Names and identities unveiled for Singapore’s new offerings at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve 

Names and identities unveiled for Singapore’s new offerings at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve 


The Mandai Boardwalk is one of the freely accessible green spaces at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve where visitors can immerse in nature and greenery outside the ticketed parks. The entrance to the boardwalk is next to River Wonders. Photo credit: Mandai Wildlife Group

 

New experiences inspired by nature and wildlife are coming up at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve, which today is the home of Singapore’s wildlife parks – Bird Paradise, Night Safari, River Wonders, and Singapore Zoo. Later this year, the public will be able to enjoy a freely accessible boardwalk, which has been built along the edge of the Upper Seletar Reservoir. This will be followed by the opening of the much-anticipated Mandai Rainforest Resort operated by Banyan Tree in the first half of 2025. Singapore will also soon welcome its fifth wildlife park, Rainforest Wild, where visitors will be transported into the rainforests of Southeast Asia and Africa.

There will be a new range of nature-based edutainment activities housed within the indoor attractions – Exploria and Curiosity Cove, which will be conveniently located outside Singapore Zoo. The Mandai Wildlife Reserve will be rounded off with the addition of Green Canvas – a meeting and conferencing facility; the Mandai Gallery – an exhibition space narrating the history of Singapore’s zoological parks; Singapore’s only ZooSchool offering zoo-based adventure programmes curated specially for young children, as well as two campsites that will operate throughout the year. These exciting additions are scheduled to progressively open in the coming years.

The Mandai Wildlife Reserve is being purposefully transformed into a 126-ha destination teeming with an array of experiences that immerses its visitors in the sights, sounds and scents of nature. In addition to the ticketed experiences which feature curated adventures, there will be freely accessible green spaces with play areas and diverse dining offerings. A 3.3km-long boardwalk skirting the perimeter of River Wonders and Singapore Zoo will offer visitors unparalleled views across the Upper Seletar Reservoir.

“While we continue to focus on expanding our positive impact in the fields of nature conservation, animal wildlife and zoological research, we are excited by the prospect of immersing our guests in a wide array of nature and wildlife experiences at the fully opened Mandai Wildlife Reserve”, said Mike Barclay, Group CEO of Mandai Wildlife Group. “This integrated destination will be a unique gateway to many inspiring and respectful interactions with nature and animals, that Singaporeans and guests from overseas can enjoy.”

He added: “We are excited to unveil new options for stayovers, with the Mandai Rainforest Resort acting as the perfect launch pad for exploring our wildlife parks and the many other offerings at the Mandai Wildlife Reserve. We welcome Banyan Tree, the homegrown company with a globally renowned brand, as the operator of this new resort. We also look forward to presenting Rainforest Wild Asia, where parkgoers can navigate a Southeast Asian rainforest via various walkways that span the tree canopy, the forest floor, and a magical subterranean world of caverns.”

A ‘Conscious Stay’ at Mandai Rainforest Resort

Situated in the eastern part of the Mandai Wildlife Reserve and overlooking the Upper Seletar Reservoir, Mandai Rainforest Resort by Banyan Tree marks a homecoming for hospitality company, Banyan Group, as its inaugural resort for Singapore.

Sitting on a 4.6-hectare site where native tree species have been thoughtfully planted in harmony with the forest scape, the 338-room resort comprises a four-storey building with standard and family rooms, as well as facilities like a ballroom and meeting rooms, a state-of-the-art gym room and a rooftop swimming pool. Outside these are 24 elevated seed pod-shaped treehouses set amongst the trees, some looking out to the reservoir. The concept of the resort is sympathetic to the existing vegetation, treelines and natural topography. It is designed to be unobtrusive, sitting below the upper canopy layer of the surrounding trees.

Biophilia deeply influences the resort’s architecture and is infused in all programmes, signature amenities and service. Drawing inspiration from Banyan Group’s rich legacy of honouring the essence of the location it is in, the unique characteristics of rainforests – from the forest floor to the understorey, canopy and emergent layers – are illustrated within the rooms to inspire guests to appreciate the biodiversity surrounding them.

Within the resort are both an all-day dining as well as a specialty restaurant where sustainably sourced ingredients take centre stage. The resort will also offer a sensory journey through local art and design as well as spa experiences. Guests will be able to explore local creations from community artists in the retail shop. A signature Wellness Centre will offer guests a range of holistic treatments crafted by Banyan Group’s renowned spa experts.

Mandai Rainforest Resort also debuts as the first-ever Super Low Energy (SLE) resort in the country featuring smart control strategies, passive infrared occupancy sensors, and passive displacement ventilation, a solution that cools air using chilled water rather than traditional air conditioning compressor units.

Adventures in the multi-layered rainforest

The sense of exploration and wonder of the natural world reaches new heights in the 12.6-ha Rainforest Wild Asia, the first zoological park in Asia to integrate adventure elements into its design.  A variety of paths will cater to different expeditions, with chance sightings of animals like the Malayan tiger, Malayan sun bear and François’ langur – a species on exhibit in Singapore for the first time.

Adventure levels start with a leisurely stroll across a wheelchair-friendly boardwalk to take in the sights and sounds of nature and wildlife, to exploring forest treks, crossing over streams, boulders and fallen logs on rainforest trails. Parkgoers can also choose to embark on thrill-seeking adventures, climbing, jumping and abseiling around the park in safety harnesses while they enjoy some of the most picturesque views and unique encounters the rainforest has to offer.

The finale to the rainforest adventure is a 220-metre cavern, inhabited by cave racer snakes, scorpions, hissing cockroaches, and a variety of other reptiles and invertebrates. Featuring massive rock formations of stalactites and stalagmites, the cavern experience is inspired by the Mulu Caves in Sarawak – home to some of the largest, magnificent, and diverse limestone caves in the world.

Over at Rainforest Wild Africa, guests will experience an Afro-Tropical and Madagascar-inspired landscape with feature animals such as the Pygmy hippo and elusive Okapi, a species that will also be making its debut in Singapore. The landscape has exotic components featuring iconic trees reflecting their geographical locations, and ravine formations where animal movements are orchestrated. Guests can also enjoy the park through immersive aerial adventures.

Planet-loving experiences for all ages 

Nestled in the eastern side of the Mandai Wildlife Reserve, adjacent to the resort, are two buildings dedicated to immersive indoor experiences and spaces – Exploria, Curiosity Cove, Mandai Gallery, Green Canvas and ZooSchool. Surrounding these structures are verdant green spaces and activity lawns, which offer ample space for alfresco activities, food and beverage choices and retail outlets, creating an engaging environment for play, exploration and education.

Designed to be immersive edutainment using technology, visitors to Exploria will discover real-life phenomena in hyper-natural environments across five worlds through digital expeditions. From a wonder-library of microorganisms to a simulation of extreme frontiers on Earth, they are set to encounter the planet’s most resilient and fascinating species virtually. Within the same building is Green Canvas, a collaborative space that invites people from all walks of life to its 2,800sqm event space, auditorium and meeting rooms. This is where travelling exhibitions, nature-themed lifestyle events and stimulating talks will be hosted, covering a variety of topics, including those aimed at inspiring its audiences to rally around and help champion nature and wildlife conservation.

In the adjacent building are Mandai Gallery, Curiosity Cove, ZooSchool. Embark on a journey through time and delve into the history and heritage of the Mandai Wildlife Reserve with a dynamic visual experience in the Mandai Gallery, a free-access permanent exhibition. At Curiosity Cove, families will be enveloped in an indoor nature setting that is accessible for young children at a scale, pace and level of interaction that inculcates an early love for nature and wildlife through tactile play. From the woodlands where arboreal flora and fauna thrive, to the river of life in the wetlands – a series of multimedia-enriched sensory adventures encourage discovery by cultivating cognitive, social, motor and locomotor skills against an immersive indoor playscape. Through outdoor-based discoveries and experiences set within the unique canvas of the Mandai Wildlife Reserve, ZooSchool will introduce children to nature-based outdoor adventure programmes that nurture their innate curiosity, resilience and sense of adventure. With a tailored curriculum blending outdoor and wildlife education, coupled with park visits, ZooSchool aims to instill in young minds a profound appreciation and care for the natural world.

 

 

 

 





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