Using a deck of cards as a template for a casino-hotel might seem surprising, but Moshe Safdie’s design for Marina Bay Sands, the world’s most expensive building, is undeniably a show-stopper. Containing a retail space, convention center, hotel rooms, and one of the world’s most successful casinos, MBS (as it’s known locally) has only been open five years but it has already become one of the city’s true landmarks. Its three tapered towers are topped by a cantilevered Sky Park that, from below, resembles a ship and is home to bars, restaurants, and a 150-meter infinity pool with jaw-dropping views of the city skyline. Safdie was also the architect of the neighboring ArtScience Museum, its exterior mimicking an open lotus flower. Just across Sheares Avenue from MBS, Gardens by the Bay, built entirely on reclaimed land, has two climate-controlled glass conservatories that are the world’s largest column-less greenhouses and will compete for your attention with the tropical plants that bloom inside.
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