If you go in expecting that the rooms are like luxury airline cabins, you will be very pleasantly surprised. The YOTEL concept is of hotel rooms that utilize space smartly, without cutting out on hotel amenities, and are similar to luxury airline cabins. But the actual rooms are much bigger than luxury airline cabins AND the glass-wall in the loo provides some awesome views of the Singapore skyline as well!
It was super exciting for me to travel to Singapore for the first time and to work with the YOTEL brand. ( I also spent some time with my Australian friends in Sentosa and more on that later ). Singapore is easy to navigate – taxis are cheap but they can add up if you use them for everything. YOTEL is conveniently located about 5-7 minute walking distance from the MRT station. ( MRT : Mass Rapid Transport ). Or you could ask the hotel to call you a cab.
My favorite part of YOTEL Singapore was their Grains & Hops restaurant and the attached co-working space and swimming pool deck. It’s like an all-in-one space where I could have spent all day, day after day. But then I had Singapore to explore! YOTEL is definitely very reasonably priced considering hotel room rates in Singapore in general. The Premium Queen Cabin with a View that I was hosted in, costs about 208 Singaporean Dollars currently and includes breakfast ( opening rates as displayed on the brand’s website ).
If you’re traveling to Singapore – for work or pleasure – and need a place to crash at night – like a “staycation”, YOTEL is ideal. If you want to sleep-in, the bed is HUGE ( the hydraulics are cool too – get a back-rest during the day and flatten it out completely at night ). You can roll down the blinds to cover the glass-fronted loo so that you can sleep in the dark during the day. I didn’t really hear any disturbance from neighboring rooms either. The hotel has 610 rooms! If you like the concept of the hotel and you still want the typical large suite, they have that sorted as well. Executive and King Suites for the luxury traveler.
But really, Grains & Hops was my favorite place. They have a sampling of local food and beer too, which kept me happy for 4 consecutive meals, after which I think I’d tried everything new and headed out to try more. There’s a gym with very basic machines as well if you’d like a quick cardio / weights session during your day. And then a quick cool down in the pool. The pool’s right outside the dining area though so if you’re shy, you can consider swimming during off-peak hours.
This is Asia’s first YOTEL. New ones are being planned and built in London, Amsterdam, Miami and even Dubai! A new one is also getting setup at Changi Airport in Singapore.
I was really impressed with how space has been managed inside the rooms. I might have also enjoyed solving the mystery of what was a door, what was a cabinet, what was a table and what panels hid utilities behind them. I did not ask the staff on purpose – to take me through the room. I figure it out myself and had a blast.
And none of those piddly toiletries either. Big-ass refillable bottles full of lovely shampoo, conditioner and body lotion.
The self-service check-in makes life a LOT easier if you’re in a hurry and don’t want to wait in a queue. The consoles are self-explanatory, including swiping your credit card and generating room key cards for you. I saw all kinds of people at Mission Control ( the lobby / reception area ), who were coming in to stay at the hotel. Indians, Americans, Australians, were the ones I was able to identify.
In general, Singapore is hot and muggy and it can rain pretty much any time ( there’s an umbrella in your room – look for it! ). Insane number of options for shopping, of course. It is super clean, the people are nice and there is something for everyone. Whether you’re a budget or a luxury traveler. It’s nice to have options like YOTEL in expensive locations like Singapore. It was my pleasure to spend a week in the Little Red Dot!
If you’re planning to head to Singapore during the Christmas season ( OMG that’s actually kinda already happening! ), don’t miss the decorations on Orchard Road, which is right around the corner from YOTEL.
Special thanks to Emily Tay for showing me around. To Paul at Grains & Hops for being the most efficient, welcoming and proactive person I’ve met in hospitality outside India. Yes, really. Also many thanks to Felicia for managing everything and making this work!
Other credits : Embroidered Dress & Silk Jacket courtesy Sue Mue | Shoes courtesy Reebok, the Club C 85 “Melted Metal” in Pearl Met-Peach/White | Brooch I swiped from my Mom | Lipstick is Cherry Chic, The PowderMattes by Color Sensational Maybelline New York, which I picked up from Watsons in Hong Kong | Jewellery is my own.