Resistance is futile

The Marina Bay/CBD area is notoriously perilous to navigate—even more so every Dec 31, when tourists and locals alike flock in droves to catch a glimpse of the New Year’s Eve fireworks; which is why you’ve probably already made up your mind to stay far away (and hit up a party elsewhere).

But alas, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is coming in hard and heavy with this year’s celebrations, to draw you back into the belly of the beast. From hourly projection mappings on The Fullerton Hotel to a mini food festival on the floating platform, a bevy of day-to-night events starting from Dec 26-31 will likely tempt you to the Marina Bay area after all. Here are four worth going for.

1. An amped up light projection show on The Fullerton Hotel Singapore (Dec 26-31)

The annual light projection mapping on the heritage hotel steps it up a notch this year with a storyline following the Fullerton Postmaster Bears, the hotel’s mascot. Lasting five minutes at a time, the shows are done by local projection mapping specialist firm Hexogon Solution—the same firm behind the projection shows for the National Day Parade. The shows will start from 8pm and take place every half hour; so fret not if you aren’t in a prime viewing spot the first time. But come early on Dec 31 to catch a special finale edition (hint: it'll help if you can count backwards from 10).

In addition, separate projection mapping displays on the facades of The Merlion and Artscience Museum will synchronize with the Fullerton animations for the very first time, from Dec 29-31.

2. Exclusive picnicking on the floating platform (Dec 31)

Kanchiong spiders will like this—only on Dec 31, The Float @ Marina Bay will transform into a picnic area complete with front-row seats to the finale fireworks. From 5pm-1am, an outdoor marketplace will provide a variety of food and drinks so you don’t have to lug anything to your countdown meal. But get your tickets early; for obvious reasons, entry will be denied once the platform reaches maximum capacity. Tickets are $5.50 online or $8 at the entrance.

3. Free sunset movie screenings (Dec 31)

We’re always suckers for free movies under the stars, and the Countdown Cinema activities across the water are no exception. Over at the Civic District, blockbuster movies will be screened back-to-back on eight-meter inflatable screens at two separate locations. From 7:30pm, catch The Lego Batman Movie, followed by Spider Man: Homecoming (9:45pm) at Esplanade Park; though we suspect the screening at Empress Lawn will fare better, with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them at 7:30pm and Wonder Woman at 9:45pm. The fireworks should make up for the lack of post-credit scenes.

4. Bigger and more fireworks—every hour starting from 8pm

Fight it if you must, but the fireworks will always be the biggest attraction at the countdown. Apparently bent on outdoing themselves every year, URA has announced hourly fireworks for the 2017 countdown. Starting from 8:05pm, each display will last a minute and punctuate the end of each projection mapping show on The Fullerton. And for the first time, the final six-minute extravaganza at midnight will be set up across a larger area of the bay, which will hopefully mean better views for everyone. Leggo 2018!