Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Night at Marina Bay Sands

Singapore Day 3
Marina Bay Sands
4:45 p.m.

Aside from wanting to eat authentic chili crabs, laksa, and hainanese chicken, I went to Singapore for Marina Bay Sands.

I'm sure nobody will blame me for wanting to visit  the world's most expensive standalone hotel-casino featuring 2,561-rooms, a 1,300,000-square-foot convention center, an 800,000-square-foot The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, and the world's largest atrium casino with 500 tables and 1,600 slot machines. It also has a 340m-long SkyPark with a capacity of 3,900 people and a 150meter infinity swimming pool, set on top of the world's largest public platform.

When it was time to book a Singapore hotel though, I encountered a lot of bad Marina Bay Sands reviews. My friends and I all got discouraged but still decided to spend a night at Marina Bay Sands being it the reason some of us actually went on this trip. We just hoped for the best and prayed that the unpleasant feedback was exaggerated, if not completely unfounded.

I'm unhappy to report though that the negative reviews about Marina Bay Sands were all true:

Check-in Line
In fact, it was such a bitch! We already arrived late in the hopes that lines would be more manageable but we clearly thought wrong. The only positive thing about waiting in line was the availability of free refreshments. 

Room Without a View
One would think that after making us wait in line for about 30 minutes, the check-in staff would be more pleasant or accommodating but this was also not the case. Every request we had regarding room preference was turned down and we even got the convention center as our view. :(

Deluxe Room

Entertainment Area
Considering the grandeur of Marina Bay Sands, the room was a bit of a letdown. Granted that size of room was bigger than most Singapore hotels,  the room looked generic and lacked character. Beds were small too.

Half of the Bathroom

Handicapped Bath
 Also, much to our dismay, we were not even informed that we were billeted in a handicapped room!  I would not have griped about this if not for the fact that the bathroom flooded every time anyone took a shower.


Part of The Shoppes
While I was at The Shoppes, I felt like I was walking inside a museum instead of being in the middle of a shopping area.  Not much activity at The Shoppes and stores are not unique either. 

Line at Rise for Breakfast
As if lining up during check-in was not enough, one also has to queue just to have breakfast. To be fair, there are no lines before 8 a.m. Also, there's another restaurant option at a different tower but food selection is rather limited.

My Only Plate
At Rise, food selection was not bad and buffet tables were replenished fast,  but it has to be said that the food was ordinary. It missed the chance to showcase the good in Singapore cooking.

(So sorry my pictures don't do it justice!)


Singapore Sling and Truffle Fries: This is the Life!
If only for the opportunity to swim at the magnificent infinity pool, I strongly encourage everyone to stay at Marina Bay Sands. The moment I saw the view from the pool platform, I finally understood what the hype is all about. It is an experience like no other and it's an experience that I would gladly share with anyone who cares to listen.

Marina Bay Sands is located at 10 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore. For more information, click here

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