When the first Hotel Jen in the world opened in Singapore last year at Orchardgateway, I was extremely impressed by the quality of rooms and how affordable it actually is - if you are ever looking for an affordable hotel along Orchard Road that is new, extremely convenient with an impressive swimming pool, Hotel Jen Orchardgateway is your place to be - click HERE to check out my previous review of the Hotel Jen Orchardgateway's Premier Panorama room. For those of you that do not already know this, there are two Hotel Jens in Singapore and Hotel Jen is a new brand by the Hong Kong-based Shangri-La International Hotel Management Ltd.
The Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore that is located within the quieter end of Orchard, along Cuscaden Rd (right across from where the Regent Singapore is). For the older generation and many Singaporeans, Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore occupies the previous Traders Hotel (also by Shangri-La International Hotel Management Ltd) and it is currently undergoing a major refurbishment and transformation process to conform to new brand standards and expectations.
The Club Rooms at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore have gone through a major transformation process and they look nothing like the previous rooms at all. Featuring a warm, playful and earthly interior, the refurbished Club Rooms are designed with the future travellers' requirements in mind. The Club Rooms at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore are approximately 25 sqm in size and it comes with a super comfortable king-size (or twin) bed, a bathroom with a walk-in shower (no tub though!) as well as a panoramic view of the surroundings.
As a Jade Member of the Golden Circle programme (Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts Loyalty Program), I received all the benefits that were advertised. I also received all three of my welcome amenities of choice - fresh fruits, instant noodles (yes this is an actual option!) as well as cookies and milk - so thumbs up on Hotel Jen Tanglin getting it right! Jade level status is awarded upon 10 qualifying stays (or 20 qualifying nights) in a calendar year at any Shangri-La hotel, resort, Kerry hotel, Traders hotel and Hotel Jen. It's not particularly difficult to hit if you do staycations once or twice a month and it gives you complimentary breakfast, upgrades and late checkout where available - click HERE to find out more about the Golden Circle Jade Membership.
You will find a comfortable-looking sofa in your Club Room at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore that also comes with a whole set of playfully-designed cushions. This is the perfect place to get some sun in the day while you read a book (or a magazine from PressReader - more on this later). If you would like to get more work done, there is also a large work desk with universal sockets (so you don't have to worry about carrying a travel adapter) and even USB ports for your power-hungry devices. In fact, I was really surprised to find four USB ports (two by the work desk and two by the bed) throughout the room - definitely another plus point! If you are feeling hungry (and lazy), there is also a 24-hour in-room Order-In menu that you will find on the work desk.
As mentioned earlier, the bathroom does not come equipped with a tub but you will find a large walk-in shower (with a rainshower head). Amenities are provided by an in-house branded Hotel Jen amenity bag that contains the essentials - shower gels, toothbrushes and a basic vanity kit.
WiFi is complimentary in all Hotel Jens around the world so you do not have to worry about chalking up huge charges with wireless internet access that you so often do in major luxury hotel chains. In fact, you also get unlimited access to PressReader which has a really impressive catalog of up-to-date newspapers and magazines from all around the world. If you are visiting Singapore for a couple of days, I would highly recommend you to download magazines that you will be able to read offline on the plane (or another hotel that doesn't have this privilege).
While exploring the bedroom, I found a button that was labelled 'Take-off' next to the bed. Upon pressing the button, mood lighting in the room (and primarily under the bed) created an illusion of a floating bed. I really like the mood lighting in this room and have found it to be excellent for watching tv in bed. Reading lights are also conveniently located by the bedside (and discreetly stowed away) if you intend to do some reading in bed (where else would you?!).
If you do stay in a Club Room (and honestly, this is the only room type you should consider since the rooms are beautiful and the lounge is crazy impressive), you do get a whole range of benefits that the basic-room-stayer do not get:
- Extended weekday breakfasts from 6.30am until 11:00am
- "Jenerous" weekend brunches from 6.30am until 12:00pm
- Mid-afternoon culinary treats
- Cocktail hour from 5:00pm until 7.30pm
- Open from 6:00am until 10:00pm. Accessible on a 24-hour basis with a room key
- Exclusive check-in, reception and concierge
- Pressing of one piece of clothing per stay
- Business centre facilities
I absolutely love the dark woody elements in the Club Lounge - it reminds me more of a chic-looking cafe rather than a boring hotel lounge that we are so accustomed to. The full-length windows also provide plenty of natural lighting in the day and a view of the hotel's surroundings. In case you do not have a laptop with you, there's also an iMac that you can work on.
Afternoon Tea is also served at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore's Club Lounge and you will find a mix of both sweet and savoury snacks. It is also a nice place to hang out and if you are here on a work trip, the lounge will be a nice change of surroundings. I had the privilege of staying in a Club Room on the same level as the Club Lounge (level 17) so it was extremely convenient for me to walk over.
In the evening, cocktail hours run from 17:00hrs to 19:30hrs each day so if you do have a day job, you still have an hour or so to enjoy if you leave the office at 6pm. I particularly enjoyed the evening cocktails at the Club Lounge. There is a healthy selection of wine, spirits and beer where you will be able to make your very own cocktail and adjust the alcohol level to your own-liking.
Food during cocktail hour is pretty amazing for me - there was prawn paste chicken (more affectionately known as 'Har Cheong Gai' by the locals here), satay as well as pork ribs. If you would like something less messy, there were also sausages and nachos (with a decent salsa). Having been to many hotels in Singapore, I can safely say that this was definitely one of the best club lounges I have been to at this price point. The food quality is decent, the selection is healthy and the only thing I would like to see more is an improvement on Gin quality (that being said, I'm just a gin-snob and Gordon's just wouldn't cut it for me).
Breakfast at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore is a pretty extensive affair - particularly if you are staying in one of the Club Rooms or Suites. Like most other hotels, you will have the option of the full buffet breakfast at Cafebiz or a small but more private one at the Club Lounge. As usual, I always pick the former option and was seriously impressed with the variety of food offered at breakfast. Apart from the usual suspects (e.g. egg station, fried noodles and sausages), there was also a Nasi Lemak (with condiments) counter, a hot Yong Tau Foo station, made-to-order laksa station and a huge selection of other dishes. To be honest, I was not expecting to see such a great variety of breakfast items but it was definitely a pleasant one. If you are afraid of feeling hungry or if you have to rush off somewhere, there is also a Tapao (which translates into takeaway) Bag for you to take food out of the restaurant and save for consumption later.
Curious about the weekend brunch at the Club Lounge that runs until 12pm on weekends, I decided to pop by the Club Lounge on my way back to the room and boy was I glad I did that. Instead of having a limited selection of food items that were also available at the main restaurant (which most hotels do, by the way), the Club Lounge offers a really delicious selection of breakfast items like poached salmon, corned beef, delicious sausages and fresh bread. If I were to do it again, I would probably pick the Club Lounge for breakfast as it is a lot quieter and the quality of food was pretty impressive!
I strongly believe that the refurbished Club Rooms at the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore are worth every penny and it could very well be the top hotel in Orchard with the best dollar-to-value ratio in my opinion. If you are thinking of a weekend staycation then the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore is really an excellent choice. There are also takeaway paper cups for you to take coffee out of the Club Lounge and back to your room (or out of the hotel).
I could see the iconic swimming pool (and Ah Hoi's Kitchen) from my bedroom which serves up delicious local food so if you have not tried it, it's about time you do so! There are also plenty of tanning decks for you to soak up the sun before taking a dip in the azure blue pools in the afternoon.
At the time of writing (and barring all other existing and future promotions), the advance purchase rate for a Club Room at Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore is approximately S$238++ which comes with all the club benefits that I have covered (yes, breakfast too!). Even though the hotel is not right smack in Orchard Road, it is only a short stroll away (besides the whole Tanglin area is really charming on weekends) from one of the world's most famous shopping strip. All in all, the Hotel Jen Tanglin Singapore truly impressed me in more ways than I thought possible - the hotel is not particularly plush but it's unpretentious, honest, fun and incredibly affordable. The hotel stay was filled with little touches and clever design that made my weekend stay enjoyable. Having been to two Hotel Jens thus far, I can't say I am not excited for my next Jen adventure on my quest to search for That Jen Feeling.