As one of the world’s leading financial centres, Singapore is South East Asia’s biggest international hub and has long been a meeting point for corporate travellers within the shipping, banking, trading and oil & gas industries. But Singapore is more than just a business destination, as a constantly evolving city to explore, there’s plenty to see and do. Spend your bleisure time exploring hawker centres, cultural attractions and experience a city where the locals believe passions are made possible.
Travelling to Singapore is a breeze when flying in, Changi airport is located at the eastern edge of the island. It’s only a short 30 minute taxi ride into the city with fares costing approximately between $20-$40 SGD, alternatively you can take the train. Note, from the airport you will need to transfer to the westbound train at Tanah Merah station.
As a city located so close to the equator, humid weather and rain is expected but luckily Singapore’s transport is not only vast but is also air conditioned.
The most convenient and fastest way to get around the city is via the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) underground train system, zip around from business lunch to business meeting quickly and inexpensively. Prices range from $0.78 to $2.03 SGD if payment is made with an EZ-Link card, London’s equivalent of an Oyster card, which can purchased at TransitLink Ticket offices located at MRT stations and bus interchanges, and at most 7-Eleven stores.
If you happen to not be near a MRT station, buses run across Singapore and are charged for the duration of your journey so prices may vary. Pay for buses with your EZ-Link card or cash but be wary of carrying exact fare as bus drivers don’t carry change.
Taxis are another convenient way to get around the city. Both hailing regular taxis and booking an Uber are widely available. Things to note: regular taxi flag down fees range from $3.60 to $3.90 SGD and a city area surcharge of $3 SGD runs from 5pm to midnight daily including public holidays.
Where to stay
Measuring at just 50 kilometres from east to west and 27 kilometres from north to south, there is no shortage of places to stay in Singapore. The city is saturated with a range of hotels to suit every business traveller’s travel policy, stay in budget, boutique or luxury hotels. And with such wide transport links no matter where you stay you can easily and conveniently arrive within the Central Business District.
If luxury and convenience to Singapore’s Central Business District is what you are after than The Fullerton Hotel is perfect. Within minutes of Raffle Place MRT the Fullerton offers 11 meeting rooms all equipped with audio-visual capabilities and high-speed internet access. Furthermore, The Fullerton Hotel is a magnificent neoclassical landmark which was built in 1928, it was once home to Singapore’s General Post Office, the Exchange Room and Exchange Reference Library.
If you need a hotel which is more tailored to your travel policy, yet still conveniently located, then Hotel G is the ideal place. Hotel G is a boutique hotel which reflects the cosmopolitan rhythms and dynamism of the Lion City. Both conveniently located on Middle Road, Hotel G is a short walk away from Bugis, Dhoby Ghaut, Rochor and Bras Basah MRT stations. Making it easily accessible to Suntec City Convention Centre and an 18 minute train ride to Raffle Place.
Places to wine and dine clients
Clarke Quay: A unique historical landmark, verging on the fringe of Singapore’s Central Business District.
A nightlife hotspot, Clarke Quay is the place to go if you plan to take clients out for drinks after dinner. It’s also full of an array of seafood restaurants along the river, and smaller intimate restaurants further in. Our favourite is Little Saigon, situated in Block E, aside from the amazing interior Saigon serves up some remarkable Vietnamese food.
Marina Bay Sands: Singapore’s hub
Marina Bay is a fantastic location to wine and dine clients. Waku Ghin is the ideal place to treat clients to traditional Japanese cuisine by Chef Tetsuya.
Or if traditional western and European fare is more your thing, then Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsey is a great place to do business over traditional fish and chips and shepherd’s pie.
Need that extra special place to wow clients? Forest by local chef Sam Leong is perfect, immerse yourself and clients in contemporary Chinese dishes within a striking space created to emulate an indoor forest.
What to do in your free time
Whether you have a few spare hours in between meetings or decided to extend your trip for leisure, Singapore is full of places to see. Our top picks are:
- Gardens by the Bay, a multi-award winning destination split into two gardens, Bay South Garden and Bay East Garden. South Garden is the larger of the two and holds a collection of man-made ‘Supertrees’. Be sure not to miss the sky show of choreographed lights and music every evening. East Garden is for walks across the waterfront promenade or exploring a Forest in the Clouds, experience the world’s tallest indoor waterfall surrounded by lush vegetation. The gardens are open from 5am to 2am daily (excluding Forest in the Clouds which opens at 9am and closes at 9pm)
- Singapore Night Safari, located next to Singapore Zoo, is the world’s first safari park for nocturnal animals. The safari is home to over 2,500 resident animals spanning across 130 species including the endangered Asian elephant, Malayan tapir and Malayan tiger. Enjoy a five-course candlelit meal on the Gourmet Safari Express a moving tram whilst mingling with the parks star animals.
- Resorts World Sentosa, a short train journey away from Singapore mainland, is host to a number of theme parks with the likes of Universal Studios, Adventure Cove Waterpark and Mega Adventure. It also has three man-made beaches along the bottom of the island, relax and sip cocktails along Tanjong Beach that is ideally located in a secluded position along the south coast of Sentosa.
A must however for any visit to Singapore is one of the many hawker centres, a place to lunch with clients and colleagues. Make it a priority to visit the Lau Pa Sat hawker centre, located just around the corner from Marina Bay and in Raffles Quay it has long dominated the local landscape with its striking presence. Lau Pa Sat blends history, striking architecture and delicious local food all rolled into one opportune experience.
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