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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Harry Potter Exhibition Singapore: Keeping the Magic Alive

I am a self-confessed and proud Potterhead. I started reading J.K Rowling's books even before they hit it big. The books opened my imagination, leading me to a world of magic, wizards, and out-of-this-world creatures. Upon hearing about the movie deal (a natural course), I was as excited as the 10-year old kids who loved Harry Potter. It was such a rare phenomenon that swept across the globe.  Everyone wanted to be part of the journey of the boy who lived.

When the last movie installment ended, a part of us felt some sort of loss. We wanted more of Harry Potter and the Wizarding World. Considering the millions of Potter Fans, they opened the Harry Potter Theme Park in Florida for that virtual Hogwarts experience. Thousands have already flocked there to get a taste of Diagon Alley and Butterbeer.

Recently, Asian invasian came into the picture. The people of Warner Bros decided to bring the Harry Potter Exhibition at the new ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. My trip in Singapore was timely because everything "big" seemed to have just opened including Gardens by the Bay. For the opening night, the actors who played Fred and Greg Weasley flew in from the UK as the guests of honor.
I booked my tickets online to secure a slot (and to avoid long lines). Since big crowds aren't ideal for the exhibition, each person is given approximately an hour around. When I got there though, I realized there was no need to book it online. You only need to go early.

Upon entering the exhibition, a familiar and enchanted car is hanging from the ceiling. Can you remember which book/movie this was part of?

If you don't, here's the answer.

The magic awaits.

Before entering the main exhibition, you'll be ask to wear a Gryffindor scarf while holding a wand for a quick photo op. (I did buy the souvenir picture, btw)

I felt like I was in the actual movie set as I entered this "curtain of light".
In true grand HP tradition, the Sorting Hat ceremony was the first order of business. The Sorting hat picked the houses for two volunteers in the crowd. The first kid from Australia wanted to join Hufflepuff since no one ever chose it. People would usually pick the most obvious one -- Gryffindor.

Interestingly, the second kid wasn't too keen on joining HP's house either. He picked Voldermort's house, Slytherin. His reason: "Because I am neither brave nor loyal". There was a contagious guffaw echoing in the room after that kid's admission.

After the sorting hat ceremony, everyone was brought to Hogwart's Express. A lady in a black robe with a lanterns greeted everyone and called out: Welcome, Welcome, Welcome to Hogwarts! 

Suddenly, I was a kid again.

I don't want to spoil the fun for everyone but let me give you a preview of what you can expect. The exhibition is divided into a few sections: Gryffindor Common Room, Hogwarts classrooms, Forbidden Forest, Hagrids's Hut, and The Great Hall.

In the Gryffindor common room, the first thing you will see is the Fat Lady, a moving painting who guards the entrance of the Gryffindor Tower. She asks for passwords before she lets anyone in. As always, she tries to break a glass with her high-pitched voice.

All of Harry's, Ron's, and Hermione's wands, clothes, and bed are displayed here. The Golden Egg from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is seen in the middle. (Source: HP)

In the next section, you'll find the Hogwarts Classrooms props. Included here are the cupboard used by Professor Lupin for his Boggart Class, Gilderoy Lockhart's painting with a production model of a blue pixie, and Snape's wardrobe.

Familiar with the crying plant from Herbology class? You now have a chance to pull a Mandrake from its pot. There is also a Quidditch area with all the spectacular costumes from the matches. Try shooting some quaffles if you feel like playing for the team.

The book for the Defence against the Dark Arts. *Avada Kedavra*

Hagrid's Hut was one of my favorites. Unfortunately, I was not able to take pictures myself. Hagrid's clothes will tell you how big this half-giant character really is. You can even sit in his huge sofa. Source: HP
The Forbidden Forest is probably the most exciting part of the exhibition. This area displays a familiar hooded figure that can suck your very soul--Dementors. They also have the models of the Hungarian Horntail, Kreecher the Elf, and Buckbeak. 
The Sorcerer's stone and one of the flying keys in the first book.
Seeing this brought out more of the wide-eyed kid in me. These were the Horcruxes! Tom Riddle's Diary Ravenclaw's Diadem, Helga Hufflepuff's Cup, and Salazar Slytherin's locket.
These are the Crests of each house before entering the Great Hall. The Great hall has floating candles and the spread of food served for celebrations.
Costumes they wore at the Yule Ball. Viktor Krum's Hermione's, and Ron's (R-L)
The Magical Triwizard Cup for the Tournament.

Does this book look familiar?

Neville Longbottom's clothes and the Gryffindor's sword. 
The end of the exhibition is the gift shop where you'll find everything fans would want to buy: Mugs,  Books, Brooms, Wands, Marauder's map, etc. However, the price for the items at the shop is a bit exorbitant. $75 dollars for a wand??? Can that make me more money?

I ended up buying Bertie Bott's every flavour beans. The Vomit flavour was really gross, to say the least.

The exhibition will run until September 30, 2012. If you are a Potterhead, you won't regret flying all the way to Singapore to see this one. Keep the magic alive.

Ticket Prices (Exclude booking fee and audio guides)
Adults: $21
Seniors.: $20
Children: $13

For online Booking Click Harry Potter in Singapore.


retrochic said...

I want to go!

deobaraanmd said...

We should go on Vj's Birthday!

Janice said...

Im also booked na in August! Suuuper excited! thanks for this.

deobaraanmd said...

that' great Janice! You will really enjoy it! :)

Pinay Travel Junkie said...

Will be able to visit a day before the last day! Weee!

deobaraanmd said...

Haha! That's great Gay! Perfect timing. lol.

Anonymous said...

I need to book ASAP!

Ruth said...

OMG! Now I want to go back to Singapore!!!

deobaraanmd said...

haha! you should ruth before it ends!

EscapeManila said...

New attraction! I'll definitely go back there soon!

Peter Anderson said...

I went to that museum last year to see Harry Potter’s exhibition. That was so fun and it attracted me a lot.