Skip the party zone of Clarke Quay and head to the more chilled Robertson Quay for good food, hotels and drinks
Everyone heads to Clarke Quay for a good time – if you’re looking to get sloshed, or party it up in a mega club, this is the place to be. But if you prefer a more chilled ambience, Robertson Quay is your go-to spot. Located along the beautiful Singapore River, it’s got all you need, including cafes, restaurants, bars and gorgeous hotels (because we all like a staycay). Yes, there are some touristy traps with mediocre food, and a particular patch known as ‘expat Disneyland’ (you’ll know what we mean when you see it) but here’s where the good stuff is at…
It’s eternal summer at this beach-meets-city resto. Bright, breezy and unapologetically tropical, Summerlong is all about Mediterranean soul food – its brunch plates include falafel scotch eggs, cypriot burger (with lamb, pickled onions and roasted capsicum) while dinner’s lineup features Lebanese style ricotta crepes and Israeli lamb pita. It’s all about fresh flavours and produce here in a casual, barefoot setting.
Summerlong, 60 Robertson Quay #01-04, Singapore 238252
We love Singapore food in all its forms – yup, when it’s elevated and plated to perfection at Pó. Named after popo (grandma in Chinese), the restaurant serves up grandma’s classics like noodle soup, spicy rendang and popiah – we hear the skin is handmade daily by heritage hawkers. Complete your meal with a craft cocktail; they’re inspired by historical eras from Warehouse Hotel’s history as an icon of spice trade and even as a disco.
Pó, Warehouse Hotel 320 Havelock Road, Robertson Quay, Singapore 169628
Follow your nose to get to Aburiya – you can smell the delicious smell of barbequed meats from a mile away. Established since 2003, Aburiya at The Quayside is one of Singapore’s finest Japanese barbeque restauranst. Come here if you’re serious about your meats; top-of-the-line options include mouth-watering and succulent Tokachi beef directly imported from the Oak Leaf Farm in Japan’s Memuro Town.
Aburiya, #01-03 The Quayside, 60 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238252, p. 6735 4862.
Bistecca Tuscan Steakhouse
If you’re a serious steak fiend, sink your teeth into Bistecca’s massive 1.1kg Fiorentina style steak. Perfect for three, the steak is served with a trio of sauces (our fave has got to be the spicy mustard) and your choice of sides. Its quaint heritage shophouse confines and romantic lighting make this a prime spot for date night.
Bistecca Tuscan Steakhouse, 25 Mohamed Sultan Road, Singapore 238969. p. 6735 6739.
This place is every oenophiles’ dream, and gets pretty hectic on a Friday night. It stocks over 30 wine labels from all over the world, and is our top choice for a casual night out with the mates. We won’t deny that their reasonably priced booze, which can go as low as $6, is a total pulling factor. Its locale in Robertson Quay even has a cheese bar, with over 40 matured farm cheeses air-flown from Europe.
Wine Connection, various locations; check website for more details, p. 6235 5466.
Bella Pizza is chef Antonio Manetto’s (formerly of Da Paolo) solo venture, so you can look forward to authentic Italian fare from his kitchen. His extensive pizza menu features both white and red pizzas, and can even be made into calzones at no extra charge.
Bella Pizza, #01-14, 30 Robertson Quay, Riverside View, Singapore 238251, p. 6734 0139.
This collab between founder Elliot Decker and restaurateur Min Chan sees authentic Texan cuisine come to Singapore, strangely, by way of Bali. The casual restaurant seats diners on large picnic-like benches, perfect for sharing the massive slabs of beef brisket, ribs and pulled pork. Complement your carnivorous chow-down sesh with a selection of equally-American side dishes like mac & cheese and brisket beans.
Decker Barbecue, 60 Robertson Quay, #01-17, The Quayside. Open Tue-Sun, 6pm-11pm. Closed on Mon.
Laurent Bernard Chocolatier
There’s no denying that Laurent Bernard serves up delicious desserts, but they do whip up a pretty mean box of chocolates as well. Not sure what to get? You can’t go wrong with its gorgeous Tiffany blue box of pralines.
Laurent Bernard Chocolatier, #01-02 The Pier at Robertson Quay, 80 Mohammad Sultan Road, Singapore 239013, p. 6235 9007.
Limoncello Pizza & Grill
The menu here features authentic Amalfi-styled cuisine, and that includes pizzas. Must-tries include the signature Limoncello pizza with a creamy white base, mozzarella, fresh rocket, porcini and beef tenderloin. Like your seafood? Savour the bounties of the Amalfi coast with the tomato based frutti di mare with fresh seafood and mixed parsley.
Limoncello Pizza & Grill, 95 Robertson Quay, #01-19/20 Rivergate Condominium, Singapore 235256. p. 6634 5117.
Red House Seafood
Be prepared to get your hands dirty when you’re chowing on this (unofficial) national delicacy that’s served here. Consisting of sambal, vinegar, tomato paste and egg, chilli crab is best mopped up with steamed or deep fried mantous, or buns. Take in the breeze and tuck into this national treasure at Red House Seafood Restaurant at Robertson Quay.
Red House Seafood, #01-14 The Quayside, 60 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238252.
A handful of Japanese restaurants line the Robertson Quay terrain, with many Japanese expats flocking here for a sentimental taste of home. Shirokane Tori-Tama is one such restaurant that skews towards these palates, with yakitori comfort food like the livers, hearts and backs carved from smoky, grilled chicken. Absolutely perfect with a Sapporo or Suntory.
Shirokane Tori-Tama, #01-02 Robertson Walk, 11 Unity Street, Singapore 237995, p. 6836 5680.
Shunjuu Izakaya grills the competition, pun intended, with its sumiyaki (charcoal grill) specialties. Often, you can find meaty delicacies served on skewers like chicken wings and pork bellies, but here, you can also down that pint of Sapporo beer while savouring some grilled foie gras on a stick.
Shunjuu Izakaya, #01-15 Riverside View, 30 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238251, p. 6887 3577.
At Super Loco, it’s all about the vibe. Inspired by street food and the rich cultural experiences of Mexico, the founders created Super Loco: a riverfront counterpart to Lucha Loco, with a fiesta-esque ambience, colourful interiors and food bursting with bags of flavour. Gather the gang for brunch with a Mex twist or dine familia style over dinner – fresh ingredients and punchy flavours only. Down it with a jug of frozen piña calamansi or knock back the finest mezcal served in tasting glasses.
Super Loco, #01-13 The Quayside, 60 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238252, p. 6235 8900.
Bar Bar Black Sheep
If you’re looking to drink yourself silly while catching live EPL screenings, it’s got to be Bar Bar Black Sheep at Robertson Quay. If you’re feeling peckish from all the cheering and jeering, they also serve authentic scrumptious multi-ethnic beer grub – from izakaya and Thai to Northern Indian and Western.
Bar Bar Black Sheep (Robertson Quay), #01-04, 86 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238245, p. 6836 9255.
Beast & Butterflies
Savour one of its artisanal cocktails as you mingle along the bar’s vast 13-metre counter. For something fruity, go for The Grape Vine – grape-infused vodka, Bailey’s, coconut cream and grapes. Or for a fusion of Cuban and Peranakan flavours, try A Cuban Nyonya – rum, fresh lime, mint leaves and gula Melaka
Beast & Butterflies at M Social, 90 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238259.
Boomarang Bistro and Bar
Leave the comfort of your couch and catch the next Rugby match at Boomarang. Constantly packed with Rugby fanatics on match days, this is one of the best sporting bars in town. Everyone here is really friendly and welcoming too – it’s no wonder everyone’s a regular! They also prepare one of the best weekend brunches in town, promising to cure any hangover.
Boomarang Bistro and Bar (Robertson Quay), 60 Robertson Quay, #01-15 The Quayside, 238252, p. 6738 1077.
La Maison du Whisky
As its name suggests, La Maison du Whisky are whisky specialists, and there’s no better place to pop by for your Manhattan cocktail fix ($25). Thinking of taking home some of that top-notch stuff? Browse through over 100 different kinds of Scotch whiskies and purchase them by the bottle.
La Maison du Whisky, #01-10 The Pier @ Robertson Quay, 80 Mohamed Sultan Road, Singapore 239013, p. 6733 0059.
Verre Wine Bar
This cosy vino spot on Robertson Quay may be great for your reds and whites, but do yourself a favour and order the chocolate lava cake as well. Besides, who could say no to the wine and chocolate combo?
Verre Wine Bar, 8 Rodyk Street, Singapore 238216, p. 6509 1917.
Common Man Coffee Roasters
A concept brought to you by Five Senses Coffee (Australia) and the Spa Esprit Group, this cafe serves bistro-quality food that promises to be on par with its top-notch coffee. Only organic eggs from free-range chickens and super-fresh produce are used here, and coffee beans are roasted daily. Order the Turkish Common Man Breakfast, Organic Eggs Benedict, or the Common Man Burger.
Common Man Coffee Roasters, #01-00, 22 Martin Road, Singapore 239058, p. 68364695.
The Book Café
Singapore has an extraordinary number of cafes, so rest assured that we truly mean it when we say The Book Café is in our top five. Two main areas make up the space – one for dining and another with sofas for intense reading and work – with an all-encompassing multi-ethnic menu to cater all tastes. Grab a book from the shelf and make yourself comfy.
The Book Café, #01-02 Seng Kee Building, 20 Martin Rd, Singapore 239070, p. 6887 5430.
Situated at the new Intercontinental Singapore Robertson Quay, Publico is a deli by day, and Italian cocktail bar, Marcello, by night. Swing by bright and early for a riverside brekkie. Recharge with its healthy brunch staples made with only fresh and local produce. On the menu are all the cafes you love, including fluffy pancakes with berries, hearty breakfast bowls, and eggs benedict. Those aside, there’s also a deli counter where you can savour traditional Affettati and Formaggi boards with cheese, nuts and pickles. Feel like an al fresco Aperol spritz under the twinkling lights or a fantastic woodfired pizza? Stroll on over to Publico Ristorante…
Publico, Intercontinental Singapore Robertson Quay, 1 Nanson Road, Singapore 238909
SPRMRKT Kitchen + Bar
Pronounced supermarket, SPRMRKT’s riverfront location shakes up your dining experience by combining dining and retail. Tuck into brunch classics like croque madame and smoked cheese tartine, pastas or mains of weekend roast and bangers and meal. Love the meal and the ambience? Shop the local and international produced used in your dish or even artwork after.
SPRMRKT Kitchen & Bar, 41 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238236
First things first early risers, Kith Cafe opens at 7am. A casual spot for great coffee and decent grub. If you’ve got very small ones, introduce them to the toybox but mind where you step – this is a popular café for people with puppies.
Kith Cafe, 7 Rodyk Street, #01-28, Robertson Quay, Singapore
One of Singapore’s pioneering cool cafes, this Aussie specialty coffee roaster is all about the craft of brewing. Since its opening in Southeast Asia in 2011, Toby’s has become a popular brunch spot and go-to café for a mean cup of coffee. Want to replicate that potent brew at home? You can pick up packs of their local blends or single origin coffee from the store.
Toby’s Estate, 8 Rodyk Street, Singapore 238216
Can PS.Cafe do no wrong? The location in Martin Road is simultaneously cosy and chic, with floor-to-ceiling windows for maximum skylight, booth seating facing lush foliage and leather seats. Pro tip: make your reservations early for weekend brunch.
PS.Cafe, 38 Martin Road, #01-01, Singapore 239059
A favoured and unofficial party hotel among the younger crowds, Studio M still ranks high on our list of relaxing boutique hotels. Its key feature is its loft rooms; spread across four categories, all of them are decked out in minimalist designs, plush beddings and panoramic views of the city from large bay windows. Personally, we love the Executive Lofts as their corner locales offer maximum privacy, larger lounge areas and complete cosy, comfort for stay-in staycays.
Studio M Hotel, 3 Nanson Rd, Singapore 238910. Price starts from SGD 150 per night.
Geared towards the millennial globe-trotter, M Social is the new player on the Robertson Quay hotel circuit. Comfort is king at this hip hotel; its chic interiors are the brainchild of renowned designer Philippe Stark. You might never leave your room, as each is a calming enclave of warm colour tones, and lush textures of plush pashmina throws and soft carpeting.
M Social, 90 Robertson Quay, Singapore 238259.
InterContinental Robertson Quay
For when life gets far too much, pack your bags and head to InterContinental’s sweet new digs at Robertson Quay. With its riverfront location, gorgeous rooms with massive windows and amenities, as well as multi-concept dining spots, the hotel makes for a heck of a relaxing weekend.
InterContinental Robertson Quay, 1 Nanson Road, Singapore 238909
Once an iconic warehouse from 1895, the meticulously restored property boasts a slick, modern design. Only 37 rooms are found here, with each boasting unique layouts and a muted palette of taupes and greys elevated with elegant brass furnishings, double-high ceilings, peaked roofs and untouched industrial details. Make it a point to hit the rooftop infinity pool – it’s the perfect spot to people-watch and take in views of the riverbank.
Warehouse Hotel, 320 Havelock Road, Singapore 169628.
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