Dubbed a “hotel in a garden,” it has been awarded Singapore’s Green Mark Platinum, the country’s most notable environmental certification. Doubling the site’s original ground space through terraced gardens at multiple levels scaling the towers, it’s an unmistakable landmark.
Recycled water, solar panels, maximisation of use of natural light, and open hallway design to capture cooling breezes are further attempts at reducing the energy consumption of the building. Taps and showerheads feature water-saving mechanisms, recycling bins in rooms provide space to sort trash, and the hotel bottles its own water too. It’s a feel-good experience.
We’d continue efforts to be green and set out to explore the city on foot. Within walking distance of the hotel are a number of earth and body friendly eateries. Real Food, in the basement of Central shopping mall at Boat Quay, is known for its wholesome, unprocessed, regionally-grown and meat-free cuisine. I’d order their fresh salads and pumpkin pancakes for sure.
A few blocks in the other direction, on Keong Saik Road, Afterglow offers a host of sustainability-minded initiatives. It too provides a plant-based menu with a number of raw options. In supporting regional organic producers and community-based programmes, they, as do Real Food, show concern for the ethics of where our food comes from.
The carrot orange miso and ginger soup rocks, so do their raw crackers with nut cheese. Singapore has a good number of parks — far more than can be covered in a weekend visit. Sticking with our goal of carbon-free travel within the city, we’d make time for Fort Canning Park and Gardens by the Bay, both walking distance from the hotel.
Fort Canning is great for short distance joggers who appreciate a few stairs and hills to get their bottoms in shape. An archaeological dig, spice garden, sculptures and old underground military complex are sites to admire on the heritage walking trails.
In the other direction, Gardens by the Bay is best accessed early morning or late afternoon. Early risers might consider packing a picnic and heading all the way through the gardens to the Marina Barrage.
At the mouth of the Marina Channel it forges Singapore’s fifteenth reservoir and the managing building’s rooftop has been covered completely with lawn. Walk up the spiral path to the top of the property to survey the sunrise over the sea, or come later afternoon and face the city to watch the sunset behind the spectacular skyline of Singapore.