Monday, August 23, 2010

Tale of Two Integrated Resorts

Hubby and I took the last weekend off to visit Singapore, specifically the two integrated resorts - Resort World Singapore and Marina Bay Sands.

We stayed over at Tune Hotels Danga Bay, and took their shuttle for each of our day trip. On the first day, we headed to Resort World Singapore (RWS)

The last time I was in Sentosa Island was probably in the mid or early nineties. Back then there was this Mayan or Aztec park and the famous musical fountain. Now this part of the island looked completely different, almost unrecognisable!

I was very amused with this group of children. They were daring each other to run across the fountain before the fountain jets are in full swing. Sure enough, someone got drenched :)

Everyone wants a photo of the Universal Studio logo!

We tried to get tickets to Universal Studio but found that the day tickets were fully sold out - A first for us! So we decided to kill time by wandering around RWS, which definitely includes the casino :)

Entrance to the casino.

All the 'kaki judi' waiting outside the casino.

The casino entrance segregate between Singaporeans and foreigners. The foreigner queue is slightly longer as the lanes are few, and they needed to validate our passport. We spent a couple of hours inside the casino, nibbling on free snacks and drinks while watching the players placing their bets on the tables. Interestingly, the signboards in RWS indicate casino is 游乐场, which actually means "Entertainment Center"

We left the casino to check out the hotels. There are four hotels within RWS - Hard Rock Hotel, Festive Hotel, Hotel Michael and Crawfords Tower. Of the four, I was most fascinated with the decor of Festive Hotel, especially its colourful bubble-like lights hanging from the ceiling.

We also took some pictures of the iconic Merlion. This was another popular tourist destination. Many people were taking photos here as well.

Later towards the evening, we queued up to get S$5 tickets into Universal Studio. While we can't take the rides or watch the shows, at least we can get into the main street to check out the merchandise shops, eateries and take some photos.

Their shops mostly feature souvenirs from Shrek and Madagascar, but they also have some cool stuff like these mini Oscar statuettes.

Below are hubby's Oscars, note what's written on the tiny award :p

As the fireworks will only star at 10pm, we decided to head towards the Lake of Dreams for its light show.

During day time, the Lake of Dreams looked pretty plain and boring. However, when the lights lit up at night, It reminded me of Avatar, very serene and relaxing. Until the techno music started blaring towards the end as part of a celebration theme. What an anti-climax!

The night fireworks at Universal Studio was all right, but it had been a long time since we watch a fireworks so close before! As usual there were the oohs and ahhs from the crowd, and we all clapped loudly after it ended before proceeding for the mad rush to the exit.

Checking out the Reese's goodies at the Hershey's store :)

The next day, we headed to Marina Bay Sands via our shuttle from Tune Hotels. My first impression of Marina Bay Sands was 'Wow!' While RWS was more of a family recreation attraction, Marina Bay Sands went for class. The design is sleek and simple yet spacious. For starters, its shopping mall called The Shoppes only features luxury brands, such as Gucci, LV, Jimmy Choo, Burberry and many more.

Super long yet-to-be-opened Gucci shop

An interesting feature in The Shoppes is the inverted dome located at the entrance. There is a tiny hole in the middle, which leads right to a water feature at the lowest level of the shopping mall. You can attempt to throw a coin and see how it rolls towards the hole. If you are successful, then it will fall into the hole, and the person sitting at Coffee Bean would probably hear the sound of the coin into the water.

There are also the popular sampan rides available for S$10.

One of the key attractions in Marina Bay Sands is its Sands Skypark. For S$20 per person, we get to catch a birds-eye view of Singapore 200m in the sky. We were given audio guides, of which we can listen to different presentation at 11 designated spots within Skypark.

The Singapore Flyer and the pit building for the Singapore F1 GP.

Clam-shaped building under construction.

We spent about 2 hours inside the high-class casino before heading back to JB, can't gamble much coz it's just too expensive :(

Lots of attractions and buildings for both integrated resort is not completed yet. I foresee we'll be making a 2nd trip down South once it is all ready. But all in all, we had a good and enjoyable break from work :)

1 comment:

Lilium said...

Wow! I was there for Christmas 2008 and a lot of changes since after that! Hopefully got chance to visit when I am back.