Marina Bay Sands: A Singapore Icon Turns 10
A decade on, the integrated resort continues to play a key role in the Singapore tourism story
It was a project that not only transformed a city’s skyline, but elevated a nation’s standing in the eyes of the world.
The unveiling of Marina Bay Sands in April 2010 marked the start of a journey that would see the integrated resort (IR) become a symbol of Singapore’s ambition, daring and uncanny ability to make dreams into reality.
By almost all measures, Marina Bay Sands has exceeded even the most optimistic expectations. Even those close to the project were pleasantly surprised by the speed with which the project took off.
“If you went to Japan or China, everybody knew Marina Bay Sands. So that was surprising to me, because it doesn’t happen very often. Maybe in the history of architecture it happened in the 20th century — once with the Sydney Opera House, and in the 19th century with the Eiffel Tower. But it doesn’t happen often at all,” muses Moshe Safdie, the celebrated architect responsible for Marina Bay Sands’ unique design.
The fact that Marina Bay Sands did not remain as a plan on paper, but was actually executed, signalled to the world that Singapore is a place where “dreams can become a reality, and that something which is seen as impossible can become a reality”, adds Keith Tan, Chief Executive of Singapore Tourism Board (STB). “There are very few places in the world that can pull this off and within that timeframe.”