SINGAPORE - More than 2,000 people turned up for a lavish "block party" Raffles Hotel held on Friday (Oct 18) to celebrate its official reopening.
Called the Raffles-Reopening Festival, the ticketed event, with each person paying $300, was sold out, and its proceeds of $600,000 will go towards the S$1 million the hotel will donate to Community Chest Singapore.
The other $400,000 came from a cocktail event on Thursday and a silent auction.
The four-hour event had tasting portions of food served at the hotel's restaurants, accompanied by live performances from a veritable who's who of the local music scene.
The festival, which started at 7pm, also had a free flow of champagne, wine, beer and bespoke cocktails.
The donation will go to about 80 charities, including social services that help children with special needs and youth-at-risk, adults with disabilities and persons with mental health conditions.
"Contributing back to society has always been a significant part of our celebrations and we would like to thank Community Chest Singapore, and everyone who has been a part of our charity efforts," said Raffles Hotel general manager Christian Westbeld.
"As we reopen, we aim to be the pride of Singapore on the world's hospitality stage, creating timeless experiences through legendary service."
Raffles Hotel reopened its doors in August after an almost two-year revamp. Established in 1887 by Armenian hoteliers, it is now owned by hotel developer Katara Hospitality.
Click and drag on your mobile device or move your mouse on your desktop and enjoy a 360-degree view of the grand lobby.
Click and drag on your mobile device or move your mouse on your desktop and enjoy a 360-degree view of the ballroom.
Click and drag on your mobile device or move your mouse on your desktop and enjoy a 360-degree view of the room.
The tasting portions of food during the festival were from the menus of the Grand Lobby, Tiffin Room, La Dame de Pic, BBR by Alain Ducasse, Burger and Lobster and Raffles Courtyard.
Providing the live entertainment were singer Kit Chan, indie-pop band The Sam Willows, singer and songwriter Inch Chua and musician Jeremy Monteiro, who performed with a jazz quartet and singer Alemay Fernandez.
Guests who like comedy had a belly-full of laughs watching actor and comedian Hossan Leong perform several stand-up routines.
The revamped hotel features 115 luxurious suites, an increase from 103. One of them was opened for guests to have a view.
Katara Hospitality acting chief executive Andrew Humphries said Singapore is fast emerging as a choice location for developers of iconic tourist destinations as the country has one of the best business environments in the world.
"Our investment in this incredible project marks another example of our commitment to the Singapore market," he said.
"It has been an amazing journey to return this unique property to its rightful place as Singapore's icon."