A storied 19th-century godown has been reborn as The Warehouse Hotel, a 37-room destination on the banks of the Singapore River.
Local practice Asylum masterminded the adaptive reuse of the building – once used for the spice trade – drawing on its colourful history to create its interiors and branding.
‘Given it was a godown, a warehouse, used to store spices and there was a lot of illicit activities we found [out about] during its heyday, we tried to bring a bit of that excitement into the space,’ says Asylum founder Chris Lee.
The triple-peaked building sits in the Havelock Road neighbourhood, Singapore’s red light district during the early 20th century. In the 1980s, the godown was also used a vast disco club.
‘Our focus has been to protect the property’s legacy while creating a fresh perspective on the term “industrial”’, says Lee. The warehouse’s distinctive silhouette has been retained, while inside, its soaring trussed ceiling has been left exposed, along with masonry, and polished concrete floors. Steel wheels hang from the ceiling in the hotel’s lobby, enhancing its proportions.
Asylum has also installed a sleek black-top bar in the lobby, serving a menu of spice-infused cocktails. Meanwhile, the hotel’s restaurant Pó dishes up Mod-Sino fare created by Wild Rocket’s Willin Low.
The Warehouse Hotel, which can be booked via Design Hotels, offers guests six types of bedrooms, each of which has been designed with the structure’s existing layout in mind. They range from lofts with mezzanines to the cocoon-like 27 sqm ‘Sanctuary Rooms’. At 54 sqm, the top-floor River View Suite is the largest on offer.
Materials are king throughout: original windows and beams have been retained, and most rooms have double-height ceilings, hardwood floors and locally sourced furnishing.
Capping the The Warehouse Hotel is an infinity swimming pool overlooking the river and surrounding neighbourhood.
It’s the first hotel for Singaporean hospitality outfit The Lo & Behold Group, whose offerings include Beach Club, Odette, The Black Swan, and The White Rabbit.