Eye on new Singapore attraction

30 Sep 2007 by business traveller

Singapore beefs up its portfolio of iconic attractions – the Esplanade, IM Pei’s Swissotel Stamford Hotel and Suntec City among others – with a very unique addition, the Singapore Flyer due to start operating either in mid February or early March 2008.

Consisting of a giant observation wheel (think the London Eye) attached to a sculpted building, it offers spectacular views of the city’s landmarks such as Changi Airport and Sentosa, as well as neighbouring Indonesia and Malaysia. Each of the 28 capsules – measuring 7m by 4m by 4m, the size of standard single-deck bus – can accommodate 28 passengers bound for the 37-minute experience. It will operate 16 hours daily.

Apart from the regular flow of residents and leisure tourists, conference and incentive travel participants are a sizeable expected market. “It can be a side activity for them,” says David Beevers, Singapore Flyer’s general manager. They can even meet in the adjacent terminal building which will provide a venue on its second storey for up to 700 people. They also won’t need to queue up, and will be invited to wait in comfort in a VIP room enjoying beverages and snacks.

If desired, companies can do up the interiors of their booked capsules to reflect their brand or theme of their event. Catering of canapés and pastries and drinks is offered onboard to complement any type of networking or seminar session. A wide selection of fine wines and champagnes can be made available, as well as non-alcoholic alternatives.

For the first year, Beevers predicted that Singapore Flyer would attract about two and a half million visitors. This was a conservative estimate, he added. Initially, customers will be charged the introductory price of S$29.50 (US$19.60).

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