Marina Bay: Your Guide to Work-Life Balance

Date of publishing: 06/04/2016 00:00

Planning to forge a career in Singapore? What the country may lack in size, it makes up for with countless opportunities for you to seek your dream job and to be able to find a balance between your career and your personal life in the city-state. Singapore is one of the most progressive economies not only in Asia, but around the world. The ease of doing business here has provided startups with greater chances to launch their companies and find success in the region. The labor force in Singapore has been touted as one of the best anywhere in the world, with their specialized skills and strong work ethic.


Marina Bay at Night

Image credit: Chensiyuan via Wikimedia Commons



Marina Bay is a famous area in Singapore to both locals and tourists because of the vast array of places and activities found here. It is a 360-hectare extension to the adjacent central business district, Downtown Core, which has made Marina Bay home to several business, as well as thousands of professionals coming into work every day. It consists of five major areas – Esplanade, Marina Bay Sands, Marina Centre, Marina East, and Marina South – which aims to encourage a mix of uses, including commercial, residential, hotel, and entertainment.


An extension of Singapore’s CBD

A prime example of Singapore’s successful long term planning, Marina Bay was the answer to the country’s need to grow the city’s land area. It is now home to several famous landmarks and tourist destinations, as well as a seamless extension of Singapore’s central business district to further support the city-state’s continuing growth as a globalized business and financial hub.


Marina Bay Financial Centre

Image credit: Deoma12 via Wikimedia Commons


International banking and financial institutions such as Standard Chartered Bank, Baker & McKenzie, Societe Generale, and Wellington Management Company can be found in Marina Bay Financial Centre, as well as American Express, Bank Pictet, Barclays, The Macquarie Group, and Servcorp. Other businesses found in Marina Bay comprise of multinational companies from various sectors such as legal firms, real estate development, commodities and specialist food providers, energy trading and technology companies. They include Fitness First, Evercore, Lynx Energy Trading, M&A Development Pte Ltd, McGraw-Hill, Mead Johnson, and Regus.


Marina Bay Sands, an integrated resort developed by Las Vegas Sands, employs over 10,000 people to operate its establishments, including a casino, hotel, mall and boutiques, theaters, restaurants, and a skating rink.


A Taste of International Flavors

With an incredible view and mesmerizing landmarks all over the area, it’s no wonder there are so many great dining options at Marina Bay. From local Singaporean street food to French fine dining and classic Chinese fare, to lavish international buffets, Marina Bay is rich with a variety of cuisines to satiate the taste buds of its diverse population.


Singapore Food Trail

Image credit: Singapore Guide


Right below the giant Singapore Flyer is the Singapore Food Trail, a retro-style hawker center with over 600 seats and numerous vendors firing up tasty dishes from all corners of the world. This 1960’s-esque hawker market near a round-the-clock short term office provides a glimpse of a much simpler time in Singapore. Some notable vendors you should try here are Boon Tat Street Barbeque Seafood, Katong Keah Kee Fried Oysters and Alhambra Satay Club, all of which serve sizable dishes for S$5 to S$15. A trip to the city-state wouldn’t be complete without trying the iconic Singaporean chili crab, and Palm Beach Seafood Restaurant is supposedly where this famous dish was invented. Enjoy fresh seafood while overlooking the beautiful views of the Singapore River.


Dining Area of Melt at the Mandarin Oriental

Image credit: Chope App


If you’re looking to splurge after closing a big client, just a few minutes away from a modern and accessible coworking space is the critically-acclaimed Melt at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. They boast one of the best all-day international buffets in Singapore, with barbequed meat, Japanese sashimi, Thai curries, Chinese delicacies, seafood, and steak. Another sumptuous food destination in Marina Bay is Jaan at Swissotel The Stamford. One of the top restaurants not only in Singapore, but across the Asian region, this 40-seat establishment with panoramic views of the Marina Bay and CBD skyline serves five to seven-course meals which include fresh oysters, langoustine, caviar, foie gras and pigeon, to name a few.


A Unique Nightlife Experience

Nightlife at the Marina Bay offers a glimpse of the vibrant drinking and social scene in the city-state. From cheap after-work juice joints to exclusive nightclubs, there’s definitely a bar or two that suits your needs and budget at the Marina Bay.


1-Altitude at the top of One Raffles Place Building

Image credit: Brainberries


One of the most popular bars in Singapore is in the same building as this first-class short term office at One Raffles Place. Young professionals, expats, and tourists go to the top of Singapore’s highest skyscraper to party at 1-Altitude during the weekends. Drinks range from S$16 to S$20, but with its impeccable view of the CBD’s skyline and great service, it’s worth every penny. Another well-known hangout among Singaporeans is Lantern Bar at The Fullerton Bay Hotel. The place is famous for its lavish bed-style seating where you can sit back with a cocktail and enjoy the breathtaking views across the Marina Bay.


Izakaya Five Bar

Image credit: TimeOut


For innovative cocktails and handcrafted spirits, just a stone’s throw away from this well-equipped coworking office is The Secret Mermaid. The restaurant bar has a vast menu of creative concoctions that’s unique to this establishment, as well as small batches of handcrafted spirits you can buy by the bottle. For a fun night out that’s not too hard on your wallet, Five Izakaya Bar is a popular watering hole among young workers because of its cheap draft beers and house wines starting at S$5. Every other evening, there’s a live singer and guitarist to entertain the guests.


A Shopping Trip like No Other

Singapore is synonymous to shopping, and there’s no shortage of malls at the Marina Bay area. As part of Singapore’s iconic Marina Bay Sands complex, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands is home to hundreds of boutiques, including luxury brands such as Ralph Lauren, Chanel, Cartier, Prada, Gucci, Hermes, Dior, and Saint Laurent Paris, among others. The architecture alone is a good enough reason to visit the place, with its giant glass windows, open atriums, and a central water feature found in the middle of the mall.


The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands

Image credit: William Cho via Thousand Wonders


Conveniently located right by the bay is Marina Square, a multi-purpose mall that’s perfect for shopping, dining, and entertainment. The wide range of shops may not seem as extensive or exclusive as those found at the nearby Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, but there are several stores here that offer cheaper but good quality items. Here, you’ll also find an awesome food court located at the top of the mall, as well as cinema theaters and a bowling alley.


Esplanade Mall

Image credit: William Cho via Wikimedia Commons


Specializing more on arts, crafts and houseware, Esplanade Mall is a unique venue for shoppers looking for a nice change of pace from the grander malls around Singapore. Check out The Naturalist Grandeur for their great range of oils and perfumes, Maestro Guitars & Ukuleles for musical supplies, and Csar Luxe for posh French home furniture and appliances.


A Worthy Visit to Famous Landmarks

SkyPark Observation Deck

Image credit: Shutterstock


There is certainly no shortage of great attractions at the Marina Bay. Home to Singapore’s iconic Merlion and Marina Bay Sands complex, the area is packed with places to see and discover. Perched at the top of Marina Bay Sands complex is SkyPark, a great way to see Singapore’s skyline in all its glory. After checking out the view, try your luck at the Marina Bay Sands Casino. If you don’t feel like throwing your money away, you can just admire its beautiful interiors, such as the huge seven-ton chandelier made up of more than 130,000 Swarovski crystals.


Gardens by the Bay

Image credit: HF Magazine


Nature lovers can go over to Gardens by the Bay, a modern park featuring tall man-made tree structures. At night, the trees are illuminated with a kaleidoscope of colors, which you can watch and enjoy for free. Another great way of seeing the whole of Singapore is through the Singapore Flyer, one of the world’s largest observation wheels. Towering 165 meters high, this famous tourist spot near an elegantly furnished serviced office gives guests a breathtaking view of the city-state’s skyline together with some famous sights such as the Singapore River, Raffles Place, and Downtown Core.



Image credit: Travel Road


Of course, no trip to Singapore would be complete without taking a photo with the Merlion. This 70 ton half-mermaid, half-lion is a mythical symbol of Singapore. Although the statue is the focal point of the place, the surrounding area is a great location to relax with friends and have a picnic.


A Fitness Hub for Every Lifestyle

Marina Bay is not only for people in power suits and briefcases. It’s also perfect for joggers pounding the pavement and cyclists rolling by a café. The area is home to several parks and open spaces where you will usually see people doing their morning or evening runs, you may come across kite flyers, or even witness dragon boat races on the river.


Sunrise Yoga at SkyPark Observation Deck

Image credit: Marina Bay Sands


If you’re looking for a healthy activity, you can join Sunrise Yoga at SkyPark Observation Deck every morning. Sign up for personal training sessions at Banyan Tree Fitness Club and get access to modern equipment that aim to bring out your muscles and core strength. You can also try your hand at ice skating at the ice skating rink at Marina Bay Sands.


Parkour by Superfly Monkey Dragons

Image credit: Superfly Monkey Dragons


For dance classes, Marina Bay Sportsplex offers dance toning sessions where you can have fun and move to the beat while shedding off some extra pounds. They also specialize and service major indoor sports like soccer, lacrosse, softball, baseball, and football. You can also try your hand at parkour, which is becoming a big hit in Singapore. Superfly Monkey Dragons offers beginner classes where you can learn how to move, climb, and jump over obstacles.


Marina Bay is the pride of Singapore. For over 40 years, they have developed this area to become a fully-realized business and entertainment district, working seamlessly to enrich the lives of the people working and living here. You won’t run out of places to go or things to do. Here, you can discover the place and build a life that’s rich with better career opportunities and a brighter, more balanced future.   


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