Hotel 81 Sakura
Hotel 81 Sakura belongs to one of the few budget hotels near Changi Airport equipped with the convenience of a short 20-minute train ride from Changi Airport MRT Station (CG2).
Located in the midst of Joo Chiat and Geylang Serai, a heritage area rich in Peranakan and Malay influences, Hotel 81 Sakura offers guests a melting pot of cultural experience.
Located between two MRT Stations, Paya Lebar (EW8/CC9) and Eunos (EW7), both are accessible from the hotel with a 15-minute walk and this makes traveling to other parts of the city a breeze.
Cultural Immersion in Joo Chiat and Geylang Serai
To get an idea of how culturally diverse this area is, it is best to do a walking tour and visit some of the heritage landmarks of the different cultures that have settled here.
Koon Seng Road was part of the early Peranakan enclave, and it has some of the most beautiful old houses in the whole area. The terrace houses impress with their colorful facades that are covered with Chinese motifs like dragons and birds that symbolize and bring good fortune, happiness, health and longevity. Infused with strong Eastern and Western architectural influences, this picture-perfect street is definitely worth visiting while you’re in the Joo Chiat area.
The Red House Bakery, also known as the former Katong Bakery and Confectionery, is one of the most prominent landmarks of the Joo Chiat – Katong precinct. Its name derives from the facade which is painted bright red, but unfortunately the bakery had to be closed in 2003 when the whole building was declared unsafe. Built in 1925, the red house oozes of old-style charm, and visitors that pass by are reminded of the traditional sweets and pastries that used to be made here.
The new Geylang Serai Market and Food Center is a place that guests mustn’t miss when they stay in Hotel 81 Sakura. It is a 2-storey Malay-style complex with sloping roofs, batik motifs and timber fascia, and just 10-minute by foot from the hotel. The hawker center on 2nd floor houses some of Singapore best kept Malay food recipes like Nasi Padang from Hajjah Mona stall and Chicken Briyani from most stalls here.
Peranakan Food Hunt in Joo Chiat
The Joo Chiat district and neighboring Katong area are actually popular with people from all over Singapore who travel there specially to satisfy their cravings for Katong Laksa and Nyonya dumplings.
328 Katong Laksa on 51 East Coast Road is the place to get a really authentic and tasty Nonya Laksa dish. Although Laksa is a noodle dish, it is eaten here with a spoon which can be a novel eating experience. This savory Peranakan dish is infused with aroma and milky goodness of freshly squeezed coconut juice, secret spices and topped with fresh cockles and prawns. Sometimes you can’t help but have second helpings of this sinfully delicious local delight.
One of the main stay of Peranakan cuisine is the Nyonya rice dumplings that are wrapped with fragrant bamboo leaves. For the best rice dumplings in town, Kim Choo along East Coast Road is the place to go. Guests can take a guided tour at Rumah Kim Choo boutique gallery to learn more about Peranakan culture and master the art of wrapping rice dumpling. At the end of the tour, you can also sample Kim Choo’s dumplings, otah otah and kueh, all for less than US$8 per person.
Puteri Mas on 475 Joo Chiat Road is a household name in Singapore that specialized in making the most delicious Durian Puffs in the city. For those who can’t stomach the real pungent Durian fruit, perhaps these sweet creamy puffs made from traditional Peranakan recipe can be a more palatable alternative. Make sure to grab a box or two of durian puffs as it definitely makes a unique “Singapore” homecoming gift for friends and loved ones.
Convenient Budget Hotel near Changi Airport
Hotel 81 Sakura is a budget hotel that is near to Changi Airport (20-minute train ride) and very affordable at the same time. It is also well-served by two MRT stations that can bring guests to almost all parts of Singapore.
The rooms in the budget Hotel 81 Sakura may not be as big as the higher-end hotels but they are definitely cozy, clean and comfortable. All rooms are equipped with attached shower facilities, Wi-Fi Internet access and Cable TV channels.
Wireless Internet access (complimentary) is available in all the rooms.
- TV with Cable Channels
- Coffee / Tea Making Facilities
- Complimentary Beverages
- Hair Dryer
- Laundry / Dry Clean Service
- Tour Desk
- Non Smoking Rooms (upon request)
Address: 181 Joo Chiat Road Singapore 427452
Contact Number: +65 6247 8181
Hotel Website: www.hotel81.com.sg/hotels_sakura.shtml
Nearest MRT Stations: Paya Lebar Interchange MRT Station (EW8/CC9) and Eunos MRT Station (EW7)