Singapore (Singapore) – February 6, 2019 (travelindex.com) – Raffles Singapore unveiled today its new line-up of dining experiences, which combine the hotel’s much-loved culinary traditions with contemporary dining concepts by renowned celebrity chefs. Each dining concept promises to tantalise the senses and has been carefully selected to enhance the famed ‘Raffles Experience’ for the local community and the discerning travellers.
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“For more than 100 years the dining venues at Raffles Singapore have been recognised as an integral part of the vibrant and ever changing local bar and dining scene, exciting the local community as well as city guests alike. Continuing with our tradition and commitment of the highest level of friendly, engaging and anticipatory service, we are more than excited to introduce concepts with partner chefs, who have a reputation of operating successful venues around the world, while at the same time, creating culinary experiences that are new and distinct to Singapore,” said Christian Westbeld, General Manager, Raffles Singapore.
New Celebrity Chefs Dining Concepts
In 1899, Raffles Singapore was the first hotel in the city to hire a French chef, introducing travellers and Singapore to authentic French flavours. Fast-forward almost 120 years, and the Grand Dame is once again at the forefront of a culinary renaissance. The following are a series of culinary ‘firsts’ that Raffles Singapore will be introducing when the iconic hotel reopens.
BBR by Alain Ducasse
Bar & Billiard Room (BBR) continues to evolve with a new chapter by acclaimed Chef Alain Ducasse, who will be presenting his first Mediterranean sharing and grill concept in the world, titled BBR by Alain Ducasse. The unique concept takes customers on a culinary journey along the Mediterranean coast, complemented by a modern and vibrant ambience. In true Bar & Billiard Room fashion, dining at the restaurant will also be accompanied by a lively bar scene that is fun, relaxed and perfect for social gatherings.
Alain Ducasse said, “I could not dream of a better location than the landmark Raffles Singapore to bring the Ducasse restaurant experience for the first time to Singapore. My team and I look forward to adding another culinary destination for Singapore’s varied international clientele.”
Seduced by the flavours of the Mediterranean at a young age, Monsieur Ducasse reveals the essence of Portugal, Spain, Italy and France in BBR by Alain Ducasse. It is a modern, energetic, vibrant and accessible gathering place to meet, exchange and discover the culinary traditions of this region.
With the new concept, the 122-year-old restaurant, which started as a club during British colonial rule, will continue to be the social gathering space of choice for travellers and the local community alike. Serving sharing plates and regular-sized dishes, this bar and restaurant is convivial and cosy – the perfect place to meet with friends. It features a high energy open kitchen with charcoal grills and wood-fired pizza ovens as well as a lively bar and lounge that will serve a selection of spirits, cocktails, beers, wines and wine cocktails. Additionally, the highly anticipated Raffles Sunday Brunch with a reputation of being one of the city’s most indulgent Sunday experiences will be returning when BBR by Alain Ducasse opens.
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La Dame de Pic
One of the world’s top female chefs with three Michelin stars, Anne-Sophie Pic, will debut her entry into Asia with a remarkable restaurant in Raffles Singapore. The restaurant, La Dame de Pic, Raffles Singapore invites guests to discover the world of Anne-Sophie’s culinary identity, which reflects her search for aromatic complexity, combinations of flavours and powerful tastes that evoke emotions. The restaurant’s drinks menu presents an elaborate and diverse collection of pairings to add both intensity and harmony in the delicate art of tasting; consisting of wines, cocktails, whisky, sake, tea, coffee, dashi, broth and consommés. The wine list in particular offers a wide international base that leans towards the French regions, with a particular focus on Anne-Sophie’s birthplace, the Rhône Valley.
Located in the hotel’s dining room at the Main Building, the contemporary chic restaurant is beautifully designed with a graceful and soft palette that is reminiscent of Anne-Sophie’s favourite colours and materials: pastel shades and natural decorative elements such as leather or wood. The renowned chef is also a third-generation Michelin starred chef, following the footsteps of her grandfather and father, perfectly reflecting Raffles Singapore’s rich heritage.
“Making our debut in Asia at Raffles Singapore is a very natural choice for me. Like Raffles, the Pic family’s culinary heritage spans more than a century. Just like this beautiful hotel that will become one of our overseas residences, we are storytellers and constant seekers of excellence. Together, we share the vision to provide distinctive experiences to our guests, delivered with innovation that combines both tradition and change,” said Anne-Sophie. “It is my personal belief that to ensure our guests are happy, it is essential to be anchored in the present while not forgetting our roots and to be creative in order to imagine.”
yì by Jereme Leung
Helmed by one of the most influential chefs in the modern Chinese culinary movement, celebrity MasterChef Jereme Leung returns home to Singapore with yì by Jereme Leung. The contemporary Chinese restaurant will be located on Level 3 at the newly restored Raffles Arcade. yì, which stands for art in the Chinese language, awakens your appetite and senses. Alluding to the fine art of Chinese dining, it references centuries of culinary mastery woven into the intricacies of Chinese cuisine presented in the restaurant.From Cantonese classics to adaptations of China’s ancient delicacies, Jereme will be using single sourced and seasonal ingredients with a contemporary approach to deliver refinement and sincerity.
The restaurant is designed with modern sophisticated detailing and a soft white palette amidst the colonial architecture. Guests can also explore an immersive multi-sensory dining experience in the Experience Room with poetic dishes curated to evoke all five senses. For the hosting of private affairs, intimate private dining rooms are also available.
Jereme said, “While I have lived abroad for most of my career, the formative years which I spent working in Singapore and Hong Kong were so important to defining my approach and style of cooking. Opening yì by Jereme Leung at Raffles Singapore is an honour and I am excited to be able to work with some of the best minds in the Singapore industry and present my personal take on Chinese cuisine. These dishes reflect what I believe the future of Chinese cuisine should be 20 years from today. It is not fusion, not ‘east-meets-west’; rather, it is about capturing the essence of provincial ethnic Chinese cuisines. With careful focus being placed on healthy and seasonal food produce, it will create authentic taste profiles that are enhanced by modern culinary techniques.”
The refreshed Raffles Arcade will also see an introduction of a vibrant steakhouse, Butcher’s Block. Here, the focus is on the world’s finest cuts of single sourced meats, showcased in The Vault, a glass meat cooler situated next to the Open Kitchen where the chef’s butcher block is and where meats are prepared and cooked to perfection. Guests are given personal recommendations by our resident meat specialists, based on their individual tastes.
Seated amidst a lively ambience set with cobalt blue hues complemented with dark wood panelling, the restaurant features communal tables for exceptional gatherings, complete with a wine library that houses more than 100 different wine labels.
Refreshed Signature Dining Experiences Return to Delight
Signature dining experiences that over the years have come to be synonymous with the hotel make their return to delight, with many of these returning favourites incorporating subtle tributes to the hotel’s 130-year history and heritage.
A part of Raffles Singapore’s history since 1892, Tiffin Room continues to celebrate the heritage and flavours of North India with our resident Indian Chef. The restaurant offers an evocative dining journey across the North Indian palate, from Rajasthan to Punjab to Lucknow through a refreshed semi-buffet lunch and ala carte dinner. Authentic specialties served in the eponymous tiffin boxes are prepared with perfectly balanced spices, paired with classic Indian brews and beverages. The restaurant will also present an interactive dining experience with tableside service by chefs, complete with freshly ground spices to elevate the experience.
The restored interior décor of the restaurant includes reinstating the wooden floorboards in Tiffin Room to bring back features from the early 1900s based on research by our heritage consultants. Intricately patterned wood and mirror wall panelling add richness and create a signature visual language while colourful displays of Tiffin boxes are imbued with historical notes but modern in feel.
Home of the Singapore Sling for over a hundred years, the Long Bar’s plantation-inspired décor will be refreshed, and the famous Long Bar counter restored. Long Bar continues to be the heritage bar for visitors to Singapore to enjoy the most iconic cocktail of the city.
The classic Raffles Afternoon Tea experience will be served at a new location – the iconic Grand Lobby of the Raffles Singapore. Guests can indulge in one of the hotel’s great traditions – a truly unique and refined Afternoon Tea with a distinct sense of heritage – in the newly restored lobby. The Raffles Afternoon Tea is perfect for sophisticated and elegant celebrations, serving classic sandwiches, home-baked scones and cakes as well as seasonal indulgences, complemented by a curated collection of exquisite teas and Champagnes.
Established as a tribute to famous writers that have come through the doors of Raffles Singapore over the years, Writers Bar will be expanded to a full bar with bespoke craft cocktails, wines and spirits. Decked in luxuriously appointed furnishings, lovingly curated mementos and books, referencing the literary legacy of Raffles, the bar will be a sophisticated and serene refuge kept exclusive to residents and restaurant patrons; keeping this a place for discreet elegance and intimate conversations.
Exuding a garden style and welcoming vibe, Raffles Courtyard is the city’s social space in a lushly landscaped alfresco venue at the Raffles Arcade. This friendly bar and lounge is open all day, offering guests a garden respite against a colonial architectural backdrop, complete with refreshing shared summer drinks and a selection of Southeast Asian small plates, including authentic Singaporean delights.
Ah Teng’s Café
Raffles’ new takeaway café is named after a famous local baker of the same name, who used to own a shop in the neighbourhood back in the 1900s. Ah Teng’s Café serves visitors, the surrounding community and travellers alike with freshly made cold beverages, a selection of premium coffee, tea and homemade bakery, pastries and artisanal ice-creams for takeaway.
Pierre Burgade, Executive Chef, Raffles Singapore, who oversees the Hotel’s culinary landscape portfolio, said, “It is an incredible privilege to be given the opportunity to update these time-honoured Raffles signatures while also curating the stellar line-up of celebrity chefs for this iconic hotel. The deliberate and careful curation of the new dining concepts aims to elevate Singapore’s culinary landscape and makes our hotel an all-in-one gastronomic journey for guests and visitors alike.”
“We are pleased to embark on the meticulous restoration of Raffles Singapore, a distinctive hotel that is emblematic of Katara Hospitality’s commitment to create extraordinary experiences on the backdrop of iconic heritage hotels and provide unsurpassed service to our esteemed guests,” said Mr. Hamad Abdulla Al-Mulla, Chief Executive Officer of Katara Hospitality, a globally recognised hospitality owner, developer and operator who is also the owner of Raffles Singapore.
“Since opening its doors in 1887, Raffles Singapore has maintained a lasting legacy as a landmark hotel, hosting some of the world’s most famous and elite personalities. As a National Monument of Singapore and one of the few remaining 19th century hotels in the world, the hotel’s restoration is a testament to our continued pursuit in preserving portraits of historic charm, while growing Katara Hospitality’s portfolio of iconic properties in key travel destinations. Raffles Singapore is no exception, with its carefully implemented restoration programme that is poised to unveil contemporary charm and elegance; reminiscent of the luxurious splendour of Katara Hospitality hotels,” added Mr. Al-Mulla.
About Raffles Singapore
Opened in 1887, Raffles Singapore is one of the few remaining great 19th century hotels in the world. Till today, its architecture is perfectly preserved both inside and out, giving it an intoxicating blend of luxury, history and classic colonial design. Within its walls are more than a hundred expansive suites, framed by polished teak verandas and white marble colonnades, clustered around lush tropical gardens. Each is serviced by the legendary Raffles butlers and offers every modern convenience necessary.
Raffles Singapore is currently undergoing a careful and sensitive restoration that is being carried out in three phases. The hotel is now fully closed with a grand reopening planned in the first quarter of 2019. The Raffles Gift Shop continues to be in operation at its temporary location on 3 Seah Street, around the corner from the hotel.
The restoration of Raffles Singapore is designed to ensure that we retain what is so special about Raffles – the ambience, the service, the charm and the heritage of the hotel. It is also designed for Raffles Singapore to stay relevant and distinctive by moving with the times and with its guests and adapting to the changing needs of the well-travelled and Singapore’s community