My boyfriend and I stepped out of the taxi into thick humidity at 3.05pm, already 5 minutes late for our booking. We stopped for just a few seconds to admire the grand façade of the beautiful Raffles Hotel before half running, half walking across the gravel driveway and down the corridor to the Tiffin Room.
Of course, the hostess at the entrance didn’t mind that we were late and welcomed us with a smile. After ticking our name from the list, we were led to our table for two.
It looked like two separate areas had been opened for high tea, with most guests (that is, the early birds unlike us) seated in the front section near the buffet. The second area where we sat was separated by a large white pillar and appeared to be more sunlit and felt quieter with fewer people. The interior was simply elegant with white marble floors, white pillars, high ceilings with chandeliers and dark wooden furniture. Fans hung from the ceiling but were turned off, as the room was air-conditioned. A harpist sat by the pillar between the two areas and played beautiful songs all afternoon.
After we ordered pots of tea (English Breakfast), we wandered over to the buffet and were overwhelmed by the huge selection of pastries, dumplings, puddings, cakes and fresh fruit on offer. Knowing that we still had a full three-tiered tray ahead of us, we both selected a few bites and headed back to our table. Soon enough, our lovely waiters and waitresses arrived with three tiers of delicious goodies and a large pot of steaming hot tea.
We weren’t all that hungry because we had eaten a light lunch just a few hours earlier after an exhausting 2-hour history walking tour in the intense heat. So we were only able to get through a few sandwiches and cakes, although drank plenty of tea. The staff were absolutely lovely and kept checking in on us (probably because we weren’t devouring our high tea like other guests!).
After deciding that we simply couldn’t eat anymore, we browsed in the hotel store and wandered around the hotel complex before finding this sign.
So of course we climbed the staircase to the second level and sat at high stools at Long Bar. We enjoyed different versions of the Singapore Sling and ate peanuts from these large sacks. We peeled the peanuts ourselves and dropped the skins to the ground because this is apparently the only location in Singapore where littering is allowed.
High tea and Singapore Slings at the Raffles Hotel should be an item on your to-do list in Singapore. The high tea is pricey but includes the buffet, endless cups of tea and refills for the tiered trays. The location is also very beautiful and the service in both the Tiffin Room and Long Bar is fast and super friendly. It’s also a great excuse to get all dolled up and pretend that you are a lady of leisure in the early 1900s with nothing better to do than enjoy a cup of tea and some cucumber sandwiches followed by a pre-dinner Singapore Sling at the grand Raffles Hotel.