Back for its 63rd year, the Macau Grand Prix shows no signs of slowing down. No other street circuit has the combination of elevations; tight, twisty sections between stone walls; long, sweeping straights; and one of the tightest hairpin bends in the world. Apart from the weekend’s three major races, the Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix, which this year celebrates its Golden Jubilee, is another highlight, featuring former and present racers in the Superbike World Championship. There will be three support races – the Macau Touring Car Cup, the Suncity Group Macau Road Sport Challenge and the Suncity Group Chinese Racing Cup. All the action takes place from November 17 to 20, with the main Formula 3 race on the final day. The best place to sit is at the Lisboa Bend, rather than the Main Grand Stand, as it’s in front of a 90-degree turn and the scene for some spectacular overtaking attempts.
Take a break
If you find yourself needing time out from the crowds and roaring action at the Grand Prix, a trip to nearby Taipa Village may provide the perfect remedy. It’s one of the few areas in Macau where you can step back in time and enjoy quiet strolls along pedestrianised alleys and hidden lanes to browse in cosy shops that offer a window on the real Macau. Home to Portuguese architecture and Mediterranean influences, alongside Chinese architectural features, the village offers rich cultural heritage and historic beauty.
Join the after party
If the thrill of the Grand Prix leaves you seeking out more high-energy fun, why not consider sampling some of Macau’s nightlife? Last year, Pacha Macau opened, the biggest name in Ibiza’s clubbing scene from the party capital of Europe. On a typical night out in Macau, it’s not unusual to dance the night away to top DJs Tiësto, Steve Aoki and Afrojack, and music stars Chris Brown, Jason Derulo and Flo Rida. If you prefer a quiet drink after a long day, local bars have wine lists that can stand shoulder to shoulder with the best. A favourite is Macau Soul, a cosy wine bar, metres away from the Ruins of St Paul’s, which specialises in award-winning Portuguese wines and ports and offers more than 600 different labels and food pairings.
If you would sooner race around the shops than the racing track, you’re in luck. The opening of two mega resorts in the city has brought enough new retail space, that if you were to visit it all, you’d probably need until Christmas. It’s a shoppers’ paradise. The US$4.2 billion Wynn Palace and the US$2.7 billion Parisian Macao offer 18,580 square metres and 28,000 square metres of luxury retail space, respectively. That’s in excess of 200 shops offering haute couture, luxury accessories, jewellery and timepieces, including labels that are new to Macau such as Antonia, Sonia Rykiel, Temptation, Garel Paris, Herzo and Isabelle Langlois.
Behind the wheel
If three days of non-stop Grand Prix action has inspired you to want to get behind the wheel yourself, go-karting at Macao Motorsports Club could be the next best thing. The 1.2km track has been renovated and is one of the most challenging tracks in Asia. All the gear is included in the hire price. You’ll need a drivers’ licence though. For info +853 2888 2126; macaummc.com. 180 patacas (per kart per 15 minutes). Buy tickets on site.