Located at a culinary crossroad, yet away from the crowds, Big Hotel is a minimalistic yet comfy city retreat
By Pamela Chow
Big Hotel’s visitor lobby resembles a cosy living room — spacious and inviting with its warm décor (Photo: Big Hotel)
When I stepped into Big Hotel, I was surprised by the picture of tranquillity that greeted me.
The visitor lobby, which mimics a cosy living room, stretches before the check-in counter — spacious and inviting with its warm décor. The staff ushered us in with amiable smiles, while humbly apologising for the short wait.
Given the building’s steely exterior and its location in the busy heart of Bras Basah, I was unexpectedly charmed by a homely welcome.
The BigStar Suite exudes a chic industrial vibe and is stocked with just the essentials that every traveller or staycationer would need. (Photo: Big Hotel)
Just the essentials
During my stay, I was put up in the BigStar Suite, the second-largest room in the property. Using a large space to create a minimal aesthetic, the suite exudes a chic industrial vibe and is stocked with just the essentials that every traveller — or staycationer — would need: from assorted teas and a kettle to bottled water and toiletries.
Another unique feature is that the shower has a separate room, so a wet washroom floor won’t be a problem. However, one must remember to raise the temperature of the air-conditioning, or you might feel like you’ve just stepped into the Arctic when you emerge from your hot shower.
Rochor Original Beancurd can be found a short walk away from the hotel. (Photo: Pamela Chow)
Eats and treats around the corner
After settling down in the room, I realised that tea-time was approaching and I was getting peckish. Due to its recent revamp, Big Hotel will only introduce dining outlets later this year. However, it’s easy to sniff out other great food options as the hotel is located right beside some of the best local fare in town.
For example, Rochor Original Beancurd is just a short walk away, and it was here that I had a relaxing tea break with my mum.
After that, I was especially excited to find out that the dim sum cafeteria, Victor’s Kitchen, and its famous oozy salted egg yolk buns were just across the street from the hotel. Thrilled to finally get my hands on the dish that had set tongues wagging, I called up a friend to join me for dinner.
As enthusiastic foodies, we were initially set to head for a second round at Thai Gold Food — also located at Sunshine Plaza — but sadly, our stomachs had decided that they’d reached their limits. Instead, we hopped on a bus for a quick ride to Orchard to hunt for dessert, and ended up window-shopping with sweet treats in hand.
Big Hotel is also a short walk from the entertainment hub of Prinsep Street and Dhoby Ghaut, where bar hoppers, bingsu (Korean shaved ice) lovers and late-night gamers can stay out late without having to worry about the ride home.
Big Hotel currently has a guest gym, and will begin introducing other facilities and outlets in the coming year. (Photo: Pamela Chow)
After my little adventure into the city, I was looking forward to curling up in bed for an evening movie marathon. Big Hotel offers a wide selection of international movies for free, and I was contented to watch Jurassic World and The Dictator while snug under the sheets.
All in all, Big Hotel is highly suitable for food lovers and adventurers, looking for a hassle-free and comfortable stay in between discovering city sights and tasty delights. With such friendly service and a relaxed vibe, the hotel’s upcoming outlets and facilities will likely be the cherry on top of a satisfying staycation.
Big Hotel, 200 Middle Road, Singapore 188980
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of Weekender, Issue 155, June 24 – July 7, 2016, with the headline ‘The big escape at Big Hotel ‘.