Switching it Up: Unique Ideas for Staycations in Singapore

You may think Singapore is a little red dot, but there are actually plenty of staycation activities in Singapore.

By now, a staycation might as well be a Singaporean cliche. You find a great staycation deal out of all the staycation deals in Singapore, where the hotel could be in Clarke Quay, Marina Bay, or Orchard Road. And then you book your annual leave, and persuade your significant other to join you. And then, you lounge and watch Netflix the entire time you’re in the room. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, here’s how we think you can breathe fresh life with your staycation in Singapore.

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Staycation in Singapore: 2023 and Beyond

We’re well underway of moving past COVID-19. Tripadvisor’s Spring Travel index estimated that 78% of Singaporeans are travelling this spring. But while some of you may splurge on a romantic spring getaway, others may be happy enough lounging in a swanky hotel room or reading by the outdoor pool.

Even so, we suspect that staycation trends in 2023 will adopt a more sustainable approach. After all, sustainability is already an overarching trend for the year, and beyond. So instead of just cooping up in a fancy hotel near Orchard Road, or Marina Bay Sands. Staycationers may head out after their daily breakfast, exploring the nearby areas of the hotel. No wonder everyone’s looking for serviced apartment offers too.

With that, we expect the experience economy will seep into the staycation sector too, as staycationers in Singapore want a more immersive experience during their stay. A complimentary breakfast or dining credits just won’t cut it any more. Even expats in Singapore want to staycation like a local, where they dive deeper into local culture and heritage.

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Plus, with the onset of geopolitical instability, the desire to escape back into a rose-tinted view of the past. Nostalgia now reigns, and you can already see it in the decor of bars and restaurants throughout Singapore. According to Booking.com, nostalgic getaways topped wishlists in 2023. Even millennials and Gen-Zs want to live out the pre-digital era: 21% of those surveyed wanted to set-jet to landmarks or attractions that were part of retro films. 

Unique Staycation Ideas in Singapore: 5 Tips for New Inspiration

You’ve heard of all the hotels before—Capella Singapore, the Mandarin Oriental, and the Oasia Hotel Downtown. But are you tired of the same views posted on Instagram a million times before? Looking for a fresh spin for your next staycation?

Singapore has plenty to offer, more than you’d expect. There’s more to do than just taking the Singapore River Cruise (again). From unconventional accommodations to themed staycation packages, here are our top 5 tips for reinventing staycations in Singapore. Before you book your annual leave, don’t forget to check for the black-out dates for these staycation hotels.

1. Let’s Go Retro

The easiest way to travel back in time is by booking a shophouse boutique hotel in Singapore. And with shophouses in Singapore, you’d never be far from a heritage walking trail in secluded neighbourhoods right underneath our noses, just like Blair Road.

One of our first choices is The Scarlet, which might as well be an Oscar-worthy set location for the next Singapore indie darling. After all, the rich, classic decor reminds us of a masterpiece of cinematic history: In The Mood for Love, the seminal romantic drama starring Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung. This is one of the best staycation hotels for your next romantic staycation.

The Vagabond Club more than holds its own too. From the award-winning French designer, Jacques Garcia, The Vagabond Club is a stunning destination inspired by Parisian style. With exquisite decor and furnishings, you’ll be transported the moment you enter. Fancy a tipple? There’s the Whiskey Library & Jazz Club for you and your partner to indulge in your favourite poison.

If you want something a little funkier, take a look at Hotel Soloha. Located around Keong Saik Street and Leang Seah Street, just a stone’s throw from Chinatown, this hotel stops at nothing to be fun and eclectic. There are splashes of colour and patterns throughout the interior, but the fully-furnished rooms remain elegant and modern. Plus, if you’re into the buzzing nightlife and the dazzling selections of restaurants, this is the choice for you.

2. Sustainable Escapes

What do a treetop loft, a shipping container, and a luxurious villa have in common? They’re all unique staycation destinations in Singapore that are not only beautiful, but affordable too.

So if you’re looking for a little sanctuary amidst the lush greenery of Gardens by the Bay, head to the Garden Pod. The hotel offers a more sustainable option for your staycation needs with their duplex suites. Your carbon and waste footprints are kept to a minimum with their repurposed 40-footer shipping containers and the photovoltaic panels atop them.

 If you want a quick island escapade, head to Tiny Away Escape @ Lazarus Island. It’s just a 20-minute ferry ride from Marina South Pier or a 15-minute ferry ride from Sentosa Cove. Tiny Away features five compact accommodations that offer a sweeping view of the rustic idyll of Lazarus Island.

Frolicking in and around Universal Studios Singapore or Sentosa Cove? You can find your respite 12 metres up from the ground, amidst the tree canopies at one of the Treetop Lofts at the Equarius Hotel. You can wake up to birdsong, and sip coffee on its broad balcony, and a personalised butler will be at your service.

Be it if you’re on a family staycation or planning a birthday bash, this is surely a great choice, with its high ceilings, elegant living spaces and great views of Sentosa. But it’s fastest fingers first: there are only two treetop lofts in the hotel.

3. Diving into Nature

Singapore actually has a rich natural history as well, despite all the hustle and bustle of its urban jungle. So nature staycations are a great idea—naturally. So reconnect your spirit with mother nature, away from the city. 

Consider Villa Samadhi for your escape into nature. The hotel is housed in a 1920 black and white garrison. The hotel is an elegant blend of Eastern and Western influences, embedded in the deep foliage of the 22-hectare Labrador Nature Reserve.

Ready for a six-star nature experience? Capella Singapore lets you relish in the thick shadows of the towering rainforest in all its 30 acres of verdant glory. There are 112 rooms, suites, and villas in the resort, with views of the surrounding treescapes or the South China Sea. And have you seen their one-bedroom and two-bedroom villa? They are simply divine. Sequestered from the rest of the city, you can truly immerse yourself in nature here.

4. Rural Getaways

The idea that somewhere is rural in Singapore is absurd. But there are actually still unbuilt areas around Singapore. So if you want to skip the jam and the queues at both the Causeways, you can find pastoral sanctuaries in Singapore.

One of the bucolic destinations in Singapore you can find is Kranji, a suburb on the northern edge of Singapore. Named after a local tree, Kranji is around 22km from the city centre, which takes around a half-hour drive. There aren’t a lot of towering real estate developments or Singapore condo rentals. While it mainly consists of industrial areas, Kranji mainly consists of stand-alone properties.

Head on to Kranji Sanctuary Resort, a truly idyllic destination. It was previously known as Gallop Kranji Farm Resort, OYO 105 Gallop Kranji Farm Resort, or D’Kranji Farm Resort. Today, they have villas that are comfy and cosy, like a home away from home. Besides that, you can also visit the Bollywood Farm and the Hay Diaries Goat Farm. The Kranji Marshes is merely a 4-minute walk away too.

If you want to lay back even more, consider Gardenasia. This quaint resort has three Farmstay Villas reminiscent of the black and white colonial homes of yore. They have a pretty sweet staycation package too. The rates go for $380++ a night on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and $450++ on Fridays and Saturdays. It includes a complimentary Western breakfast for 2 guests (No Pork, No Lard) and a dining discount at their bistro.

5. Set Sail for the High Seas

Set sights for the Singapore Straits! Discover Sailing Asia offers cruises to all the islands surrounding Singapore. You can go for a quick 7-hour BBQ adventure to Lazarus Island, or splurge on a Southern Island and Pulau Ubin Sailing Adventure. If you’ve fallen in love with sailing the high seas, sign up for their myriad of sailing courses so you can conquer the waves

Honourable Mentions: More options for staycation ideas in Singapore

Of course, we have a couple of honourable mentions. Hotel Mono has this minimalist chic that’ll make you feel like you’re in the chic piers at Custom House on the outskirts of London. Lloyd’s Inn is another secluded escapade, one that’s just off Orchard Road. Looking to imbibe more of that colonial charm? Book a deluxe room at Goodwood Park Hotel, which is pretty close to Orchard Road too.


MetroResidences Singapore Serviced Apartments—Your Home Base for Travels Beyond

Looking for your home away from home? Our Singapore apartment rentals and serviced apartments are perfect for a longer period of stay. We have properties in luxury developments across Singapore’s most coveted addresses: Bugis, Bukit Timah, Shenton Way, and Novena.

And, you can rest easy at any of our properties. We adhere to our strict Property Standards that account for the comfort and cleanliness of all our serviced apartments. Our fully-furnished apartments come with amenities like wi-fi, air conditioners, and a fully-equipped kitchen.

Life as a business traveller or a digital nomad will always be hassle-free at MetroResidences.

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