More than just a place to sleep: What accommodation means to me while travelling

Though I was never ever comfortable doing the stay-in-a-dorm-full-of-strangers business, there was a time when I thought that the less money I spent on accommodation while travelling the better, because, after all, what am I going to do in that room but sleep? But as the years passed, and I became a frequent, seasoned traveller who was ofter on the road for longer than just a week or so, and I realised that in fact, I was doing much more than just sleeping in my accommodation, and the accommodation I chose was going much more than just giving me a bed to sleep in.

Where I was staying always turned out to be an experience in itself, whether in a good or a bad way. The dusty room in Hoi An with a little cockroach living amongst the toiletries and little bugs using my bath tub made me stay out longer than I was comfortable doing because I couldn’t bear the thought of going back  to the smell of mildew and my new creepy crawly friends. The soulless room I stayed at in Ho Chi Minh city with the mouldy shower depressed me even further when I was nursing a bad cold and throat infection.

But then I think of the little bungalow in Bali with flowers on my bed and bright green geckos in my outdoor bathroom, and the most beautiful pool I have ever seen, perched on a cliff, or the warm, homely room in Chan Tho overlooking one of the channels of the Mekong delta, where to get to the city you hopped on a boat shuttle if you didn’t want to bother with a taxi, or the little hotel in Hanoi where my room was on the 5th floor and you could see rooftops and hanging laundry and motorcyclists and sellers on the streets below, and where the receptionists treated you like family, and the hotel cat warmed up your chair before you sat on it for breakfast.

Where you stay is much more than just where you’re sleeping.

Today I thought I’d share with you photos of my latest love regarding accommodation while travelling; The Hotel 1929 in Singapore. Other than saying that this place is in a seriously fantastic location in the heart of China Town and a few minutes away from the closest MRT, I’ll leave you to the images below to show why I adore this place, and why I looked forward to going back to it at the end of a long day seeing the sights of Singapore.




What are you thoughts on accommodation while travelling? Do you have an anything goes philosophy or are you more particular about where you stay?

This post is part of the Singapore Travel Library. Please click on the logo below to access more inspirational articles about travelling in Singapore.

-Text and Photography by Denise Pulis


13 thoughts on “More than just a place to sleep: What accommodation means to me while travelling”

  1. I’m glad you enjoyed your stay in my hometown. Also, I totally agree with you about where to stay on a holiday. I don’t need a posh 4 or 5 star hotel, but I definitely need a place where I feel safe enough to get a proper rest after a long tiring day in a strange city. After all, if you don’t feel rested at night, how are you going to have the energy to explore the next day?

  2. I agree completely on the accommodations (and this place looks great). We rented two apartments during our recent trip to Italy – both spacious, clean, functional and well-located. One was so inviting it made you want to come home to its warm of decorations and furniture and the other so functional and basic that we found ourselves staying away from it as long as we could each day.

  3. I’ve done plenty of budget travel – staying in cheap places and being disgusted. Now that I’m older I like boutique hotels or B&B’s with some personal flavour. I think it can make a huge difference in how you view a country. And I can certainly see why you like this place in Singapore.

  4. I couldn’t agree more. I was never really into the hostel scene, although I have stayed at one or two that were brand new.

    Having a nice place to stay just helps to put your mind at ease and ready for travel.

  5. Great article! I know the feeling – I’ve stayed at some grotty little hostels, and some 5 star hotel rooms, but the best accommodation is somewhere in between, with just enough comfort, on the right side of the cost-value equation and most importantly enough, feels like home.

    Some of my most memorable places have been a hostel in Mendoza, Argentina, where I didn’t feel like leaving (Brilliant!), a 5 star stay in a castle in Dublin (Amazing), and a haunted room in Quito’s Old Town (not-so-good). I think expectations also play a part.

  6. I don’t need fancy accommodation when I travel, but I am definitely not a “anything goes” person. Cleanliness is a must, as are nice new bed linens and comfort. I can do with a smallish room, but it needs to be comfortable and homey. I agree that it’s much more than where you sleep, but even if it’s just for sleeping, I won’t put up with dirty or smelly or generally old and ugly accomodation!

  7. For long-term travel I strike up a balance. Hostels wear me out, so sometimes I find an apartment or room in an apartment to rent out for awhile. It’s nice to settle into a routine and feel at home on the road.

    1. Hi Collen!

      Thanks for stopping by. I’ll do the same from now on. A day or two in a really nice hotel won’t hurt my budget that much!

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