One of the things I’ve always loved about going to Singapore is Changi Airport. In all my trips there since 2000, I’ve mostly used Terminals 1 and 2. When I last flew out of Singapore prior to my trip last July, there were wooden board all around Terminal 1. Renovations of the terminal have already started then, and this year, the transformation was completed.
To say it was impressive is a gross understatement. It was freaking AMAZING.
Samantha Lee from the Changi Airport Group, extended an invitation to me way back in February, and it wasn’t until July that I was able to go there and take the tour. Despite having to be at the airport way too early for my noon flight, I’m not about to turn down an opportunity to explore the new terminal (specially since I’m flying out of Terminal 2).
One of the highlights of the renovation was the Kinetic Rain installation at the departure level. It looks pretty when not in motion, and totally amazing when it starts moving.
Unlike most of the airports in Manila, where only passengers are allowed inside the airport, Changi airport has plenty of open spaces for well wishers, aviation fanatics, or even students looking for a quiet spot to study. One of the fantastic places to hang out, even if you’re not flying is the Viewing Gallery, where you can get very very close to the planes and the tarmac.
There’s also the premier restrooms where you get the same views from the ladies’ powder room. I’m told that the gents have the same view — the urinals are up against the window, so you get to look out the runway as you’re doing your business.
There are now bigger windows around the terminal, letting in more natural light. This is in tune with Changi’s sustainability efforts. Also, in keeping with Singapore’s title as the Garden City, plants, flowers, and trees are a common feature in all terminals, whether inside or out.
Aside from all these, there are also the facilities for the passengers: hundreds of shops for that last minute shopping, free movies (in an actual theatre!), computer terminals with Internet access, massage chairs, nap areas, etc. Changi always puts the passenger in mind, and it’s no wonder they’re ranked one of the best airports in the world.
Huge thanks goes out to Samantha Lee and the Changi Airport Group for the tour and the photos.