Dusit Thani Laguna Singapore: Hotel Staycation Review
It has been more than a year since the coronavirus pandemic hit the world, and although the situation has eased in many parts of the world, travel remains restricted to essential business only. For many of us, travelling serves as a great source of inspiration and provides respite from our hectic schedules, yet our last experience on a flight out of the city-state for a beach getaway or ski vacation feels like a lifetime ago.
To curb our wanderlust, we turn to the next best thing: staycations. From five-star luxury resorts to the quaint boutique hotels, we're lucky to have a diverse array of options in Singapore. Just last month, we checked into the newest addition in the East, the Dusit Thani Laguna Singapore, for a midweek breather. The luxury resort opened its doors to the public in December last year and boasts direct access to two championship golf courses should you want to have a tee off with friends. I'm not an avid golfer myself, but that doesn't mean there's not much to enjoy at the resort.
Here's how my experience went:
1/5 First impressions
If you share the same excitement as I do when it comes to travelling, then you'll understand when I say that every holiday begins the minute you're en route to the airport. Luckily for me, the journey to the resort takes the same route as you would if you're heading towards Changi airport since they share the same highway.
The resort is Dusit International's first property in Singapore; for the uninitiated, the Bangkok-based hospitality group is well known for its warm Thai hospitality and has over 30 properties in 13 countries. Here in Singapore, it is nestled within the grounds of the acclaimed Laguna National Golf & Resort Club and guests who choose to stay will enjoy privileged access to the driving range and championship golf courses.
I arrived in the early afternoon, and noticed a brand new Rolls Royce that was parked out front as I pulled up to the main lobby. Apparently, guests who choose to host their wedding at the resort will get to enjoy a chauffeur-driven service for their celebration. As I entered, a doorman who donned a Thai-style hat greeted me warmly, and I was ushered to the front desk for a swift check-in process. It took no more than five minutes, and whilst waiting, my eyes wandered to notice the hotel's stunning contemporary design that features high ceilings and an ample amount of natural light. Shortly after being handed my room card, I dropped off my belongings with the hotel concierge that ensured everything was sent to my room and was then ushered to have lunch at the Greenhouse.
2/5 Do Not Disturb
The new resort offers 198 rooms and suites that each exude contemporary Asian design. I checked into the Deluxe Laguna Pool View on the second floor that faced the three swimming pools and a line-up of double storey pavilions, and was pleasantly surprised to find a pair of refreshing coconuts to enjoy as I settled in. The room also had a large ensuite bathroom with ample vanity space for personal products, as well as a rain shower for calming wind downs after a long day.
What I was most excited about though, was the nightly turn-down service and pillow menu offered to guests. I loved the turn-down service which entailed my room curtains being drawn and, pillows fluffed up with generous spritzes of lemongrass fragrance that prepared me for a good night's sleep. At this point, I had two menus in hand: one for pillows and another for in-room dining, both of which I deemed essential for a perfect evening in. The former boasts an extensive selection, and as someone who struggles with regular neck pain and stiffness, I was delighted to find an orthopedic memory foam pillow that provides firm support for my spinal column. I also made use of their room service to order some dinner, which was delivered to me in less than 15 minutes.
3/5 The Extras
The golfing facilities at the resort are absolutely top-notch, and the experience of making my way to the courses was seamless. Golfers will first enter The Shop, where quality golf apparel, accessories and clubs are available for purchase, before walking past the Walk of Fame hall that houses a stunning line-up of trophies. From there, VIPs can head to their private changing rooms and get ready to tee off at either the Masters or Classic courses. Should they wish to grab a quick brunch before or after the game, they can then head to The Nest for a selection of local and western favourites while taking in the panoramic view of the beautifully maintained Masters course.
(Related: The Best Hotels For a Romantic Staycation in Singapore)
4/5 Food and Drink
Talk about lunch with a view. The Greenhouse, which is the resort's all-day dining multi-ethnic restaurant, is absolutely stunning. Its interiors are decked out in forest-like decor and looks out towards the green landscape of the golf course. And apart from its floor-to-ceiling glass windows, you can also see the building's curvilinear architecture that allows for ample natural light to seep in during the day. I got to sample a total of six courses—all of which are signature dishes from the five live stations that boast different cuisines, including Thai, Chinese, Indian, Mediterranean and Japanese. For mains, be sure to order the seafood pasta and Tom Yum soup—the latter comes with a giant freshwater prawn. If you're a fan of the King of Fruits like I am, I strongly suggest not to skip on the desserts as the durian panna cotta was simply divine.
During my stay, I also got to enjoy breakfast at the Greenhouse. Personally, I much preferred the lunch options from the day before there even though the breakfast menu was extensive.
5/5 Tatler Tip
If you're not an avid golfer like me, then there are two things that you must do to maximise your stay at the resort. First, head to the main pool and lounge on one of their cabanas or sun decks. Not only will you get to watch airplanes fly over you, it's also the perfect time to catch up on that book you've always wanted to get to or soak up the sun in peace. I had a couple of hours to myself in the afternoon and booked a spot at one of the cabanas to get some writing done. Bookings can be made with just a quick call to the concierge.
Make sure to treat yourself to a 90-minute signature massage that features a combination of Thai, Ayurvda and Shiatsu techniques at the Devarana Wellness spa. While waiting for my session to begin, I was given a glass of chilled lemongrass tea and asked to pick a massage oil of my liking. There were five in total, each with a different combination of scents therapeutic purposes. I went with the lavender scent that was supposed to soothe and calm any hints of stress and anxiety. An hour and a half later, I found myself in a total state of zen. The massage was enjoyable, and I appreciated the attention to detail that truly elevated the whole experience. For example, a bowl of steaming hot water infused with kaffir lime and orange was placed under my massage bed prior to the session, and my therapist constantly checked in to ensure that the amount of pressure used was comfortable for me. It really wasn't long before I drifted off into a relaxing sleep, and I'm already counting down till my next spa session.
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