High-speed drama: Formula One Singapore Grand Prix is one of Asia's must-attend weekends
Raft of new initiatives introduced to attract more fans and increase the festive atmosphere
The Formula One Singapore Grand Prix celebrates its 10th edition this year and race organisers are again gearing up to give tens of thousands of fans the ultimate sporting, entertainment and gastronomic experience.
The 2017 Formula One Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix is introducing a raft of new initiatives to attract more fans and increase the festive atmosphere, including special ticket offerings, the Apex Lounge that transitions into a party club and plenty of high-end dining options, including the debut of Hollywood Road by Hong Kong’s award-winning restaurant group Maximal Concepts.
Michael Roche, executive director, Singapore GP, says the new features are in line with the race’s pioneering objectives since its launch in 2008 of creating a sporting event as well as a festival that celebrates Singapore’s standing as an international city.
“From the outset, we wanted to create a memorable event that stood out from any sporting event here,” Roche says. “This is a fantastic platform to showcase the best of Singapore – the spectacular city skyline, award-winning attractions, architecture and dining options, dynamic shopping districts as well as a buzzing nightlife.
“Formula One, as well as the accompanying events around it, not only add to the vibrancy of the city, but also helped to change the perception of Singapore from being just a stopover, to a must-visit destination.
“Today, the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix is one of the largest events the country has ever hosted, and has become one of Asia’s must-attend weekends.
“As one of Asia’s largest sporting and entertainment extravaganzas, we constantly innovate and strive to deliver a great event experience for all, including petrol-heads, music fans, and even the F1 teams with our exciting on-track offerings, off-track entertainment, food and beverage options as well as hospitality experience.”
A number of new ticketing offerings are being introduced, such as single-day tickets for selected grandstands and the Premier Walkabout category that allows fans to create their own schedules for the race weekend. There are also combination packages that give racegoers the flexibility to explore different parts of the Circuit Park over three days of practice, qualifying and the race itself.
Also this year, fans can buy 36 merchandise items, some of which will incorporate the commemorative 10th year anniversary design.
In terms of dining opportunities, Hollywood Road will showcase the best of Asian and Western culinary techniques at the Paddock Club, led by chefs Russell Doctrove and Lee Man-sing.
They will serve up signature dishes such as foie gras cotton candy, crispy sugar-coated barbecue Iberico pork bun with kumquat and toro tiradito with dragon fruit and red juice from their restaurants in Hong Kong.
Japan’s celebrity chef and restaurateur Nobuyuki Nobu Matsuhisa will be creating a seasonal autumn menu, while returning for the 10th year is world-famous celebrity chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who will showcase his dishes from the new The Dempsey Cookhouse & Bar.
Apex Lounge is a new category on the second and third level of the Pit Straight hospitality facility. There will be live DJ sets with the lounge turning into a club where guests can party the night away.
“Apex Lounge guests can look forward to gastronomic delights with multiple live food stations ranging from freshly prepared tapas to nitrogen ice cream accompanied by specialist cocktails, craft scotch whiskies and sake bars to ensure an outstanding food and beverage experience,” says Jonathan Hallett, director, Singapore GP.
The Grand Prix has attracted more than 350,000 international visitors over the past eight years, generating an average of nearly S$150 million (HK$856 million) in incremental tourism receipts each year, according to the Singapore Tourism Board (STB). More than 40 per cent of fans at the track are foreign visitors.
“The race and Singapore’s skyline has been broadcast to a global audience of more than 640 million viewers over the last eight years,” says Jean Ng, director of the STB’s Sports Experience Development Group.
“Driven by stakeholders ranging from culture and heritage, to retail, entertainment and dining, the Grand Prix Season Singapore visitor experience has also significantly contributed to showcasing our destination’s vibrant lifestyle options.”