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Asia Minute: Singapore’s 'Bubble Hotel' Open for Business Travelers

AP Photo/Wong Maye-E, File

More people are making travel plans for the future, but right now international trips remain difficult. Many countries are not even accepting visitors, while others require lengthy quarantines. But in Southeast Asia, one long-planned alternative has now opened for business.

If you’ve been waiting to go to Singapore for a business trip, you could have an option that will let you skip the quarantine process.

There is a bit of a catch—you’ll have to stay in what’s being billed as the world’s first “bubble hotel”---called “connect at Changi.”

That’s as in Changi Airport---where you’ll get off a plane, onto a shuttle and directly into the hotel---and then not leave the hotel until you depart the country.

And you’ll be regularly tested for COVID-19 during your stay.

The recently-opened hotel includes 150 guest rooms, and 40 special meeting rooms.

Those meeting rooms include airtight glass walls---with separate ventilation systems on each side, and a microphone and speaker system for communication.

The result is the ability to hold face to face meetings through glass with colleagues from Singapore, as well as those flying in from elsewhere, all without direct contact.

There’s even a special compartment with ultraviolet light so that documents can be disinfected and shared.

Hotel officials say guests have already included clients from France, Germany, Indonesia, Japan and the United Arab Emirates---although they have not given any indication about how their occupancy rates are shaping up so far.

Bill Dorman has been the news director at Hawaiʻi Public Radio since 2011.
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