Situated in Sentosa Cove away from all the other hotels on the island of Sentosa, the W brand is known for their fun and quirky, almost outlandish, style of interiors and furnishing. I’ve been wanting to check this hotel out for the longest time but prices have always been insanely expensive. With Trip.com, although the eventual price tag was still relatively high, at least it was a fair bit lower than the regular rates with the help of a promo code. I reasoned that once the pandemic eased up, it wouldn’t be as easy to find rates like these again, so here we are!
- 1-night stay in Fabulous Room (upgraded from Wonderful Room)
- Spent: SGD$360.01
Walking through the doors of the hotel, you will have to scale a carpeted flight of stairs (or take the lift) to reach the reception area. Flooded with natural light, this bright and open space boasts breezy views of the pool and surrounding greenery.
There was a short queue at the reception counter but it moved fast and it was our turn in no time. John, the staff checking us in, was super friendly and made us feel very welcome. He also generously upgraded us to a Fabulous Room, two tiers above the Wonderful Room category we initially got. What a great way to start our stay (:
Stepping into our room on level 3 (out of 7 floors), the first thing that caught my eye was a strange hand sculpture by the door supposedly holding a rose, but it looked to me like it was smothering a bird It was additionally amusing that it bore an uncanny resemblance to my husband’s hand. Other than that, everything else about the room was nice and comfortable, especially the spaciousness of it. Expectedly, there was nothing subtle about the decor – it was flashy and flamboyant, even the amenities and their accompanying labels had witty tongue-in-cheek captions. Although certain parts of the room had visible wear and tear, most things were generally fairly well-maintained. My architect of a husband was also pretty impressed that they used actual terrazzo for the balcony table.
One novel aspect was the mood lighting around the bed, where toggling the various modes like hello, runway, escape and flirt would result in different hues of neon lights. I received my usual firm pillow promptly but alas, the bed was a tad too soft such that I woke in the middle of the night with a mild backache.
The eclectic bathroom was equally roomy and came with a tub and a separate standing shower. Similar to the design in Oasia Hotel Novena, there is a single sliding door shared between the shower area and water closet, which meant we could only close either one or the other. I liked how the tub had direct line of sight to the TV and balcony but unlike the one at Fullerton Bay Hotel, this one was partially obstructed with the frosted glass partitions.
As our room was pretty near the lifts and the soundproofing wasn’t fantastic, the shrill “dings” each time someone used the lift was overly audible. We approached the front desk regarding this matter and they helped to shift us to a room on level 6 that was much further away from the lift lobby. This room had a slightly different configuration, with the desk placed closer to the window, as it had a connecting door.
The panoramic view from our balcony here was way better than our previous room! We could clearly see the lawn, the pool and the sea glimmering under the sun. We spent some time just observing the yachts streaming in and out of the cove, incredibly calming. Unfortunately, there was one glaring issue: the presence of drain flies. I managed to eliminate three of them but just knowing there was probably more where those came from made me feel terribly uneasy. The turndown service we requested for before we left for dinner was also rather bare minimum, with nothing replenished except water.
All in-house guests have complimentary 1-hour access to the spa facilities at AWAY Spa on level 1, which include a whirlpool, vitality pool, steam room, sauna and a relaxation lounge. I soaked in the vitality pool and whirlpool for a bit but the whole area was a little too dark for my liking. It didn’t feel as relaxing as the ones as The Westin or St. Regis, where there was an abundance of natural light streaming into the space.
Free yoga sessions were also available from 7.30am to 8.30am from Mondays to Wednesdays and 8am to 9am on weekends, with only two slots per session.
The pool and gym can also be found on level 1 of the property. One of the largest free-form hotel pools I’ve seen in Singapore, it even comes with a water slide for the young and the young at heart. There are some jacuzzi jet sections along the sides of the pool as well. The gym is quite sizeable and seemingly holds an endless array of equipment.
Located upstairs on level 2 near the reception area, WOOBAR is an alluring venue with great views for afternoon tea or evening drinks with live DJ music on the weekends.
Come dinner time, we headed to SKIRT on level 1, the hotel-operated steakhouse. It is brightly lit in the day with its floor-to-ceiling windows but at night, it transforms into a cosy, intimate setting perfect for a romantic dinner. We were seated at one of the booths by the window and assisted by Theresa, who was such a gem! She took the time to listen to our preferences and recommended dishes based on her personal experience. On top of that, she diligently checked in on us from time to time to top up our warm water and even shared briefly about her life back in the Philippines (:
For starters, we were brought a complimentary basket of warm focaccia with butter and salt. Then, we were offered an interesting palate cleanser that came in a cute bottle containing a concoction of apple juice, ginger ale and a hint of bourbon for that warm feeling down your throat.
For our mains, I had the butchers cut steak ($78++) while my husband ordered the beef rossini with foie gras ($88++). My steak was juicy, flavourful and nicely medium rare without tasting gamey. The succulent beef rossini went incredibly well with the french and whole grain mustards, plus the foie gras tasted creamy and delicious too.
For dessert, we shared a dark chocolate soufflé with plum and burgundy wine sorbet ($20++). Initially, we asked to change the sorbet to vanilla ice cream as we weren’t sure how strong the wine flavour would be but this request was overlooked, so in the end, we got to sample both (not a bad outcome in my books heh).
As it turned out, I actually really liked the sorbet as opposed to the very forgettable vanilla ice cream. It was light and refreshing just as Theresa said it would be. The soufflé was wonderfully risen to height and super indulgent with just the right sweetness and lightness that made it a delightful ending to the meal. Prices here are rather hefty but if you have access to the Love Dining programme, you can enjoy a 50% discount on the bill for two diners. Ours came up to $109.46, a decent amount for a meal of this quality.
Full from dinner and seeing that the rainy weather had cleared up, we decided to take a midnight stroll around the cove. It was amazingly quiet and tranquil, hearing the waves wash up against the shore and watching the yachts bob up and down rhythmically. Such a serene way to conclude our day (:
Our stay didn’t come with complimentary breakfast this time but there was supposedly a promotional price of $39++ per pax if we added it on during check-in. I don’t usually do such add-ons, especially since this one felt a tad exorbitant, but I figured since we wouldn’t be back here anytime soon (or so I thought), we might as well complete the experience.
Having returned from the Maldives, Michelin-experienced US executive chef, Henry Jordan, was helming The Kitchen Table during our stay, the restaurant where a la carte buffet breakfast was served. Main access to the restaurant is via a staircase down from level 2 near WOOBAR. After a brief wait at the entrance, a staff warmly ushered us in. We opted to sit indoors as it was drizzling but you can choose to sit outdoors as it is mostly sheltered.
Unsurprisingly, all the dishes were quite awesome! Our unanimous favourite was the fluffy truffle scrambled eggs atop a soft griddled brioche with crispy sides. I liked the well-seasoned crab cakes with eggs benedict too. Even the desserts were above the average standard you’d typically get at most local hotel breakfasts. The buttermilk pancakes had a zesty infusion (though it was still fairly dense) while the belgian waffles were moist on the inside and crunchy on the outside.
There were some dishes worth avoiding, like the smoked salmon salad, chicken congee and pastries (except the pain au chocolat which was yummy), if you need to save on stomach space. It was a pity that only the watermelon juice was fresh as well. But all in all, this breakfast totally surpassed my expectations and I felt a lot better about having to fork out $45.90 per pax for it 😀
My overall rating of the experience: 4 out of 5 stars. What is truly unparalleled here are the gorgeous views and luxury resort vibes, in addition to the spacious rooms and impeccable service standards (special shout-out to John from the front desk team and Theresa from SKIRT!). Breakfast was really quite impressive, with some menu items elevated with more premium ingredients. Not to mention the huge free-form swimming pool that is a spectacle in itself and I’m sure kids will have a blast with the water slide. I did appreciate that guests could access the spa facilities at no extra cost and although it was a pleasant experience, I personally prefer spaces that aren’t as dim. However, the stay wasn’t without its flaws. The most troubling aspect for me was the involuntary hypervigilance knowing that there were icky drain flies in our room, which probably meant cleanliness issues in the bathroom. When we shared this with Sebastian, the Director of Rooms, who happened to be the one checking us out, he empathized with our predicament and not only waived the breakfast charges, he offered service recovery on our next stay should we decide to give the hotel another chance. His sincerity to make things right was truly heartwarming, which left us with an indelibly positive impression (: