Singapore’s Changi Airport, routinely voted the world’s best and a key part of the city-state’s psyche, is reinventing itself for the Covid era and beyond.
Jewel, a dome-shaped commercial complex in the heart of Singapore's gateway airport, has been named one of the winners of the 2020 Nikkei Superior Products and Services Awards.
With an eye further into the future, slices of the nearby Singapore Expo site are being transformed into a giant construction site as 840 guest and meeting rooms are built in short order - part of Connect@Changi, a sprawling facility to house overseas business visitors as part of a bubble initiative.
Nearby, children start making themselves at home in large white tents erected as part of the airport’s Glampcations in the Clouds initiative. People can stay overnight amid the greenery and wake to the sound of splashing water from the world’s largest indoor waterfall. Prices start from S$320 ($240) and slots have been fully booked for weeks.
Developed as a joint venture between airport operator Changi Airport Group and property developer CapitaLand, the SGD 1.7 billion (USD 1.3 billion) Jewel Changi Airport opened in April 2019 on the site of a former parking lot.
While international travelers declined significantly after COVID-19 erupted, the unique facility continued to attract locals. The complex is connected to airport terminals and is separate from passenger-only areas, so anyone can visit.