Hotel rooms in Singapore are now the most expensive in almost a decade as the city-state seeks to position itself as the tourism and business destination in Asia with a slew of high-profile events lined up for the coming months.
At an average of S$259 a night, the average hotel room rate in July rose nearly 70% year-on-year to the highest since September 2012, as visitor arrivals continue to accelerate amid easing Covid-19 restrictions, the latest data from the Singapore Tourism Board showed.
According to data from Trip.com, five-star hotels in Singapore now charge an average of S$344 per night.
It’s an unexpected side effect of the rebound of travel, after Singapore in April became one of the first major regional economies to announce it would end all testing for incoming vaccinated travellers as the government furthered efforts for living with Covid-19.
Visitor arrivals in Singapore rose for the sixth straight month in July to 726,601, up from 543,733 in June, according to the tourism board. This growth is likely to hold as the country plays host to a growing number of international business and sporting events.
Part of Singapore’s pathway back to pre-Covid prosperity and tourist appeal will include the return of the Formula 1 GP to the twisty Marina Bay Sands street circuit from September 30 to October 2. This year’s night race is set to see its biggest turnout since the inaugural event in 2008, with tickets expected to sell out.
Away from the track, the entertainment lineup includes performances by Westlife and Green Day. Other big names in entertainment coming to Singapore later this year include Justin Bieber, Maroon Five and Guns N’ Roses.
Singapore will also host the Milken Institute Asia Summit, Forbes Global CEO Conference and several crypto events in September, followed by Gamescom Asia in October.
The reopening comes as regional travel hub rival Hong Kong, which continues to require three days of hotel quarantine for incoming visitors, is reported to be planning an end to quarantine by November.
Singapore Airlines’ rebuilt schedule now shows four daily flights from Sydney and Melbourne to Singapore, with the airline also having opened four new lounges at its Changi T3 hub, spanning from the KrisFlyer Gold lounge for frequent flyers to new business class and first class lounges.
ironically, while Singapore’s hotel rates have skyrocketed, airfares from Australia to Singapore are steadily falling, although it’s still expected to take some time until they hit 2019 levels.
If you’re headed to Singapore, make time to see this extraordinary city ‘like a local’ and also check out some of the Michelin-rated value-for-money eateries, which range from restaurants to hawker centre stalls.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg