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How to Build a Lux Hotel


Raffles Hotel Singapore is proud to introduce its third iteration of its renowned Writer’s Residency programme. First launched in 2019 to reinvigorate the hotel’s rich literary heritage, the programme was inspired by Raffles Hotel Singapore’s long literary tradition of playing host and muse to famed writers from all over the world, from Rudyard Kipling to Somerset Maugham and Joseph Conrad. The residency programme is designed to host writers at its colonial architectural repose for them to reflect, contemplate, and draw inspiration from its 136-year-old well of stories as they put pen to paper.

Madeleine Lee's latest poetry collection, ‘How to Build a Lux Hotel’, is an articulation of overheard conversations, meaningful interactions, and observations made of the sounds and spaces at Raffles Hotel Singapore during her various lengths of stay within its storied halls. The collection’s accompanying photos were also captured by Madeleine herself for readers to fully immerse themselves in the Raffles experience as her words come to life.

“Raffles Hotel Singapore holds an air of old-world charm and modernity all in one. The sheer history and grandeur of the building offers an extensive inspiration for writers. Being selected as the first Singaporean writer-in-residence for Raffles Hotel Singapore presented a daunting prospect at first, to say the least, but I also found profound pleasure and gratitude in being given the chance to be both a quiet observer and participant in the hotel’s everyday activities, and to put them into words to capture the soul of the hotel,” said Madeleine Lee. 


This year’s the programme welcome its first-ever appointed Singaporean writer and poet, Madeleine Lee. An award-winning investment manager and poet, Madeleine was the Singapore Botanic Garden’s Writer-in-Residence from 2014-2015 and has also performed her works at major literary festivals around the world. 

Madeleine is the third Writer-in-Residence under the Writer’s Residency Programme, following the footsteps of the British-born essayist and novelist, Pico Iyer and Vicki Virtue, a seasoned travel writer from New Zealand. As part of the programme, creative writing talents are given the opportunity to immerse in the Grand Dame’s luxurious environment for up to four weeks and be inspired to create new literary works.