BIG Hotel Singapore is surrounded by four MRT stations, Dhoby Ghaut MRT, Bugis, Rochor, and Bras Basah, about 10 minutes’ walk from each station. It’s a boutique hotel, meaning that space is scarce, so there are no big spaces and no big facilities like swimming pool. After all, the hotel is in the city.
A homely lobby
But what it lacks in space, it makes up for the city location. My favorite karaoke, Cash Studio at Princep St, is at the next street—good for late night entertainment and inexpensive. There are many great eateries around. Victor’s Kitchen, one of the best dim sum in Singapore, is across the street. Beside BIG Hotel, Fortune Centre holds many vegetarian restaurants, and one of the best izakaya in Singapore, Nobuya. For local street food, Sing Ho Hainanaese Chicken Rice, and Rochor Beancurd, are nearby. HangOut Cafe, my best 10 cafes in 2015, is diagonally across from BIG Hotel, not forgetting the cafes at Bugis area, many of them halal. BIG Hotel has a cafe, Froth, at the lobby. And then there are the big restaurants at Dhoby Ghaut and Bugis: I recommend Tim Ho Wan and Tsukada Nojo (Plaza Singapura outlet).
The overall design for the hotel is chic and modern, using cement and wood. Like the room which uses cement wallpaper.
There are many things we like about the room. It has provided most of the necessary amenities. An ice machine and a watercooler are found at the corridor. Inside the room, there are a safe, toothbrushes, slippers, hairdryer, etc. There is even a tablet to surf the net.
My three favorite things in the room: complimentary WiFi, TV, and bed. Many hotels still live in stone age and don’t provide complimentary WiFi. The TV has almost 30 channels, catering to all guests, from news, to movies, to cooking shows. They even have Arirang TV which I appeared on! And then they also have movies on demand for free.
Now the bed. It’s one of the most comfortable beds I’ve lain in, better than 6 star hotels’. It’s soft so you sink into it, but it also provides a very good support for the body. I 认床 and I normally sleep fitfully in strange beds; but this one is amazing that I napped from 4pm-7pm and slept from 11pm to 7am. (I woke up to gym.)
But because the space is small, the bed is pushed to the far end of the room. That means that the person sleeping inside, near to the windows, may wake up the other person when s/he wants to get out.
Also, while it’s modern to have glass panels as partition between the room and toilet, I wonder if they could a curtain so that the lights from the toilet won’t wake the other sleeping party.
There are 3 common areas: the homely lobby which Mr Fitness likes a lot; gym; and Froth cafe.
Mr Fitness used the gym twice and I, once. It is very small—allowing maybe 5 people at once—and doesn’t have many free weights. But like the defunct California Fitness gym at Somerset, this gym faces the main road; people can look in. I like gyms like that because it forces me to run at a proper posture. By the way, the machines are new and state-of-the-art. I did the HITT program on the treadmill. My ass hurt after the workout.
Lastly, the dining area. It’s very smart of BIG Hotel to lease the space to another party, Froth Cafe. The breakfast is semi-buffet: you order one main plate, and you have free flow items like cereals, toast, pound cake, oranges, coffee and tea. My breakfast at Froth has confirmed my review based on two previous visits to the cafe, it is better at its desserts than savory dishes. Actually, I would recommend you to take your breakfast across the street, at Victor’s Kitchen or HangOut Cafe.
Overall, this is a restful, happy staycation for me. What I like about BIG Hotel are (1) even though it’s in city area, it’s serene to provide a peaceful sleep in the wonderful bed; and (2) I have the option to stay in the room the whole day to watch the varied channels and movies or I can go out, shop, eat, visit attractions, and play at easily accessible locations.
BIG Hotel Singapore
200 Middle Road, Singapore 188980
T: +65 6809 7998
Hotel room rates start from about $150.
Written by A. Nathanael Ho.