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Sunday, May 19, 2019

Singapore swing-around

WITH several direct flights from Cebu, Singapore is just a hop away. And with its varied attractions, it is definitely a tempting getaway. Think sightseeing, shopping, savory food, plus fun places like the Singapore Flyer, Gardens by the Bay, Marina Bay Sands, interactive museums etc. Of course, not to be forgotten is the Resorts World complex with its Universal Studios, Sea Aquarium, Adventure Cove, Dolphin Island, Malaysian Food Street, cafes, luxury hotels... the list goes on. SilkAir has made the trip even more enticing with its promo fares.

Small wonder then that a group of Cebu travel agents headed by Grand Holidays’ Cherry Callelero decided to invade the Lion City a few weeks back, on their way to Bintan Resorts in Indonesia. Their main purpose was to come up with a two-in-one package for avid travelers... after all, Bintan is less than an hour away by ferry from Singapore.

Hotel hopping was very much part of the agenda to find room choices for the package. With GTMC’s Samson and Grace Tan on the lead, the group visited two of the three brands of Global Premium Hotels Limited—the Parc Sovereign Hotel (which had some rooms opening up to a tiny terrace garden), and the Fragrance Hotels with really compact rooms.

On another category are the Millennium Hotels and Resorts (a global group), where the travel bunch got to check out the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel Singapore, the M Hotel Singapore and the M Social Singapore. All three are in prime locations and feature modern, well-appointed rooms. Very fascinating was the robot errand boy on the lobby hallway of M Social. All a hotel guest has to do is to input what he needs and the robot brings it to his room.

Far from the city hub but very near shopping outlets is the Genting Hotel Jurong which is under the Resorts World wing. The lobby and the rooms are spacious and it has complete facilities for seminars and events. Quite unique is its swimming pool on the top floor which has round glass-enclosed holes that go all the way down to the lobby ceiling. Swimmers crossing the holes can be seen from the lobby ceiling.

A trip to Singapore is somehow incomplete without a foray at Resorts World in Sentosa. It was around noon when the group arrived at RW, just in time for the super yum lunch at the Malaysian Food Street hosted by Resort World’s Annie Ico-Tingzon. For dessert, she surprised Grand Hope’s Baby Dy (whose birthday was the next day) with a delicious birthday cake. Joining the happy group was SilkAir Philippines manager Jake Jeow who flew in from Cebu the night before.

Then it was time to go around the complex for more fun. Diverse attractions were here, there and everywhere. The group skipped Universal Studios and concentrated on the enthralling world of dolphins in Dolphin Island, the enchanting Sea Aquarium and the exciting Adventure Zone, ending up by late afternoon at Resort World’s Festive Hotel.

The day was far from over... next stop was the famed Orchard Road for a sumptuous Chinese dinner at East Ocean. It was Nelson Dy’s treat in celebration of wife Baby’s birthday.

The two days seemed to fly and soon it was time to go to the airport for the SilkAir flight back to home sweet home.
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