Apart from Japan last summer, I spent a considerable time in Singapore. This is the first installment of my Singapore series, starting out with the maybe more commonly expected views of Singapore. It is about the polished, modern side that gives Singapore a very special character and is also what Singapore is “known” for. We will then, in later installments, explore other, more raw and immediate aspects of Singapore.
So let us start with the downtown core and the Marina Bay Area. Below is a small overview map of the general geographic. You can pretty much get from any point to any point with say 30 mins of walking.
Recently I have been traveling more and more, easily totaling 120k miles a year (at the same time less and less of my work can be posted on the blog). That means that I also spent a good number of nights a year in various hotels – enough to have status with most. At that point it starts to matter what kind of hotel you spent your time in. After all, it is not a once-in-a-while type of experience, where I used to be fine with hostel-like accommodation, but it became a constant part of my life. As such I decided to stay in the Bayfront area, which is conveniently located with easy access to most places at an elevated price point. TL;DR: the hotel sucked big time – pretentious ba***rds. Below is the view from my window – not too shabby, not too great either…
What characterizes this part of town is its British influence and poshness. Things are generally shiny here and are priced accordingly. Nonetheless, in the evening this area is quite nice to hang out and the location right at the bay makes for some relaxing atmosphere. In fact there are some really nice roof top bars; shots in later installments.
The Marina Bay Sands hotel and boats. Every(?) evening the hotel has some laser show. Quite spectacular the first time, if you have never seen it. From the second time on though it is pretty boring/annoying. There will be some shots from the roof top up there in some later installments.
My “evening office”. I hung out quite a few times on the couches on the right in the evening to do some final editing – at some point they knew me so well, so that I got my own power plug and extension cord to the couch. The setup was pretty amazing. I usually edited until the DJ came and the music got started, which nicely pulled me out of the day’s rhythm slowly transitioning into the night and leisure time.
(One of) the reception desks in the Marina Bay Sands.
Close to my hotel was the Lamborghini shop/dealer/show room and that would be my ride for the night. It says 世界中 on the car. Unclear whether my Japanese is good enough, and frankly it is probably Chinese anyways given that that’s Singapore but it probably means the “center (中) of the world (世界)”. For sure that’s the feeling you will get in that car.
Quite close to my hotel was the Mandarin. Pretty cool place and I used to hang out in these “pods” for my late night coffee, doing some reading and catching up on emails, before heading back.
The Marina Bay Sands from the Gardens of the Bay. Must see location – lots of green to relax in…
… especially when the sun is setting, the play of the light is phenomenal.
The Flyer. I have been to Singapore many times now and I still haven’t made it to the flyer – last time it was like 10 minutes from my hotel but still… At the same time, unclear whether I will be trying it this summer when I will be in Singapore.
Take the metro, get out (almost) any station and enjoy some pretty unique architecture…
… and finally, the Merlion (the white thing with the water in the middle) and the Singapore water front…
So much for today with the “expected” views of Singapore. Next time we will explore the more interesting parts, where the actual life is happening.
Thanks for stopping by today —TSJ.