Upon approaching Marina Bay Sands in my taxi, I could really feel the grandeur of this architectural brilliance of a structure standing tall and proud in this beautiful anti-chewing gum land.
I enter the understandably busy lobby with its high ceiling and take in the all the opulence and splendor. There were larger than life Salvador Dali sculptures on display all over the hotel lobby.
After checking-in, we were shown to our room, which were of expected standards with a large, comfortable bed, desk area, and an LCD flat screen TV; now somewhat basic in all hotels. The bathroom was quite spacious, with a separate shower area, bathtub, and double-basin vanity.
And without further adieu, I head to the 57th floor. Before you can get access to the Skypark, there is a checkpoint. And before entering the pool there is another checkpoint; I call them the pool police patrol, to ensure that only hotel guests can enjoy this magnificent facility. For a fee, the public can access the Skypark, but not the pool.
The swimming pool of this hotel is so breathtaking that it makes everything else seem unimportant and mediocre in comparison. It’s divided into three sections, with one exclusively for adults. Thus, whenever a child was caught taking a sneaky swim in that area, the lifeguard would quickly appear and over-enthusiastically exclaim “No kids allowed in this side of the pool laa” Alright, okay, sorry for the stereotypical remark; there was no “laa” involved here.
With the sun on my face and my gaze upon the magnificent view of Singapore city, and with nothing but time on my hand (okay, a drink too!) and while cracking lame jokes with some good friends; I now have my moment of peace, a sense of euphoria and a true holiday feel.
There were a few Jacuzzis on the other side of the Skypark but the real view was from the pool area.
As I chilled in the pool minding my own blissful business, I noticed a few glass panels at the edge of the pool with a “Do not lean against the glass” sign. Upon seeing that, I somehow had an urge to make my way there and contemplated leaning against the glass. It was a brief and weird moment of rebellion, and I quickly let go of that thought and decided not to disturb my own calm.
The next day while we were at the pool, it started to rain, but I didn’t mind much. However, the lightning detector let out a very scary alarm, that of impending disaster (alert: slight apocalyptic exaggeration), so once again the lifeguard came to the rescue and asked everyone to leave the pool area. Jokes aside, I do applaud them on their safety protocols.
Once out of the pool, we got hold of our completely drenched towels and clothes, and decided to get shelter, as well as try out the famous Ku De Ta bar next to it. But, the 2 hostesses at the entrance said we could not enter because they required a smart casual dress code. Safe to say the soaking wet clothes, hair dripping, wrapped in towel look wasn’t an acceptable attire. We did return in a while in a fairly more appropriate manner and ordered some cocktails, which were only average and did not live up to the hype.
Thankfully, after a while the rain stopped and I returned to my beloved pool. Hoping that maybe drinks would be better there, we ordered passion fruit and lychee mojitos, but yet again, disappointment as both tasted merely like rum mixed with syrup; and a couple of mint leaves were thrown in to make it look like a mojito – no lime, no soda. I guess, the only sensible option was beer; always reliable.
On the last night, we headed to the chocolate bar, also located at the Skypark. It was an extensive chocolate buffet with more sorts of chocolates and desserts you can imagine, along with an option to include a glass of champagne. Option? I laugh wickedly. This plethora of sweet treats was an absolutely ideal end to a great trip, aside from the small concern of suffering from chocolate overdose.
Overall, Marina Bay Sands is an impressive hotel with the highlight, of course, being the incredibly amazing swimming pool. The service could be better as it was not that personalized, perhaps considering the massive throngs of visitors they have each day. It has more of a department store feel at times. The hotel has a massive casino and as part of the hotel complex, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands is a paradise for shopaholics and could also be a financial nightmare for many.