Yes, we know. A big change from all those rooftop tents and cheap motels we have stayed in. As unemployed graduates who didn’t have a job then, being able to afford a 5* luxury hotel was, and still is, a luxury. We couldn’t bear to live in such extravagant hotels knowing that 80% of the time we would be out travelling in other countries.
However, going for a staycation in Singapore at a 5* hotel, now that would be worth it. Since Singapore is our ‘home country’ and we would have explored most of Singapore, we decided to splurge a little more on the hotel and to be able to fully utilise the hotel’s amenities — namely the pool, jacuzzi, steam room, and the gym.
We stayed at The Westin Singapore, which is located right in the middle of CBD, in Asia Square Tower 2. Yes, surrounding us were office buildings and many business people walking around clad in office wear and suits, while we were strolling around in our most touristy fashion. We took things slow during this staycation at our own pace to slowly enjoy the experience of being on a staycation.
The Westin’s available amenities (during COVID-19):
- Infinity Pool (facing office buildings)
- Gym (8am – 8pm opening hours due to COVID)
- Jacuzzi and steam room (10am – 8pm due to COVID)
Note: You would need to book a time slot for all public amenities at the hotel.
Day 1 – Check in: Gardens by The Bay + Massage
The reception area of Westin is sparkly clean and neat, with huge windows shining ample light in. Check in was pretty smooth, and we were given a room with an unobstructed view of the sea. After checking in, we headed over to Gardens by The Bay to visit the Cloud Forest dome, which was really cooling with many unique plants and flowers. That took us around 30-45minutes including photo taking and admiring the plants with our botany-less knowledge.
The plan was to walk to Satay by The Bay for dinner, but since it started pouring, we made a few changes to our plans and decided to go for a massage at Toa Payoh, recommended by one of our friends. The foot reflexology and body massage was 10/10, with no fuss no frills no decoration shop. Just enter, get your massage without all the fancy schmancy, and then pay and leave. Honestly, these places are definitely much cheaper than more established, well renovated massage parlours where you’ll pay exorbitant prices for massages that might be sub-par.
For dinner, we went back to the hotel’s restaurant, Cook and Brew, and had an amazing meal along with well made cocktails.
Day 2 – Sentosa: Tanjong Beach Club + Hydrodash + Lao Pat Sat Dinner
Booked our 8am gym slot the night before (usually 8am slots would be empty now since the hotel is not full + most people don’t wake up at 8am to gym on a staycation) and did a few exercises before getting ready for Sentosa. As we did not get the breakfast buffet (which costs around S$45++/pax) and something we were not willing to spend, we had to get our breakfast from the cafes near the hotel, which is plenty especially on weekdays. Usually these cafes close on weekends due to its location (Asia Square Towers, which is in the CBD) so if you’re going for a staycation there on weekends, do make sure to check out your meal options.
We went to Artisan Boulangerie Co right downstairs to get some really good coffee and pastries which did not cost us S$45/person.
Going to Tanjong Beach Club on a weekday is wonderful — it’s not as crowded. Additionally, booking a daybed on a weekday only has a minimum spending of S$100 for a 4 hour booking. Very easy to hit if you get drinks and some finger food to share. The weather was perfect for a tan, and we even got to dip in the sea and the beach club’s pool!
After that, we headed over to Hydrodash at Palawan Beach at 3pm. The crowd was not too much, but there were still plenty of people there for the activity. Honestly, Hydrodash might be one of the most fun beach activities I have done in a while. However, this activity is not for those who are not confident in the water, or have the potential to get seasick easily as the obstacle course is floating on water and it bobbles very often.
1 hour there was a killer, if you have been putting your all to clear the different obstacles set out.
We headed back to the hotel after to do a quick rinse and to hop into the jacuzzi room + steam room for a test. At every hotel, we love trying out their jacuzzi/steam room/sauna if they have any as it’s a luxury amenity 😉 The jacuzzi (Whirlpool room) and steam room is super cozy, and due to current safe distancing measures, it’s very similar to a private spa due to restrictions. Every booking is around 1.5 hours, so you can take your time in there.
Dinner was takeaway Lao Pat Sat food, such as oyster omelette, carrot cake, and many many satays. We even did some takeaway from Cook and Brew since our friend had some food credits that had to be used up.
Day 3 – Bel’s birthday celebration: High tea + Massage
Headed to the gym straight after waking up at 8am, and the gym was empty as usual. After, we headed for breakfast again at Artisan Boulangerie Co before dipping in the pool and the jacuzzi. We washed up once our slot was over, and celebrated Bel’s birthday before choosing our high tea location.
Westin offered high tea at the Lobby, but as it was seafood based and the birthday girl was mainly allergic to crustaceans, we had to make alternative arrangements. Took a cab to Pan Pacific Hotel in Suntec for their Japanese inspired high tea which was delicious. It also came with 2 free drinks/person of our choice. It’s a beautiful hotel and we would definitely be interested in staying there in the future 🙂
We shopped at Suntec City since it was linked to the hotel, before heading on to Toa Payoh for our favourite massage. We had dinner @ Cook and Brew again (since it really was the most convenient option and the food is pretty good) — we were glad the staff was able to get us a seat as it was already full house on a Thursday evening.
Day 4 – Check out: Singapore Zoo
Morning came and it was our last day here. Had breakfast and dipped in the pool + jacuzzi + steam room one last time before checking out. We could get late check-out as it was a weekday and being a Marriott member has it’s perks. We took a cab to the Singapore Zoo in Mandai only to realise that it is pouring there at 2pm 😦
We also wanted to utilise the free entrance birthday perk from the Zoo since it was B’s birthday, but apparently this scheme has been stopped due to the pandemic… Maybe they should update their website regarding this information to prevent any disappointments. There was also a revamp of the Zoo with a huge dining area outside which included KFC, so we had our lunch there before entering since the rain stopped. Another thing to note is that the Zoo entrance fees has increased to S$41 per person, and only by booking online would you be able to get a 20% discount which amounts to S$32.80 on weekdays and S$36.90 on weekends.
I vaguely remember the entrance fees being in the S$20-S$30 range in the past but inflation has finally caught up.
3pm may seem late to enter the Zoo considering the fact that the Zoo closes at 6pm, but we managed to make it to most of the shows that were available while still being able to visit all the animals.
We highly recommend going for a staycation in Singapore when the COVID-19 situation is under control. We were really lucky to have gone for a staycation right before Singapore’s Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) hit. Nevertheless, stay safe and we will all get through this together!
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