 9sqm balcony)
- VIP View Suite (52sqm + 20sqm balcony)
The word “affordable luxury” often excites us (don’t tell me you’re not LOL). Combined with a prime location in Orchard Road, this property sounds like a dream come true to many. Now, I can’t wait to experience a refreshingly different staycation in YOTEL! 🙂
YOTEL Singapore is located behind Shaw House and a few minutes’ walk from Orchard MRT. As I walked in, the futuristic vibes in the lobby instantly grabbed my attention. To my left, there is a row of airport-style touch-screen check-in machines. And to my right, there are two robots. The self check-in process was totally fuss-free and within minutes, I was on my way up to my cabin on the 23rd floor. There are also reception counters if you prefer to check-in through the guest service officers.
Edison with the YOTEL Robots
Self check-in/check-out touch-screen machine
Our cabin is a Premium Queen View with 1 Bunk measuring 13sqm. At this size, you’ll notice that it’s typically smaller than your conventional hotel rooms. But as you discover more about the cabin, you’ll be impressed by how it utilises space efficiently. Basically, you’ll get EVERYTHING (work desk with multiple power sockets, coffee/tea station, mini fridge, electronic safe, hairdryer, iron, ironing board) in this little luxury cabin. I kid you not, so please read on.
The concept of the room in YOTEL follows that of a first-class airline cabin. As such, the bed is adjustable – it can be made to recline like a sofa and fully flat when it’s time to sleep. It’s compact but super functional; I’m so in love with its white interior with soft purple backlighting. Moreover, the Serta Gel mattresses and fluffy duvets are totally unbeatable! All of us slept SO well that night.
Ladies and gentlemen, meet my busy monkey! He just couldn’t stop swinging around the overhead bunk bed. 😛
Now, let’s take a look at the smart use of space. The small cabinet that houses the ironing board actually sinks into the wall, while cloth hangers can be made to protrude out of the wall by a simple press. Extra desk space is available by drawing out a panel from below the television, complete with power outlets.
Besides the bed, you’ll find a coffee table with kettle and coffee/tea making facilities. A tray-table is stowed away underneath – you can use it as a mini writing desk. Below the table, there’s also a folding chair where you can sit or use it to put your bags. Haha, so fantastically designed, isn’t it?
Even though there’s no wardrobe, you’ll find clothes hang-on bars and hangers inside the cabin. Suitcases and shoes can be stashed away under the bed to keep the cabin looks neat.
On the other side of the bed, there’s a vanity mirror and sink. Toothbrushes are provided but I didn’t see any shaving kits or vanity packs. In the drawers under sink, there’s also a hairdryer and iron.
The bath and toilet area is located in a separate enclosure that spans the length of the floor-to-ceiling window with excellent view of Orchard areas. I like how the full-height windows bring plenty of natural light into the cabin. Of course, there’s a sliding blind to preserve modesty. Haha! 😆
Toiletries are from Urban Skincare, an Australian brand, which are available in locked dispensers. Personally, I love the dispensers that greatly reduce plastic bottle waste. They are so eco-friendly! Hotel toiletries seldom satisfy me, but this one is really GOOD. I’m even tempted to purchase a bottle from the lobby.
Robot is coming!
One thing that totally caught us by surprise is the YOTEL Robot. When you request for extra amenities (mineral water, towels, etc.) from the lobby (they call it Mission Control, nice name!), the staffs will put the items in the Robot who will then deliver them to your cabin. Edison was totally amazed with it. We followed the Robot all the way from the lobby to our cabin, observing how it took the lift up, press the button, door bell, etc. We even recorded a video of it, LOL.
Dining Establishments & Facilities
All the hotel’s dining and facilities are located on Level 10, including the 24-hour YOTEL Gym, 20-metre swimming pool, Club Lounge and Grains & Hops restaurant and bar.
International buffet breakfast is served from 6:30am at Grains & Hops. Honestly, given the price that we paid, I wasn’t expecting a huge buffet spread. It was decent but sufficient. There are fried noodles, porridge, fried eggs, bacons, sausages and hash brown as well as salad, bread, cereals and pastry stands that complete our morning breakfast. I also understand that the restaurant serves ‘one dish’ concept from lunchtime onwards, but we didn’t get a chance to try them.
Grains & Hops
The Club Lounge is located next to the restaurant. It’s the perfect spot for social gathering and getting your creative juices flowing in the co-working studio.
The cabins are inspired by luxurious first-class airline travel, and that’s the reason why I want to experience YOTEL. Frankly speaking, in my entire life I probably won’t have a chance to experience flying in first class. Now, I get to try something similar at a small fraction of the price. So, why not?
When you stay in YOTEL, it is important to keep in mind that the concept and overall proposition are NOT the same as your conventional hotel. If you want a spacious room with first class services, then YOTEL is not for you. YOTEL isn’t the Ritz, but it never aims to be.
The overhead bunk bed is also not suitable for young kids, but I’m pretty sure the older ones will enjoy it to bits. If you have younger kids, I’d advise you to take the First King Deck Cabin or the VIP View Suite.
With room rates starting from S$199++ which is an awesome price considering its prime location, I’m happy to check myself in to experience a different kind of staycation. Moreover, the exclusive opening offer is just too attractive – not to be missed!
Lastly, YOTELAIR Singapore Changi Airport is slated to open next year. I can’t wait to check out this one as well!