Here are some tips:
- always use a sturdy tripod, cable release and mirror lock-up. Latter two are not so indispensable with longer exposures, but tripod is essential.
- use the lowest possible ISO for lower noise. There's generally no reason to use higher than 50 or 100 ISO, unless you have some specific need to use a higher ISO (a faster shutter speed) - eg. to have moving traffic produce shorter trails or to freeze trees moving in the wind.
- play with f-stops, as it not only affects DOF, but it dramatically changes how light sources are rendered. Remember that most lenses are sharpest around 2 stops tighter than their widest setting, though.
- try to catch some light on the sky with longer exposures and/or shooting after dusk or before dawn. I'm guessing you're in Antarctica so that's not an option atm...
- bracket, bracket, bracket. Depending on the scene you might have vast overexposed areas with a lot of deep shadows. If you bracket you can later do some digital blending, or just pick up the one shot that is most faithful to your vision
- practice. Experience is the best way to learn
Google for astrophotography for tips on shooting star trails, lots of good info there - and yeah, it's basically just taking very long exposures. As for shooting buildings in the night, that's a bit tougher. As shown in the photo you posted, it's very easy to get blown-out highlights. Sometimes that's not a problem, but if you want to have more detail in the lighter areas, bracketing comes in handy. A more advanced technique is digital blending - google for that also, there's an excellent article here on LL on that.
Something you might want to try if you get tired of shooting lit buildings, is painting with light. A bit more involved, but I've seen some stunning photos done that way. Also, get someone to run around with a sparkler, painting figures in the air. Alcoholic beverages optional but recommended.