The Shangri-La Hotel at Orange Grove Road

Located along Orange Grove Road near the Orchard Road tourist and shopping belt, the Shangri-La Hotel was completed in 1971 at a cost of $31.5 million. The 25-storey luxury hotel was situated amidst 12.5 acres of lush, tropical gardens designed by Hawaiian landscape architect Raymond Cain to fit into Singapore’s image as a garden city. The hotel’s name was inspired by the mythical city of Shangri-La described in James Hilton’s novel, ‘Lost Horizon’. In keeping with the fantasy theme, the hotel had an oriental-themed Chinese restaurant, the Shang Palace, and a nautical-themed discotheque, the Four Seas. Each of the hotel’s 520 rooms came equipped with all the trappings expected of a luxury property, including individually controlled air-conditioning, television and radio sets, refrigerators, oversized beds and modern bathrooms. The Shangri-La has grown to become the hotel of choice for accommodating foreign dignitaries, holding international conferences, and hosting high society wedding functions. Initially managed by the Western International Hotels group based in the United States, the hotel is now part of Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts – an international deluxe hotel group founded by Malaysian entrepreneur Robert Kuok.