Luxury overseas-style experiences in Singapore
With new VTLs being launched recently, it’s tempting to just hop on a flight for the holiday season. However, between application processes, numerous precautions, and the uncertainty of the situation, some may choose to wait a little bit longer.
But just because you can’t hop on a flight doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy that “overseas trip” you’ve always wanted. There are plenty of ways to have an atas overseas-style holiday to places like Paris, London, and New York, with fancy food and shopping right within our borders.
To attempt this, we headed over to Marina Bay Sands to see if we could go around the world in less than a day – no passport required!
Read till the end to find out Christmas offers from Marina Bay Sands as well.
– Europe –
1. France – Savour seafood & bistro classics at db Bistro & Oyster Bar
Say French food and your mind might drift to scenes of charming roadside cafes, toasted baguettes, and fancy fine dining. Lucky for us, we needn’t be in the City of Love itself to enjoy classic French bistro dining.
Hop on over to db Bistro & Oyster Bar, which offers epicurean fare like Seasonal Oysters (from $40), Burgundy Escargots ($28), and Seared Foie Gras ($36). Rule of thumb: if you’re ordering food you can barely pronounce, you’re definitely enjoying that luxe French experience.
Image credit: Marina Bay Sands
This holiday, they’re also offering a special 4-course Christmas dinner (from $98 per pax) that includes Roasted Capon, Foie Gras Terrine, Daniel Boulud’s Oyster “Vanderbilt” and Black Forest Bûche de Noël.
Pro tip: For a full-day French affair, grab some croissants and eclairs with hot chocolate at cafe Angelina and pretend you’re people watching, while saving your stomach for dinner at db Bistro.
2. London – Try classic English fare at Bread Street Kitchen
Continuing the European tour, next on the menu is Bread Street Kitchen, owned by celebrity British chef himself, Gordon Ramsay. With an industrial warehouse aesthetic inspired by its counterpart in London, you’d be forgiven for expecting a red bus to come hurtling down the roadside any time.
Choose from classics like Fish & Chips ($30++) and the signature Beef Fillet Wellington ($160++ for 2 pax) that we’ve all heard about on Hell’s Kitchen.
From top, clockwise: Traditional Christmas pudding, brandy sauce, Foie Gras Terrine, Roasted Turkey Breast. Image credit: Marina Bay Sands
Else, for a London-style Christmas feast, pile up your table with staples such as Roasted Turkey Breast and Traditional Christmas Pudding (from $79 per pax) from their festive menu – you can almost see the campy Christmas sweaters and hear the fireside crackling.
3. Go shopping for European luxury brands like Celine & Panerai
Many Singaporeans love snagging themselves luxury goods when heading over to European cities overseas. And even if you’ve barely left our shores, you can recreate the rush and excitement of shopping with your very own spree in Singapore, with brands that hail from the likes of Paris and Florence.
Begin with a trip to Celine and invest in one of their timeless, instantly-recognisable handbags which will leave you feeling like a chic Parisian. Then, complete your outfit with a luxury watch from Panerai, a coveted collector’s brand that has developed a massive following.
Even if you’re more of a homebody than a fashionista, you can still dress up your home. Round up the trip with a visit to Devialet, to fit your abode with futuristic speakers and earphones in designs that are out of this world, literally.
4. Southern US – Indulge in classic American fried chicken at Yardbird
With any trip to the US, you can’t miss out on quintessential American fried chicken. At Yardbird, you can enjoy waterfront views while simultaneously munching on crispy fried chicken borne from authentic Southern recipes.
Image credit: Yardbird Southern Table & Bar
Begin the indulgent feast with the famed Chicken ‘n Watermelon ‘n’ Waffles ($40), made from a 100-year-old family fried chicken recipe. Continue with some classic Lobster Mac and Cheese ($64) before washing it down with a Watermelon Sling Cocktail ($24).
If you’re looking for a place to enjoy a Christmas meal, gather friends and family around the table with an exclusive festive American feast (from $58 per pax), featuring oven roast turkey and pumpkin pie that’s straight out of an American Christmas movie.
5. New York – Get burgers and OTT shakes at Black Tap
Opt for OTT milkshakes or the Spicy Chèvre Burger ($27++), which brings the heat to prime beef with spiced goat cheese and Morita-infused pepper jam. Image credit: Marina Bay Sands
Besides Broadway and Central Park, New York City is famed for its diverse, experimental, and sometimes over-the-top cuisine.
From its home in Broome Street all the way to Singapore, Black Tap offers diners classic NYC offerings like craft burgers such as The Old Fashioned ($24) and decadent, towering milkshakes like The Brooklyn Blackout ($20).
This Christmas, enjoy 1-for-1 classic shakes or try the exclusive The Holiday Shake ($24), a creamy vanilla milkshake topped with white chocolate macadamia cheesecake.
6. Recall your luxury shopping days at brands like Tory Burch, Coach
If there’s any place on Earth that’s known for its designer brands, it’s the USA. Lucky for us, you can skip travelling halfway round the world and get your hands on brands like Tory Burch and Coach right here, all ready for Christmas gift shopping
Swing by Tory Burch for the latest ready-to-wear dresses and pumps, or Coach for their iconic handbags to strut into the office next year in style. After that, make a stop at CH Carolina Herrera, a Madison Avenue staple, with bold yet elegant designer clothes. Hey, you deserve it after all that hard work this year.
Bonus: Travel to “overseas” countries that have yet to open VTLs
If we could be super greedy, we’d love to see VTL flights to other popular destinations like Japan and Hong Kong. Thankfully, till then, there are plenty of comparable experiences to be had in Singapore.
Transport yourself to Japan at KOMA, a Japanese restaurant and sushi bar offering a modern interpretation of Japanese cuisine such as the Salmon Pillow ($14) and mouth-watering A5 Wagyu Beef Tenderloin ($170).
Image credit: Marina Bay Sands
Not only that, but your eyes will also be in for a treat at the beautifully decorated setting, complete with Torii gate-inspired archways, a traditional footbridge, and a 2.5M Japanese bell as the focal point.
Onto another island of Hong Kong – Mott 32 offers authentic yet modern Hong Kong cuisine, with Asian-Western fusion signatures including Apple-wood Roasted Peking Duck ($108) and Black Truffle Siu Mai ($9). In December 2021 only, treat your relatives to a festive set lunch (from $55 per pax), complete with Deep-fried Cod Fish and Iberico Pork Dim Sum that’s reminiscent of warm, hearty feasts at family gatherings.
Bonus: Stay “home” in comfort right here in Singapore
Of course, not everyone wants the hassle of managing plane tickets or passports when it comes to overseas holidays. Instead, you can escape from the grind right here in Singapore with a relaxing staycation.
Head on over to Marina Bay Sands hotel, which offers premier rooms (from $399++ per night), complete with a gorgeous view of Singapore’s CBD or Gardens by the Bay and a deep-soaking bathtub for maximum relaxation.
Make the best out of your staycation with the Sandsational Staycation Package (from $399++ per night), which includes a complimentary room upgrade and guaranteed access to the famed Infinity Pool. Bookings for club rooms and suites also include complimentary afternoon tea at Club55 restaurant and bar.
As a cherry on top, Sands Rewards members can pick from an array of bonus experiences such as:
- A scent creation experience at Maison 21G worth $150.
- Attraction tickets to Future World, Sampan Rides, and Digital Light Canvas.
- $70 nett dining credits at db Bistro, Bread Street Kitchen, RISE Restaurant, or in-room dining.
- Breakfast for 2 adults and 1 child at RISE restaurant
Take “overseas” shots with photo spots at Marina Bay Sands
If travelling the world through gourmet and retail experiences doesn’t satisfy your wanderlust enough, you can check out Christmas photo spots at Marina Bay Sands to soak in the “overseas” vibe. The entire mall is decorated with festive lights, arches and Christmas trees adorned with iconic signages from across the world from Milan to New York – perfect for your IG carousel post.
Head on over to the Little Luxury Stars Avenue for some photo opportunities.
Psst, look out for neon installations like this and icons like the Statue of Liberty and Eiffel Tower!
Be rewarded when you stay, shop and dine at Marina Bay Sands
If you want more F&B options besides the above, you’ll be spoilt for choice with festive menus at over 80 international dining options. Shoppers will have a grand time as well, with over 170 luxury and premium brands from all over the world offering a flurry of gift ideas for Xmas shopping.
Good news for Sands Rewards LifeStyle members, too, as you’ll get further rewards:
- Up to 10% instant Reward Dollars for dining
- Up to 3% instant Reward Dollars for shopping
- Up to 6% Reward Dollars when you stay
These can be used to redeem shopping, dining and even hotel stays at Marina Bay Sands, Psst…if you aren’t a member yet, membership is free!
Pro tip: Do all your Christmas shopping in one go or gather your fam and friends for a festive meal! A Sands Rewards LifeStyle membership will snag you these perks:
- $150 shopping voucher + $30 bonus Reward Dollars with a DBS/POSB card – min.spend $3,500
- $50 dining voucher – min.spend $500
- $20 dining voucher – min.spend $200
- Complimentary gift wrapping – min.spend $100
For more details & T&Cs, check out all festive deals.
With all these rewards up for grabs, we dare say it’s a gift to ourselves when we get our Christmas errands or festivities settled at Marina Bay Sands.
This post was brought to you by Marina Bay Sands.
Photography by Huy Pham.
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