SINGAPORE: Is Singapore one of the least exciting cities in the world? The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) begs to differ - and released a tongue-in-cheek video on Thursday (Feb 1) to respond to the charge.
On Tuesday, Singapore came in 31st out of 32 cities in an anonymous survey by Time Out, which took into account criteria such as culture, food, drink, friendliness, liveability, affordability and happiness. About 15,000 people across the 32 cities took part in the survey.
Singapore was named “the worst rated city” for culture, and the worst for drinking apart from Dubai.
The video by STB, posted on VisitSingapore's official Facebook page, opens with shots of Singapore's Marina Bay skyline, stating: "Yeah, Singapore is boring."
"There is nothing exciting to do," the video declares, against a backdrop of footage of Universal Studios Singapore, the Singapore Grand Prix and the AJ Hackett bungy jump.
It goes on to refute the index by extolling Singapore's nightlife and hit back at Time Out's claim that there is no art and culture in the country with shots of the ArtScience Museum, The Arts House, as well as Chinatown.
STB also dropped in a reference to Liao Fan soya sauce chicken, a Michelin-starred meal that costs just S$2, and ended the video with the question: "Can we be any more boring?"
Facebook users left comments on the video, with suggestions and stories of their time in Singapore.
"Get off the tourist trail. Eat & drink in local joints. Ask around. Singaporeans are a friendly bunch! Just remember your manners & respect. Welcome. Selamat datang!" Marjorie Wheatley wrote.
"Seriously, as a Singaporean & living here since birth, I've yet to explore all of it! And for those who find it boring, what I can say is get out of 'tourist' (spots) & (your) comfort zone," said Jennifer M Hoa.
"I'm from UK - went last October for 10 days and we couldn't fit in everything we wanted to do ... it's an amazing city," said Martin Pearce.
Singapore's final score on the index was 98.7 points, bolstered by its good ratings for safety and public transport and its “much buzzier restaurant scene” compared to other cities towards the bottom of the ranking.