This restoration is designed to ensure that we retain what is so special about Raffles – the ambience, the service, the charm and the heritage of the hotel. It is also intended to provide the facilities, spaces and experiences that the well-travelled expect. The newly restored Raffles will breathe new life into our beautiful building. With a planned reopening in the second half of 2019, you can expect to experience Raffles’ charming ambiance and legendary service and enjoy newly opened bars, restaurants, courtyards, and social areas; spaces designed to make Raffles the place to meet, spend time, shop and celebrate.
Raffles has begun writing a new chapter, as an extensive restoration, sensitive to the heritage buildings’ striking façades and features, breathes new life into the storied hotel. Immerse yourself in its one-of-a-kind ambience. Savour the carefully restored splendour and enhanced comforts. Experience Raffles’ legendary service as you enjoy newly opened bars, restaurants and boutiques. Explore graceful courtyards and relax in cosy social spaces.
No stay in the Lion City would be complete without a visit to this iconic hotel. Shortly following its opening in 1887, Raffles was seen as a beacon and haven for world travellers, arriving from all shores to experience its exquisite combination of grandeur and charm. Staying here became a rite of passage among adventurers, with “See you at Raffles” their signature parting shot.
Today, the hotel continues to embody regal elegance and Old World appeal. In a city where modern buildings compete to touch the sky, this beautifully preserved colonial-style treasure – declared a National Monument in 1987– takes pride of place in the vibrant civic and business district.
Named after Sir Stamford Raffles, founder of Singapore, the hotel has welcomed countless legendary names throughout its history. Writers, movie stars, dignitaries, journalists... They all found inspiration and conviviality here. Among the many luminaries were Rudyard Kipling, Elizabeth Taylor, Somerset Maugham, Ava Gardner and Noel Coward. At a time when global travel was a luxury available to only a select few, the stories these personalities shared – both facts and fables – contributed to Raffles’ renown. Thanks to them and myriad other guests over the decades, the Long Bar’s Singapore Sling gained international fame, along with exciting tales – such as the one involving a tiger in the Bar & Billiard Room.
Intricately woven into the hotel are lush tropical gardens. Occupying more than a quarter of the entire estate, they provide soothing contrast to the urban hustle and bustle. It is not uncommon to hear the delightful melodies of singing birds beyond the verandahs, and the rustle of palm leaves in the breeze. You are in an oasis of exquisite tranquility. Welcome to Raffles Singapore.
The Raffles Grill was renamed Elizabethan Grill to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. The 1950s saw Ava Gardner and Elizabeth Taylor among the famous who visited the Hotel.
Singapore, Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak formed the Federation of Malaysia.
Singapore left the Federation to become a sovereign and independent nation.
Pretty Polly, which starred Trevor Howard and Hayley Mills, was filmed at Raffles Hotel.
Raffles Hotel celebrated her centenary a year early to coincide with the Year of the Tiger. A live tiger was photographed on the first day of the year – on top of the Hotel's billiard table.
The Singapore Government designated Raffles Hotel a National Monument.
In March, the Hotel closed to enable a complete restoration. The multi million dollar project would return Raffles to its elegant look of the 1910s and 1920s and ensure its status as one of the world's Grand Hotels.
On 16 September, the restored Hotel reopened its doors to the public, looking much as it did in 1915 during its elegant first heydays. 1 November and beyond saw the opening of the Raffles Hotel Arcade with more facilities and attractions including 65 speciality shops, additional food and beverage outlets, the Raffles Hotel Museum & Museum Shop, Jubilee Hall theatre playhouse and five function areas.
The official commemoration of Raffles Hotel as a National Monument with the unveiling of a plaque at the entrance of the Main Building. Raffles Hotel launches a lavishly illustrated hardbound book titled "Raffles Hotel", a definitive on the Hotel's history and restoration. Raffles begins the tradition of an annual Christmas Gala Dinner and Tree Auction for charity.
"Raffles - The Untold Story" is launched and takes a humorous look at the Hotel and her history. The tradition of the New Year's Eve Gala Ball at the Lobby is revived.
A renowned Italian artist, Carlo Marchiori returns to Raffles to add to its classic ambience with elegant fresco murals depicting landscapes of old Asia and figures composed in dance spanning the exterior walls and corridors of the Hotel's function areas, The Ballroom & Jubilee Hall.
On 14 September, Raffles Hotel commemorated a suite in honour of James A. Michener, Pulitzer-prize winning novelist, who had a life-long love of travel and Raffles Hotel. The launch of the suite also coincided with the Hotel’s 111th birthday which fell on 16 September 1998.
Arising from the success of Long Bar, the Long Bar Steakhouse opens. A steakhouse with a difference combines steakhouse dining with the nostalgia and simple honest flavours of early plantation fare.
To commemorate her 117th anniversary, Raffles Hotel collaborated with leading watch manufacturer Longines in the creation of the Longines Raffles Collection featuring 117 exquisite limited edition timepieces.
Raffles Hotel celebrated her 120th birthday in splendid style with an unforgettable Gala Reception on Sunday, 16 September 2007. The centre stage for the reception took place in the grand lobby of the colonial-styled hotel, with Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew gracing the event as Guest-of-Honour.
Raffles Hotel launched the book Memoirs of a Raffles Original, featuring the story of its Resident Historian, and his unique relationship with the Grand Dame. In this wistful and humorous autobiographical account, he retraces his nearly four decades of service; from his humble start in the maintenance department to becoming its very first Resident Historian.
Raffles Hotel celebrates 125 Years and has turned to another symbol of good taste and style to mark its anniversary: Jaeger-LeCoultre whose own history goes back nearly 180 years. To mark Raffles’ 125th anniversary, Jaeger-LeCoultre has created an exclusive engraving “Raffles Hotel 1887 – 2012 Singapore”. Available in the Gents’ Reverso Grande Taille and Ladies’ Grande Reverso Lady Ultra Thin.
Raffles Hotel Singapore embarks on a careful and sensitive restoration, targeting a grand reopening in the second half of 2019. 2017 also marks the 130th anniversary of Raffles Hotel Singapore, the flagship of Raffles Hotels and Resorts that has 11 other properties under its portfolio..