Raj Datwani and Alexander Chew on Singapore's latest private members club
By invite only
The genesis of Madison Rooms Singapore
Alexander Chew (AC): The idea to open the club really came out of a sense of frustration. The office is not always the most condusive place to have a meeting while the boardroom can be too formal. While we see a lot of meetings happening at Bacchanalia, you need to leave the restaurant at some point of time because they close after lunch service. Restaurants are also not the most ideal spaces as you might be sitting too close to somebody to have a proper business conversation. In this day and age, where the line between our social and professional lives are pretty much blurred, we feel Madison Rooms is the perfect place for you to break the ice and entertain your client. If you want a formal setting, we have the boardroom. If you want to have a meal, you've got a couple of different areas to choose from. It allows for very different types of meetings to take place within the same space.
Not a gentlemen's club
Raj Datwani (RD): The one thing we didn't want Madison Rooms to look like was a gentlemen's club. We've gone with a neutral colour palette for an inviting look and feel. The name Madison Rooms is also gender neutral. It's not too masculine or feminine. At the beginning, we threw out a lot of different names and settled on Madison as it's representative of New York and has an international ring to it.
RD: We've custom-built an integrated technological system that does a couple of things for the club. For one, we use fingerprints to authenticate members. When you arrive at the club, that's how we recognise you. When you pay for your bill, your bill appears on the tablet with an itemised list of what you ordered. When you sign up as a member, you can choose to have multiple credit cards stored, so whether it's a business or personal expense, you pick the card, scan your fingerprint, and the bill's settled. It's essentially an e-wallet for our members. Your receipts get emailed to you, making it easy for you to forward it on to your secretary.
Our rooms are also meant to be multi-functional and transformational. With a wireless bridge that allows you to connect your phone to the speakers, music can be controlled straight from your phones. The lighting and air conditioning can also be tweaked. Members can basically curate their entire experience.
Perks that actually matter
RD: We've built a partnership with Etihad Airways that gives our members unbeatable rates on Business and First Class flights around the world. I can't reveal the rates, but let's say that members can fly to New York for $4000 on Business. With Quintessentially as our concierge partner, our members also get to enjoy Quintessentially's lifestyle concierge services.
AC: We also hold exclusive members-only events, such as the launch of The Macallan's Rare Cask whisky. With the F1 season coming up, we have some amazing events that'll happen in August and September.
AC: We have this tangible space, but what we're really building is a lifestyle. We're looking to expand the brand into other markets in Southeast Asia. We're also handpicking partner clubs from all over the world. We've currently announced London and Dubai. Over the next few months, we'll have Tokyo, Hong Kong, Mumbai, Dubai, two in London, one in Paris, and one in San Francisco. They are clubs we know our members would love.
Madison Rooms Singapore. 23A Coleman Street.
Buro 24/7 Selection
Gal Oya in Sri Lanka: Of unspoiled nature, wildlife and cathartic experiences
Comedian Ahmed Ahmed: The Egyptian-American discovers Nasi Kang Kang in Malaysia
Singapore label Biro Company designs a football-inspired capsule for Buro 24/7 x Farfetch. Here's what it looks like
Sunday Riley on creating a skincare brand that actually works
World Cup finals 2018: Reactions to Mbappe, Putin's umbrella guy and BTS
Buro 24/7 Selection