The oceanarium on Sentosa Island allows groups to swim with dolphins under the supervision of a trainer. Delegates can learn to interact with the animals, or dive with sharks and rays, and diving experience is not necessary. Only four delegates can participate at once, so while waiting for their turn other group members can experience 'fish reflexology', where a shoal of Turkish spa fish gently exfoliate their feet by nibbling on them. The therapy session is followed by a treatment from a foot reflexologist, and can include a head-and-shoulder massage. Underwater World also offers a range of event spaces and dining options, such as Dinner with the Sharks, where groups dine on a moving walkway.
School of Hard Knocks
School of Hard Knocks at the Royal Selangor Pewter Centre in Clarke Quay is a fun, hands-on, 45-minute craft workshop that encourages teams to work together. An instructor will lead participants through forming, scraping, polishing and packing, to craft their own pewter dish. The finished dish can be engraved with initials or a personal message, and delegates will be presented with a certificate and apprentice pewter-smith apron.
The workshop is open to groups of up to 30 and costs £15 per person. Larger groups can be divided and, while one team takes part in the workshop, Royal Selangor can arrange for the other delegates to experience a 30- to 45-minute ride on the Singapore River on a bumboat - a traditional river taxi - at an extra cost of £5 per person.
Devised by Duncan McKee, a professional jazz musician and composer from the UK, Stix Motivation Through Music offers team-building activities based on the metaphor of an orchestra. Groups work in teams to decipher the Stix musical notation system - which can be used by delegates without musical experience - and perform a piece of music using simple percussion instruments. Sessions last for 30 minutes to three hours, and can be laid on for up to 2,000 delegates at once. The techniques can be used as ice-breakers, brainstorming tools, evening entertainment and leadership games.
"We engaged Duncan and his Stix programme as part of our strategic procurement event to help build conversations within our group," says Rosina Wickart, senior director, procurement at Johnson & Johnson. "We were looking for a unique way to improve the team's performance and build on communication. The result was a fully engaging and insightful meeting that shifted our perceptions of what was achievable. Duncan challenged our ideas of leadership and teamwork, and we could not have predicted such positive results."
Being a tropical country, Singapore's lowest recorded temperature is a balmy 19.4 degC, but at Snow City, the country's first indoor snow centre, delegates can experience real snow, a sub-zero climate and a three-storey-high snow slope. The venue, on Jurong Town Hall Road in the east of the city, is open seven days a week and has a 160m2 function room. Groups can take snow-tube rides on an inflatable tube, have snowball fights or build snowmen. For adventurous members, skiing and snowboarding lessons are available with experienced instructors. Snow City's Sub Zero team-building packages include constructing a sled using rubber tubes and rope to carry team members through a zigzag course in one go, and getting members of a team across a frozen lake without stepping on the ice.
Gareth Gallagher, account director at Universal World Events, suggests a trip to Little India. "As its name suggests, this is Singapore's foremost Indian enclave and one of its most genuine districts. Just like Orchard Road, the colour and cheerfulness derives from its being a shopping arcade," he says. "Its charm lies in the fact that many old trades can still be found by its roadsides, alleys and back lanes. Fortune-tellers and their parrots, flower vendors selling garlands of jasmine, pushcarts selling roasted nuts and street-side newspaper vendors are just some of the interesting sights."
No trip to Little India is complete without an all-night shopping spree at the 24-hour emporium, Mustafa Centre. Gallagher adds: "It is a treasure trove of household knick-knacks, decorative items, foodstuff, Indian spices, apparel, textiles and electronic items at some of the lowest fixed prices in Singapore."
Coriander Leaf is a bistro and cooking school at Clarke Quay. During a fourto five-hour session, up to 100 participants can work in teams to prepare, present and eat a meal together. The dishes can be Asian, Middle Eastern or Mediterranean, but the emphasis is on cooking that can be replicated at home. Groups including British Gas, BT, Nokia and BP have held events at the cooking school, and Yvonne Low, executive director at The Traveller DMC, says it is an ideal way to incorporate team building and personal development in an incentive.
"Singapore has some unique spices that groups from the UK and Europe may not be familiar with, so as well as taking the class itself, the group can have a tour of the spice garden so all their senses come into play," she says.
Singapore Tourism Board
Contact: Maria Pangoli
Tel: 020 7484 2710