A cosy enclave with delicate touches of Peranakan heritage.
Standing in front of the Village Hotel Albert Court, the first thing we noticed was the highly distinctive clock tower that stood in the middle of the roundabout driveway. Boasting a distinctive colonial style revitalised by modern influences with a dash of local quaintness, the clock tower was a clear embodiment of the experience that lay in store!
Stepping into the hotel, we were quickly attracted to the Peranakan furnishings and furniture, as well as the traditional Indian carvings and motifs, which gave an oriental twist to the colonial-style interior. With pastel-coloured wallpapers, warm lighting and spacious corridors, the hotel exudes an atmosphere of tranquility. By combining its pre-war heritage with a pervasive Straits Settlement Style and modern amenities, the Village Hotel Albert Court certainly offers elegant yet cosy rooms that guarantee a comfortable and quiet staycation.
We especially love the twin jacuzzi pools nestled at the back of the hotel! With smooth wooden floors, beautiful surrounding greenery and curtains to separate the jacuzzi area from the rest of the hotel, the pools became our favourite place to lie back and soak all our worries away.
We couldn’t resist sighing in contentment once we entered the room – the soft lighting and plush king-sized bed clearly promised a relaxing stay! It was so difficult to get off the fluffy mattress, and we inadvertently spent the next morning just lazing in bed. The Peranakan touches to the interior decor of the room added to this sense of cozy comfort, enhanced by beautiful paintings and nature-inspired motifs. Besides the ever-so-enticing bed, we also enjoyed sinking into the equally comfortable couch where we got some reading done or dabbled with our phones.
The best part, however, was the location of the Club Rooms! The hotel is split into two sections, one on each side of the street. The Club Rooms, along with the Club Suites, are in the section that’s exclusive for the hotel’s club guests, away from the hotel’s main facilities. This meant that our room was in the quieter section of the hotel, making our staycation an extremely peaceful one! The club section also has its own breakfast buffet at its members-only lobby, which allowed our morning meals to be both private and tranquil.
With lovely arched windows almost stretching from the floor to the ceiling, the Deluxe Room momentarily transported us back to the pre-war era! We loved how every feature in the room is fused with a tinge of quaintness, from the oriental decorations on the desk lamp to the alabaster lace curtains.
The massive windows constantly bathed the room in natural light throughout the day, which further added to the elegant atmosphere. If you want an even cosier stay, check out the Superior Room instead! This slightly smaller room retains the design of the Deluxe Room, and is perfect for a more intimate staycation.
If you really desire ample space for your stay, try the Premier Room! This large room has the same layout as the Superior and Deluxe Rooms, but with a lot more space.
You can do what we did and sprawl your belongings all around the room! You might even get the massive near-floor-to-ceiling windows like we had!
Wanting to pamper yourself with the exclusive comforts of the Club Room, but on a much bigger scale? The hotel’s grandest room awaits: the Club Suite! Situated at the same section as the Club Rooms, the Club Suite has two separate rooms – the bedroom, with a luxurious king-sized bed, and the living room.
Not only do you get the exclusive service of a hotel Club guest, but you’re also guaranteed earlier check-in or later check-out timings when you book direct. What’s more, the Club Suites open out to a picturesque corridor filled with lush green plants and gently flowing pools!
From soaking in outdoor jacuzzis to relaxing in comfy armchairs at the Lobby Lounge, experience tranquility like no other.
Tucked away in a corner of the hotel, the twin jacuzzi pools provide a soothing respite for both travellers and staycation-ers alike, either from the chaotic hecticness of work, or from a long day of city exploring. As each pool can sit up to four people, you can even strike up a pleasant conversation with fellow guests as you let the bubbling waters ease your tired muscles!
We also loved how the jacuzzi area is demarcated from the rest of the hotel by curtains, which further amplify the atmosphere of relaxation and tranquility that the pools provide.
The jacuzzi pools quickly became our favourite spot to unwind! It was especially nice to soak in the warm water after a day of walking about the area,. For those who prefer a brief dip but still want some quiet time, there are a couple of chairs provided in the jacuzzi area (outside of the pools of course).
We admittedly spent hours in the jacuzzi – from chatting with each other to cuddling at the chairs, this cosy enclave is the perfect bubble far from hectic work life!
Operating daily from 6.30am to 10.30pm, the Albert Cafe offers an exquisite range of both Western and Asian dishes. We highly recommend the Tenderloin Steak (medium-rare please) and the Chicken Fried Kway Teow, both of which left us paradoxically satisfied but also wanting for more!
The cafe’s colonial-Peranakan furnishings also made our dining experience more rustic – it was lovely to enjoy our food amidst the quaint paintings hanging from every pillar.
Seeking a quiet place for after-dinner drinks, yet reluctant to simply return to your room with a bottle of wine in hand? Check out the Lobby Lounge instead! The barkeep serves a wide array of excellent cocktails and there are snacks available to complement your drink. Besides sipping your beverage and immersing yourself in the pleasant ambience, you can also people-watch!
The lounge is next to the Front Desk, making it easy to observe the streams of visitors moving in and out of the lobby. These moments of people-watching made for good breaks in between the many intimate conversations we had in the Lobby Lounge.
The hotel was converted from a series of shophouses and thus still retains its air well, a unique architectural element commonly found in pre-war Singaporean shophouses. The air well consisted of an open column running through the entire shophouse to an outlet on the roof, allowing air to flow into the shophouse and cool the entire area!
This remarkable colonial “air-conditioning system” usually has a water feature at the bottom to enhance its cooling effect, though the hotel’s air well is now simply situated above one of its common corridors. If you can’t seem to find this feature, ask the any of the hotel staff – they would be more than delighted to bring you there.
The Village Hotel Albert Court hides a secret like no other: a staff member who can sing, perform magic tricks and even DJ! Jamaluddin Mohad loves to surprise hotel guests, whose birthdays coincide with their stay in the hotel, with a private performance at their own rooms.
Mr Jamaluddin also enjoys chatting with guests, so be prepared to be awed by one of his numerous magic tricks as he pleasantly enquires about your day.
Scattered across the hotel are not just Peranakan-inspired furnishings, but also vintage items from colonial times. We had fun trying out the authentic rotary dial phone at the hotel lobby, which was really a far cry from the modern voice-accessible smartphones we all have now! (The rotary dial phone does not work, by the way.) Across the street at the other section of the hotel, we marvelled at the exquisite display of heritage artefacts in the club lounge.
We spotted porcelain crockery adorned with Peranakan decorations, as well as monochrome photographs of the surrounding streets during Singapore’s pre-independence times. Be prepared to see more cultural relics as you saunter through the hotel – you never know what you might encounter with each turn!
There are plenty of dining and entertainment options at your doorstep! From shopping malls to hipster cafes and the sprawling Mustafa Centre, you’ll never run out of things to do.
Besides the dining options at both Little India and Bugis, you can source out good bites at the various restaurants and cafes just next to the hotel! Just like Village Hotel Albert Court, the eateries in the area are also converted from pre-war shophouses. Check out the Mexican dishes at the Casa Latina or go for more spicy fare at The Chilli Padi Singapore.
For alcoholic delights, you can enjoy Czech craft beer at Hospoda Microbrewery or pick from a good selection of wine at Wine BOS.
With such a versatile array of dining options just a stone’s throw away, you needn’t have to trouble yourself with where to go for a meal!
Located at the heart of Little India, this shopping mall sells a sweeping selection of goods at extremely affordable prices. From flashy dress watches to dried fruits, you can get almost anything you need at Mustafa Centre!
From the hotel, the shopping mall is a relaxing walk down the road, which is also brimming with shops selling clothing, shoes and leather bags.
You can start your shopping journey straight from the road itself, and peruse the various items from the streetside stores! With so much to offer, take a day off to shop at Mustafa Centre and its surrounding streets. P.S. Mustafa Centre is open round-the-clock, perfect for a late-night shopping spree!
Famous for its fashion boutiques and Middle Eastern cafes, Haji Lane is situated at a corner of the nearby Kampong Glam neighbourhood. Besides seeking out avant-garde fashion accessories, head over to the various bars along the street and the surrounding area. For out-of-this-world cocktails, visit Bar Stories, one of the first cocktail specialist bars in Singapore! We also love the vibrant atmosphere at Going Om, with its hippy beats and open mics. Wherever you are enjoying your after-dinner beverage, be sure to check out the Instagram-worthy street art too!