As we all know, if there is something Singapore isn’t short of, it is shopping malls. Shopping centres, as we like to call them, are found throughout the island, at the heart of all the major town centres. Nevertheless, we have been waiting with bated breath for this particular mall and it is finally official—Jewel Changi Airport is opening its doors on 17 April 2019.
If you live in Singapore, you will know that Changi Airport is not just a place for people to get on and off a plane. The world’s best airport is also an amazing lifestyle destination for both travellers and locals alike. And now it is adding a 10-storey jewel (pun intended) to its crown with a megamall that boasts over 280 retails shops and restaurants.
And Jewel isn’t just an eating and shopping paradise. This sustainable destination (the mall uses solar energy) will also contain an indoor playland called the Canopy Park and has two major features on display, the Forest Valley and Rain Vortex, reminiscent of the Cloud Forest and Flower Dome at Gardens by the Bay. The Rain Vortex lays claim to being the tallest indoor waterfall in the world and utilises actual rainwater. All of this is housed under one gorgeous, modern dome that is made from glass and steel.
Let us look in more detail at what we can expect come 17 April.
Foodies of Singapore may have a difficult time keeping their mouths from watering because there is no shortage of good eats at Jewel, such as the long-awaited arrival of the American burger chain Shake Shack and the return of a fast-food oldie but goodie, A&W. Whether it is foodcourt fare or fine dining, you can expect to tantalise your taste buds with the best of both local and international brands and cuisines.
That’s not all. Eating at Jewel Changi Airport is also a visual feast. For instance, visitors can delight in ‘alfresco’ dining at the terraces on the uppermost floor. Surrounded by beautiful flora and natural light, you will feel like you are having a meal in the great outdoors, just without the heat and humidity. Not only will you be sheltered from the elements that are typical to the tropical environment, you’ll also be enjoying pleasant ‘weather’, thanks to air-conditioning. Night-time provides a whole other different dining ambience; for lovers, it is perfect for a romantic night out under the stars.
In what is most likely to become a new shopping mecca, Jewel stands out as the place where you will find Nike’s largest Southeast Asian store and Pokemon’s first and only permanent retail store that is located outside of Japan. The Pokemon Center will not only have Pokemon merchandise that is sold in Japan, but you can also expect to find original merchandise that is exclusive to Jewel Changi Airport such as trading cards, stationery and toys.
An excellent initiative by Jewel is to have homegrown brands such as Naiise, Tiger Street Lab and Supermama showcasing their wares alongside the world’s well-known international brands.
Perched at the top of Jewel is the 14,000 m2 attraction called the Canopy Park. Here is where you can enjoy three major family-friendly play areas, Sky Nets, Discovery Slides and Canopy Mazes.
There are two different Sky Nets. Not for the faint-hearted or those who have a fear of heights, one involves a walk on a solid net that is basically hovering more than 25 m above the ground. The other is a net for bouncing among the lush foliage within the setting of the Canopy Park. This fun activity also has some thrill built-in; there is an 8-metre-high lookout spot at one point of the net—that is, if you dare.
Let’s also talk about the four Discovery Slides. Not just for play, these four slides include a lookout platform and also serves as a sculptural art installation. Slides are not separated but integrated and are suitable for children too, depending on their comfort and ability level.
Those who have no need for thrills will appreciate the two vastly different Canopy Mazes. The hedge maze is lovely for a nice leisurely stroll that finishes with a beautiful view of the maze. The mirror maze, on the other hand, involves the clever placement of mirrors in a garden setting that is meant to confound visitors. Be prepared for an amazing surprise at the end with an audio and visual experience in a chamber that is replete with mirrors.
Finally, rest those weary legs and catch the latest blockbuster at one of the 11 screens at the Shaw Theatre.
Do you fancy a sneak peek at Jewel? From 11 to 16 April, only Singapore residents can register online to see what all the fuss is about ahead of everyone else. There are about 500,000 tickets available and each registrant can sign up for up to 4 people.