“Most times, we would take our clients and the delegates to Clarke Quay, which has everything from clubs to bars,” said Alvin Koh, founder of events company Summer Productions.
“These are usually casual affairs, as most of the networking and negotiations have been done and deals sealed over a hectic three or four days of meetings.”
“Clarke Quay is a spectacle in itself to our clients, especially since Zouk is now at Clarke Quay too,” said Koh of Singapore’s largest entertainment precinct. Zouk, a globally recognised club, is currently ranked No. 4 on international clubbing magazine DJ Mag’s Top 100 Clubs list.
“These outings are usually a spontaneous affair, but if it is clubs they prefer, we set them up for VIP entry, after which they’re free to explore whatever the night has to offer,” he added.
Regular venues with a unique touch
Helmy Osman, regional business development director of CWT Meetings & Events, prepares a specially chartered party bus – typically a minibus which seats up to 15 people, with an elaborate audio system within its passenger cabin – and takes his delegates for a night on the town.
One venue that his clients have taken a shine to is Atlas Bar at Parkview Square, an Art Deco-style building that’s reminiscent of the skyscrapers of New York City in the 1930s.
The bar, an opulent black and gold affair beautifully set up in the grand lobby, has inspired many a reference to The Great Gatsby. The Atlas Bar boasts an excellent selection of cocktails and possibly the widest variety of gin you could get at any bar in the world (there are more than 1,000 brands to choose from).
“Most of the guests just soak in the beautiful atmosphere of the space,” said Helmy.
According to Helmy, these outings are not always mere drinking affairs – they could include a fortune-telling session and a mini fengshui (Chinese geomancy) masterclass.
“For an event we had at 1-Altitude (the world’s highest alfresco rooftop bar located at 1 Raffles Place), we provided a guide who explained the fengshui of the CBD area from the vantage point. The view at night is understandably a lot different from in the daytime, and the delegates were quite intrigued by how fengshui works,” explained Helmy.
“We even had a tarot card reader to read the fortunes of our delegates, but with a twist – since it was a business affair, the tarot card reader focused on the deals made during the trade event so delegates had an idea of the prospects of success they would attain!”
The potential of turning any space into a fun place is dictated by the desires of the client, according to Helmy, and limited only by the imagination of the events planner.
“For instance, we turned Capitol Theatre into a Moulin Rouge – a French themed party, with props such as a replica Eiffel Tower to give it a feel of Paris,” said Helmy.
The party, for a client whose outgoing CEO was a Frenchman, even had a grille for love locks – the Parisian tradition where lovers inscribed their names on padlocks and secured them at such places as the Pont des Arts, the bridge across the River Seine.
“We purchased 500 padlocks of different shapes and sizes, and the delegates placed their well-wishes for their boss on them,” added Helmy.
Rooftop bar with a difference
According to event organisers, rooftop bars are very popular with foreign delegates, especially those coming from countries where it would be impossible to operate one year-round because of the climate.
A stunning bird’s-eye view of the city aside, one rooftop bar that offers a unique experience is LeVeL 33, which boasts its very own microbrewery.
Once a guest steps into the venue, they’ll be intrigued by the huge tailor-made copper kettles that sit at the heart of the bar. And every two months, the brewmaster comes up with a special brew for guests to savour.
LeVeL 33 has a private dining room with a beautiful view for exclusive events, a terrace for cocktail events and functions that are more social and casual in nature, and, of course, space for a sit-down dinner that can accommodate a group of 20 to 80 people, explained Michael Bem, LeVeL 33’s managing director.
“Whether you come just for drinks in a group or if you have a very important person to host, we can cater to all occasions,” he added.
With an array of rooftop bars in Singapore and countless options on terra firma, there’s really no excuse to not get the party started when you’re in Singapore!