Sounds like a good plan. Have never been to Divine's wine bar. Hopefully I make another trip one of these days.
First trip to Singapore in the 80s, pre-renovation Raffles was much nicer than in the 90s post rennovation. It lost its unique charm, and now looks like many other hotels.. What they now call the museum, is what the entire hotel looked like. I still have my cocktail napkin and swizzle stick documenting my Singapore Sling at the Long Bar.
p.s. found a nice picture of Divine's wine bar, in a list of the top 10 ex-pat bars
Most places in Asia, dress and behavior makes a big difference.
Its a very class-oriented society.
I have also found it helps to have the concierge make appointments. Knowing you are affliated with the hotel will get you special treatment.
Asian names always have surname first, and then given name, as it is more important, what you belong to, e.g. is your family important? is your company important? Which hotel are you staying at? Are you a valued customer hence the concierge makes your plans?
Even in the US it doesn't hurt. When Spago's first opened and I wanted to go, I could not even get a phone call through. The phone was 'permanently' busy. I asked the LA Marriott concierge to get me a reservation, and presto, I had one.
There's some great guidance for me in your note. Despite working there for a few weeks, I never picked up on the 'belonging' angle. The names used to throw me as they also seem to adopt an 'English' name as well, e.g. one lady's given name was Kai Heng but I kept hearing people call her Adeline ... complete confusion until I asked my Asian colleague what was going on
Many immigrants with difficult to pronounce names adopt english names that sound similiar to theirs.
I have found this not only in the US, but also on cruise ships. They want you to remember their names, and interact, so have Angliciized their names.
Same thing when I study languages. My professors have assigned me names that are considered a translation of my name. Or friends and family form other cultures have given me a nicname. its also pretty traditional to give everyone a nicname. Its how you know who is on the inside circle and who is not, without a letter of introduction.