The Peranakan culture emerged from Chinese communities that settled on the Malaysian Peninsula during the 15th and 16th centuries. This culture still flourishes on Singapore’s east coast, particularly in Katong. Hotels in the East Coast/Katong area are mainly located in the Joo Chiat part of the zone.
There aren’t many tourist attractions on the East Coast, but locals like to visit East Coast Park. The beach has facilities for kayaking and jet skiing, so this area works as an attractive morning or afternoon destination. Visitors based in the area can also spend plenty of time on the coast, transferring a short distance to the city center for sightseeing, shopping and dining.
Joo Chiat is where most of the classic Chinese shop houses remain. Some have been converted into cozy hotels. These are mostly affordable, and they're within close range of a great array of Peranakan restaurants. An exciting and inexpensive night scene is located in Joo Chiat.
The actual Katong neighborhood is a few blocks closer to the coast and has fewer hotels. Between these two neighborhoods are East Shore Hospital and a spread of gated communities where affluent Singaporeans enjoy views of the sea.
Most of the hotels in the East Coast and Katong area are connected to the Joo Chiat night-owl district in some form. They’re mostly popular with backpackers who don’t mind the short commute to Singapore city center.