The Hyatt name had been around in Singapore for some years, but at somewhat traditional level – although admittedly what is now Grand Hyatt revolutionises its food and drinks offerings continually. Now, however, an element of extra fun has been brought to town with the arrival of Hyatt family member, Andaz Singapore. This is a luxury hotel for those who like stylish design – see, above, the exterior, by architect Ole Scheeren. See the open atrium, soaring from floors 25 to 39 of the 39-floor building. See how designer André Fu has, as always, come up with something new. Outside all 340 bedroom doors is a faux letter box, for proximity-pad access. And of course, as the video below shows, André Fu’s room designs are empathetic and fun.
Fun is apparent in all of the 316 team members I came across. Chio(kako) Shimizu, Director of Operations, is a tall Japanese lady who I thought was the liveliest in the place, and dinner with her and the Lausanne-born GM, Olivier Lenoir, a former chef, was lots of entertainment, too. We ate at Auntie’s Wok, Hyatt’s take on food stalls. The menu is sheets of paper clipped to a bright orange plastic board.Dishes come quickly. First a big steamer trolley is wheeled in – it holds individual portions of Jiao Zi dumplings, filled with tiger prawn and chicken, or chicken and mushroom. A china bowl has bite sizes of crispy organic cucumber with garlic and plenty of chili. Another bowl has cashew nuts and mixed peppers. I think my favourite is actually wok-fried broccoli with wood ear and shimeji mushrooms, again with crispy garlic. I am still hungry, so we go to the DIY icecream machine, dispensing chocolate, vanilla or a blend of both. I fill a glass with vanilla and the server tops it with sauce and raspberries.
By contrast, after an early morning workout in the 24/7 Matrix gym on the 38thfloor, I was pleased that breakfast, in Alley on 25, was comparatively relaxed treat. You can sit outside, by the pool, or inside in 3 adjacent rooms, one of which has the continental buffet, another the hot buffet and live egg station. Piles of plates, all Clayton, from Malaysia, but different patterns, allow you to help yourself and move around. I have a Danone aloe vera yoghurt and a jar of acai purée, and an enormous strawberry and some chunks of papaya – this is a stylish meal, every bit of displayed fruit looks perfect, and the jams, already on tables, are Bonne Maman. I order an omelette and the cook cannot believe I do not want anything in it or on it. Although I could make my own coffee (or squeeze my own juice) I am brought one, and then another, really good cup. I see that this place, open continuously day and evening-long, at weekends serves breakfast until 2.30, and then, later, switches to an oysters and ribs buffet. But I must be on my way. Suddenly a local team member, Delia, appears by magic to say goodbye. This modern-luxury hotel does not have the word ‘boring’ in its vocabulary. AND HERE IS ROOM 3114