I mainly cover places rather than events but there are 2 things happening this week that are must-dos:
THE FITFLOP & HUNTER WELLIE SALE: TODAY AT SJII HIGH SCHOOL
While FitFlops are practically a uniform here, Hunter wellies sadly haven’t caught on like they have in, say, New York where people sashay down the pavement in regular walk-the-dog-ones, wedge ones, (seriously, they exist in NYC) high heeled ones and laced ones. Rush down to SJI to bag factory seconds and sample stock for both Hunters and FitFlops today only. 50% of all proceeds raised will go to the Bamboo School, Thailand. Payment is by cash or cheque only.
SJII High School Hall (next to the Chapel), 490 Thomson Road, Singapore 298191
Friday 21st September, 8am-4:30pm
(Image of high heeled ‘Fulbrooke Tall’ wellie is courtesy of Hunter)
THE ROYAL ACADEMY COMES TO SINGAPORE
I’m also extremely/equally excited about the touring Royal Academy Show (‘Encounter: Royal Academy in Asia’) that arrived here in Singapore last week and hangs around (literally) until 24th October. Singapore is the first city it’s been to, with Doha next on the list. It’s expected to tour seven cities in two years. What’s particularly interesting about it is that it will feature 100 works of art in a wide variety of media by 25 Royal Academicians and 25 prominent artists from across Asia. Famous RA artists whose works are displayed include Tracy Emin, Turner Prize winner Richard Deacon and famous sculptor Anthony Gormley. Part of its draw will be to see such a diverse range of subject matter (an unmade bed next to a disenfranchised labourer for instance) and media displayed shoulder to shoulder. Admission is free.
Lasalle College of the Arts, 1 McNally Street, Singapore
T: (+65) 6496 5000
(Image courtesy of Lasalle)
NASSIM HILL BAKERY BISTRO AND BAR: BRILLIANT FOR BREAKFAST AND BRUNCH
I love how fast this city changes. Blink and you’ll miss it. This has replaced the spot that used to be occupied by HSBC in a building that was called the Friven Centre but has now changed its name to Tanglin Post Office. Before I ate here, and frankly even afterwards, I never really understood what they were calling themselves. They seem to have decided to use a road name (kind of relevant as they are on Nassim Hill) paired with quite a long number which I don’t think really helps in terms of branding/inspiration/being a name you will remember. (1228 is apparently the year Grimbergen was born but knowing that still doesn’t help me remember it). Their offering seems to me, to be a bit confused; is it a beer garden or a bakery? I suppose it’s all wheat, but I like going to a bakery or a bar; not something that does both. Especially not if you are going at breakfast time. Now that I’ve got that off my chest, the food I ate here was actually very good and, gasp – for anything within the shadow of Tanglin Mall – reasonably priced. I had delicious, freshly made pancakes served up with crispy bacon and maple syrup costing around $12. I’d go again but if I’m meeting anyone here, to avoid confusion, I’ll be referring to it as ‘that new place where HSBC used to be’ so that they don’t go to the downstairs bar bit.
The bakery/bistro operates for breakfast and lunch. At dinner it has a personality change and becomes a full on beer/booze place, complete with a DJ, and operates as part of the 1948 or whatever it’s called, downstairs (they are both owned by the same group). The downstairs bar and bakery serve beer (only of the Grimbergen variety) as well as Absolut and other wines/spirits.
Nassim Hill Bakery Bistro Bar, 56 Tanglin Road #01-03 Tanglin Post Office, Singapore
T: (+65) 6835 1128
(Image courtesy of Changmoh)
A DRAW FOR BUSY BEES AT LUNCHTIME: POLLEN
The best time to come here – best for your wallet that is – is lunchtime as their menu is (more) reasonable. Dinner is an eye-watering affair. Food is of the expensive, excellent variety and is especially good if you are not paying for it. I love how the name – by chance – fits in so well with the venue: the Flower Dome at Gardens by the Bay. And it really is only by chance because the restaurant follows in the footsteps of Jason Atherton’s exisiting London offering: Pollen Street Social. Awesome, mind blowing botanical views match the quality of food (bitter chocolate banana with white sesame ice cream and caramel nitro, and I don’t even like puddings) with mirrors strategically positioned to ensure no one gets a bad seat. A great new place for visitors/out of towners/expense accounts.
Pollen, Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Drive #01-09
T: (+65) 6604 9988
(Image courtesy of Pollen)
IT’S NOT NEW…BUT IT IS CLEVER:
Each week we’ll also showcase one hidden gem that I know, love and can’t live without. It may be known to some, it may be news to others but it’s a place that offers something out of the ordinary.
CHEAPEST FACIALS IN TOWN WITH WONDERFUL WAXING TOO: FEMMA BEAUTY CENTRE
Where all the air hostesses (KLM, BA, SQ and Qantas) go for really good and good value facials, this beauty bastion is also excellent for waxing. UK trained Teresa owns and runs the store and has been doing Brazilians since before they were called Brazilians. She’s been here for 30 years ago and set up when she moved back to Singapore after 10 years in London, where she learnt her trade (she honed her waxing skills working on the can-can girls in Soho apparently) and she is a real character. Never a hair missed, Femma offers meticulous waxing services at a good prices. Their facials are an incredible $60 for 60 minutes and – crucially – only performed using Guinot products (all her staff are good at facials, Teresa is the best for hair removal so only ask specially for her if you are waxing). A bargain that needs to be shared and supported!
Femma Beauty Centre, Far East Plaza #04-61, Singapore
T: (+65) 6235 3802.
Open from 11am-8pm Monday to Friday and 10am-6pm on Saturdays. Teresa’s mobile number is: (+65) 9818 8379