Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre
Singapore - the gateway to the world's most dynamic region, is home to over 5,000 foreign companies, 1,800 of which have chosen it as their regional headquarters. Its sophisticated sea and airport facilities, advanced communication systems, total business support capabilities, strong financial sector, combined with vibrant leisure and lifestyle activities have all contributed in making this nation the world's sixth most popular convention city.
Located just 20 minutes away from the internationally reputed Changi International Airport in downtown Singapore is the Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre (or Singapore Suntec Centre in short), the latest purpose-built convention and exhibition facility in Singapore. With its official opening in August 1995, this S$650 million project is now one of the newest world-class venues in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Centre is part of the S$2 billion Suntec City complex. Suntec City is a fascinating synergy of state-of-the-art technology and metaphysical symbolism. Inspired in particular by the mardala, an ancient philosophical representation of the universe as well as Chinese geomancy or fengshui, its buildings and features are arranged to create harmony and attract good fortune.
In its entirety, Suntec City resembles a 'left hand'. The Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre represents the 'wrist'; the 18-storey State City Tower the 'thumb' and the four 45-storey office towers depict the 'fingers'. The 'palm' is cradling a ring, the Fountain, and its water flows inwards representing the retention of wealth, bring prosperity to occupants and visitors alike.
The unveiling of the Singapore International Convention Exhibition Centre, a new-found national icon, is of paramount importance to Singapore as the nation poises to make its mark as the latest entrant into the international arena of the MICE industry. The development of this Centre and its future events will also underscore the importance of this industry to the region as Asia prepares itself to become the next economic super-power of the 21st century.
Modern facilitiesThe Centre is designed to provide an ideal settings for meetings, conventions, exhibition and other special events. It offers 28,000 (net) sqm of convention and exhibition space. It has the largest column-free Convention Hall 12,000 sqm) in Singapore capable of seating up to 12,000 delegates theatre-style. There is also a 12,000 sqm Exhibition Hall that can be sub-divided into three smaller halls. In addition, the Centre has 26 meeting rooms - each able to cater to groups numbering from 20 to 400 participants, a 600-seat auditorium, a multi-purpose ballroom which can accommodate 2,000 people theatre-style and spacious pre-function areas. All these are equipped with state-of-the-art audio, visual, theatrical and lighting equipment.
The main Convention Hall offers some 7,560 custom-engineered telescopic seats. Costing S$8.2 million, and incorporating the latest technology in safety and efficiency, these portable elevated seats offer flexibility in seating configurations and optimum visibility for the audience.
The Centre is equipped with ample food and beverage facilities. In addition to three restaurants, two lounges and six concession stands, a central kitchen capable of preparing several thousands meals at one time provides catering services to all function rooms. For convention or show organisers, a spiral ramp allows 40-foot containers direct two-way access to the Convention and Exhibition halls (located on the six and fourth storeys for easy set-up and tear-down. On each of the fourth and sixth levels there are ten loading bays, material handling areas and cargo lifts.
Sophisticated broadcasting and interpretation systemsThe Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre has provisions for teleconferencing and videoconference via satellite transmission, optic fibre link or via the world's most advanced ISDN (Integrated System Digital Network) transmission. It is in fact the first in the Asia Pacific region to be equipped with this system. There is also provision for an infra-red simultaneous interpretation system including facilities for the hearing-impaired. The Convention Hall Ballroom and the Auditorium have been designed acoustically for speech clarity and for holding live performances.
Distinctive designThe Centre is clad in light grey-green aluminium panels and crowned by a multi-pyramid roof of metal and glazed panels. With overall dimensions of 172.8m by 144m, the space-frame roof of the Centre is a distinctive architectural feature. The roof structure is made up of a primary space frame and series of secondary pyramid structures suspended below the exoskeleton. The 2,500-tonne space frame roof allows for a column-free area beneath with one of the world's largest clear spans of space. This roof also serves a functional water conservation role. The rain water collected from the roof is used to irrigate Suntec City's landscaped grounds.
Prime locationBeside world-class facilities, the Centre also enjoys a prime location. Located at the northwest end of Suntec City Development, the Centre is nearest to the city and main station of the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) system at Raffles City. It is within walking distance from more than 5,000 hotel rooms. Two new hotels across Termasek Boulevard will provide another 1,000 rooms. It also has easy access to major roads and direct expressway link to Changi International Airport which is 20 minutes away.
Support servicesSince the Centre is part of an integrated, mixed-use development, it is supported by a wide range of commercial and business services. Convention and exhibition organisers and visitors have easy access to Suntec City shopping mall and the many dining and entertainment outlets within Suntec City and the nearby Marina Centre and Orchard Road. Banking services, postal services and a business centre are all just part of the wide range of auxiliary services available within Suntec City.
Forthcoming mega events in the Centre include the World Trade Organisation's Inaugural Ministerial Conference 1996 and the 1998 PATA Travel Mart which has made the Centre its anchor venue for the next decade. Another major event will be the Rotary International Congress which is expected to attract 30,000 delegates in 1999. The Centre is also host to leading exhibitions such as the Asian International Gift Fair, Comex/Asia at Singapore Informatics, CommunicAsia, Globaltronics, to name a few.
The vital link between the world and Asia, the Singapore International Convention & Exhibition Centre is the pioneer and trendsetter for the Asia-Pacific MICE industry at the dawn of the Pacific Century.