Raffles City (Chinese: 来福士城, before 2007: 莱佛士城) is a large complex located in the Civic District within the Downtown Core of the city-state of Singapore. Occupying an entire city block bounded by Stamford Road, Beach Road, Bras Basah Road and North Bridge Road, it houses two hotels and an office tower over a podium which contains a shopping mall and a convention centre. The mall is managed by CapitaCommercial Trust and CapitaMall Trust.
Groundbreaking on the site took place on 14 August 1980 and officially opened to the public on 3 October 1986. The complex was designed by I. M. Pei in one of his earliest works in the city state. Built on the former site of Raffles Institution, the first school in Singapore, and located beside the historic Raffles Hotel, its aluminium-finish and simple geometric designs gave a stark, modernist contrast to Victorian architecture and classical architecture which used to characterize architecture in that district. The design includes the one-time world's tallest hotel and currently the world's sixth tallest hotel, the 73-storey Swissôtel The Stamford, as well as a 26 storey high-end twin-tower hotel, the Fairmont Singapore. The three blocks are complemented by the rectangular 42-storey Raffles City Tower, an office block.
In the 1990s the shopping mall went under a major renovation, with a different look. In June 2005, the management announced that the basement section of the mall will be expanded, with 30 to 50 more shops and was completed in July 2006 with MPH Bookstores, renowned food and beverage outlets and numerous fashion shops occupying the extension. Gloria Jean's Coffees has also made a return to the country after exiting the country a few years ago. The mall is directly connected to City Hall MRT station by escalators from the building entrance and to Esplanade MRT station from Basement 2.
On 1 January 2002, the two hotels were rebranded as the Swissôtel The Stamford and Raffles The Plaza (now Fairmont Singapore]) when FRHI Hotels & Resorts took over the hotels' management.
CapitaLand REITs takeoverEdit
On 19 March 2006, CapitaLand's real estate investment trust (REIT), CapitaCommercial Trust and CapitaMall Trust jointly acquired the development from Raffles Holdings for S$2.09 billion. The former will take up a 60 percent stake in the complex and the latter taking the remainder 40 percent. The trusts' shareholders approved of the purchase of the complex in July 2006. The deal has been completed in August 2006 and the complex is owned by the two trusts.
On 20 August 2006, the new owners announced their plans to expand the retail space between 150,000 to Template:Convert from its current Template:Convert, by using the space on the carpark floors on basements two and three. The two CapitaLand property trusts will spend S$86 million on the expansion. An underground link linking Esplanade and City Hall MRT stations opened on 15 July 2010.
The mall has several anchor tenants, with the Dairy Farm Group having a higher end supermarket, Jason's Market Place and a Guardian pharmacy, both located in the basement. A renowned local department store, Robinsons, together with Marks & Spencer has opened since 2001, when Sogo vacated the space and the supermarket (now occupied by Jason's) in 2000 after the company had financial problems.
117 IOC Session, SingaporeEdit
- Main article: 117th IOC Session
The 117th IOC Session in Singapore, was held from 2 to 9 July 2005 at the Raffles City Convention Centre on the fourth floor. Security at the complex was extremely tight during the event. At the IOC Session, London was awarded the 2012 Summer Olympics.