Winston Aldworth checks into the Crowne Plaza at Changi Airport, in Singapore.

Check-in experience:

You're at Changi — so arrival is polite and swift.

The room: I was in room 911 — pretty much plane-nerd paradise, with a wonderful view straight down on to terminal 2 and the adjacent runway. I could see the Singapore Airlines 777-300 I'd flown in on was parked about 100m from my window, with an SQ A380 on either side. Amazing.


The bed: Like its occupant, big and wide.

What's in the neighbourhood? See above. This is a wonderful place to rest your head on a stopover to Europe. I was heading to Vietnam, with a morning connection.

Exercise: There's a gym, but the most fun way to blow out your long-haul flight cobwebs would be in the big outdoor swimming pool inside the massive atrium on level three.

There are no lanes, but soaking in the Singaporean heat has restorative powers.

Entertainment: There's a TV with all the channels you'd expect and the Wi-Fi is free and fast, but you can't beat opening the blinds and watching the planes.

Noise: Being on the airport side, I had the low rumble of take-offs to lull me to sleep. If this isn't your thing, get a room on the other side of the building.

Food and drink: There's a bar in the foyer, plenty of dining options around and regular room service. Loyalty programme members and those who buy an upgrade can access the Crowne Plaza Club lounge from 6.30am-11pm. There are free drinks from 5.30pm to 8.30pm, an excellent breakfast and cheerful staff — lacking the kahlua to mix me a white Russian, the dude at the bar went and got me one at the downstairs bar. Nice.

Fellow guests: It's a huge joint and being so convenient for stopovers, it'd appeal to just about anyone passing through, particularly business travellers. When I pulled into the Crowne Plaza Club lounge, it was notable how many were solo Europeans banging away on laptops.

Laundry: Worth noting, too – if you join the Crowne Plaza Club you can get two pieces of clothing done in the laundry each day.

The bathroom: They've arranged it so the bathtub looks straight into the main room, with a view continuing on out to the runway. Again, great for plane lovers; those keen to bathe without their partner looking on might have reservations.

The final word: A superb stopover spot. If you're a plane nerd, be sure to ask for runway views.