Plenty of us grew up with memories of spending Christmas visiting Orchard Road. Regardless of the crazy crowds, it certainly was an experience to savour as we went from mall to mall, appreciating the lights and decor set up at each one. More important than the money spent on gifts is the time spent with family, and this year, Orchard Road Business Association (ORBA) is set to play Santa and give you the “The Greatest Gift” of love, peace and joy for Christmas on A Great Street 2019.
Running from 16th November 2019 – 1st January 2020, the Association will once again collaborate with the Community Chest to organise the LightUp Ceremony at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza as part of the opening on 16th November. The Light-Up Ceremony will be officiated by Mdm Halimah Yacob, President of the Republic of Singapore, and visitors can expect to find the thoroughfare from Tanglin Mall to Plaza Singapura decked out in colourful festive lights featuring adorable little Santas – ORBA’s new Christmas icons – hanging from the trees and on the glittering arches welcoming visitors to Orchard Road.
This year’s Christmas street décor takes on a new showcase format designed to provide a more immersive experience for pedestrians as they walk along the precinct this festive season. Bigger and grander lamp post decorations will line the three sub-precincts, namely, Tanglin, Orchard and Somerset – each with a unique theme featuring little Santas on baubles, gift boxes or snowflakes. Also, new this year is a welcome arch at the junction of Tanglin and Grange Road and more than thirty giant festive greeting cards on three-metre tall glass shards along the key stretch of Orchard Road. For the first time, street decorations are also extended towards Grange Road and Orchard Link.
Now in its 36th year, the signature Christmas on A Great Street also includes unique interactive set pieces on the pavements of Orchard Road providing many insta-worthy backdrops. Visitors can pose with a giant Santa riding on his reindeer, help pull Santa’s reindeer, or walk through a four-metre tall tunnel made up of large Christmas icons.
ORBA Chairman Mr Mark Shaw said: “Our signature annual event brings families and friends together, celebrating this season of giving. This year, we are pleased to bring you a bigger and better Christmas on A Great Street. The theme of this year’s Light Up, from the carefully curated programme to the decorative set pieces, underscores the true spirit of Christmas. We hope to create joyful memories for all residents and visitors as they enjoy their time on Orchard Road this festive season.”
“An annual crowd favourite, Christmas on A Great Street returns this year with the theme The Greatest Gift. The theme encourages visitors to embrace the spirit of gifting and bring joy to others during the festive season,” said Ms Ranita Sundra, Director, Retail and Dining, Singapore Tourism Board. “Through the event, we hope to bring festive cheer to Orchard Road and add greater variety to the precinct’s offerings with the Great Christmas Village. Such events enliven Orchard Road, and we hope to see more private stakeholders come forward with innovative lifestyle proposals to enhance the precinct vibrancy.”
Hitachi Asia Ltd is once again the Main Sponsor for Christmas on A Great Street for the 29th consecutive year. Mr Kojin Nakakita, Chairman of Hitachi Asia Ltd., said: “Christmas is truly the season of giving and we are proud to continue to be the Main Sponsor of Christmas on A Great Street for the 29th year running. This has become an annual tradition for us, and we are thrilled to play a part in giving back to society through this sponsorship. Hitachi is committed to creating a sustainable world and continue powering good by improving the quality of life of the people through both our social innovation business activities and social contributions. In addition, we will continue Hitachi Plays Santa, our corporate social responsibility event, for the third year. We’re heartened that this event is gradually becoming a tradition and part of the Hitachi spirit. We hope that we can help more of those in need through our charity efforts.”
The Great Christmas Village, a highlight of the festivities, also returns for a third year with a refreshed concept. The marquee event will be spread over three different locations this year, having outgrown the outdoor space at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza, where it was located for the past two years. The new venues at *SCAPE, Grange Road Car Park and Shaw House Urban Plaza will have a combined area of 7,796 sq ft, more than double the size of the previous venue at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza. Running from 23rd November to 26th December, the village features over 30 amusement rides and game booths, a huge increase from last year’s four.
The Great Christmas Villages at *SCAPE and Shaw House Urban Plaza will host family-friendly rides such as the popular duplex carousel, pirate ship and London train. At the Great Christmas Village at Grange Road Car Park, teenagers and young adults can enjoy thrilling rides such as the exciting Miami ride, bumper cars and Turbo, a ride that spins horizontally. The Great Christmas Village ride credits will be pre-sold online with an attractive early bird promotion on Christmas on A Great Street’s website from 22nd October 2019. When the festivities start, they will be sold at ticketing counters at the three locations and on Christmas on A Great Street’s website.
New this year to the Great Christmas Village are also two thematic pop-ups. Nom Nom Nom will present street food from 14 vendors in food trucks that will be rotating between the Great Christmas Villages at *SCAPE and Shaw House Urban Plaza. Visitors can also dive into a world of Hasbro toys at Mini TOYBOX, which will feature popular brands such as NERF, My Little Pony and MONOPOLY. They can have a magical My Little Pony makeover or challenge their agility at the NERF obstacle course, among other activities.
There will also be nightly performances at the Great Christmas Village at *SCAPE by singers such as Estelle Fly, Shye and Charlene Su leading up to the Christmas Eve Countdown Concert at the Great Christmas Village. International and local brands such as Bvlgari, Chomel, IRVINS Salted Egg, SingTel and Vivo will have pop-up stores to provide experiential shopping experiences for visitors through exclusive products, interactive displays and activities.
The annual Celebrate Christmas in Singapore (CCIS) 2019 event is held from 16 – 23 December 2019 along the pedestrian walkway from ION Orchard to Wisma Atria. Visitors to Orchard Road will be treated to a multimedia celebration of performances, interactive activities and Christmas carolling. This year, Mastercard will bring cheer to shoppers with exclusive Christmas Rewards. Mastercard cardholders who charge a minimum of $300 or $500 to their Mastercard credit or debit card at any of the 11 participating malls will be able to redeem $30 or $50 shopping vouchers.
Deborah Heng, Country Manager, Singapore, Mastercard, said: “Christmas is the perfect time for family and friends to connect and create meaningful memories they can cherish together. It is also a time to celebrate a year of hard work and successes. As the Official Card of Christmas on A Great Street for the seventh year, Mastercard is pleased to reward cardholders with priceless experiences and exciting offerings, for both the young and the young-at-heart to enjoy a fun-filled holiday season and Start Something Priceless with Mastercard.”
Christmas On A Great Street 2019 runs from 16th November 2019 – 1st January 2020 at Orchard Road. Admission is free. For more information, visit their website here