Singapore

Centrepoint, Ion Orchard best-dressed malls

The Centrepoint and Ion Orchard shared honours for the best-dressed mall on Orchard Road this Christmas, the Orchard Road Business Association (Orba) said yesterday.

Ion was the judges' pick, while Centrepoint was the choice of voters.

The malls were judged for the day and night effects of their Christmas decorations as well as the use of interactive features to create an engaging experience for shoppers.

While thanking participants of the contest for their efforts in dressing up their facades, Orba chairman Mark Shaw said he hopes that "visitors will not only enjoy the visual spectacle and fun activities along Orchard Road but will also help spread the joy this Christmas season".

The Centrepoint's larger-than-life kitchen, which is manned by gingerbread men, was a hit with shoppers.

There was a gumball glasshouse for visitors to climb into, a candy cane throne and a giant chocolate fountain to sweeten the display for voters.

The mall received 5,326 out of 29,845 votes cast online.

"Winning the shoppers' hearts as voters' choice is a great way to return to the best-dressed building contest after a year's break," said Ms Stephanie Ho, general manager of retail properties for Frasers Centrepoint Malls.

"The Christmas clockwork kitchen concept is about... (bringing) out the child in all of us.

The judges' choice, Ion Orchard, has a dazzling 20m-tall Tiffany tree adorned with more than 2,000 crystals, orbs and pearls, and Tiffany blue boxes.

The theme for the mall is "a season of resplendence".

Visitors can enter the Tiffany Box at the base of the Christmas tree and take photos with the interactive photo booth.

This is the second year Ion Orchard has won the judges' choice award.

"We also have an outdoor Christmas maze decorated with glittering ornaments, towering hedges and larger-than-life reindeer, toy soldiers and penguins," said Mr Chris Chong, chief executive of Orchard Turn Developments.

"All these make for terrific photo opportunities along with the Orchard Road Christmas light-up."

Ten malls participated in the annual contest this year. The eight other malls received merit awards. They are Forum The Shopping Mall, Orchard Central, orchardgateway, Paragon, Plaza Singapura, Tanglin Mall, Tangs at Tang Plaza and Wheelock Place.

People who voted for their best-dressed building stand to win $150 worth of shopping vouchers in a lucky draw.

Other Christmas promotions and activities are in store.

MasterCard has teamed up with ComfortDelGro Taxis to knock $5 off all taxi fares to and from participating Orchard Road malls every weekend.

Christmas carols will be piped on 16 to 20 outdoor speakers lining the road from Ion Orchard to Ngee Ann City.

Song requests from a pre-selected list of Christmas favourites will be accepted on weekends. - THE STRAITS TIMES

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