Largest and longest Kampong Glam bazaar to begin on March 2, Latest Singapore News - The New Paper

Largest and longest Kampong Glam bazaar to begin on March 2

The Kampong Glam heritage precinct will hold its largest and longest edition of the Ramadan bazaar in 2024, stretching almost five weeks from March 2 and featuring over 100 stalls selling food and retail items.

Now in its fourth edition, the bazaar will start a week before the Muslim fasting month commences, and operate until April 5, from 2pm to 11pm daily. The stalls will spread across Kandahar Street, Muscat Street and Baghdad Street.

Around 80 stalls are dedicated to selling food and beverage (F&B) and around 20 are retail vendors.

There will also be live cooking shows, and live performances by Malaysian artistes like Tomok and Alif Satar, and homegrown act Taufik Batisah.

The 2023 edition of the bazaar had more than 650,000 people visiting over 90 stalls.

Bazaar organiser One Kampong Gelam is expecting about 700,000 visitors in 2024.

“Last year, we had visitors who returned (to the bazaar) again and again, so we hope to have that kind of mood once more... We are very confident,” said Mr Zaki Ma’arof, chairman of One Kampong Gelam, speaking to media at a press conference on Feb 16.

Conscious of the pressures of rising costs, the organiser said stall rental prices will be kept to a maximum of $13,800 for F&B vendors, and $3,500 for retail vendors.

“We want to keep it affordable for everyone – both vendors and consumers,” said Mr Zaki.

In March 2023, the Geylang Serai Ramadan bazaar drew flak for its high rental prices where some stall holders paid up to $25,000 for rental. Towards the end of the year, it was announced that rents would be capped at $15,000 for 2024.

In 2023, the 36-day Geylang Serai bazaar, which stretched from Geylang Serai Market to Tanjong Katong Complex, had over 150 stalls and attracted some three million visitors.

With two weeks to go, organisers of the Kampong Glam bazaar said that all retail spaces and 80 per cent of the F&B stalls have been taken up.

The bazaar’s staples such as food trucks will return, alongside popular vendors like Broti and Kream, which sell drinks and snacks like hot dogs, respectively.

Mr Zaki hopes that with the event starting a week before Ramadan will be a “sales boon” for vendors, for people to come by during the day before they break fast at sunset.

The bazaar will end four days before the end of Hari Raya as the organiser wants to make sure the precinct is in “tip-top condition” for morning prayers, and ample car park space is available for those coming to the area to pray, added Mr Zaki.

The precinct’s iconic Sultan Mosque is also celebrating its bicentennial in 2024.

Light projections of archival images from the National Archives of Singapore will be cast on Sultan Mosque every Friday to Sunday from 7.30pm, highlighting definitive moments from the mosque’s 200-year history since the 1800s.

As part of Kampong Glam’s Ramadan celebrations, a mass iftar – the evening meal eaten by Muslims to break fast after the sun has set – will also be held on March 23 along Arab Street.

The street will be closed on that day to host a projected 1,500 attendees, including charity beneficiaries. The 2023 edition drew 1,200 participants to the mass iftar. Groceries will also be distributed to around 200 to 300 beneficiaries on the same day.

Tables will be open for sale to the public, with part of the proceeds going to Sultan Mosque and its beneficiary groups.

The Kampong Glam Ramadan celebrations are supported by the Singapore Tourism Board and Urban Redevelopment Authority.