9 unknown facts about Marina Bay Sands

9 unknown facts about Marina Bay Sands
April 02 10:36 2016 Print This Article

Although Marina Bay Sands was only completed in June 2010, it has quickly risen to become the most prominent landmark in Singapore, overtaking old favourites like The Esplanade and Old Parliament House. Initially, most Singaporeans were skeptical of Marina Bay Sands. The hotel caused a nation-wide outrage when it announced its decision to install the world’s longest elevated swimming pool- 200 meters above the ground. It led to many Singaporeans blaming the building when ill-timed floods took place shortly after.

Today however, it is one of the most recognised structures in the world.  Let us share a couple of facts you may not have known about Singapore’s iconic building.

1. It is the world’s most expensive standalone casino property

"construction site marina bay sands casino singapore"

Marina Bay Sands Construction Site 2009. Photo by:  Andy Mitchell

In May 2006, Las Vegas Sands won one out of two slots to be in Singapore’s integrated resorts. The initial investment commitment was S$3.85 billion. However, due to escalating costs of materials and labour shortage, Las Vegas Sands had to reprioritise their options and delayed other projects worldwide just to complete Marina Bay Sands. As of July 2009, the total cost of development had been finalised at S$8 billion.

2. It brings in a whopping revenue

According to CNBC.com, Marina Bay Sands and Resorts World Sentosa contributes 1.5-2% to Singapore’s GDP, with Marina Bay Sands netting a cool revenue of S$703 million in the last quarter of 2015.

3. It is one of the top 40 largest hotels in the world

"sunset views marina bay sands singapore casino skypark"

Marina Bay Sands at sunset

Marina Bay Sands has 2561 rooms and suites, making it one of the top 40 largest hotels in the world. It also has 6 expo halls, 250 meeting rooms and the largest ballroom in Southeast Asia.

4. The infinity pool holds a ton of water

"infinity pool relax marina bay sands swim"

Marina Bay Sands Infinity Pool

The swimming pool at the top holds 1423314.83 litres of water. Even if you drink a gallon a day, it would take a millennium to finish it- you’ll be drinking well into 3016! 

5. It houses an underground labyrinth

The staff of Marina Bay Sands start their day in the “Heart of House”, an underground labyrinth. Located deeper than Bayfront MRT Station, it is for staff only. Upon entering, you are required to exchange your card for a pass to access the gated area. Beyond it are locker facilities, a wardrobe concierge service, a spacious buffet area and even a standalone 7-11- only for staff to use.

6. It runs on a lot of fuel

On average, the 10,000 strong staff consumes close to 73,000kg of rice, 438,000kg of meat and 547,500kg of vegetables in a year. It adds up to 1,058,500kg of food, an unimaginable amount! The average family consumes an estimated 900kg’s worth of food in a year- it’ll take 117 families to finish that same amount in 10 years! 

7. MBS has a VIP only program called Paiza

“Paiza” is Marina Bay Sands by-invite-only membership program. It is a Mongolian word that, when translated to Chinese, means 牌子. While it can mean ordinary playing cards as well, it is more likely that Marina Bay Sands chose it for its Mongolian significance. In Mongolia, 牌子 refers to a tablet that officials carry with them to show their authority and to enjoy special privileges.

Paiza members are treated like royalty across Marina Bay Sands. Staff will greet them by name at the casino, where they can choose to access the Paiza-only VIP Gaming suites. In these suites, all drinks are on the house- from champagne to premium XO brandy. There is a free flow of bird’s nest as well, but the high rollers are usually too caught up in gambling to enjoy it. Paiza members also get prioritised access to all shows in the Marina Bay Sands Theatres. 

Within Paiza, chosen members will be invited into the elite Marina Bay Sands’ Chairman Club when they reach a monthly S$100 million monthly turnover.

If you haven’t quite reached that number, these resorts will make you feel like a million bucks!

8. Big bets are common in the casino

"casino marina bay sands bets large singapore"

Casino at Marina Bay Sands. Photo by: Sarah Ackerman

Marina Bay Sands attracts up to 150 high rollers every week, all of them holding an account containing at least S$100,000 with the casino. The bets at the VIP Baccarat table begin at S$500 with a maximum of S$750,000. The most expensive recorded loss was a $400,000 single bet by a Singapore rag-and-bone man on a single card, which turned out to be in favour of the house.

If you prefer a cheaper form of entertainment, why not check our list of free walking tours!

9. It houses one of the most expensive restaurants in the world

"marina bay sands fine dining waku ghin celebrity chef expensive restaurants food delicious"

Oyster served at Waku Ghin, Marina Bay Sands

Marina Bay Sands is home to Waku Ghin, dubbed the most expensive and best restaurant in Singapore by local food critic Daniel Ang. Their famous S$400 per person meal does not include champagne (which starts from S$50 per glass), paired wines (which starts from S$250 per head), tax or service charge. It is not uncommon to see guests raking up S$2000 bills for a meal of two, prices that make it one of the most expensive restaurants in the world. Reviews of this place are highly divided, with the general opinion that it is better enjoyed by the older generation. 

How to get to Marina Bay Sands:

Marina Bay Sands is located on 10 Bayfront Ave, Singapore 018966
Open Sunday to Thursday, from 1030am to 11pm
Friday, Saturday & eve of Public Holidays, from 10:30am to 11:30pm

Official website: http://www.marinabaysands.com/

share your experience by using #singaporenbeyond on social media!

Featured photo by: Choo Chin Nian

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Singapore n Beyond
Singapore n Beyond

Sharing getaway and itinerary ideas in Asia and insider knowledge of Singapore

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