Luxury wellness hotel operator Six Senses will open its first city hotel in Singapore this year as part of a restoration of two buildings in the heart of the city-state’s Chinatown.
Six Senses Singapore is split across two buildings within walking distance of each other, Six Senses Duxton and Six Senses Maxwell, and will celebrate local Singapore culture and history while adding a touch of playfulness to the heritage properties, the company said.
The buildings feature a mix of Chinese, Malay and European elements, including neo-classical lion head motifs, Chinese porcelain-chip friezes co-existing with Malay timber fretwork, French windows, Portuguese shutters and Corinthian pilasters.
Six Senses has made authenticity and responsible preservation of the buildings a priority, and both properties have received the Urban Redevelopment Authority Architectural Heritage Award to recognise this. Six Senses Duxton is due to open in April 2018, followed by Six Senses Maxwell three months later.
“Such unique properties do not come to market often, and we are delighted to be working with Satinder Garcha and Harpreet Bedi of Garcha Hotels on this project,” said Neil Jacobs, Six Senses CEO. “The buildings will be the last heritage hotels of this quality to be developed in Singapore. Each building has its own distinct personality, but what makes Six Senses Singapore so special is that guests can enjoy all the offerings of both locations plus the neighborhood when staying with us. It’s all about community and being part of the rich, local culture of Singapore.”
Duxton Road in old Chinatown’s Tanjong Pagar is also known as Jinrickshaw Place, named after the rickshaw pullers who used to gather by the station. In the not-so-recent-past, this section of town was home to opium and gambling dens. Today, the site features a row of trading houses that have been sustainably restored under the designer Anoushka Hempel, known for her Hempel and Blake’s hotels in London.
Hempel has given each of the 49 guestrooms and suites a unique individuality so that no two are exactly the same,with features including large golden fans and strong hues of black, gold and yellow, layered with Oriental screens and calligraphy wallpaper from Hempel’s personal collection.
A property highlight is the appointment of a traditional Chinese doctor offering readings, health recommendations and a medicinal herbal dispensary.
Six Senses Maxwell will be located in Maxwell Road, which was originally a nutmeg plantation before 14 three- and four-story colonial-style buildings were constructed and later joined together as a single entity. The diverse characteristics have been carefully conserved, and the property features 138 guestrooms and suites, a Six Senses Spa, outdoor lap pool, champagne bar and lounge, whiskey bar, boardroom and club lounge. A verandah lined with lush tropical foliage follows the length of the building.
The interior design is by French architect and designer Jacques Garcia, and is designed to reflect the authentic decor and furnishings of the era in which it was built, but with a modern twist. Garcia – who has also worked on La Mamounia in Marrakesh, Hotel Costes in Paris and NoMad in New York – has infused a Western sensibility with a timeless ambience.
The 50 bedrooms include details like brass, lacquer and marble mini bars, handmade Lafroy Brooks bathroom fixtures, handmade mattresses by Naturalmat and organic bed linens to support Sleep With Six Senses, a key pillar of the group’s Integrated Wellness philosophy.
Special looms were constructed to hand weave 13 x 20-foot (4 x6-meter) silk rugs for the public areas of the hotel. The interior spaces, which are all different, meld together in respect of the architectural styles of the original buildings and add to the hotel’s charm.
The restaurant will feature the brand’s approach to fresh, local and seasonal food and drink: Eat With Six Senses, and the resort will offer a Six Senses Spa along with an external lap pool.Six Senses plans to open seven new resorts and two spas in 2018