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As great as it is to be in the middle of nowhere – say, a private island or an isolated safari – it does not have the jolt of electricity that comes from being plugged into the humming current of a city. From Los Angeles to Singapore, here are four suites in four amazing urban hotels that give new meaning to the word ‘outstanding’.
1. The Silver Suite at The Peninsula Beverly Hills, California, USA
Last year, The Peninsula Beverly Hills celebrated its 25th anniversary with a new addition to its range of specialty suites – each of which is themed to a particular style and colour palette. As you breeze through the personable welcome at reception and stride out of its golden-hued elevators, you arrive at the 1,500-square-foot Silver Suite. This room, specially created in honour of the hotel’s namesake anniversary, is a lavish rendition of mirrored walls reflecting the brilliantly crisp white furnishings, rounded off with rich grey hues and silver highlights. Frequent guests at The Peninsula hotels worldwide will enjoy the custom touch of monogrammed pillows, an embroidered tea cosy and even a favourite selection of in-room music, seamlessly streamed from radio stations around the world.
Here at the Peninsula, everything is taken to the next level with impeccable service from the doormen greeting you by your name, and the exceptional attention to details such as the Lissi Kaplan-designed fine European china tea set at The Living Room. Those checking into the Silver Suite may opt for a special package – starting at US$10,000 (RM44,280) – which includes the keys to the new Rolls-Royce Dawn (in silver, naturally). This latest model from the long-standing automotive partner of The Peninsula, is yours to use for the duration of the stay, and is presented with bespoke driving itineraries crafted around spectacular routes such as the Hollywood Boulevard and Pacific Coast Highway.
The entirety of this suite experience evokes Hollywood’s glamour, with the Californian sun on terraces of lush foliage recalling sepia-tinted footage of a thousand motion pictures. Guests wishing to escape the attentions of paparazzi may also request for access via private entrances. To dine, one may then head towards the recently remodelled Belvedere Terrace for all manner of gastronomic indulgences, where a laid-back chic belies the million-dollar artworks adorning its walls.
2. The Grey Garden Presidential Suite at The Franklin Hotel, London, UK
Doing grand justice to its SW3 postcode, the jewel in the crown of The Franklin Hotel is undoubtedly The Grey Garden Presidential Suite (from £2,500/RM13,900). Envisioned and designed by one of London’s most in-demand interior designers (and former Bond girl) Anouska Hempel, this opulent 680 square foot suite’s dramatic-yet-whimsical aesthetics give it the warmth and distinctive personality of a private townhome, right in the heart of Knightsbridge.
A four-poster wrought iron king-size bed topped with Italian Frette linens stands tall in a light-filled bedroom, amidst grand oak floors, mirrored furniture with shagreen lining, and Rubelli velvet and taffeta accents. Look through the lofty Victorian windows onto the tranquil, immaculately manicured lawns and flowerbeds of Egerton Gardens – amazingly, only a few minutes away from Harrods and the Victoria & Albert Museum.
Penhaligon’s bath amenities, GHD hair straighteners, Jensen telephones, and a special pillow menu are some of the small but highly welcome luxury comforts that you’ll discover in the Presidential Suite. You won’t have to venture far if you’re in search of more extravagant amusements, either. The Franklin Hotel’s marble-lined, crystal-doored hammam is entirely dedicated to blissful relaxation sessions, while a dramatic champagne sabering ritual takes place in The Franklin Bar every evening.
3. The Presidential Suite at The St Regis Macao, Cotai Central, Macau, China
Amidst the kinetic buzz of Macau’s Cotai Strip, a haven of immense luxury opens up the moment you step into the 5,134 sq ft Presidential Suite of The St Regis Macao (from HKD28,488/RM16,250). In here, lounge on Asian-inspired furniture while soaking in the view of the strip’s man-made wonders from the relative quiet of the couch. Three bedrooms, four bathrooms, a private entertainment and dining areas offer plenty of roaming while the Technogym-outfitted private exercise room offers fitness buffs relative privacy. A private massage room draws upon the expertise of therapists from the hotel’s famed Iridium spa – known for its unique gemstone-inspired massages and treatments.
The perks of the property’s impeccable butlers means that one need not go far or wait long for service. It took all of seven minutes for a pot of hot chocolate to materialise at 2.30am on a Friday morning, with pressing done in near record time – ideal for those transiting from the day’s activities to dinner reservations at Michelin-starred restaurants. Down at The Manor restaurant, one may ostensibly tuck into a delicious Hamachi tartar, with an overlay of mustard sorbet providing a pleasurable zest. A slow-cooked wagyu beef rib undergoes a six-hour sous vide, before it is finished in an oven for smoky aromas and equally light crust. Other delicious options on its expansive menu include the Culatello di Zibello (Italian cured ham), Australian lobster sashimi, succulent Iberico lamb with a side of quinoa and the gigantic Hokkaido sea scallops, glazed with smoked chilli butter for an oriental twist.
4. The Robinson Suite at The Fullerton Bay Hotel, Singapore
Commanding a 270-degree panorama of the exciting Marina Bay, this suite is named in honour of Sir William Robinson, a governor of the Straits Settlement in the period of 1877 to 1879. The hotel, entirely built over the water, is infused with the aesthetic genius of Andre Fu who was tasked to weave a design tapestry of Singapore’s east-meets-west heritage within the lobby and restaurants. That touch of modern colonialism is burnished by lush olive, burnt orange and deep aubergine, headlined by the heady sight of a five-metre cylindrical chandelier 10 metres high and sensationally polished by a signature welcoming tropical floral scent of jasmine, lilies, rose and sheer musk.
Inside the 100 guestrooms and suites, this sensory narrative of heritage and modernity is cleverly elaborated by Hong Kong-based LCL Architects via polished rosewood furniture, ivory limestone and fabric walls to recall the Occidental belle époque. Inside of the 840 square foot Robinson Suite (from SG$1,260/RM3,900), the chinoiserie chic is portrayed by silk wall panels, ceramic urns, oriental-themed prints and glazed Buddha figurines while refinement is also present through Egyptian cotton linen and 100 per cent goose down pillows and duvet.
The hotel’s location in the nexus of Singapore’s commercial, cultural and entertainment precincts provides guests with splendid access to the diversity of artistic, shopping and dining pursuits. Just a stone’s throw away lies the Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall, the National Gallery and the monolithic Asian Civilisations Museum. Back at the suite, one may take in the resplendent and ever-changing colours of the urban jungle, with the buzz of the daytime gradually winding down into a quiet hum in the evenings, all of which is refracted by the shimmering, dream-like bay.