9 unmissable experiences throughout festive season in Singapore


Produced by SilverKris for Sofitel Singapore City Centre

December is here and with it the joyous festive vibe that grips Singapore at year-end. This year feels extra special as we emerge from more muted celebrations over the past two years, and several marquee events are coming back after a two-year hiatus.

Whether it’s a Christmas dinner at home you’re after, a visit to Santa’s workshop with the kids or a 20,000-spectator extravaganza over New Year’s Eve, the city has something for every mood.

Read on to discover 9 exciting ways to celebrate the festive season in Singapore.

1. Shopping and carolling on Orchard Road

Nothing says Christmas in Singapore quite like the annual Christmas on a Great Street Light-Up along Orchard Road. Starting at Tanglin Mall and extending over three kilometers to Plaza Singapura, this year’s light-up runs till 3 January 2023 and is the definitive photo-op for Insta-happy elves. Over 100 of Orchard Road’s famous trees, and over 170 lamp posts will be festooned with LED lights. The beloved Great Christmas Village is also back for the first time since the pandemic, with food, music and carnival rides at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza. Finally, don’t miss the twice-daily carolling outside malls such as Mandarin Gallery and Paragon.


2. A year-end toast with Yuletide cocktails

Throughout December, Singapore’s bars and restaurants will be abuzz with friends and colleagues getting together for one last hurrah before the year-end holidays. And while Christmas is associated with classics such as mulled wine and eggnog, 1864, the lobby bar at Sofitel Singapore City Centre, is shaking and stirring contemporary festive cocktails until 31 December: Papa Noël’s Mule is a spirit-forward concoction with Remy Martin VSOP, Campari and Angostura bitters contrasted with fizzy ginger beer, while Mrs Claus’s Cosmo takes the expected Ketel One vodka and cranberry juice and jazzes it up with Limoncello and lime juice.

3. A visit with Santa at Christmas Wonderland

Gardens by the Bay pulls out all the stops for jaw-dropping family fun. The biggest celebration of its kind in Singapore, the annual Christmas Wonderland this year is spread out across six zones. Between now and 1 January 2023, say hello to Santa or ride a Venetian Double-Storey Carousel at St Nick’s Square, shop for crafts at Mistletoe Alley and even enjoy igloos, polar bears and “snow” at Merry Lane’s Snowland. Kids get in for free with every paying adult.


4. A European-inspired staycation in Singapore

A Christmas in Europe is a bucket-list experience – and the next best thing might just be a French-inspired staycation right here in Singapore. An urban oasis in the heart of Tanjong Pagar, Sofitel Singapore City Centre is offering an indulgent festive-season staycation package starting at S$614++, inclusive of a one-night stay, breakfast for two, Yuletide cocktails at the 1864 bar and your choice of a three-course festive set dinner at Racines or a festive afternoon tea at 1864 for two. The offer is available through 1 January 2023.


5. A Christmas dinner at home – no labour involved

Lavish Christmas feasts are par for the course, but hours in the kitchen are not – not when Singapore’s finest hotels and restaurants open their kitchens for pre-ordered delicacies to enjoy at home. At Sofitel Singapore City Centre, centrepieces include roasted turkey with truffle butter, glazed ham with honey spice and citrus and char-grilled Black Angus tomahawk, while sweet treats range from homemade stollen and chocolate panettone to a hazelnut dark chocolate log cake. To place an order, visit the site, call +65 6428-5000 or email ha152@sofitel.com.


6.  Snowmen and circus acts at Bayfront

Photo: Trip.com

Kids of all ages, take note. The Great Bay Fiesta is running throughout December until 1 January 2023, at the Bayfront Event Space, with several exciting acts and activities spread out across four themed zones and 20,000sqm. Among the highlights are death-defying stunts by The Great Cirque des Cascades in a 1,000-seater big-top tent, bumper cars and Ice Magic: The Great Fantasy on Ice, a massive tent featuring the chance to build snowmen, try ice curling and enjoy other wintery treats.


7.  Festive buffets and set meals in Tanjong Pagar

While some choose to cook up a storm at home, restaurants across the city are rolling out special buffets and set menus at every price point. Gather up your friends and family and head to Racines. The French-inspired eatery at Sofitel Singapore City Centre will be cooking up lunch and dinner sets through 1 January 2023. For something less formal, there will also be a selection of festive buffet dishes such as chargrilled Angus beef with mustard sauce and miso glazed halibut with beurre blanc. Free-flow Taittinger Champagne is also available with a top-up. Festive buffets will be available for Christmas Eve dinner, Christmas Day brunch and Boxing Day brunch.


8. New Year’s Eve fireworks over Marina Bay

Hot on the heels of Christmas festivities is New Year’s Eve. After all-too-quiet countdowns the past couple of years, Singapore is gearing up for a full-on party, and the Star Island Singapore Countdown is a definite highlight. Commissioned by the Urban Redevelopment Authority, this will be the biggest Marina Bay countdown of its kind, bringing together 20,000 spectators at The Float @ Marina Bay for a 70-minute fireworks and music extravaganza. Expect stunning Singapore-themed fireworks, drone choreography, stage performances and visits from all your favourite Sanrio characters throughout the night.


9. Reunion feasts for the Year of the Rabbit

Hold off on your weight-loss resolutions for a few more weeks, as January comes knocking with a slew of Chinese New Year reunion feasts. Racines at Sofitel Singapore City Centre is going all-out with the Auspicious Semi-Buffet Dinner on weekdays, a Monday-to-Sunday Prosperity set lunch and the Abundance set dinner on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays between 9 January 2023 and 5 February 2023. For something truly special though, book a table for the family between 21-23 January 2023 for the Harvest Reunion lunch or dinner set, with delicacies such as braised fish maw and abalone in superior sauce and seafood treasures soup with crab meat. Take-home Chinese New Year classics, such as the premium seafood-loaded Magnifique Pen Cai and the Healthy Yu Sheng will also be available for pre-order.

That’s not all! For even more festive offerings at Sofitel Singapore City Centre, including Christmas set dinners and a festive high-tea, visit the official website.


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