W hotels have always stood out from the usual luxe hotel chains. There is just something so edgy and irreverent about the brand that makes it so appealing.
If we were to liken the entire hotel sector to a high school – the Ritzs, the St Regis and the Cappellas would be the rich kids of the school, the ones who enjoy luxury and opulence in abundance, the uber privileged, as you would call them.
On the other hand, the Ws, would be the cool hipster kids (still rich, mind you) of the school, those who know just how to enjoy a good cocktail, dance up a storm to the latest DJ tunes, appreciate modern art and doing just about everything cool.
And this last weekend, I was thankful enough for the chance to live it up at the home of a rich hipster kid, just like a rich hipster kid would.
While it’s almost impossible to sum up the weekend in a blog (drunken antics notwithstanding), the thing that stood out the most was the fact that the entire weekend was a complete sensory experience. All my senses were teased, tantalised and satisfied... so here’s my sneak peek of the W...
The view of Sentosa Cove and the marina around it are pretty breathtaking – gazing at yachts passing by makes you almost forget that you're in Sentosa, but instead, living a life of luxury, like the rich and famous, in those yachts across the Carribean.
Bonus points go to the fact that there is art everywhere you turn – sculptures, paintings, art installations greet you and fascinate your sense of sight – there is a giant gold candy sculpture in the middle of the lawn, giant gold dog near the welcome counters, paintings everywhere and the DJ booth in WOObar (the lobby bar, which is a mainstay throughout all W Hotels in the world) even has little gold hippos as leg stands. Cute touch!
Which brings us to the furniture in the rooms. The guest rooms boast kitschy one-of-a- kind furniture, like these gorgeous chairs, which are inevitably head-turners, lending a unique touch to the character of the room.
But most of all, I love how lit-up the place is at night you can't stop staring. Starting from our rooms, the lighting panel behind a flower motif cut-out can be switched around, going from purplish pink to a pale green to light yellow based on your mood.
Even the pool deck, simply known as WET, by the W talents (a way cooler term than staff), has lit chairs that simply ups the glam quotient of the 24-hour pool at night. There is colour and light, every corner you look.
At the W, music is also everywhere. And I do literally mean, everywhere.
In your personal bathroom, you can switch on the telly in the room and listen to the surround sound dialogue when you’re taking a shower. (I had MTV on throughout, so I could hum and shower at the same time!)
The Bose surround sound system in the room also amplifies any music you might be playing, while the iPod dock is handy, on your bedside table, perfect to change the ambience of the room from dance tunes to soothing lounge music whenever you like.
Now, if you’re secretly a billionaire rolling in the dough, have your own listed company, is a rockstar or named Oprah Winfrey, I urge you to book the Extreme WOW Suite, otherwise known as the presidential suite of the W.
Not only will it give you access to your very own private DJ console area in your room – perfect for throwing parties and getting your own DJ to spin for you and your friends – you can be sure the sound quality is top-notch. The room is also equipped with your very own personal private plunge pool. I might have heard from a little bird, that a single night in the suite will set you back a neat five-figure sum.
Speaking of DJs, there is a never a dull moment at the W. The WOOBar (above) as well as the Great Room see DJs flitting in and out – there is a constant supply - to keep you entertained. This weekend alone, we saw Posso, Vitor Kurc, Dogus Cabakcor, Aline Magnier and the super dapper Mark Ronson (appearing to screams from eager fans) spin at the opening party.
Even after all that, if you still need more music in your life, go for a swim. The underwater sound system means that you will be duly entertained even when you’re doing your laps at the WET deck.
What’s a hotel without a good spa, one might ask. If you answered with a look of horror, we are definitely on the same page.
Don’t worry, the AWAY spa at the W Singapore did not disappoint. The 60-min full body massage I had during my stay was so blissful, I was lulled into a state of sleep and was completely relaxed – exactly what my body needed after a long work week.
The pre-massage treatment area consisting of the vitality pool (a warm pool area), the whirlpool (a cold pool) together with the steam rooms, aqua rooms and rain bath, was perfect in prepping me for the session. It soothed all my joints and aching muscles and allowed me to unwind while jets of water were hitting my body at my pressure points.
This was all before my masseuse Avi, worked her magic on my knots, easing out the kinks with long deep strokes of perfection.
Note to everyone, DO NOT leave the W without a visit to the spa.
Oh, and then, there is a little something called food. The two restaurants in the hotel – SKIRT and The Kitchen Table – serve up such wonderful creations, I gave up on my diet just because it was simply too hard to resist the culinary creations.
Mark my words, new eatery SKIRT is definitely the one to look out for. The W brand’s first contemporary grill restaurant, will definitely go onto everyone’s list as the place which serves one of the best steak in town. Think thick juicy wagyu marbled beef cuts that are grilled to perfection. Drooling already? So was everyone else before they even got to taste it.
I even had a taste of unique offerings like the seaweed mousse/cream concoction which went so well with the sourdough bread and bacon powder (SERIOUSLY AWESOME!) which added a boost of flavour with the scallops.
The more casual The Kitchen Table isn’t one to overlook as well. From cold cuts like fresh sashimi, tiger prawns, crab legs and sushi to flavourful Indian cuisine, to make-your-own pasta stations, to comfort food like dim sum and lobster claw noodles, I was spoilt for choice. Have I even mentioned the dessert bar complete with eclairs, meringues, profiteroles and pastries?
And unlike most hotels where F&B is the usual phrase the restaurant staffers use, the W goes with B&F instead, because, the beverage, as they say, should always come before the food.
I was treated to a whole array of innovative cocktails throughout my stay, courtesy of the W mixologists from WOObar, to the bar at SKIRT, to the WETbar in the pool. The use of fresh ingredients, juices, and fruit promised a refreshing drink with every sip.
My favourite? The French 75 at SKIRT, made with monkey 47 gin, veuve cliquot, lemon extracts and grapefruit peel.
And with that, my senses were definitely pampered, soothed and spoilt over the weekend, I couldn't be a happier camper. Throw in an awesome opening party with tunes by Mark Ronson and more than 1,200 bottles of champagne consumed, I’d say, the weekend was definitely well-spent – the W way.
Now, if only I could stay there... forever.