by Cheryl Tay
Expanding the hospitality industry on Sentosa Island, the Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) is expected to launch the tender for a site to accommodate a 500-room hotel development later this month.
The subject 4.2 ha historical site once housed a military parade square (pictured) and features six blocks of barracks originally built for the British Royal Artillery. It was later occupied by the Blakang Mati Artillery Barracks and its last tenant was the Tourism Academy.
“Building on the island’s success, we are looking at how best to provide our guests with more activities and accommodation choices,” noted Mike Barclay, Chief Executive Officer at SDC.
Once completed, the new development will be the 15th hotel on the 500 ha island resort and will be part of a line of colonial buildings that have been converted into heritage hotels.
This year, 19 million to 20 million people are targeted to visit Sentosa, with about 9.2 million already recorded in the first half.
Already in its 40th year, the island resort welcomed only 600,000 visitors yearly in the 1970s, but the number rose to two million and four million in the 1980s and the 1990s respectively.
From 2007 to 2008, Sentosa welcomed six million visitors and the number soared to 19 million last year.