Capella Singapore’s restaurant Cassia offers not only delicious meals, but also a bit of a historical reminder of one of Singapore’s distinguishing characteristics. Named after the fragrant cinnamon spice, Cassia is reminiscent of the ancient spice routes between India and China that passed through Singapore in the early settlement days. It is these spice routes that have helped to define Singapore identity even today.
True to the notion that everyone has different strengths, Singapore while being small with not many natural resources has one rather unique trait; a strategic location at the tip of the Southeast Asian peninsula. It is no surprise that during the British colonial period in the early 19th century, Singapore fast became a bustling entrepôt trading center in Asia with many commodities such as silk and spices as well as raw materials passing through its harbors.
Here on our little island of Sentosa, up on a knoll where Capella Singapore is comfortably perched, we are endowed with a truly magnificent view of the South China Sea. On evenings, looking out over the glistening waters of our cascading pools, I often see numerous dancing lights in the horizon coming from the ships and containers passing through our port. A beautiful sight it is indeed, especially because it makes the deep night sky come alive. It almost looks like the very same silk that once changed hands amongst traders now lives forever amongst the stars and sea. And the ships that sail into the horizon are like shimmering sequins delicately sewn across the silk.
Perhaps it is being up on a hill that gives me this unique perspective and opportunity for retrospection. Perhaps it is the lush green landscape which I am surrounded by that provides the perfect setting. Indeed, while I watch the ships in the distance, I cannot help but reflect on Singapore’s history and be deep and innately thankful. Thankful that our bustling port is indeed the cornerstone of our prosperous and vibrant country.
Nevertheless, regardless of our rich history, it definitely is a unique sight to behold. Many a time guests have confided about how much they adore the view and it would be in a sense incomplete without those boats in the background. I am often told that while in the midst of soaking up the tranquility of the resort, seeing those boats in the distance still reminds them that this is Singapore and that the lively cosmopolitan experience is a mere stone’s throw away.