Brand Singapore

Singapore’s hospitality scene is on fire.

Home to some of the world’s best bars and restaurants, the Lion City has forged an identity as an important dining and drinking destination on the world stage.

Singapore’s sophisticated scene thrives, backed by a bustling melting pot of locals and international guests. The scene is innovative, curious, diverse and bold, and continues to surprise and delight as it grows and evolves.

SETTING THE SCENE

How did this incredible transformation happen? A large part is due to Singapore’s thriving economy, and the diverse perspectives and passions of local innovators and committed outsiders. There has been a changing of the guard’, as a new generation of owners make their mark and lead the pack.

Additionally, Singapore’s scale and density mean everything is a 15 minute train or cab ride away. This proximity is great for bar-hopping patrons, and has also created a tight community of owners and operators.

The city has rigorous regulations on alcohol and F&B licencing and commercial zoning, and its traditionally high excise of alcohol meant that innovation and quality were not key drivers for venues. This started changing when guests’ value expectations did. Their interest in quality, origin and authenticity drove the craft bar and cocktail culture in Singapore and its region. This in turn created an environment where operators are willing to experiment and take risks.

Finally, Singapore is a connected city that attracts world class talent. Its infrastructure, including renowned Changi Airport, offers easy access to other Asian cities. Short and long term travellers have grown the city’s scene, bringing diverse styles and attitudes. The result is an open culture that rewards hospitality innovation.

Purveyors of fine spirits, craft beers, organic wines and thoughtful plates have thrived in this environment. Motivating their commercial realities is a healthy willingness to experiment, take risks and aim high.”

Paul Semple, Hassell Principal

THE CATALYST

When integrated resort Marina Bay Sands opened in 2010, a slew of world leading chefs, mixologists and operators came to Singapore.

The burgeoning scene, previously led by a few trailblazers in the early 2000s, suddenly exploded.

Enter 28 HongKong Street. This no-sign speakeasy sparked the craft cocktail bar movement, and was a sign that the city was ready for new flavours and experiences. The new wave of operators sought challenging, interesting spaces in unexpected locations around the city to reflect their unique new offerings.

CO-CREATORS OF THE DESTINATION BRAND

Paul Semple and Matt Shang designed 28 HongKong Street and many other of Singapore’s scene-defining destinations.

Matt and Paul founded their design practice Distillery in 2008. It fast became eponymous with high end hospitality, retail, food and beverage and residential design. Distillery merged with Hassell in 2015. Its founders saw this as a natural evolution given the practices’ shared design aspirations and culture.

A big narrative idea drives every design process and acts as the script that we always come back to.”

Paul Semple, Hassell Principal

Idlewild bar at InterContinental Singapore.

Some of our standout F&B projects in Singapore

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Consistently rated in the world’s top 50 bars 
  • An immersive, glamorous drinking experience designed in collaboration with beverage consultants Proof & Co
  • Evokes the American perspective of the golden age’ of cocktails, with artisanal spirits crafted and combined in the world’s first in-hotel rickhouse
  • Private seating areas in the library, The Rockefeller Room, and accessible via a secret’ door

Its elegant interiors … mimic the grandeur of New York City in its 1920s. Indeed, the bar is almost like a scene from highly acclaimed novel The Great Gatsby! Sexy and swanky.” 

Uncover Asia

Image: EK Yap

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Housed in the lobby of Singapore’s prestigious Parkview Square, an Art Deco building with 1920s glamour and decadence 
  • The bar’s design incorporates the geometry, gilded brass and frescoes of its building
  • A signature, three-story, gold liquor cabinet houses the world’s largest gin and vermouth collection

We whipped out our phones and snapped photos the way any awed Singaporean would do, while cooing at the magnificent interior. The bar, and the three-storey gold gin refrigerator was a marvel to behold.”

Lifestyle Asia

View project
Image: EK Yap

HIGHLIGHTS

  • A soulful, glamorous journey of discovery and delight, inspired by the golden age of air travel, with a sense of timelessness and longevity
  • An immersive expression of the imaginary personalities of Mae and Albert – a couple we created and placed at the centre of the bar’s design narrative
  • Crafted as a journey of progressive discovery – from the pink velvet entry to the intimate parlour, Cabinet of Curiosities and split level bar adorned with smoky mirrors and exquisite details

Aplomb and romantic musings are in the air here at Idlewild; not to mention the luxurious mien of plush booth seats and a stunning bar counter that screams luxury.” 

Buro 247

Image: EK Yap

HIGHLIGHTS

  • A tropical-colonial’ inspired tea lounge and gourmet pasticceria - with distinct identities that work together
  • These reimagined venues, designed for warmth and comfort, sit elegantly within the hotel’s existing atrium volume
  • With the aroma of coffee and Italian pastries wafting in the air, Dolcetto energises the lobby with a homelike atmosphere 
  • The Tea Lounge has lush foliage and dramatic windows that stream natural light
Image: EK Yap

HIGHLIGHTS

  • A members-only business club and lounge for VIP meetings, intimate discussions and exclusive events
  • Nods to the glamorous executive lounges popular in the US during the 1960s and 1970s
  • Custom-made furniture and plush carpets in light tones create a sense of calm, defined with metallic and dark timber touches
  • A meticulously designed Champagne Room for discussing deals over a crisp glass of bubbles from the all-day cocktail bar
  • An eclectic library lined with orange Thai silk wall panelling and shelves for an assortment of books and collectors objects is an informal space designed to spark creativity and conversation

[Despite the] exclusivity and the demography of its members, walking into MARK feels like walking into a (very luxurious) home. Custom-made furniture pieces upholstered with Pierre Frey fabrics and handcrafted crystal decanters from Venice are paired with rattan screens, bright handpainted shelves, and mismatched silverware.” 

IndesignLive Singapore

Image: EK Yap

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