The Luxe List 2009, Singapore: Capella Singapore, Sentosa Island

Cascading down a hillside toward the South China Sea, the Capella Singapore has all the trimmings of a luxury resort with a grand, colonial twist. The Asian debut for the Capella group, a new chain of boutique properties headed by former Ritz-Carlton president Horst Schulze, the 111-room hotel occupies two 1880s buildings linked by a modern curvilinear structure in the shape of a figure eight. Sir Norman Foster was called upon to oversee the architecture, while Indonesia’s Jaya Ibrahim took the helm on interiors—think dark-wood floors, Burmese teak furniture, and thoughtfully selected modern art. In fact, over 900 artworks accent the property, from striking murals in the living room– style lobby to larger-than-life sculptures nestled amid the hotel’s 12 hectares of rain forest and heritage trees. Posh Chinese is on the menu at Cassia, but the highlight of any visit has to be sipping ginger beers at Bob’s Bar, a semi-open space with views over three hillside swimming pools (1 The Knolls, 65/6377-8888;; doubles from US$382).

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