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Marina Bay Sands
Wikipedia | Google | Google Images | FlickrMarina Bay Sands is Singapore’s most exclusive resort par excellence and the second most expensive building in the world. This phenomenal place is an absolute jaw-dropper, whether you’re admiring it in awe from the top of the Singapore Flyer, the promenade on Marina Bay or, heaven grant you one wish, while absorbing the spectacular views from its roof top infinity pool.
Singapore is certainly not short of high-rise, 5-star hotels, yet if you can afford just one splurge when visiting this gorgeous city-state, then consider spending at least one night sleeping under its opulent roof. Sure, you’d need to scrounge up $ 17,000 USD for the Chairman Suite but boy are we sure it’ll be worth every penny. The financially challenged can opt for the cheapest room instead, which go for a more respectable $ 300 USD . For this, you’ll get access to one of the world’s most spectacular swimming pools.
How the Sands came to beIt’s no surprise to learn that Las Vegas Sands are the brains behind the design and development of this striking building. There are very few landmarks in Singapore which scream ‘VEGAS!’ quite as much as the Sands. Part of a two-resort project initiated by the city to meet ever growing demands for high class accommodation in Singapore, Marina Bay Sands burst into the hotel scene in 2011 and has never looked back since. Renowned not just for its incredibly opulent hotel, but also for its luxury boutiques, amazing casino, great entertainment venues, fine dining establishments and, most of all, for Sands SkyPark. This incredible rooftop complex boasts an observatory granting unobstructed and unforgettable views all over Singapore, as well as the 150 metre long pool which seems to literally fall into the void, restaurants, bars and pristine gardens. Swimming in the world’s highest outdoor pool is as scary as it is exhilarating and rates as one of our planet’s most iconic bucket-list additions.
What's on offer at the hotelThe Marina Bay Sands is, first and foremost, a hotel. Not just any hotel, but Singapore's finest and if you stay here, expect to be pampered and to experience one of the most preferential stays imaginable.
Rooms & SuitesAside the gorgeous dark wooden furniture, flat screen TV and opulent bathrooms, the most coveted addition to every room and suite at the hotel would have to be the floor to ceiling windows. If you've ever dreamt of taking in breathtaking views from the comfort of your own oversized bed, then this may just be the place for you.
There are nine different rooms to choose from, ranging from the above mentioned Superior Suite, which ranges in price from $ 300 USD to $ 800 USD depending on the season, to the exorbitantly priced Chairman Suite, which remains at a pleasantly consistent rate. A middle of the road option, like the Orchard Suite, is described as a '97 square metre haven' boasting amazing city and limited bay views. The price for this mid-range room is about $ 1,000 USD in low season.
Rooms above the Orchid level come with the inclusion of a sumptuous breakfast, whilst all those below can add an extra charge of USD40.
The Infinity PoolHands down, the absolute number one attraction in this entire, enormous complex, would have to be its astonishing pool. Stretching out for 492 feet, it encompasses a large part of the 57th floor, and its altitude rates it as the highest outdoor pool in the world. Yet what sets this apart from all others is the absolute plunging edge and the superb city and bay views it grants at any time of day. There are many guests of the hotel whose sole incentive for overnighting is to access the pool, and one would be hard-pressed to blame them. The Sands infinity pool is often rated one of the best in the world.
The Club at Marina BayMuch like the infinity pool, the The Club is accessible only to guests of the hotel during the day, but is open to the general public at night, when it offers its famous 'cheese and chocolate buffet'. The Club offers fine dining and drinking all day, along with the ubiquitous stunning views. if you;re lucky enough to overnight at the hotel, this is where you can enjoy a delectable breakfast.
More included extrasThe included extras list is most impressive, and your treats will include 24/7 room service, a personalized golfing experience (just 3km away), Banyan Tree Beauty Spa and Fitness Club and, of course, access to the stunning swimming pool.
Visitor highlightsHotel aside, Marina Bay Sands is a brilliant place in which to spend a few hours. Here are its most loved attractions available to non-guests of the hotel.
RestaurantsEven if you're not a guest at the hotel, you can certainly feel like one when you splurge for a meal at one of its many restaurants. Top-notch chefs have been poached (pun intended) from all over the world, and the Sands prides itself in offering a wide range of dining and drinking options. From 5*, rooftop a la carte havens, to an 'authentic' hawkers filled food court and plenty of cafes and bars, the cuisine on offer here is both varied and quite good quality. You can choose from Indian, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, French and local Singaporean, in an array of over 60 distinct eateries.
SkyparkFinally we arrive at the first, and perhaps only, criticism of the often talked about infinity pool. Whilst pool access is restricted to hotel guests, the adjoining observation deck is not. What this means is that if you have forked out hundreds if not more to stay here, you will have to put up with day-long queues of curious tourists who come up here in order to photograph the pool, and you sunbathing beside it. If you can overlook this minor irritation, you may actually enjoy the whole experience.
The admission fee for Skypark is S$23 ($17) and this grants you access to the observatory and a few, quite overpriced souvenir, food and drink outlets. Tickets are on sale from 9.30am until 10pm (11pm on week-ends) and visitor numbers are restricted per hourly basis. Pressed for a choice, we’d recommend dining at one of the buffet restaurants downstairs, which offer still spectacular views but a whole meal to go along with the bill. Sky on 57 is reputedly the best restaurant choice here and offers an Asian-infused French menu.
The Shoppes at Marina Bay SandsThe aptly named The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands is one of the city’s largest designer malls and without a doubt, one of the most stunning. Home to a near infinite number of designer (and a few more affordable) boutiques, it is a shopping mecca in its own right.
Expo & Convention CentreOne of Asia’s largest and most popular convention centres can hold over 10,000 delegates and is often booked out months in advance. Unless attending a conference, we dare say this is the last appealing section of Marina Bay Sands for visitors.
ArtScience MuseumOne of Singapore’s most visited art spaces and part of the Sands complex, the ArtScience Museum is a striking, futuristic looking building right on the Marina Bay waterfront and holds both permanent and temporary exhibitions from every corner of the globe.
CasinoThe Marina Bay Sands Casino is just as opulent as one would expect. Entry if free to foreigner national but you’ll have to bring your passport as proof. Food is served and drinks are free. This popular entertainment establishment is open 24/7. Minimum bets are just S$10 ($7.40).
Wonder Full Light & Water ShowLast but not least is the lightshow spectacular of Marina Bay Sands which is best viewed from across the bay. Water reflected holograms, lasers, fountains and fire displays, this is probably the best free activity you could indulge in around the bay.
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Author: Convergence. Last updated: Mar 22, 2015