Monday, January 4, 2016

Bay Hotel Singapore Review

So happy to be back in Singapore! As a 2015 finale, we went to Singapore for our Christmas vacation! Singapore is a memorable country for me because it was the first country I visited when I was a kid. As with other countries that we frequent, every trip even in the same country is a unique experience.

This time, we tried staying in a budget hotel near Sentosa. We chose this because after our 2-day stay in Singapore, we will be going on a cruise! Since we are going with Royal Caribbean, the cruise center you need to go to is the Marine Bay Cruise Center. There's another cruise center just across but RCI is not one of the cruises that dock there. Anyway, Marina Bay Cruise Center is far more better and newer. Before I divert the topic much further, let me share my quick review of Bay Hotel Singapore (Which I will also put in Tripadvisor).

There are several ways to access the hotel. One is through the restaurant on the first level, and another is through a back street where if you go in, is already level 3 but that is where the main lobby is located. I suggest that if you are checking in, ask for the back street (Temenggong Road) drop off so you won't need to lug your luggage in the restaurant before finally going to the lobby on the 3rd level.

The hotel offers several package options and the one we got was already including a day ticket to Universal Studios Singapore, buffet breakfast, transportation allowance worth 8 SGD per room, and get this -- FREE MINI BAR! Yes, this was the deal breaker for me because we've always known that hotel mini bars are 99% always over charged. This time, we can grab anything we like without shelling out additional money!

FREE mini bar items!
Check-in was a breeze. We booked directly via the hotel website and just showed them the print out of the reservation form. We were asked to sign some stuff, they asked for our passports for registration and gave us our 8 SGD per room, USS tickets, and we were done checking-in!

We were 7 in the group with 6 adults and 1 18-month old kid (my son) so we got 3 rooms. Upon entering our room, I was expecting less because of the price but it turned out nice. The thing is, the layout of the hotel room is somewhat unconventional. First, the bathroom is incorporated in the room, meaning, there is no division whatsoever from the bed and the bathroom. For better explanation, see photo below:

The only problem that I see here is when you are staying with friends or someone you are not familiar with. As you can see, the shower room is in fact, just a shower room, a bit see through without locks. Same goes with the toilet area. Once you are using the loo, there's a 99% chance that the person in bed will know what you are "getting rid" of. For the shower, it has a nice rain shower installation but there's a high chance that water will cross the glass wall to the next area, which houses the loo.

Again, for couples or solo business travelers, this hotel is perfect! I will highly recommend this. For those staying with families, I'm not that sure. It's kind of awkward to stay with your brother or sister in a room like this. For families with young kids, no problem. This trip, we also brought with us our son's playpen. It's a Graco Pack n play and it fits nice on the area near the window. No more walking through that area anymore though.

Another problem I saw (which shouldn't bother most, I think) is the noise. First, when you use the only sink in the room, you'll hear the water drain behind you, beneath the shower enclosure. For parents trying to keep noise levels down to prevent waking up the baby, it's a bit of a challenge. Same goes with the noisy toilet flush because as mentioned, only a glass wall separates the toilet and the bedroom.

Another source of noise is the highway below you. As you can see, it's a pretty busy road below with a busy elevated highway. I was less bothered by this compared to the noisy drain though. A third source of unwanted noise was from the hallway and thin walls. I could hear my dad coughing from the next room and we could hear the conversation out on the hallway.

The bed was nice and comfortable. There were enough lights to navigate our small room and a nice LED light on the table that we used as a night light. The view out the window was also nice as we can see USS's far far away land castle at the far end. I also did a quick time lapse video of our view.

The best part is yet to come. For me, I think this is the perfect hotel for couples, friends comfortable with each other, or families because of the proximity to a huge nice mall just across the street. There are also public transportation options just in front of you (MRT, Bus), and taxis are easily available by the hotel lobby.

Buffet breakfast was also nice with several choices from Chinese to American to European breakfast. I'm just quoting categories here and there's 3-4 for each category with juices, fruits as staples. For the Mini Bar, there were 6 drinks available ranging from colas to beers and juices with mixed nuts as snacks and some chips. Not bad for a free mini bar! Water was also included.

Overall, it was a really nice hotel to stay in and I hope they maintain their packages to be that affordable and their offers very competitive. It was a great deal considering we went there during the Christmas holidays.

Again, would I recommend it? A BIG yes!

Check out their website at

Photo of hotel frontage from Bay Hotel Website

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