Monday, August 29, 2011

The City of Dreams: Macau

When I last visited Macau, the City of Dreams were on its final stages of completion. Now, it is fully operational, brightly lit and beaming with promise. It may not look like a city, but the newest kid on the Cotai strip is definitely making some noise.



The City of Dreams doesn't have the fun and awesome feel of the Venetian. It is geared towards a more sophisticated crowd, with more high end shops and a tasteful design.


The entrance to its casino a huge projection wall with water flowing. There were LED lights illuminating the water to give it an enchanting look.


And then, the mermaids come out. They seem to come alive as they follow you while some even stare at you. It was a hit among the kids, and a brilliant use of technology.


We were in the City of Dreams for the single reason of us being in Macau. The main attraction of the hotel complex was a show called House of Dancing Water. More on that in my next post though. After claiming out tickets in the box office, we searched for a restaurant to pass by the time before the show.


We ended up n the restaurant in front of the box office - Beijing Kitchen. I didn't know if it was a well known restaurant, and if it carried any stars. Nevertheless, the place looked very classy, and since we were dining early, we were given the last non-reserved slot.


The food was our first Chinese meal in Macau, so we hoped it would be memorable. Fortunately, we made the right choice. The fried dumpling below (forgot the name of this specialty dish) was absolutely delicious. Its crisp brown shell and tender pork and chive filling was something I have never experienced. Me and my daughter were scrambling to get servings of the dish. She ended up with more in the end.


The City of Dreams had 3 hotels, the Crowne which was the most high-end, the Grand Hyatt, supposedly the mid range, and Hard Rock Hotel, the cheapest among the three. All were full booked, so we opted to stay in the Venetian just across.


The City of Dreams is also the venue of Macau's biggest and most extravagant night club, Cubic. I wasn't able to get in, since I was with my 10-year old daughter, but I will be seeing this place once I get back.


 Aside from the House of Dancing Water, there was another show making buzz in the City of Dreams. It was called a multimedia spectacle that is a first for Macau - the Dragon's Treasure. At first, I thought the show would be like some sort of theme park production, but when we stepped into the "egg", we were transported to a totally different world.


I was in the events industry, so I knew what technology was to be used. Projectors were spread all across the planetarium type room, beaming images that made you feel you were underwater. Then, suddenly, the top was hoisted downwards, and water fell out in a spiral manner.



It was amazing. The lights enhanced the effect, and then suddenly, the walls of the room came alive.



The show lasted for 15 minutes more or less. The "egg" took us to several worlds, in search of the Dragon's Treasure.


You do feel you're inside a spaceship (the egg) and traveling to alien landscapes with dragon creatures at your tow. Some of the scene were jaw dropping, like these stalactite structures.


The show was indeed a multimedia spectacle that shouts of Macau's move to make waves in the entertainment industry. This was a new immersive experience, and I would suggest any visitor to step inside the "egg".


The City of Dreams knows how to compete with the Venetian and other resorts, and using technology to entertain was ambitious. But they succeeded in doing so. They even put up perhaps the most expensive show on Earth, the House of Dancing Water - which is coming up next.

More information of the City of Dreams in their website.
Again, book for rooms through their booking portal.

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