Report: Discover Singapore

Media: Lufthansa Inflight Magazine 2015

Sector: Financial Services

Publication Date: December, 2015

Discover the Singapore Story

Shedding off its image as a stopover location and celebrating its 50th anniversary of independence, Singapore is rising as the must-visit destination in the Asia-Pacific region.

Abridge between the East and the West for centuries, Singapore embraces tradition and modernity. Colourful ethnic quarters amongst efficient business centres and serene gardens set against sleek skyscrapers, Singapore is a fascinating destination for both leisure and business travellers.

Often called the Little Red Dot, the island of Singapore is small – just 49 kilometres by 25 kilometres – and sits at the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, the southernmost point of continental Asia. Championed by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), the city-state has witnessed a remarkable transformation of its tourism landscape, while visitor arrivals have almost doubled since 2004.

Today, Singapore’s delights draw more than 15 million tourists annually, reinforcing its status as a vibrant global city that is a magnet for capital, business and talent. Its Asian neighbours, Indonesia, China, Malaysia, India as well as Australia, account for more than 50% of tourist arrivals. However, Lonely Planet, CNN and the New York Times have named Singapore as one of the top destinations to visit in 2015, setting the scene for the city-state to widen its share of European and US visitors.

The Green City

Investment in greenery, urban parks and nature reserves has created an environment that Singaporeans are proud to call home. Today the city offers a broad selection of lush ‘green’ tourism attractions, such as the Tree Top Walk in the MacRitchie Reservoir, Gardens by the Bay and the recently opened River Safari, Asia’s first and only river-themed wildlife park. Hotels such as the Marina Bay Sands, the W Singapore and the Park Royal on Pickering all incorporate ‘green’ elements in their design, and along with life-style venues such as Dempsey Hill and Botanic Gardens, showcase the abundance of greenery throughout the city.

Singapore has also made great strides in attracting tourism with the remodelling of Orchard Road into one of the best shopping streets in the world, hosting the most exclusive brands and trendiest fashion houses. Other exciting plans in the past included the development of the Singapore Flyer, the rejuvenation of Sentosa Island as a tropical island resort including theme parks, casinos, hotels, golf courses and beaches, as well as the development of iconic Integrated Resorts.

Culture & Heritage

One of the remarkable aspects of Singapore is the truly cosmopolitan nature of the population, a natural result of the country’s geographical position and commercial success. Visitors can easily experience Singapore’s rich and unique multicultural tapestry by exploring ethnic precincts such as Chinatown, Little India and Kampong Glam, in addition to sampling a diversity of cuisines, within a single trip.

In particular, Singapore’s dining scene has witnessed a boom in recent years, featuring first-rate restaurants helmed by both overseas Michelin- starred chefs and local talents. A variety of mid- to high-end dining options nicely complement food stalls at local hawker centres, making Singapore’s dining scene a vibrant and diverse one.

Exciting Events

There is also an exciting calendar of events that includes the Singapore Formula 1 Grand Prix and the BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore in addition to a variety of cultural festivals throughout the year.

From end of November 2015 onwards visitors also have the unique chance to discover the Jubilee Walk, which is essentially an 8km-long trail connecting the past, present and future elements of the Singapore story. It takes participants to 25 historical and modern Singapore icons, including the Padang, where the people of Singapore gathered to mark the end of the Japanese Occupation in 1945, as well as one of Singapore’s more recent additions, the Helix Bridge, the longest pedestrian bridge in Singapore, overlooking the Marina Bay.

Conference & Incentive Travel

Thanks in no small part to its attractions and first-class hotels, Singapore is also gaining popularity as a destination for meetings, conferences and incentives. Last year, the country played host to more than 100 different business events, while 2015 saw the introduction of events such as the World Confederation of Physical Therapy Congress, inter airport Southeast Asia, Children Baby Maternity Expo, Interpol World and GasTech.

Cruising out of Singapore

Another growth segment is the cruise industry. Passenger numbers are expected to grow between 5% and 8% annually over the next three to four years. In 2016, Singapore will be welcoming 10 maiden calls, including Royal Caribbean International’s newest and most innovative ship, the Quantum of the Seas which can carry over 4,000 passengers. In addition, TUI Cruises chose to homeport out of Singapore for four months from November 2015 to March 2016 for the first time ever.

An Emerging Art Location

In addition, Singapore’s growing host of exhibitions, galleries and fairs offer many opportunities for the art community to discover Southeast Asia’s evolving art scene. One of the key event highlights is the Singapore Art Week. Returning for its fourth edition in January 2016, the Singapore Art Week is a celebration of the visual arts. Art fans can also visit the Pinacothèque de Paris, the largest private art museum in Paris, which opened its first venue outside of Europe in Singapore in May 2015, or head to the National Gallery Singapore which just opened its doors in November 2015. It is the first museum in the world dedicated to Southeast Asian modern art.

Unique Singapore

Singapore is one of the most diverse and unique places in Asia, and there are few places in the world that offer a similar array of attractions. Singapore means big-city life and connecting with nature, history and culture as well as entertainment for all ages and tastes, plus the very best of Asian cuisine.

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