Gong Xi Fa Cai
I hope you guys have had a blast during your Chinese New Year. All the celebrations and reunions have have been quite hectic for one to handle, am I right? Is it time to get away? A quick escape and yet not willing to go too far out as visiting is still on going? Well here’s a suggestion. Why not kick back and just regain and re-calibrate your inner chi at Singapore’s only urban oasis in the middle of the city, Hotel Fort Canning. Let me now tell you a portion of Singapore’s History in relation to this rather majestic architectural relic (Jump to paragraph 6 if uninterested).
Located on (obviously) Fort Canning Hill, originally known as Bukit Larangan (or “Forbidden Hill” in Malay). It has been a local landmark in the city since Singapore’s earliest recorded history. It has been the exclusive address for many of Singapore’s Rulers and colonial leaders dating back all the way back to the 14th century when it was the site for the palatial resort for former Majapahit Kings, which then during the colonial times became the location for the residence of colonial governors which began with Sir Stamford Raffles. The 60m high building have also witnessed key historic events throughout its lifetime on the hill which includes the infamous surrender of Singapore to the Japanese by Lieutenant-General Percival.
Believed to be the site of palaces built by the locals ancestral Kings, the Keramat Iskandar Shah at the foot of the hill is known as his final resting place for the last Malay King of the island, and was venerated by the Muslims. Relics have been found during a contemporary archaeological excavation which builds up more evidence of Singapore’s role suggesting the that we were indeed a regional trading hub. These relics can be found in the lobby of Hotel Fort Canning, with the interior designed by one of the leading architectural firm, DP Architects. The Relics were intentionally arranged four individual pits in the floor giving visitor a realistic experience of how it looks like during excavation.
The colonial governors residence formally known as Government Hill was later named Fort Canning after Viscount Charles John Canning, who was then Governor General and the first Viceroy of India served as a headquarters of the Singapore Base District until the spread of World War II (WWII) into Asia Pacific in 1941. But after a year of ill-fated attempts to defend the island from the invading Japanese forces, they also used the fort for its military until the end of the Japanese Occupation in 1945, where the British resumed control. The bunker which is adjacent to the whats now known as Hotel Fort Canning is now a visitor attraction known as The Battle Box.
Fast Forward, the British handed over control of the fort to the Singaporean Military in 1963, and was home to the headquarters of the 4th Malaysian Infantry Brigade until December 1966 when it was handed over (again) to Singapore Armed Forces. The SAF then proceeded to build the Singapore Command and Staff College (SCSC) on the fort which officially opened in 1970. In 1976 however, the SCSC moved out the building and it remained unoccupied until 1995, when it housed Fort Canning Country Club.
The Legends Fort Canning Park took over the premises (again) in November 2002, and only in October 2010, it re-opened as Hotel Fort Canning Singapore. This iconic building, tucked away within 18 hectares of lush greenery have been changing ownership for more than 5 times and even been unoccupied for 8 years. Finally, we have found a sole purpose for such a majestic beauty.
Hotel Fort Canning houses 86 luxurious room, an extremely intimate boutique style hotel designed to reflect elements of nature. With the breathtakingly high ceilings (approximately 5 meters) and picturesque vies of the park and city, the hotel manages to bring the inside out and the out inside with the ingenious choice of motives and colours. With the basic needs of in-room technology including a Ipod Docking system by Bowers&Weklins, the room also features an interactive control panel for room temperature adjustments, mood lightings and curtains. What brings it all together will obviously be the award winning Designer Furniture pieces to compliment the luxuriously furnished floors in marble and teak. Not forgetting the monsoon rain shower and super large free-standing tub. So apart from not even lifting a finger, you can be sure you are pampered every moment during your stay at HFC.
With all the luxurious fittings and facilities, I am sure you would think it will have a super high maintenance system which can be quite unpleasing to the eye. Fret not! HFC is actually one of the greenest buildings in Singapore. Awarded the BCA Green Mark Gold Plus Award, HFC is one of the very view hotels which carries out numerous conservation initiatives such as environmentally-friendly work practices. It is also Singapore’s only hotel to carry out a “Plant-A-Tree” Program. At just SGD$200, you can plant your own tree or have a representative do it for you! What an affordable initiative don’t you think so?!
So apart from all this green initiatives, you still think it cannot get any better than that? Well thats where you are wrong. HFC has a Gym (well thats normal) with an amazingly lusciously green view and the have 3 pools! Okey maybe I am exaggerating a wee bit, but they do have 2 main pools (one lap pool and one free form pool) and the third pool is the kids pool. Ofcourse, we still do need to accommodate them too right? The best feature that this pool can offer is not the quantity! Trust me, when you do have sensitive skin or even eczema, and not being able to go for a swim in a chlorine filled pool with your friends just because your skin would dry up and flake and perhaps cause you your comfortable night sleep. Well HFC pools are treated with minerals; an ecological safe process using NASA’s technology for sanitation, to ensure that the water is chlorine and chemical free! Good news for all with skin issues!
For a small boutique hotel, HFC also offers a vast number of event spaces. Up to 12 ballrooms ranging from 40 to 230 seaters! Big enough to hold medium sized wedding or small enough to hold an intimate birthday party. Just an idea for you to judge it. Apart from all that facilities, HFC also offers a lot of sun deck for you and your resting time. Like I said earlier, is is supposed to be me-time. I am sure you can have a whole lot of me-time here, if not we-time (wink-wink).
So thats all folks from me up on this hills! I do have chills about this place, but what a amazing place to just cuddle up with you loved ones, oops. Well good night to you guys! its almost time for me to take off! Ciao, and don’t forget to book a stay with Hotel Fort Canning!
Hotel Fort Canning 11 Canning Walk Singapore 178881