Think Singapore and zen don’t fit in the same sentence? The Six Senses Duxton will change your mind.
When the Six Senses announced a new hotel close to Singapore’s CBD, it was hard not to raise an eyebrow.
Known for building hotels in UNESCO heritage sites, a busy city of 6 million people is the last place you’d expect to find a Six Senses property.
Nevertheless, as from April this year, the group’s first urban projects the Six Senses Duxton, and the Six Senses Maxwell House, will be opening up to the world and ready to welcome guests.
Does the brand fit in the middle of a sprawling city? Will the two hotels even feel like Six Senses at all? We decided to head down to the Six Senses Dutton, ahead of the opening and find out for ourselves.
Where is it?
Trust the Six Senses to find the one place in Singapore a writer can describe as quiet and not make it hyperbole.
Located in the Tanjong Pagar historical district, Duxton Hill barely looks like modern day Singapore at all.
You’ll find no skyscrapers here, no crowds, and no shopping malls. Instead, swap the buildings of glass and steel for colonial-era shop houses, the malls for independently owned boutiques, and chain restaurants for quaint cafes selling anything from fresh French pastries to caviar, and you’ll get the picture.
The laid back Duxton Hill is the ideal location for the Six Senses Duxton
Even Singapore’s omnipresent cabs are hard to find here. Instead, the bevvy of shops, cafes and green space create an exclusive “village-within-a-city” feel we couldn’t help but love.
What to expect
Sleek interiors signed by Anoushka Hempel, 49 rooms with original designs, and an atmosphere that makes you feel like you’re anywhere but five minutes from the Singaporean CBD.
Let’s be clear, the hotel was in the last stages of construction when we last visited. But, despite having to shimmy across the walls to make way for workmen in the narrow corridors and that the common areas were temporary staff working stations, there’s an undeniable aura of peace.
Sleek designs by Anoushka Hempel make for a cocooning atmosphere from the city outside.
Hempel’s (former Bond Girl, and current designer extraordinaire) predominant choice of black for the interiors makes for a “hush hush” and cocooning atmosphere once you step in from the outside. Gold accents, yellowed wallpaper, and a liberal application of yellow pots and calligraphy brushes set the stage for a hotel that’s unlike any we’ve seen in Singapore.
The Six Senses Duxton’s Reception area.
Looks wise, it’s a winner, but the appeal for a Six Senses hotel is more than skin deep. For fans of the chain, it’s the zen philosophy, commitment to sustainable luxury, and curated wellness activities which make a stay in one of these luxury hotels unforgettable. How does the Six Senses Duxton fare in those regards? Quite well indeed.
The Six Senses Yellow Bar, soon to be one of the hippest places to sip a drink in Singapore
The Yellow Pot Restaurant
The Six Senses Duxton looks set to connect its guests with Asia’s soulful and traditional side, and make them forget there’s a concrete jungle only minutes away. For example, a Chinese traditional doctor is at hand for any health checkups and to introduce guests to herbal medicine, acupuncture massage, qigong and dietary therapy within the comfort of the hotel. Complimentary yoga sessions with singing bowl meditation are available twice a week and held in a small green area behind the hotel. It’s the best way to discover Singapore’s softer side.
We had the privilege of visiting 3 of the Six Sense’s rooms, the Opium Room, the Pearl Suite and the Duxton Duplex Suite. None of them look alike. When the Six Senses Duxton say their rooms are originally designed, they mean it.
The Opium Room for example, is a nod to Duxton Hill’s colorful past. A contemporary take on the opium dens of old, its dark interiors ooze sexiness and challenge your conception of what a wellness hotel ought to look like. The Pearl Suite however, is the Yang to the Opium’s Yin. All dark is chased away for a light and airy room where natural light takes center stage along with two mother of pearl encrusted wardrobes which flank the bed like two very expensive guard dogs. For a little something that stands out from the norm in Singapore, the Duxton Duplex Suite impresses by offering two levels connected by a lacquered wood staircase.
The Pearl Suite – Both of those cabinets come encrusted with mother of pearl.
The Duxton Duplex Suite – One of the only two storey hotel rooms in Singapore
The Opium Room – Sleek, Suave and Sexy, the Opium Room is unlike anything the Six Senses has done before.
The Six Senses have done everything possible to keep their brand identity alive in their first urban hotel. From the quiet location to the comfortable and gorgeous designs, and integration of local traditional medicine doctors, the Six Senses Duxton isn’t the odd one out from this group’s excellent portfolio. We look forward to confirming our initial thoughts as soon as the hotel opens next week. Who knows, you might book it through our collections soon.