Here we help you choose where to stay in Singapore – we highlight the most popular areas with tourists and share our favourite hotels in each area.
Choosing which area to stay in Singapore can make a big difference to the type of vacation you will have, with each different area of the city having a distinct feel.
So finding the right area to stay should be one of the first things you do when planning your Singapore trip.
The truth is Singapore is a pretty small city and you can get to most places in around 20 minutes in a taxi no matter where you are. If you are staying centrally, you can access most popular attractions, shopping and restaurant areas quickly either via public transport or taxi.
That being said, it is always nice to be within walking distance of where you want to spend most of your time. If you want to spend most of your time shopping, staying on Sentosa doesn’t make much sense. Conversely, if you want to hang on the beach, then Orchard Road is not the best choice for you.
So here we talk you through the six most popular areas to stay in Singapore with visitors. We share the highlights of each area and give you the main reasons why you would choose to stay there.
For each area we also share our favourite hotels and tell you why they are our pick. You can find more hotel guides in our Singapore accommodation section of the website.
Insider Tip: Hotel room rates in Singapore are subject to a 10% service charge and 8% GST. These surcharges are often not quoted in hotel prices, so be sure to check.
Best neighbourhoods in Singapore to stay
The six main areas that are popular with visitors to Singapore are:
- Marina Bay – popular with business travellers and wealthy tourists.
- Sentosa Island – popular with families and beach lovers.
- Civic District – popular with culture buffs.
- Clarke Quay / Robertson Quay – popular for mid-range hotels.
- Orchard – popular with shoppers.
- Chinatown – popular for boutique hotels.
Marina Bay / Downtown
Popular with business travellers and wealthy tourists, Marina Bay puts you right in the heart of the action.
It is close to the Central Business District, and has a good choice of restaurants within an easy walk. Al-fresco drinks or dinner with a view is definitely a highlight of the area.
There are plenty of Singapore’s best luxury hotels in the Marina Bay area to choose from, many with stunning marina bay or city views. Public transport options are good and there is a large shopping mall at Marina Bay Sands.
Why you’ll love staying in the Marina Bay Area
- It is close to the Central Business District.
- It has a large choice of high-end hotels.
- There is a good choice of restaurants nearby.
- It is well-serviced by public transport.
Our pick of the best hotels in Marina Bay Area
- Marina Bay Sands – this iconic hotel cannot be overlooked. This huge hotel (2,500 rooms) has plenty of facilities, with easy access to public transport, restaurants and a shopping mall. Views are either of the city or over Gardens by the Bay and out to sea. The rooftop infinity pool is perfect for your Instagram shots. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Fullerton Bay Hotel – this beautiful design hotel offers stunning views over Marina Bay. Everything about this hotel screams luxury and opulence. The rooftop swimming pool and Lantern bar boasts one of the best views in the city. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Ritz Carlton, Millenia Singapore – this luxury hotel offers sweeping views of Marina Bay and has everything you would expect from a high-end establishment, including a choice of restaurants, spa and outdoor pool. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Fullerton Hotel – housed within a stunning Colonial building on the Singapore River, the Fullerton offers 400 luxurious rooms and suites. We particularly love the rooftop swimming pool, lined with Doric columns and with views over the river. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Westin Hotel– ostensibly a business hotel, the Westin is located within the Asia Square office complex. It is an easy walk to Marina Bay Sands, the restaurants of Customs House and also to Chinatown. It offers spacious rooms, a spa and rooftop swimming pool. Click here to check prices and availability.
Popular with families and beach lovers, Sentosa is a fun area to stay with a great holiday vibe. It is close to the beach and also some of Singapore’s biggest tourist attractions, such as Universal Studios and the SEA Aquarium.
Hotels here tend to be resort-style with large outdoor pools and spa facilities.
Note that there are no MRT stations on Sentosa, so getting here is not as easy as to some locations. Once you are on the island though, there are free shuttle buses to get around.
Click here to read more about Sentosa in our Insider Guide to Sentosa Island.
Why you’ll love staying in Sentosa
- It is close to the beach.
- It is close to some of Singapore’s biggest and best tourist attractions.
- Hotels tend to be resort-style with large outdoor swimming pools.
- You have a good choice of beach clubs and beachfront restaurants.
- It has a fun holiday vibe.
Our pick of the best hotels in Sentosa
- Sofitel Sentosa Resort & Spa – beautiful luxury hotel set atop a cliff amongst 27 acres of tropical rainforest. The 33-metre outdoor midnight blue swimming pool is a highlight and the hotel also boasts one of the best spas in Singapore. Click here to check prices and availability.
- W Hotel Sentosa – the W Hotel is a bit further afield, but once here you have a beautiful hotel with excellent facilities including a large outdoor pool with water slide. The hotel has several bars and restaurants and is just a short stroll from more restaurants and Sentosa Cove. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Shangri-La Rasa Sentosa Resort & Spa – Singapore’s only true beachfront resort is hugely popular with families thanks to its large freeform swimming pool with slides and its fantastic kids club. Click here to check prices and availability.
- The Capella – its upscale luxury accommodation boasts views out over the South China Sea from many of its spacious rooms and suites, while the hugely stylish villas and manors all have private plunge pools and outdoor bathing facilities. We particularly love the cascading swimming pool. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Village Hotel Sentosa – designed specifically with families in mind, it has a large proportion of family rooms, enormous outdoor pool deck area and also provides easy access to all the attractions of Resorts World Sentosa. Click here to check prices and availability.
The Civic District is a beautiful part of town with its striking Colonial architecture, wide open green space of the Padang and city skyline views.
It is an easy walk to museums and galleries such as the National Gallery and Asian Civilisations Museum and also theatres the Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay and Victoria Concert Hall.
The Singapore River and Marina Bay are also a short, pleasant walk away. The area is well-serviced by public transport, has many restaurants and a shopping mall. If you have money to burn, you will find some of Singapore’s best luxury hotels in this area.
Why you’ll love staying in the Civic District
- You will find some of the most beautiful architecture in Singapore here.
- It is a short stroll to museums, galleries and concert halls.
- The area is well connected by public transport.
- You can enjoy a lovely stroll with skyline views down to the river and Marina Bay area.
- There are plenty of restaurants here and an excellent shopping mall, Raffles City.
Our pick of the best hotels in the Civic District
- Raffles Singapore – it’s the most famous hotel in town, and a stay at Raffles is an experience of a lifetime. From its luxurious rooms to high-end restaurants, it’s about as fancy as you can get. Don’t miss afternoon tea in the lobby and, of course, a Singapore Sling in the world-famous Long Bar. Click here to check prices and availability.
- JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach – a luxury hotel with slick service, JW Marriott has an excellent location a short walk from the Esplanade – Theatres by the Bay, Suntec City and Raffles City shopping malls. It also has easy access to two MRT stations. It has a good choice of restaurants and a beautiful pool with skyline views. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Naumi Hotel – The 73 spacious rooms of this hotel are divided among five unique themes, and are all decked out with plush fittings. There’s a gym and a classy Italian restaurant, but we especially love the Cloud 9 rooftop pool and bar with its skyline views. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Swissotel the Stamford – perfect for business or leisure, the Swissotel is handily linked to Raffles City shopping mall, where you will also find an MRT station. This towering hotel has incredible views from its 67 floors of rooms and suites. There is a huge choice of bars and restaurants within the hotel, our favourite of which is Skai restaurant and bar on the 70th floor, for some of the very best views in town. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Capitol Kempinski Hotel – Housed in two stunning restored heritage buildings, the Capitol and Stamford House, you are promised high-end luxury at this impressive hotel. It is handily located equidistant from the National Museum of Singapore and National Gallery and is also linked via underground walkways to Funan Mall, Raffles City, Marina Square and Suntec City. Don’t miss cocktails in the Bar at 15 Stamford! Click here to check prices and availability.
Clarke Quay / Robertson Quay
Located along the Singapore River, Clarke Quay and Robertson Quay have a good choice of mid-range hotels to choose from. It is ideally located close to Marina Bay, Orchard and Chinatown.
While Clarke Quay is traditionally a bit of a party zone with lots of bars and nightclubs, Robertson Quay is a quieter laid-back area with a residential feel.
There are plenty of bars and restaurants in both these areas to choose from, with easy pedestrian access along the riverside.
Why you’ll love staying in Clarke Quay / Robertson Quay
- It has a good choice of mid-range hotels.
- It has a relaxed riverside vibe.
- There is a good choice of restaurants and bars.
- The area has easy access to Marina Bay, Orchard and Chinatown.
Our pick of the best hotels in Clarke Quay / Robertson Quay
- Intercontinental Singapore Robertson Quay – this hotel has a great location right on the river in Robertson Quay. There is a choice of restaurants in the hotel and there are plenty others on the doorstep in a leafy pedestrianised setting. The hotel has modern rooms, swimming pool and gym. Click here to check prices and availability.
- The Warehouse – as its name suggests, this boutique hotel has been created from a heritage 1895 trade warehouse building. It is now an uber-cool 37-room hotel, where old-world glamour meets modern comforts. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Holiday Inn Express Singapore Clarke Quay – this is one of our favourite value-for-money hotels in Singapore. It is handily located in Clarke Quay, just a short walk to all the restaurants along the river and a 5-minute walk to the MRT station. Rooms are small but comfortable, breakfast is included in the price, and there is free Wi-Fi and a self-service laundry. The highlight is definitely the 40m rooftop infinity pool. Click here to check prices and availability.
- M Social – this funky hotel in Robertson Quay has interiors designed by renowned French designer, Philippe Starck. Staff are friendly, rooms are stylish and there is an outdoor pool. We particularly love the loft-style duplexes… and keep an eye out for the robot egg-maker at breakfast! Click here to check prices and availability.
- Studio M – this Robertson Quay is the sister hotel to M Social and is also rocking the stylish loft-style vibe. The floor-to-ceiling windows let in plenty of light in the bedrooms and the hotel has a gym and swimming pool. Click here to check prices and availability.
Orchard Road is famous for its shopping malls that line the 2km stretch and you will find everything from high-end brands to high street shops and local boutiques.
It is centrally located within Singapore making it easy to access other parts of the city and is well connected with public transport, with several MRT stops, bus stops and taxi ranks at all the malls.
There is a good choice of hotels here too – mostly high-end and mid-range, although you’ll find a few fantastic budget hotels within an easy walk of here. The area also has a good choice of restaurants and coffee shops, mostly within the shopping malls and hotels.
Why you’ll love staying in Orchard
- If you love to shop you’ll be in heaven with shopping malls galore.
- It is central with good public transport options.
- There is a good choice of restaurants and cafes in the area.
Our pick of the best hotels in Orchard Road
- Shangri-La Hotel Singapore – Shangri-La’s flagship property is set amidst 15 acres of tropical landscaped gardens just a few minutes stroll from Orchard Road. With three distinct wings, it offers something for everyone – from the family floor to the luxury tower wing. Facilities are fantastic with a large resort pool, kids club and choice of restaurants. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Jen Orchard Singapore Gateway – this modern hotel in the heat of Orchard Road benefits from contemporary rooms with city views and multiple restaurants. The highlight is the incredible 47-meter rooftop infinity pool with panoramic views. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Quincy Hotel – this trendy hotel is a short walk from Paragon shopping mall in the center of Orchard Road. We love all the extras offered at this hotel – breakfast is included and served until 3pm (perfect for night owls and late risers) and there are snacks served all day in the lounge and even a complimentary cocktail. Note this hotel only accepts guests over the age of 12. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Singapore Marriot Tang Plaza Hotel – this large hotel is located right in the centre of Orchard Road opposite ION Orchard, and above Orchard MRT station. It has a range of restaurants, including a Michelin-starred Japanese and an excellent buffet restaurant with live cooking stations. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Yotel Singapore – inspired by first-class airline travel, Yotel offers value-for-money ‘cabins’ that are prefect for singles and/or couples who don’t mind getting cozy. It’s all high-tech here, from adjustable smart beds to robot butlers. Click here to check prices and availability.
Chinatown is a popular part of town with tourists thanks to its beautiful heritage shophouse architecture, temples and street markets.
It also offers a good selection of boutique hotels that complement the heritage architecture beautifully and has a great choice of cool bars and restaurants.
Chinatown is well service by MRT stations and bus stops and is within easy walking distance of the CBD and Marina Bay.
Click here to read more about Chinatown in our Insider Guide to Chinatown.
Why you’ll love staying in Chinatown
- Some of Singapore’s best boutique hotels are located here.
- You will find loads of great bars and restaurants in this area.
- It has some of Singapore’s best hawker centres
- It is well connected via public transport.
- It is within easy walking distance of the CBD and Marina Bay.
Our pick of the best hotels in Chinatown
- Hotel 1929 – this boutique hotel is housed within five original shophouses built in 1929. Its 32 individually decorated rooms are decked out in a mix of classic and retro vintage furniture. Click here to check prices and availability.
- The Clan Hotel – this luxury hotel is handily located on the edge of Chinatown towards the CBD. It offers rooms with all the mod cons, a rooftop infinity pool, gym and restaurant. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Ann Siang House – located on Ann Siang Hill, this cozy boutique hotel has 20 rooms with comfy beds and rain showers. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Hotel Scarlet – one of the original boutique hotels in Singapore, this seductive hotel is still known for its rich velvet upholstery and quirky decor. Click here to check prices and availability.
- Wink – this Chinatown hostel offers clean, comfortable capsule accommodation in three fantastic locations and is known for its friendly welcome. Click here to check prices and availability.
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