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Gardens by the Bay

Feeling Tall and Reckless. Drunken on Rarefied Air, and Expensive Mineral Water.

semi-overcast 28 °C

When Bill and Jamie visited me last August, he stayed in the Marina Bay Sands (they didn't gamble at all, but they used the roof-top infinity swimming pool a lot. Well, they're Aussies). His hotel room was facing the Gardens by the Bay (GBB) just immediate opposite. While it was already completed for barely over a month, going by the few visitors, I thought it was still building.

Like the other casino in Macao that Sheldon Adelson built, GBB was also built on reclaimed land. No, the Marina Bay Sands wasn't built on reclaimed land, nor GBB built by Adelson. Let make that clear.

I remember Bill commented at the hotel balcony that he can't see how they make money from the Gardens. Theme parks would more likely the tourist drawcards. I jokingly said that perhaps the Singapore's image was ruined by the casino, and the government is doing damage control, and the Gardens is just the thing to save its heard earned, cultivated image of a clean and green city. A fraction of the casino revenue would more than cover the running of the Gardens. Revenue isn't the goal for GBB.

Using Taoist Speak, there're just too much bad chi emanating from the casino, and a place with positive chi is needed to place nextdoor to restore the balance of positive and negative chi.

Speaking of Taoism, and fengshui and whatnot, the surfboard or boomerang on top of the Marina Bay Sands not only giving the casino hotel a unique architectual feature, without it, the 3 towers would look like 3 joss sticks. Few Chinese superstitous gamblers would gamble there. By the way, gamblers are superstitious by nature, Chinese or otherwise. Many Chinese gamblers know about how the old Lesboa's architecture in Macao looks like a birdcage with iron chains around it. Very bad fengshui for gamblers.

Sorry, I digress. While some of the structures - Cloud Forest and Flower Dome - look pleasing, it's a garden after all. The idea of visiting there didn't exactly appeal to me. Let's say it isn't my cup of tea.

Etta bought some cheap entrance tickets to the GBB from Groupon, and it's expiring soon. Also, I have bought my Sony NEX-6 just last week, I'm itchy to take it out for a test drive before the upcoming overseas next month. So I have something looking forward to the Gardens.

The entrance to the Gardens is free, and the tickets - cost about $10 pax - are for entrances to the 2 convervatories: Cloud Forrest and Flower Dome. While they both contain pretty flowers, they reinforced my reluctance. The Singapore Botanical Gardens does a better job.

We arrived around 4:30pm to avoid the hottest part of the day. There was some nice breezes as the Gardens are surrounded by water with the Bay at one side and the ocean at the other. It was in fact a perfect day. It had a bit of scatter cloud with nice breezes throw in.


When Bill and Jamie visited me last August, he stayed in the Marina Bay Sands (they didn't gamble at all, but they used the roof-top infinity swimming pool a lot. Well, they're Aussies). His hotel room was facing the Gardens by the Bay (GBB) just immediate opposite. While it was already completed for barely over a month, going by the few visitors, I thought it was still building.

Like the other casino in Macao that Sheldon Adelson built, GBB was also built on reclaimed land. No, the Marina Bay Sands wasn't built on reclaimed land, nor GBB built by Adelson. Let make that clear.

I remember Bill commented at the hotel balcony that he can't see how they make money from the Gardens. Theme parks would more likely the tourist drawcards. I jokingly said that perhaps the Singapore's image was ruined by the casino, and the government is doing damage control, and the Gardens is just the thing to save its heard earned, cultivated image of a clean and green city. A fraction of the casino revenue would more than cover the running of the Gardens. Revenue isn't the goal for GBB.

Using Taoist Speak, there're just too much bad chi emanating from the casino, and a place with positive chi is needed to place nextdoor to restore the balance of positive and negative chi.

Speaking of Taoism, and fengshui and whatnot, the surfboard or boomerang on top of the Marina Bay Sands not only giving the casino hotel a unique architectual feature, without it, the 3 towers would look like 3 joss sticks. Few Chinese superstitous gamblers would gamble there. By the way, gamblers are superstitious by nature, Chinese or otherwise. Many Chinese gamblers know about how the old Lesboa's architecture in Macao looks like a birdcage with iron chains around it. Very bad fengshui for gamblers.

Sorry, I digress. While some of the structures - Cloud Forest and Flower Dome - look pleasing, it's a garden after all. The idea of visiting there didn't exactly appeal to me. Let's say it isn't my cup of tea.

Etta bought some cheap entrance tickets to the GBB from Groupon, and it's expiring soon. Also, I have bought my Sony NEX-6 just last week, I'm itchy to take it out for a test drive before the upcoming overseas next month. So I have something looking forward to the Gardens.

The entrance to the Gardens is free, and the tickets - cost about $10 pax - are for entrances to the 2 convervatories: Cloud Forrest and Flower Dome. While they both contain pretty flowers, they reinforced my reluctance. The Singapore Botanical Gardens does a better job.

We arrived around 4:30pm to avoid the hottest part of the day. There was some nice breezes as the Gardens are surrounded by water with the Bay at one side and the ocean at the other. It was in fact a perfect day. It had a bit of scatter cloud with nice breezes throw in.

Gardens-By..re-DSC00045.jpg

After quick tours of 2 the greenhouses, I went around taking photos of the various structures, especially the supertrees. As I photographed them, I had to say they grew on me. As the sun started to hug the horizon, the various nice juxtapositions and perspectives of these supertrees looked somehow inspiring. I could see how the design won an international competition held in 2006.

Gardens-By..re-DSC00081.jpg

One of the attraction/highlight of the Gardens is a stroll on the OCBC Skyway. It's a skywalk that suspended between the supertrees structures. My vertigo added cheap thrills to my skywalk. "Focus, Skywalker! Focus!" It's quite steady, only if my nerve is as steady. The supertrees are as tall as 16 storey building, and the skywalk would be about 12 to 14 storey tall.

The entrance to the skywalk is $5 pax. The view from above, pricesless.

One of the supertrees - the tallest - has a restaurant IndoChine at its top. As the name suggests, it serves Indochinese cuisine: Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, and Thai. We know they're going to be touristy prices, but we decided to splurge. There were some restaurants planted firmly on terra firma with more down-to-earth pricetags, but we decided to dine in a lofty style with soaring bill. We were feeling tall today after looking up at these supertrees all day, and walking in the air.
We ordered Bo Luc Lac (black peppered beef), springrolls, and lemon grass tiger prawns. They happened to be all Vietnamese.

Boc Luc Lac - the beef is a little bit chewy, and dry. 6.5/10.
Lemongrass tiger prawns - the prawns are spongy, not springy. Little too sour for my tastes. 6/10.
Springrolls - not bad, but nothing special. 7/10.

It came to $120 for 2 pax. I told you it's going to be a splurge (everything is cheap for the European tourists). The dishes are cheap comparing to the bottle of water that cost $18. Holy water, you ask? No, just mineral water imported from Italy. It may have comes from a spring that situates near a cathedral, God only know. Lucky that Etta didn't tell me the price of water while I was drinking it. She may very well be surprised by being sprayed by my sprouting mouth of shock.

Gardens-By..re-DSC00185.jpg

The only consolation price is the admission to the roof of the restaurant that let

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Posted by FrancisQ 05:37 Archived in Singapore Tagged singapore garden bay asia tourism supetree horticulture

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