A large common space used for anything and everything when the other rooms are too small. It also doubles as our dining hall. Apart from meals, it also functions as a venue for committee meetings, performances, formal dinners, parties, bazaars and the occasional birthday bash.
On a daily basis, the communal hall is most used during breakfast, dinner and supper (from Uncle Vincent) when residents catch up with each other on the day's latest happenings. After meals, it is not common to see residents engage in a friendly competition of table tennis or a song or two at the piano nearby. The small joys of life!
The upper lounge is situated above the communal hall, consisting of the media room, conference room, library and an open discussion area. The upper lounge is frequently used by committees for their meetings, or by Rafflesians who need to take a breather from their studying routine. Peak usage of this place is during the period just before the exams when student bodies (literally), laptops and textbooks cover every usable space. Regular "residents" of the area affectionately know this area as the unofficial "Block 1".
The recently renovated Alumni Lounge is also situated here. This is a place for the RH alumni to return and bask in the much-missed sights and sounds of their second home, as well as catch up with their former hall mates. Distinguished RH alumni are also invited back on a regular basis to conduct a series of leadership talks, known as the School of Leadership Development (SoLD), to the leaders of the hall.
The dance studio is located next to the lower lounge where our aspiring dancers work on their dance techniques and routines. It is not uncommon to see the dance studio used by our dancers in the wee hours of the night, perfecting their every move. Things heat up especially during major cultural events such as the hall's annual drama production and Rhazzmatazz, RH's annual showcase of its cultural groups.
The RH gym has just been renovated, and it is a spectacular sight to anyone who visits Raffles Hall. The biggest gym compared to the other halls, RH gym is a frequent haunt of those among us who strive to achieve the seemingly impossible body: lean, clean and muscular. So for eye candy, feel free to head on down there every evening, complete with adrenaline-pumping music.
RH's newly renovated lower lounge is a place that is packed with entertainment amenities. Pool tables to help people kill time, a piano for those culturally inclined, board games when one is tired from hitting the books; the lower lounge is a great place for residents to take a breather. Within the lower lounge also lies a meeting room, where residents can book to hold project meetings or discussions, and more importantly a TV lounge, with beanbags and bed-sofas for a perfect chill-out experience.
Both the hard court and the takraw court act as multipurpose courts that can cater to various sports such as volleyball, street soccer, basketball and netball. Occasionally, it also doubles up as a venue for block suppers or bbq events. It is not uncommon to see the courts packed with people during peak periods such as during the Inter-Hall Games (IHG) training periods in December and the freshmen orientation period in August.
An air-conditioned room, located opposite the Hall Office. Furnished with a full complement of band equipment, it is the place where most of the cultural musical compositions, practices and polishing are done. At certain times of the year, you will feel the bass of the drums and guitars emanating from this room all the way up to the library. We tell residents it is because sound travels better through solid ceiling to the floor above.
Each block is endowed with a kitchenette, frequented by those among us who like cooking. Each block's kitchenette is equipped with basic cooking amenities such as cooking utensils, hot plates, microwave, toaster and a common fridge. Occasional birthday parties and block suppers are prepared at the kitchenette as well. Bubble tea included.
A parting note...
Well, the above are a few examples of the physical amenities we have in RH. There are also several minor ones not mentioned above, but we will let you discover those on your own. More importantly, the amenities in Raffles Hall are a testament to our tradition, our life story. Indeed, how we use these amenities to create the vibrancy of our hall makes this hall, our hall.