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What did TripAdvisor rate "Trendiest Hotel of 2011?" This one: the Hotel New Republic in Singapore's Chinatown. Don't let that color your judgment however, since our recent stay proved that "trendy" here doesn't mean it's overcrowded, packed with scensters or cheap furniture to look "cool." Instead, the New Republic is a quiet 30-room design-focused hotel that has expertly renovated a historic Chinatown shophouse into a place we sincerely wish we had booked for more than one night.
To be completely honest, of all the hotels we've experienced in Singapore, the New Majestic is the first one we'd return to on our next trip. It is ideal for travelers who seek out unique spaces that reflect the spirit of the destination (ah hem, not a big chain hotel) and for those who desire to be outside of the business district, in the heart of culture. And maybe those who want a funky pool too.
Rooms at the New Majestic begin around $200 per night, which we paid. There really aren't any bad rooms, but we'd try for the second floor where each room has either a balcony or a patio, some of those patios with outdoor soaking bathtubs. It's details like thisand there are many of themthat give you a sense that the New Majestic is having fun...fun with design, fun with being in Chinatown and fun with having you there, doing things like taking an al fresco midnight bath by the light of a lantern.
There once was a time when this HotelChatter writer used to book a hotel based solely on the glossy photo of its pool. Those were the days of pamphlets, however, and now with the internet, we've got far glossier photos in a multitude of angles. Still, nothing beats actually being there, seeing a stunning pool and being able to dive in, as we recently did at The New Majestic Hotel in Singapore.
You've probably seen photos of the New Majestic before, without realizing it. The "floating beds" are frequent favorites of design magazines and it was named "Trendiest Hotel" by Tripadvisor in 2011, but the pool gets enough attention on its own. You see, it sits above the lobby and has three large porthole windows that allow guests downstairs to look up at swimmers.