The Countdown Begins
The F1 season is here and the Singapore CBD transforms itself into an ever-vibrant summer bonanza from dusk to dawn. F1 enthusiasts across the globe are all eyes on the latest happenings on the Marina circuit, but just because you don’t speak the automobile vernacular doesn’t mean you’ve to lose out on the festivities.
Grand Prix aficionado or not, take a trip down south during the race weekend and let the host of activities and electrifying atmosphere ignite your engines!
1. Embark on a local food gastrotrail at Lau Pa Sat
Even the fastest drivers need to eat! Singapore is known for its food, particularly its string of hawker centres. But none is as impressive or iconic as Lau Pa Sat. Hokkien for ‘old market’, this giant food hall is located in the bustling business district and is home to an array of local delicacies that’ll give you a wholesome taste of Singapore.
For an immersive experience, head over with a group of friends during evening and dine alfresco. As for what to eat, do what the locals queue and look for the queues to discover what’s good.
2. Discover the race cars of the past
Culture vultures who got dragged down to the south by their F1-diehard friend/significant other/dad, fear not. Salvation exists and it comes in the form of museum hopping. Within walking distance lies a trove of museums – Singapore Art Museum, National Gallery and National Design Centre are starters.
For a quirky experience, a trip to the MINT museum of toys should be on top of the list. Showcasing toys and not to mention old model cars from around the world, step into the time warp and get a glimpse of what fun used to be like before iPads were used to pacify kids.
3. Revel in the high life aboard your personal yacht
No tickets to the grandstand? Worry not! You can still enjoy life to the max. A weekend getaway for many involves the sun, sand and sea. But if it’s the lush life you’re after, forgo lounging by beach clubs and get out into the waters on your personal yacht. Be it a close gathering of 10 or luxurious party for 20, rally up your squad and get on board.
The day is yours to call as you’re given carte blanche to decide the route. If you relish dipping in cool waters, stop mid-sea for a dip or snorkel to catch sight of the colourful marine ecosystem you never knew could exist in our local waters. Alternatively, stop by any of the islands and bask in your personal beach.
Oh, did we mention, these yacht packages come with a 7-course buffet meal mid-sea.
4. Tuck into a decadent dinner by the bay
It is said a meal is always made better with close company and striking views. If that’s the case, strike dining nirvana with an intimate dinner in a cable car that functions as your private dining room. With the glittering F1 lights as your backdrop, be treated to a luxurious 4-course dinner that stars a char grilled Angus beef sirloin as its main course.
During the ride, be enthralled by the changing facade of the skylines – from soft pink hues to a bed of lights as the sun goes down.
5. Be your own Lewis Hamilton
It may be exciting to snag a front row spot during the race, but why stand by the sidelines when you can be the one behind the wheels? We’re not talking about some virtual reality goggles here. At the F1 Driving Experience, take on either the suave Ferrari F430 F1 Spider or Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder and take a joyride around the circuit Fast and Furious style.
Depending on how adventurous you are, choose to be the one behind the wheels making the engines roar or relax by the passenger seat and let the pros do the driving. Either way, a trained instructor will be there to guide you. *tip: cue Charlie Puth’s See You Again before driving for maximum feels*
6. Ride the fast lane at The Luge!
If you can’t drive, this is probably the closest you’ll get to driving a F1 racecar. A lovechild between the go-kart and old-school sled, the Luge is an one-of-a-kind outdoor experience that’ll appease any thrill-seeking junkie. After ascending the Luge track via the skyride – essentially an open cable car that’ll offer you the view of Sentosa’s idyllic charm – you’ll be strapped on safety gears and briefed on how to operate the Luge (which really is just a simple pull-and-push of a lever).
As you make your descend halfway, choose between the Dragon [688m] or Jungle Trail, [628m] both of which has it own exhilarating twists and turns. Depending on your need for speed, you’ll reach the end in 5 – 8 minutes. Either way, the fun of it all will tell you why it lives up to its slogan “Once is Never Enough”.
7. Have an unobstructed 360-degree view of the race from 165m above ground
To catch the best views of the vibrant business district, a spin on the Singapore Flyer must be in order. This Grand Prix season, supersize your experience by catching an aerial view of the race too.
The flyer is within close proximity to the race circuit, and the view from above beats any viewing party from a nearby hotel. Of course, a little bit of luck and calculation will help put you right at the peak during the course of the race. People don’t know this, but viewing the race live from above in a cool cabin – that’s the best seat in the house.
8. Grab a bird’s eye view of the race from Marina Bay Sands Skypark
Come race day everyone will scramble for a highly coveted spot at the iconic Marina Bay Sands Skypark just to catch a glimpse of the racetrack action happening right under their nose.
At 57 levels high, you’ll have an unobstructed panoramic view of the bay area and the gorgeous Singapore cityscape at night. The expansive 1.2 hectare observation deck has space for just about everyone to get a slice of the action, but do be sure to arrive early to secure the best spots!
9. Turn up at Clarke Quay
The epicentre of nightlife in Singapore, the party is just on its way after seeing the live acts perform at Clarke Quay. If EDMs and heavy beats are rhythm to your soul, clubs like Attica and F. Club will keep you pumping till dawn. But if it’s a casual conversation with your friends you’re after, the trong of bars along the river will serve as serum to nestle any good moments.
For F1 ticket holders, look out for exclusive deals that range from discounts off the final bill, 1-for-1 to free club entries. Check out here for participating outlets.
10. Rub shoulders with the world’s fastest men on wheels
Sebastian, is that you? Source.
F1 champs Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton’s wax clones have descended on the sunny shores of Singapore! Grand Prix fans will know grabbing a photo with the real deal is near impossible, but at Madame Tussauds the success rate of that perfect #selfie with the dashing duo has a pretty high success rate considering they’re literally not going anywhere.
You’ll even stand a chance to have your picture taken atop a mock podium, but you’ll need to hurry because the exhibit only runs through September!
Not Just For The Racers
So you see, you don’t have to be a fan of automobile to get into the swing of things during the F1 season. In fact, it’s the perfect time to put your trusted kicks on and explore the vibrant south. As for those heading straight for the race or after-race performances, remember to dress light, stay VERY hydrated and keep your personal belongings close to you.