When I first got the job at Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport, I knew very little about hotels or the hospitality industry. Hotels were just prettily designed or not for me. I never considered why sometimes a late check out would not be possible or the kind of hoops the people in charge of guest relations have to jump through when I request for a special arrangement. In a way, I used to be entitled about the service rendered by hotels. I just thought, a good hotel would sort all these out. I never realised how much goes into getting everything to run as smoothly as it does and now I really do appreciate it. The understanding of the processes, once you see it, you can’t unsee it. Maybe it’s what we call “occupational sickness” or 职业病! Because of that, I have become my hotel’s number one fan.
I’m being very honest here. Because I know what it takes to get things going, I deeply respect my hotel’s service teams from front desk to housekeeping and engineering. It takes many hands for light work, but in a hotel, many hands don’t make the work any lighter. That’s the way it is, many hands are absolutely required. Its like how cogs in clockwork work. It just makes the experience one that is as great as it can for the guest. When people say “thank you for your hospitality” it means thank you for being a warm and wonderful host and making me feel at home and that’s what a great hotel creates for guests. To me, Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport is a great hotel and a great second home (in every sense of the word). You may find this a biased statement seeing that I am after all an employee of the company, but I can’t deny that on a very personal level, this is a hotel I’ve come to really love as a guest and as a person who works in it. Cross my heart! There are days when things don’t go smoothly and the hotel gets its fair share of feedback both negative and positive, but I love that there is so much heart in the team and we move on and work towards changing future experiences using that feedback.
As mentioned in my previous post on Holiday Inn Express Singapore Clarke Quay, a huge perk of being an Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG) employee is that I get an employee rate on any IHG® hotel around the world – not always – but often enough. I don’t use it as much as most people would expect, but time to time, I check out one (especially when I’m travelling and hotel rates are rocketing sky-high). Thankfully, with my employee benefit, I have the opportunity to stay at my hotel at a really good rate.
This is the second time I’ve chosen to do a staycation at Crowne Plaza Changi Airport. The first time was with my boyfriend and this time it was with my girlfriends, Manda and Jillo. I said it was an absolute MUST for them to experience the nature-inspired hotel at the airport. It was such an amazing time with friends I can be goofy-and-serious with at the same time, in a place I’ve become comfortable in after working there for over three years.
Floral frangipani motif across the glass window that shows a peek of the bedroom
Welcome to Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport’s Deluxe Room. It’s a spacious 36 square metres and a smartly designed soundproofed hotel room. There’s the wooden “bench” to place luggage on (in the absence of the typical luggage rack), hideaway wardrobe and mini bar with sliding doors, little sofa seats that can be moved away or joined together to form a proper sofa and large floor-to-ceiling windows to let the most natural light in and create a perception of space.
The bed is always goodness gracious so comfortable; wrapping myself in and hiding under the duvet always gets me sleepy in a jiffy (dangerous place the bed is). As such, knowing the dangers of lying on this comfy piece of furniture, I avoid it at all costs if I want to do more things during my staycations (that does not involve sleeping).
Comfortable little pillows
This unique sofa creates an illusion of more space instead of a traditional two seater sofa
Everything is in calming soothing earthy neutral shades. A brazen floral motif of frangipani flowers run across the glass feature wall separating the bathroom and bedroom. (No worries, there are blinds to pull down for privacy.) Even the carpeting is beautifully designed to mimic the forested ground under a sun-dappled canopy.
Large 1.8m work desk
If you’re travelling on business, you’ll find that the large 1.8 metre work desk complete with ergonomic Herman Miller swivel chair is a God-send. Plus, since January 2014, the hotel started offering complimentary WiFi and wired internet to all guests (and not just IHG Rewards Club members). Of course, high speed internet is available at a charge.
Jillo already feeling completely at home
Our gorgeous view of the pool
Since all deluxe rooms boast full-length windows, it offers an unobstructed view of the hotel surroundings. There are three different views here: pool view (like ours which overlooks the outdoor landscaped pool), garden view (which shows off the lush garden landscaping around the hotel) and runway view (watch aircraft from your room, but an additional charge required).
I’ve seen this rooms SO MANY times during shoots, site inspections and for checks on printed collateral… I’ve been in and out countless times and I still love it. In fact, I can’t believe I’m not sick of it already.
Needless to say, my girl friends were completely amazed by how awesome our room was.
Huge mirror, adjustable vanity mirror, and ample bathroom amenities
I’m a sucker for a nice bathroom and the great bathroom here is one of the main reasons why I’d return again and again to stay here when the opportunity arises. (You know how hard it is to not whip out my phone, open HotelQuickly to scan for a new hotel and book a hotel I’ve been to before instead?!)
Separate bathtub and shower
A separate tub and shower is a standard for all Crowne Plazas. Rejuvenation is emphasised greatly by the brand and having both in one bathroom helps make that happen.
You can watch TV with the blinds pulled up through the glass wall while enjoying a warm relaxing soak in the large tub. If you’d prefer a shower, wow, check out that awesome rain shower AND hand shower in the glass shower stall. This is really indulgent to say the least.
Luxe The White Company toiletries
When things can’t get any better, it does. I love The White Company bath set which is in a fragrant combination of jasmine, rose and neroli. I know quite a few friends and guests take away these toiletries because they are fantastic. Why not, right?
Coffee-making facilities have been upgraded and coffee machines are actually available now
Not just smell fresh, but feel fresh after waking up with the coffee making amenities given a boost and the hotel now has these illy coffee machines that take illy coffee capsules.
These are pretty good amenities in my books. Of course, minibar is gonna be expensive, but with Changi Airport just next door and NTUC just a five minute brisk walk away, I can stock the minibar with my own beverages and snacks anyway very easily.
More interesting floral motifs
One of the most girly things to do during staycations, is to lounge by the pool and really enjoy the sun. Get some Vitamin D, ya know. We already planned to spend a couple of hours dipping in the pool and enjoying the pretty architecture.
Even in city hotels, its hard to come by a pool that is designed like it is in Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport. Just look at the swaying leaves of the tropical palm trees growing from the pool. Plus, how about a view of the iconic Changi Airport Control tower? Yeah, I can see some airport lovers’ eyes light up like a Christmas tree.
Tropical paradise to enjoy sunny Singapore weather in
So relaxing, it doesn’t feel like the airport
At least till you spot this iconic tower
The only thing is the water is really, really cold even if it is outdoors! I made sure we all had a towel each, grabbed from the poolside counter, so that we could wrap up immediately once we got out the pool.
Jillo took some time to inch into the pool, while Manda and I went bravely in. We spent the next 45 minutes to an hour or so just playing around and taking tonnes of photos.
Awesome fun times at the pool
Altogether now… one, two… smile!
Caught on camera by Manda
Tropically designed, lush gardens with trees “growing” from the pool
A quiet garden spot next to the lift landing on Level 3
You know what’s really charming about the hotel? It’s the little gardens and landscaped spots all around. It’s easy to just really take some time to zone out or have a ball of time surrounded by super lush foliage. After our dip in the pool, we thought of joking around at the quiet garden next to the lift lobby of Level 3, where the pool is at as well.
Jillo and the towel turban
What started as just taking some time to dry off, became a full-fledged Street Fighter showdown. Complete with very bad (not proper) martial arts wannabe moves.
Round 1! Fight!
Dramatic hit scored by Jillo
Looking way too happy to be actually hit by an energy ball
Jillo kicking ass again huh?
I don’t show this wacky side of me too often. Somehow, with Jillo and Manda around, it’s so easy to be serious AND be wacky at the same time. Too often, friends comment that I am too fierce or serious. It’s like I’m so strung up or something. The funny thing is, I can really goof off too, just that some friends bring it out of me.
It’s nice to have a different group of gal pals like that. I sometimes feel so exasperated about why I feel so “pulled tight” like I could snap. I felt this more before I did my personal development training with Asiaworks. Now though, I’m still dealing with letting it go, it’s still a work in progress.
Filling dinner at Pasta de Waraku
Staying at Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport may seem like a bad idea at first, being at the airport and all. I mean, doesn’t everyone prefer to stay in town where there’s shopping and dining options galore? But wait a minute, Changi Airport has an amazing repertoire of food outlets, restaurants, snack kiosks, and to some extent shopping too!
I also have an awesome Changi Rewards card (free!) which allows me to accumulate points (one dollar for one point) to redeem shopping vouchers for use in Changi Airport. I understand right now, the exchange is 500 points to $5. Nubbad lah!
There’s so many places I love to shop at like Etude House for their awesome skincare and make up (Terminal 2), Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf because I love the Vanilla Blended Coffees (Terminal 2), Watsons (Terminal 3), Szan for dresses and clothes (Terminal 3), Krispy Kreme for the original glazed donuts (Terminal 2) and Muji (Terminal 2). That’s just naming a select few.
Grabbed a load of donuts as well for in-room snacking and late night hunger pangs
Deciding which donut to have
Lotsa donuts in boxes!
Also, Changi Airport’s latest event is “Springtime Wonders” featuring everyones favourite Disney Characters! This is running from 15 January to 29 March 2015. Check out the cute Mickey and Minnie Mouse statues!
For every $100 spent (up to two receipts cumulated within a day) get a free Disney pass to get a Disney organiser AND a Disney Tsum Tsum challenge pass. Oh yeah! If you’re the weekly top scorer, you might win yourself a Tsum Tsum plush toy and stand a chance to win a 3D2N holiday for two to Hong Kong.
Anyhow, if you manage to redeem that organiser and challenge pass and if you’ve got one of those free Changi Rewards cards, you get a set of Disney hong baos as well! My whole office is freaking excited about this spring promotion (and Tsum Tsum) by the way.
In a nutshell, the staycation was really super fun and enjoyable even in a familiar setting, having stayed here once before. I would do it all over again, same place, same people!
Crowne Plaza® Changi Airport
75 Airport Boulevard, Singapore 819664
Disclaimer: The views expressed on this website are my personal views and do not necessarily reflect views of my employer. The posts and opinions expressed on this blog are solely my own. They do not represent (nor are they intended to represent) the positions, opinions or policies of my employer or any other company or person. The comments on this site are moderated, but even so the opinions expressed in those comments are not necessarily shared by me.