I suspect that we're the only country that considers a day out at the airport a completely normal affair. How far we've come from the supposed travel horrors—the security checks, the long lines, the unforgiving fluorescent casting all in a pallid light—to an inviting experience, where a family can eat, shop and play. Changi Airport ups the ante with the Jewel annexe that's part aviation facility, part hospitality, part retail services and part F&B.
Spanning 10 storeys—five above-ground and five basement storeys, the complex hosts gardens, the world's largest indoor waterfall, and other attractions. Given its expansiveness, is it possible to spend the entire day at Jewel and not be bored?
8am to 9am
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so let's start with that. We start with breakfast at this 12-seater concept by Lee Wee & Brothers. Like its namesake, the place deals with an otah-centric menu (what? Not otah shakes?) Try the Coconut Collection (only available at Jewel) where the chefs have put their own spin to otah.
9am to 12pm
Shaw Theatres, #B2-237
There's a movie theatre at the airport. Plenty of films to catch but why not watch Avengers: Endgame and cry over the <redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted>. And <redacted> smashes <redacted><redacted><redacted> monkeys were set lose and <redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted><redacted>"you don't CB."<redacted><redacted>. Rosebud.
12pm to 1pm
Fred Perry, #01-217
How about some shopping at the Brand with the Laurel Wreath? Expect limited drops that are only found at the Jewel outlet—like the Art Comes First collaboration.
1pm to 2pm
Grab lunch at Singapore's first all-Latin American restaurant. By the fine folks behind OLA Kitchen and TONO, this eatery serves up meals from places like Mexico, Peru, Cuba and Argentina.
Hot tip: suggest to sit at the terrace, which overlooks the seven-storey-high Rain Vortex.
2pm to 3pm
Pokémon Centre, #04-201/202
Singapore is the first country outside of Japan to have an official merch store. Not only does the Pokémon Centre stock 143 of the 151 Pokémon plushies, but there are also Singapore-exclusive items for sale as well. No word on whether there might be a special Pokémon that can only be found at Jewel Changi.
3pm to 4pm
Lady M, #02-253
Get your tea on with Lady M's signature mille crepes. This is an open-concept area that's meant to evoke the Parisian past time of people-watching. Lady M has also introduced its line of bonbons—23 flavours, from gummies to chocolate pastilles to liqueur-filled.
4pm to 5pm
Sultans of Shave, #04-240
Y'know, why not treat yourself to a nice facial massage and a haircut? It's more expensive than your back alley barber but along with a haircut and a shave, there's the pampering that's worth the extra penny.
5pm to 6pm
This duplex unit not only sells Nike swag but is also built with local aesthetics in mind. With input from local contemporary artist, Sam Lo aka SKL0, the Nike Jewel outlet is decked out with local elements like traditional tiles to street signage and lingo. The outlet also has its first full-fledged 'Nike By You' in-store customisation service in Southeast Asia, where customers can customise certain Nike items to their liking.
6pm to 8:30pm
Violet Oon Singapore, #01-205/206
Singapore's favourite culinary daughter has opened up another outlet at Jewel. It's bigger, bolder and with a menu of Singaporean flavours like a DIY Nyonya Poh Piah dish and the perennial prized, Dry Laksa.
We suggest sitting in the back, where you can catch a view of the nightly HSBC Rain Vortex Light Show that runs at an hourly interval.
8:30pm to 9:30pm
FairPrice Finest, #B2-205/206/207/208
Yeah. So this is an unorthodox approach: grocery shopping. And in a male-centric website? What? You think shit magically appears in your fridge? Go shopping. It's therapeutic and you won't get hungry in the middle of the night as you're scrounging for food in your larder.
FairPrice Finest has a curated section for gift selections. Like Udders ice-cream or Australian aged beef. Exclusive products include products from the Granola House that offers wheat, refined sugar and chemical free Diamond Grains granola. If you're travelling, you can enjoy tax-free shopping but this post isn't about that. There's still time to go. Time to get your booze on.
9:30pm to 10:30pm
Rumours Bar & Grill, #05-207
The Bali restaurant and bar has an outlet at Holland Village and now has another at Jewel. Laidback, unpretentious, you'll languish in the atmosphere when nursing their many signature cocktails.
10:30pm to 11:30pm
Tiger Street Lab, #05-205
There are many things to like about this place: that classic Tiger Beer taste, artwork and merch designed by local artists, and hawker food. The joint also serves up seasonal brews every three months. Currently on tap: the Tiger Orchid-infused Black Lager.
11:30pm to 12am
The Alley, #B2-273
Eh. Might as well. It's not every day you go to Jewel and the Alley is 24-hours.
12am to 1am
It's either Shake Shack or this and Shake Shack is already closed. While this blast of nostalgia is open 24/7. Surprisingly, there's still a line but I'm willing to wait for that icy mug of Root Beer Float, Coney Dog and some Curly Fries.
1am to 8am
YOTELAIR Singapore Changi Airport
The first YOTELAIR Hotel in Asia and it's perfect to round up your 24-hours at Jewel. Open to travellers and transit passengers, YOTELAIR cabins include an adjustable SmartBed, rain showers, workstations and so on. Oh, and cabins are available at an hourly rate, which for the purpose of this write-up, isn't going to cost much.
Jewel Changi Airport is located at 78 Airport Blvd.