It’s clear a visit to Singapore’s Raffles Hotel is going to be special when your car pulls into the circular driveway. The crunch of gravel gives the place an air of Downton Abbey, but the hotel’s famed Sikh doormen, in their white turbans and ornate uniforms, are an instant reminder that you’re firmly in ex-colonial territory.
Before you’ve uttered a single word, the hotel knows more about you than you might think. To personalize guests’ experiences, their profiles start to be reviewed about two weeks ahead of arrival, according to Grace Kiong, the hotel’s head butler. This attention to detail ensures that when a visitor arrives, their personal butler—every suite gets one—is one step ahead when it comes to anticipating their possible needs.