For the uninitiated, finding fresh and unique venues for events in land-scarce Singapore can be quite the challenge. Thanks to joint efforts between the government and private sectors, event spaces in Singapore are finding new homes in unexpected locations.
Locations with rich history give more depth to the overall venue experience for attendees and go a long way in making events memorable. We’ve scoured the venue landscape to bring to light these five offbeat and unique locations in Singapore that only the most discerning event planners know how to utilise.
Before ceasing operations in July 2011, Tanjong Pagar Railway Station ran trains between Singapore and various parts of Malaysia for 79 years. In 2015, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) proposed that the station be converted into a multi-functional community space as part of the revamp of the Rail Corridor stretching from Kranji to Tanjong Pagar.
The redevelopment, which will include an underground MRT station, a linear park, an auditorium and art gallery, is currently taking place in phases while the northern stretch of the Rail Corridor continues to be available as an events space.
The public outdoor hawker venue held its first-ever private event for some 3,500 delegates during the closing party for the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM), which might never have happened if not for the persuasive skills and insider contacts of Janet Tan-Collis, CEO of local destination management company East West Planners, and the help enlisted from the entire second-year cohort of the Diploma in Integrated Events & Project Management at Singapore Polytechnic.
Located just beside The Esplanade, Makansutra Glutton’s Bay is a public facility on the water, which also includes an amphitheatre, restaurants, and bars.
An alternative to the conventional Cineplex, The Projector revives two cinema halls and the 5th-floor foyer of the historic Golden Theatre. The independent cinema brings together a great selection of films, unique events, versatile spaces and delectable fare to host up to 300 people standing, and 220 seated.
Bringing to attention the past glory of an old cinema in Singapore, special touches at this halal event venue include vintage signage, fabric walls, original flip-up theatre seats with wooden armrests, and floor lettering for designated seats.
4. Zepp@BIGBOX Singapore
Multi-commercial complex BIG BOX, known for its wide range of furniture, general merchandise, and electronic stores, entered a joint venture with Zepp Hall Network Inc. (Tokyo, Japan) in 2017 to transform one of its spaces into a live hall “Zepp@BIGBOX Singapore”.
Zepp@BIGBOX Singapore currently stands at a maximum capacity of 2,333 people, but when combined with MEGA BOX Event Hall B, it can accommodate up to 4,032 persons, making it the largest event and exhibition hall in the west of Singapore. Its direct connection to Jurong East MRT station makes it a convenient location for attendees, with hotels such as Genting Hotel Jurong within the vicinity and Park Hotel Alexandra just a 15-minute drive away.
From Finland to Singapore, Finnish firm Huone is a rising star in the venue offerings game, taking meetings out of cookie-cutter boardrooms and into one of Singapore’s most innovative venues. Launched in early 2017, Huone is tucked in an approximately 1,858-sq m shophouse in the heart of the entertainment district of Clarke Quay. Groups can choose to hold their meetings and events in an igloo, a forest, a Finnish cottage house, a bird’s nest, or in seven other creatively themed spaces.
Besides giving an edge to where workshops and brainstorming sessions are held, the company also provides programme management, consultation services, as well as food and beverage options, making it a one-stop “events hotel”.
As Singapore’s first civil airport that was opened in 1937, Old Kallang Airport (main picture) took six years, SGD8 million (USD6.1 million) and thousands of clay subsoil to transform what was once a swamp into an airport dubbed as the finest airport in the British Empire during its colonisation of Singapore.
The part it played during World War II and other political uses add history and depth to the venue. Now a gazetted historical monument, global flash event Diner en Blanc held its 2015 Singapore edition at the Old Kallang Airport, which saw approximately 3,000 attendees all dressed in white for an evening of chic dining under the stars.
Venues not initially built for event purposes drive event organisers to think outside the box and allow the most resourceful ones to shine as they come up with ways to transform an unusual location, since the events landscape of today no longer pre-defines what venues are supposed to be like.
Are there any other ways you’ve used an unusual venue for your events? Share with us your story on our Facebook page or email us at email@example.com.
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