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Go Asia-Singapore

MICE professionals ‘spoilt for choice’ in Singapore: experienced providers offer world-class venues and soft skills

Well-connected city state has gone further than most of its competitors in addressing the needs of the meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions sector

PUBLISHED : Friday, 12 August, 2016, 11:06am
UPDATED : Monday, 15 August, 2016, 9:58am

It’s a competitive market in Asia, but Singapore has shown that it possesses advantages in the meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) sector.

“MICE professionals are spoilt for choice in Singapore. There is something for all budgets and occasions,” says Andrew Au, managing director, Southeast Asia, for Imagination, an agency that specialises in hosting experiential events.

Supporting Singapore’s MICE ambitions is a strong transport network, beginning with Changi Airport, which has 320 connections, including 45 city links in Southeast Asia with 6,500 flights every week. Around the airport are venues that are can host mega events. The 30-hectare Changi Exhibition Centre, for example, has a 40,000-square-metre exhibition hall and 100,000 sq m outdoor display area, playing host to large-scale events such as the Singapore Airshow and maritime defence exhibition IMDEX Asia.

Also close to the airport is the Singapore EXPO Convention and Exhibition Centre. The venue offers 100,000 sq m of column-free space, with another 12,000 sq m in its sister venue MAX Atria, which presents a green convention concept focusing on natural light and garden features.

The Raffles City Convention Centre has 70,000 sq ft of function space, with 27 meeting rooms that can be linked via closed-circuit television. Another option for events is the Sands Expo and Convention Centre encompassing more than 120,000 sq m of space with 250 meeting rooms and room for 2,000 exhibition booths.

MICE professionals are spoilt for choice in Singapore
Andrew Au, managing director (Southeast Asia), Imagination

Other venues to consider are the Novotel Singapore Clarke Quay with 1,200 sq m of conference area or the Grand Hyatt Singapore with 5,183 sq m of meeting space. For something a little different, the InterContinental Singapore in the historic Bugis district has been renovated in the grand old style, and has approximately 1,000 sq m of event space available.

One of Singapore’s advantages is an attitude that is all about evolution of skills. “Singapore is constantly progressing and evolving so there is a constant sense of forward motion and excitement that plays well to forward looking and forward thinking organisations,” Au says.

Singapore’s unusual venues add a bit of flair to proceedings. On Sentosa Island, there is the Resorts World Convention Centre for a more laid-back vibe when hosting conventions for up to 6,500 people, with a ballroom that can span as much as 6,000 sq m.

But the city also offers smaller venues with more intimate vibes. These include The ArtScience Museum set in front of the spectacular Marina Bay Sands, where art exhibitions offer a break from serious stuff.

Meanwhile, the Gardens by the Bay has space for smaller events. The conservatory, urban garden, public space, complete with the OCBC Skyway, could be intriguing for an event.