An Ode To Heritage

By Eve Tedja

Three hotels in Mexico, Bali and Singapore are paying homage to their locality and environment.


Paying homage to the Far East Square heritage precinct and Telok Ayer district is the newly opened hotel that tells captivating stories of its locality. Through unique touchpoints and services, the history of clans and Chinese settlers around Amoy Street can be experienced when one stays at one of the hotel’s 324 rooms. The hotel’s signature Master Series, comprising of 18 Grand Premier and 60 Premier rooms, is a not-to-be-missed highly personalised experience. Be it a luxury airport transfers with a Rolls Royce car or a bespoke service from The Clan Keepers, expect immersive and detailed pampering experiences.

From tea ceremony upon arrival at the lobby to the all-hawker-farein- room dining menu, the highly curated Clan Collective programme and network will delight both leisure and business travellers alike. Head to TungLok Group’s all-day dining concept, QIN Restaurant and Bar to enjoy distinctive dishes such as Siphon Mushroom Tea or Chili Crab Crostini and end the day with a nightcap.

The hotel is equipped with Sky Pool, Sky Gym and jacuzzi on its top floor, offering a bird’s eye view of the surrounding skyscrapers and traditional shophouses. The Den and Mahjong Room event spaces are available for business executives who wish to create small-scale meetings. 


“The Clan Hotel Singapore is proud to work with our local partners, The Clan Collective. This group of local craftsmen, artists and influential figures help us in creating unique touchhpoints for our guests. There’s Grace Tan, the artist behind hotel lobby’s artwork, The Pact; Dr. Leslie Tay, the curator of The Clan Daily Special menu; Chong Han San of Q Menswear who designed our staff uniforms, and Ivan Yeo of the 1925 Brewing Co who crafted our beer. I recommend a stay at one of our Master Series room where personalised details such as pillow menu and personal concierge service are part of the charming experience. Exclusive to guests of the Master Series rooms, The Clan Daily Special in-room dining menu offers tiffindelivered hawker favourites such as Punggol Nasi Lemak, Eddie Li Xin Fishball Noodle and Legendary Bak Kut Teh.”


Oaxaca conjures colourful arts and crafts, magical natural landscapes and vibrant indigenous heritage. Nestled in the delta of La Barra de Colotopec, a few kilometres down from the lively port town of Puerto Escondido, Cazona Sforza beachfront boutique resort is an intimate hideaway, marrying vernacular tradition with barefoot luxury. 

Designed by the renowned Mexican architect Alberto Kalach, 11 vaulted suites were harmoniously built to blend into the landscape. The sand-yellow bricks keep the suites cool. 

Five suites are situated on the ground floor with six more on the upper floor. The down-to-earth bohemian decor showcases the region’s craftsmanship prominently, from Teotitlán del Valle’s rugs to glassware from the workshop of Pueblo del Sol, a social project supported and financed by the resort. Its aim is to grow a community of indigenous artisans in Oaxaca, improving the strength and visibility of their work and rediscovering their native roots.  Situated an hour from the resort, guests are invited to get involved and meet the artisans.


“At Casona Sforza, we combine comfort with natural setting and design that stimulate the senses. Sustainability is at the heart of what we do, from using vernacular building materials to locally produced amenities. We pay a special attention to where and how we source our food. The culinary offers at Casona Sforza have been created with farm-to-table principle. Some of the favourites are Causa Peruana, Catch of the Day, and Roasted Octopus marinated in Diabla Sauce on Huitlacoche Cream. Mezcal, distilled spirit made from the agave plant, is at the forefront of our cocktail menu. I personally recommend our Mezcal Maracuya and Mezcal Jamaica, a concoction of Espadín Mezcal, with an infusion of hibiscus flower and lemon.”


Set to open in September this year, the resort is located in an off-the-beaten-track part of northern Ubud. With just 16 balés or villas and “no walls, no doors” concept, there is only a thin veil to separate guest with the enchanting nature. Having fireflies in the room at night and waking up with morning mists and sunrise are no longer just a dream.

Sustainability is at the heart of the resort. Respected Balinese architect Gede Kresna worked closely together with Dharmali Kusumadi, Banyan Tree’s head of architecture to create an immersive experience while preserving the surrounding nature and community. The vernacular approach was then meticulously translated into the property’s architecture and design, from using repurposed iron wood from boat jetties to natural dye soft furnishings. There are designated Hideaway Spots that encourage guests to being one with nature as well as curated and self-led experiences, on and off-site. Toja Spa, a unique open garden experience led by certified Banyan Tree Spa Academy therapists is definitely one of the highlights.


“As the first Banyan Tree Escape in the world, this resort is an embodiment of Banyan Tree brand’s vision and commitment in creating immersive experiences, combining nature with sustainable design. With 180-degree views over forest and mountain peaks, there are three types of balés to suit your preferences: Rainforest Pool Bale, Riverside Jungle Pool Bale and Buahan Valley Pool Bale. We partner with Locavore for The Open Kitchen, a predominantly plant-based restaurant offering flavours of Bali. At The Botanist Bar, discover locally grown ingredients and freshly picked herbs, then dive into house-made kombuchas, sodas, local ciders, beers and an exciting range of cocktails and mocktails.”

Gourmet Traveller