A couple of points:
1. Are you certain that there are 3 Marriott properties in Singapore; my recollection - admittedly a couple of years old - is that there only two: a Ritz Carlton and a Marriott. It is true that for a long time the Marriott advertised an additional site, but on closer examination - and for reasons that no-one outside of Singapore seemed to understand - the "two" Marriott" sites were in fact one and the same.
2. The main differences between the two sites - apart from the obvious brand differences - are:
a) Age: the Marriott is an older building - the CK Tang building, which is beginning to look its age, particularly internally, whereas the the R-C is a much newer construction. The Marriott has a very busy lobby and Lobby Cafe, which some find a little hard to manage.
b) Location: the Marriott is on the intersection of Orchard and Scott - dead centre of "retail" Singapore, easy walking distance to all the main stores, well served by MTR and generally a really bustling, energetic location, which can occasionally be a little disconcerting in the late evenings; the R-C, by contrast is in the Marina area, perched on recently reclaimed land, nearer to Chengi Aiurport, close to the major artistic/cultural centre but further from the shopping centre. about equidistant from the main finance/banking zone and the Clarke Quay bars/restaurants area on the river. It too is relatively well served by the MTR - though I doubt whether too many R-C clients use that form of transport. Lastly - and I trust you will appreciate the significance of this factor - the R-C is closer to the Singapore Cricket Club - and of some historic interest, Raffles Hotel:-)
Eating out - which I understand you occasionally enjoy - is well catered for, with a variety of Asia and European/American cuisines available. Like many other things in Singapore, however, it tends to be ferociously expensive.
As I think you will have noticed the recent controversy (aired on this site) about the range of "customer services" on offer at the Marriott, I'll leave it to you to judge the relevance/importance of this issue:-)
I'm sure others will offer a wide variety of advice and information, but please feel free to use me as a sounding board if you wish. I worked in Singapore - off and on - for around 5 years.
Have a good week-end
That was a great summary. When I was there (also a couple of years ago) there were only two Marriotts. I seem to recall being offered a 'third' option but it was off-island in Malaysia. Unfortunately, I never got to stay at either Marriott property as I could never get the corporate rate ... I always seemed to end up at the Swisshotel The Stamford or at the Park Hotel ... both were very central but did not earn me points!!
We are also heading to Singapore in Feb next year and plan to stay at the Marriott on Orchard. I like walking around Singapore and that makes the best base. I also think the MRT is more accessible from there. However, taxis were one of the few things that seemed fairly reasonably priced in Singapore!
As for Raffles Hotel ... mmm, not exactly what I expected ... I'll take my wife there as she has never been, but it will be a short visit and I will definitely 'not' be drinking one of those Singapore Slings ... not nice!
Jerry ... when are you planning to visit?
I too used the Swiss, though I think it was a previous incarnation - the Stamford Plaza or something along those lines. On one occasion I became so seriously "ratty" with my usual haunts that I used a place called the Carlton - one block up from Raffles - which had a good Exec Lounge and reasonable accommodation for a lot less, but then I succumbed to the lure of "points" - and alas now I am a pure bred points junkie!
Apropos of "world tours", I too think it is a delightful concept. I will keep the May-London date in my diary, though whether I'll be able to operate the diary is another question.
Stayed there in the 80s but can not remember which hotel (guess the hotel was not that memorable).
Went back in the 90s and prices had quadrupled so started staying in Jahore Bharu which was only 45 minutes away by car, priced like Singapore was in 80s, and a fascinating place to stay. Was also able to travel to southern parts of Malaysia, like Kukup for the crabs, Malacca to see the Portugese influence, Kuala Lumpur, and the east coast where some of the scenes from South Pacific were shot.
While there are only 2 Marriotts in Singapore, Jahore Bharu, Malaysia is only a 45 minute ride from the Singapore Airport, and it costs alot less to be in Malaysia. Many of the hotels will pick you up and drop you off at the Singapore Airport.
There is a Renaissance opening in Jahore Bharu in December of 2012. Its a cat 4 so, the Cat 1-4 certificates could be used there.
And when klaus29 is in Kuala Lumpur he is not that far away. Might be a great place for a Meet & Greet!
Best to go in Jan. By Feb-Mar it can be unbearably hot.
Also, best to catch Duran (King of fruits) and Mangosteen (Queen of fruits) season.
Of course, Pisan Goreng (fried banana fritter) is always available. And Malaysia as Pisan goreng mas which is a small golden, extra sweet banana.
When I first started spending a lot of time in Singapore, a local gave me a piece of advice which at the time I thought to be rather facile, but later realised was very significant. "Chris", she said, "in Singapore we have only three climatic variants: hot/humid, hotter/more humid, very hot/very humid!"
This helps in part to explain the popularity of the large shopping malls along Orchard. Even if you have little interest in retail activity, they are all very adequately air-conditioned!
Arkwright ... having read you comment, I was just thinking about how hot it would be when we are there in Feb ... looking back to one of my old work diaries, I was there in Nov, Jan and Feb at various points and can't recall much of a temperature difference. It always seemed to be hot! I do recall that people tended to avoid being out in the middle of the day ... I wonder why!?!
Durian is a fruit the size of a large pineapple, covered in spikes. If one falls from a tree and hits you in the head it can cause some significant damage.
When they are fresh they do not smell.
But not long after they are cut they do develop a strong odor, to the point that most hotels have signs that say 'No Durian Allowed" or a picture of Durian with a red X through it. I have some pictures of the signs somewhere, and if I can find them, will post.
There is also a story about how one of the British Govenors was given a Durian by a local administrator, and told it had a wonderful taste, but not to smell it. The British govenor did smell it, and thought they were trying to kill him.
Bottom line: no matter how bad it smells, it tastes great, and if you want to avoid the smell, than have it when you see it being cut from the tree, or recently cut.
Thanks for the info GemP ... yes, it was Durian that I was thinking about. I saw the 'no Durian' signs when I was last there in early 2010. I was in the Little India area when I actually first saw (and smelt) the fruit ... I guess that it wasn't too fresh! I must try a fresh one when we are there next year.
First time I saw it was in WDC. The ex-pat communicty use to have it flown in, flash frozen, and the pricing was similiar to cavier. I never indulged, as I didn't want to develop a liking for yet another expensive, hard to get food item. But when I finally traveled to SE Asia, I tried it, and fell in love with it. Also learned all the variations from fresh to been around awhile and smells, though it still tastes good which is why its not thrown up cause its smelly.
you will cam to south est asia wooow; i think you will like it. i go many times to Singapore, but never stay in the Jw marriott , its near 500 US; with Hongkong is the most expensive city in asia
i will stay in Kuala lumpur in the ranaissance hotel is better at the Jw marriott .. i will be there two time 7 days.From the 21/11 to the 28/11/2012 and from the 07/01 to the 14/01/2013
and the two times i get a upgrate to a suite .and i stay in the phuket beach club in a villa with 2 beedrooms from the 09/12/ to the 16/12/2012. with a gateway from interval international...
dont vegette thailand, you have many nice places there. , And i hopei to see you in Kuala lumpur or in Phuket.. i wisch you a wounderfull trip. i leave Paris the 09/11:2012 for Phuket, and will be back
to Paris the 18/05/2013.
ps. i vergette cpmpletlyi will stay to n the Renaissance hotel in melaka,, a historical city, the chanel of Melaka, the Jonker treet with, the china town from Melaka, with many schops, and restaurants;
i dont take the special ^price minimum 2 nights 380 ringitts, no when you stay 7 nights it is a long stay in this hotel, and the price go down to 220 ringitt i take 3 times 7 nighs total 21 and this for
84 US per night . and. ths for the best 5 Start Hotel in Melaka.; and not for a Deluxe r oom,, in this hotel i will get to a upgrate to a Suite, for 21 nights; all this hotels have a E lounge, open
the Week end, and the guest don,t stay withaut a Breakfast.; I stay there from the 17/12 to the 07/01/2013, very good for the megabnus.
i make a confusion with Kota bharu, and jahore bharu.. i book years ago in kota bharu for 1 week, but stay only 2 nights . its a very good hotel, but the city is died;.
in jahore Bharu, a Renaissance will open , but when? you dont can book , ni for january or february 2013.
I prevere the Renaissance hotel in kuala lumpur, with 2 lounges, 6 waiter in each.; and the city is very, ,very clean , and many cites to visit there.
I have also been to Kota Bharu! The shopping was great, and so was the food.
I am thinking of Jahore Bharu as an option for Singapore, as folks can still fly into Singapore airport which is 45 min away.
If we are based in Jahore Bharu, then its possible to sightsee in Singapore & Jahore Bharu, as well as do day trips to Kuala Lumpur, Malacca, Kukup.
Or maybe every arrives Singapore, stays in Jahore Bharu 1st, and then goes up to Kuala Lumpu for a night or two?
When I was there I flew between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, but is it driveable?
More links on Singapore
http://www.rewards-insiders.marriott.com/message/62199#62199 (some references)
http://www.rewards-insiders.marriott.com/message/63046#63046 (some references)