Singapore

Keeping Sentosa fresh with new offerings

Sentosa Development Corporation working on 2030 master plan

More youth-oriented activities and the accompanying redevelopment of Singapore's other Southern Islands could make the Sentosa area a more attractive destination, tourism experts said.

Steps are being taken to refresh Sentosa's offerings, as the Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) confirmed it is working on its 2030 master plan for the island.

In response to Straits Times queries, SDC said its last master plan was introduced in 2002, followed by further efforts to refresh the island's offerings and infrastructure.

Branding and communications director Tay Cheng Cheng said: "In our continual efforts to strengthen the island's value proposition for guests, SDC is inviting international and local urban planners, architects and their allied consultants to assist in the planning of the next phase of Sentosa's development."

The 2002 plan included refurbishing attractions and introducing new ones like the Skyline Luge and Sky Tower, and the replacement of the monorail with the Sentosa Express system.

The opening in 2010 of Resorts World Sentosa, home to the country's first casino and Universal Studios Singapore, helped to more than triple the number of visitors to the island, from 6.2 million for financial year (FY) 2008/09 to 19.5 million for FY 2015/16.

Ngee Ann Polytechnic's senior tourism lecturer Michael Chiam said an overhaul of the island is overdue.

He said: "I think youth-oriented activities is something that's lacking. Currently the focus is on families."

The upcoming AJ Hackett Bungy, which is touted as Singapore's first bungee jump, and a nature-based adventure attraction to be developed on a slope connecting Imbiah Lookout to Siloso Beach may add more vibrancy, he said.

I think youth-oriented activities is something that’s lacking. Currently the focus is on families. Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s senior tourism lecturer Michael Chiam on the attractions on Sentosa

Another idea could be to develop the underutilised southern islands like St John's and Lazarus, said Dr Chiam. Singapore Tourism Board had earmarked the islands for development, but plans were put on hold in 2007 for undisclosed reasons.

Mr Kevin Wee, senior lecturer at Nanyang Polytechnic's hospitality and tourism management programme, said development plans for Sentosa and neighbouring islands depends on the market they want to attract.

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