City Hall is located in the central region of Singapore and many are quick to dismiss it as a business district that is devoid of life or fun. In this City Hall Edition, we are going to debunk that! There are actually many hidden gems to explore and while they are hidden, they can be easily found if you just read on. Moreover, it's in the central, so it's very accessible. Here are the Top 14 Must Visit Places in City Hall Singapore!
City Hall Singapore
Are you familiar with the term "coworking"? Coworking spaces are quickly gaining traction in countries such as Singapore, Indonesia, America and many more and with coworking spaces, you pay a monthly/yearly fee to rent a shared office with like-minded individuals who are pursuing their own goals as they work there. It's a great place to work, network and meet new friends. Hence, it's no surprise that someone would soon try to introduce "coliving" and that is exactly what Lyf is doing! The coliving concept is not that much different from the coworking concept, except instead of working, you're living there. It is basically a Millennial's dream coliving hotel.
While it can be compared to a traditional hotel, since it offers accommodation at a price, it's also very different from what you'd expect at a hotel at the same time. The coliving concept that Lyf is so proud of encourages connections, friendship and creating a closely-knitted community, and that's why they have a myriad of facilites or "lyf spaces" as they'd like to call it to create unique points of interactions for you.
The moment you enter, you can tell this isn't your typical hotel. It even feels wrong to label it a hotel. It is a unique and special concept of its own that is really worth the experience. Every social space is planned to maximise opportunity for communal activities and free events are even held regularly for residences of the coliving apartments. It truly feels like a mini village hidden right in the middle of the city.
Lyf has a myriad of interesting rooms you can check out. Their rooms are uniquely designed to suit different needs and personalities, and they all look as aesthetically pleasing as they are functional. Fun Fact - Did you know, Lyf uses a mobile check in. You never have to worry about losing your key cards ever again!
One of A Kind (Studio)
The One of A Kind is perfect for couples who love to snuggle, 2 friends looking for a sleepover or even the individual who appreciates space. The room can sleep a maximum of 2 guests and the room design is modern, slightly minimalistic and functional, as it is with the rest of the spaces.
This room can incur costs from $150/night, which actually is not too bad if you think about the central location and the convenience you'll be getting, Not to mention, have you seen how pretty the room looks? You can even go to the Lyf website and use their 360 degree room tour function if you're not convinced.
All Together (4 Bedroom)
Travelling in a group but still appreciate privacy and down time away from socialisation? The All Together is suitable for you. As the name suggests, there are 4 bedrooms with either queen sized beds or super single sized beds. This room can sleep up to 6 guests and comes equipped with a mini living room and kitchenette. Think of it as home away from home. Always wanted to live in an apartment with your friends? Now, you can! Spend some time in the living room if you wish to hang out but when it's time for bed, retreat back to your individual rooms.
This isn't just for friends. If you're heading a project and want to brainstorm for innovative and disruptive business ideas, you can definitely do that too. The room also comes equipped with an interactive display and touch screen whiteboard and to actively engage a team of up to 6 persons in a conducive setting.
There's also a 2 bedroom version of this.
This room can be booked from $350/night.
Lyf Style (Studio)
This is another type of room that houses up to 2 guests. Equipped with a PlayStation game console, this room is perfect for the ultimate gaming experience. If you're travelling with a group of friends and don't wish to spend so much on the All Together, I suggest booking some One of A Kinds and booking one of the Lyf Style. That way, your friends can come over to have some fun with the console, hang out and chat before retreating back to their room for the night.
This room can be booked from $170/night.
Two Of A Kind
As the name suggests, it is quite similar to the One of A Kind, except, this has two bedrooms, with queen beds, and a communal pantry to share. This can sleep up to 4 guests, perfect for a group of 4 friends or 2 couples! You always have the privacy, but you never feel like you're too far apart from your friends.
This room can be booked from $230/night.
Up And Down
This is one of my favourite rooms. Travelling with a friend and dislike the loneliness that comes with the night, but still appreciate your privacy and bed space? Try the Up and Down that comes with a bunk bed. The modern design of this room maximizes space and functionality, giving you everything you'd want. The only complaint you might have about this room is the possibility of you and your friend fighting over who gets which bed!
The room can be booked from $170/night.
One of A Kind (Plus)
This is another variation of the One of A Kind. Again, this is great for couples and friends or even just yourself, if you appreciate the space, except, this one comes with a kitchen!
This room can be booked from $190/night.
All Together (6 Bedroom Duplex)
Last but not least, this is the largest room that Lyf provides. Similar to the All Together (4-Bedroom), it provides a living room, kitchenette and 6 bedrooms over 2 floors. There are 3 bedrooms upstairs and another 3 downstairs, with 2 toilets on both levels. Ideal for huge groups, this duplex feels more like a villa apartment or chalet.
This room can be booked from $410/night.
This is Lyf's floorplan. It's pretty simple, with the lobby being at the top floor of Funan Mall. This is where you have the lobby, the laundry room and a bunch of other facilities.
Lyf has a wide variety of social spaces. Their lobby is called "Connect" and it is rightfully named as such because they value connection between guests and have set up the lobby to be a communal space for people to gather and sit and chat if they'd like. There is a free photobooth in one corner where guests can play with and even a human sized "Connect-4" game that people can try. There are also coworking spaces that residences that book if they wish to do so. They also have a super aesthetically pleasing laundry room which can double up as a great backdrop for your Instagram photos.
The lobby only uses movable furniture. That way, the lobby can be cleared out or appropriately furnished for events. Lyf often holds free events for their residences. Always check the upcoming events tab in their mobile app when you're booking a stay to maximize your fun! They sometimes hold parties, meet ups and even talks by some really cool personalities.
Step to the staircase and you'll find it is as tastefully decorated and designed as the rest of the hotel. This staircase leads to Level 5, which holds the communal kitchen and a mini area for people to have their meals or sit and have a chat. It's entirely up to people. Some rooms are located on this level. Along the staircase, there is actually a ball pit where again, you can take photos or jump in with your friends. Looking to the wall opposite the stairs, it is actually a plain wall but strategically placed as such because it can double up as a wall to project movies on. Sit on the social staircase and enjoy the show!
Going up to Level 6, you can find a gym and some interesting things such as a human sized hamster wheel and a round see saw!
Lyf's coliving concept may still be new but they've done it exceptionally well. The amenities are amazing. The social spaces are truly strategically and extensively planned and designed. The entire space feels fun and encourages you to explore more. Gone are the days where hotels merely serve as a place to rest your head. Once you've checked in, you might want to spend another 3 hours exploring the place and snapping pics before you even leave! For the amazing design, comfort and convenience, Lyf's prices really are unbeatable. Book your stay now!
67 Hill St, Level 4 Funan Mall, Singapore 179370 (City Hall MRT)
When CHIJMES opened its doors to the public in 1996, it slowly acquired its status as a popular hub of entertainment, food and lifestyle activities over the years, with its beautiful architecture, central location and huge variety of dining establishments. While there are countless restaurants you can visit in CHIJMES, not many can say that they've been there from the very start but Tatsu is different. Yes, that's right! They set up shop at CHIJMES in 1996 and they've been here ever since, serving up delicious teppanyaki and sushi. I'm sure we're all familiar with teppanyaki and sushi both but it's really rare to find an establishment that offers us the best of both worlds in one location. It's like teppanyaki and sushi heaven! With the vision of bringing authentic Japanese dining to the city, Tatsu has remained a favourite amongst their loyal customers who are lucky enough to have discovered Tatsu. Since the dining establishments at CHIJMES are aplenty, Tatsu, to me, still retained its status as a hidden gem, which is funny to me because their reservation list is always full! I was excited to delve into the world of Tatsu to try their menu.
Tatsu is a beautiful Japanese restaurant that was halved into two - one side for sushi diners and the other for teppanyaki diners. I was told that things were done this way because diners go through different dining experiences based on what they were here for, be it sushi or teppanyaki. Sushi diners would enjoy a relaxing and enjoyable experience while teppanyaki diners would have a fun and exciting time. I was feeling adventurous so I decided to go for some teppanyaki. Led deeper into the restaurant, there was a square-ish counter surrounding grills, which is very typical of teppanyaki restaurants. The ambience was relaxing and the staff were all extremely friendly. So far, I was satisfied but my stomach wasn't, so I went on to order some food.
I ordered the Wagyu and Lobster set. The set was inclusive of lobster, wagyu beef, seafood fried rice, sautéed mushrooms and a crab miso soup. Soon, a chef came up to the grill and greeted us. He made us feel at ease and he was really friendly. He cooked our wagyu first. The chef told us that they use A4 Wagyu grade beef and this was decided after loads of experimentation. Apparently, A4 Grade Wagyu had just the right amount of fat and oil for teppanyaki cooking, hence, they didn't need to use additional oil. The sight of the wagyu sizzling on the grill was a sight to behold and it smelled amazing too. The chef asked us how we wanted our wagyu to be done and of course we went for medium.
Soon, he started playing with the tools that he was cooking with. It was incredible! He threw his tools up and caught them with ease, incorporating each movement into the cooking process as he seasoned the meat. All too soon, he was done and he laid the wagyu beef beautifully in front of us. He placed a dollop of wasabi and some garlic chips. He had us try the beef by itself, then recommended us to try it with some wasabi and garlic chips. When we went for our first mouthful, we knew immediately that we would be coming back and that he was right about the whole grade A4 Wagyu beef oil and fat thing. It melted in our mouths! It literally disintegrated and I loved it. Trying his suggestion, we were all taken aback because this seemed like an entirely different flavour profile. It was amazing what garlic chips and wasabi could do. I personally really loved the garlic chips and couldn't stop snacking on it as the chef went on to prepare our lobster.
As he was cooking our lobster, he laid out a creamy yellow sauce and served it to us with the lobster. This was my favourite of the entire meal. The sauce was savoury and the umami flavour was insane. Paired with the natural sweetness and QQ texture of the lobster, the sauce only served to elevate the taste. We all looked at each other in surprise as we tasted the lobster. It was that good. I'm going to make a bold statement and say that I liked it better than the wagyu! The chef told us that the sauce was a special sauce that they made in-house and just like that, he crushed my dreams of finding it in the supermarket and drizzling the sauce over anything I ate in the future.
The meat and seafood were good but at this point, I was craving for some rice to pair them with and it's like the chef read my mind because he immediately went on to prepare the seafood fried rice. His technique was crazy! He balanced an egg on his tool and started throwing it up, catching it as it fell. We were on the edge of our seats, afraid that he would drop the egg and shatter it. Then, amazingly, he turned his tool and the egg cracked on it. As he balanced it on his tool, the egg slowly slid out onto the grill. It was definitely entertaining. The chef then asked us if he could serve us the egg and we agreed, thinking nothing of it. It was then that he told us he wanted to throw the egg into our mouths. He assured us it wouldn't scald our tongue and that his aiming was immaculate. My friends egged me on to be first and of course, I was the guinea pig. It was so funny because he really threw it in on the first try! We all had a laugh and cheered each other on when we caught it. Not to mention, the egg was yummy too!
He threw some white rice on the grill and at this moment, he told us to brace ourselves and take out our phones to record the moment if we wanted to. He lit up an oil trail and it erupted into flames over the rice. It was truly a thrilling sight that had us screaming in excitement and delight. When the fire died down, the rice was nicely cooked and had that "wok hei" aroma that we know and love. He prepared some sautéed mushrooms and served us, asking us to enjoy our meal. The soup came last and it was nice and hot. We dug into our meal. Everything was in perfect harmony and had its place on the table. The wagyu was aromatic, juicy and savoury, while the lobster was sweet and savoury with a slight twang. The seafood fried rice was a nice base to pair them with and the sautéed mushrooms gave us a break from the savoury notes, with the slight bitterness and aroma of mushrooms that we're all familiar with. The soup was soothing and helped us wash it all down. We were all surprised to find a whole crab shell in the soup. No wonder it tasted so rich!
We ordered some sushi to go along with our teppanyaki too. We didn't think too much of the sushi, thinking that nothing could beat the teppanyaki we just had but honestly, the sushi was on par. The salmon was fresh and the rice was perfectly seasoned. You could tell that both the sushi and teppanyaki chefs put a lot of pride in their craft and this resulted in the delicious meal we just had. Tatsu truly was a teppanyaki and sushi heaven and we left the restaurant as converts. It hurts writing this article because I'm torn between keeping Tatsu my little secret and sharing the joy with the public. All I know is, I will definitely with calling to book myself a slot in advance with my family and even my friends, and so should you!
Read More: Top Must Visit Places In City Hall Singapore As Tourist
30 Victoria Street #01-08 Singapore 187996 (Nearest MRT City Hall)
Mon - Sun: 12:00PM - 2:30PM, 6:00PM - 10:30PM
Pearls are synonymous to bubble tea and its existence is iconic in the bubble tea world. But did you know - factory made pearls actually have a shelf life of 1 year? From this, you can imagine the amount of preservatives and stabilisers used in the making of this addictive and chewy topping. Worst of all, most bubble tea places you frequent are guilty of serving factory-made pearls. As an avid bubble tea fan myself, I was immediately put off and started reflecting on what I have been putting in my body. If you're like me and can't see yourself without bubble tea but don't wish to continue putting junk in your body, let me introduce you to Hollin 赫里, the honest taiwanese bubble tea place.
I dubbed them the honest taiwanese bubble tea place because that's exactly what they are! Hollin was opened by a group of young taiwanese colleagues turned friends turned business partners, who all have decades of experience in the bubble tea industry under their belt. Despite serving delicious concoctions of bubble tea to their customers, they rarely, if ever, make themselves a drink for their own consumption. While they share a love for bubble tea just like you and I, they could not bring themselves to drink the bubble tea they made, knowing the amount of preservatives and stabilisers used in the process. They doubted their morals and asked themselves...
"If I can't bring myself to consume my creation, how can I serve it to my customers?"
Hence, they set out into the unknown to pursue their dream of opening a bubble tea shop; one that would provide natural drinks and toppings that they could serve with a clear conscience.
Matthew, one of the owners actually shared his philosophy with me, which really opened my eyes. He claimed that food should remain as food and shouldn't be converted into a food product in order to achieve a longer shelf life or stronger flavour profile. An example he cited was that in his previous jobs, he had to create taro toppings for the drinks and it is often made with taro powder. Taro powder is a concentration of taro, preservatives, added sugar and other ingredients that aren't necessarily the best for our body. This process has changed taro, which is the food he wanted to serve, into a food product. Sure, it definitely tastes stronger than the normal taro and has a longer shelf life, but at what expense?
Hence, at Hollin, they strictly do not use added preservatives and food colouring. While bubble tea will never be a healthy beverage, you can be rest assured that the bubble tea from Hollin is at least better for your body than other brands out there.
Hollin is much like any other bubble tea booth. Their booth is tastefully decorated; classy, elegant and cute. Their signage is extremely easy to spot and the counter is inviting. Their menu is also illuminated at the top, which is extremely helpful for an indecisive person like myself. While it is mainly a takeaway booth, there are a few counter seats at the side of the booth. However, seats are extremely limited. I assume it's more for people who are waiting to collect their drinks and wish to have a seat in the meantime.
Hollin's menu is extensive but not as extensive as some of the other brands out there. However, what's special about them is that they serve handmade pearls that are made daily. If you look towards the bottom, you can see that they only serve a certain pearl flavour on certain days of the week. While the Honey pearl is available everyday, you would have to come down on specific days to try their more interesting flavours, such as Matcha, Rock Salt, Cocoa and many more!
I understand this can be a little inconvenient for people who have busy schedules and asked them why they had such a system in place. Hollin responded that since they hand-make their pearls daily, instead of getting a factory to do it, they currently are unable to churn out all the different flavours. A single flavour of pearl requires 2.5 hours to create and this definitely affects sales but the dedication to their philosophy and principles are inspiring and I felt rest assured drinking their creations!
I tried their signatures, the Black Tea Rock Salt Macchiato with Honey Pearls and the Green Tea Latte with Matcha Pearls. (P.S 25% - 50% is enough! Trust me ;D)
The Black Tea Rock Salt Macchiato was delicious and super addictive. I especially loved the Rock Salt foam that is a refreshing change from the cheese and milk foam that is provided everywhere. The saltiness of the rock salt foam paired with the slight bitterness of the black tea was perfect match. The tinge of sweetness from the honey pearls sweetened things up and gave me the chewiness that I love.
The Green tea Latte with Matcha Pearls was interesting! I loved green tea and matcha so having these two together felt natural to me. The green tea latte had the familiar sweetness and aroma that we are all used to and the matcha pearls were bittersweet. In fact, it wasn't very sweet at all. While it wasn't enough to incite a complaint for me, I realised that I had made a comparison between this to other matcha pearls served and somehow, I had plain expected this to be sweet. Afterward, I realised how ridiculous I sounded because this was exactly how Matcha should taste. Matcha is after all, bittersweet! Hollin revealed that they only used authentic Japanese matcha powder and tapioca flour to make their pearls and I was taken aback at how simple their process is, as it should be!
Overall, the drinks did not taste all that different to other brands, which was a plus, since they used only natural ingredients without any added stuff, but I would say I like their drinks better than other brands because I know they use only natural ingredients in their drinks and toppings. Hollin truly is an honest taiwanese bubble tea shop and I really respect what they are trying to do. Of course, it also helps that their drinks are super yummy too!
Mon - Thurs: 11:30AM - 9:45PM
Fri - Sun: 11:30AM - 10:30PM
The Modern Izakaya is a contemporary Japanese Bar opened by the same owners of Tatsu and Kome Bar that was started as a drinking joint with a Japanese touch in the food and beverage choices. Singapore's night life is nothing to scoff at, and for many, a perfect night entails of a friendly gathering in a bar, sharing some bar bites and chatting over drinks. With its central location and interesting concept, The Modern Izakaya seemed like a place worthy of a visit. Izakayas are essentially Japanese taverns – drinking houses with a menu of small dishes for snacking while drinking and The Modern Izakaya seemed like it had chosen the perfect name for itself, serving up yakitori and drinks!
The Modern Izakaya is encompassed within a special glasshouse bar with an alfresco dining area. The Modern Izakaya chic interior provides a comfortable atmosphere for gatherings while its outdoor area is poised for the perfect night of drinking under the stars. In the restaurant, there was also a show kitchen which features a Japanese imported grill that uses Bincho Charcoal for its kushiyaki. I personally preferred the alfresco dining area. Something about drinking under the stars and beautiful fairy lights that just creates the perfect intimate and romantic atmosphere, whether you're there with your friends or your partner.
The Modern Izakaya had a wide selection of alcohol and we were absolutely spoilt for choice. They had whisky, sakes, shochu, wines, liquor and beer. I personally picked a sparkling yuzu sake. It was light, slightly gassy and had the tangy sweetness of yuzu. I loved it. It was a great drink to start the night off and would be a perfect pairing for the food we were about to order. We ordered some yakitori skewers, with each skewer priced at $3++. We felt it was quite reasonable. To fill our stomachs, we also ordered a grilled squid and some maki.
The yakitori skewers were all amazing, It was perfectly seasoned with their in-house teriyaki sauce, which wasn't sickeningly sweet like some other yakitori places in Singapore. I especially loved the quail egg. It looked innocuous enough, but the egg was actually done lava egg style, where the inside was soft and mushy. It popped in my mouth and the savoury yolk spilled over. I had to order 2 more skewers of it but had absolutely no regrets. As we drank and chatted, we unknowingly finished the yakitori! It was truly the perfect accompaniment to our drinks.
The grilled squid was great too. It did not have the fishy smell that comes with seafood that wasn't fresh. We squeezed a bit of lemon over the squid and that was that. It was sweet and the texture was great - not too chewy and dense. It was addictive even!
The maki was great. We ordered something that came with cheese and usually restaurants aren't very generous with the cheese that they provide over their food but this maki was different. The cheese was generous and deliciously savoury. The Modern Izakaya truly thought over their food choices very carefully, because each and every food we ate seemed to pair with the alcohol perfectly. I will definitely be coming back with my friends to spend the night with yakitori and drinks. Usually with bars, you don't end up very full but with The Modern Izakaya, you can even order rice bowls and with their extensive menu of yakitori and maki, you can be rest assured that you can fill yourself up and go crazy with the huge alcohol menu with your friends!
The Modern Izakaya
30 Victoria Street #01-18 Singapore 187996 (Nearest MRT City Hall)
Mon - Sun: 12:00PM - 2:30PM, 6:00PM - 10:30PM
There are many coffee places in Singapore, but not many have the heart and soul that PPP was founded on. PPP was founded by Leon Foo 10 years ago but they weren't called PPP then. They were referred to as Papa Pahelta but had gone through a rebrand to celebrate their tenth year in business. When they first started in 2009, they would have never imagined to grow as much as they did but they sure did. With a current total staff strength of more than 70 servicing over 100 corporate clients from multinational corporations, F&B establishments, hotels as well as customers through our three F&B/retail outlets in Singapore and Malaysia, they wouldn't never thought that this was all because they shared a love for coffee, specialising in supplying coffee to small cafes and home brewers in the area. Now, they have once again established themselves in Funan as an artisan coffee and toast bar, serving up good old coffee, as well as a few other special creations on their menu.
PPP is located in Funan Mall on the second level and can be easily spotted when you go up the escalator or stairs. It has more of an open air concept and the design is modern, yet homey. With a balcony overseeing the mall, you can sip on coffee as you chat with your friends or people watch. I especially loved watching the rock climbers attempt to climb the rock wall in Funan, secretly egging them on to reach the top.
The lighting in PPP is bright, but not too bright, perfect to snap Instagram photos of your coffee and toast. It feels really easy to walk in and claim a table to yourself. It's clean, cozy and I could definitely see myself sitting here for hours. Not to mention, their seats are also equipped with wireless charging docks (I know right!) that is free for the customers' use, and customers can browse latest magazines on available iPads.
As with most coffee places, there is also a retail rack where customers can bring home freshly roasted beans for their enjoyment or shop for coffee equipment and accessories. When I visited PPP, there were also some extremely adorable pins that they were selling.
Last but not least, there was also an experience bar where customers can get up close and personal with coffee equipment and even attempt to brew their own coffee. It not only looks pretty good on photos, but it's functional as well! It can be a fun activity as you're waiting for your food.
The PPP Coffee store is the first in Singapore to introduce a frozen collection of vintage coffees, otherwise known as The Archive. This selection of coffee comprises some of the best roasts in their ten years of sourcing and roasting coffee, as well as exceptional coffees from other revered roasters from around the world. You can bet that with the ten years they've spent honing their craft and acquiring the best recipes, their coffee are sure to be great.
As dedicated they are with their craft, people love to get creative and so did they. They had some interesting drink items such as Papa's Iced Coffee, which is their classic iced latte topped with homemade coffee jelly. I absolutely love coffee jelly. This drink seems strong, interesting and fun. They also have other drinks such as their Cascara Fizz and Huat Shake, which is a coffee-based milkshake made with espresso, milk, chocolate bits and peppermint ice cream!
The milkshake had hints of coffee (of course), but it was also sweet and milky at the same time, before it hit you with the refreshing blast of peppermint, which slowly mixed in with the chocolate. The drink was an experience and I couldn't stop. The problem with milkshakes is that it tends to leave you feeling surfeit after a while or even leave your throat sore but this did not do that for me. In fact, I wanted more! I had my sweet fix and my coffee fix in one beverage.
One of my favourite toast is the Caramelised Banana Hazelnut Chocolate on Sourdough Toast. Chocolate and bananas together never go wrong but what was special about this toast was the use of sourdough which made it a pleasant sweet and savoury experience. I aslo tried their salmon cream cheese. It was a luxurious breakfast choice and this would definitely be my pick for days where I prefer savoury over sweet. The smoked salmon was slightly savoury adn the cream cheese went so well with it. I took a bite and everything just melted in my mouth into a savoury mess. I loved it!
Besides the toasts, they also have a selection of cakes and assorted Nyonya kuehs such as the Coffee-Infused Gula Melaka Ondeh Ondeh, Pulut Inti and Kuih Bingka, which unfortunately I did not manage to try because I was being a glutton with the toast.
107, #02-19 North Bridge Rd, Funan Mall, 179105 (Nearest MRT City Hall)
Mon - Sun: 9:00AM - 10:00PM
Kome Bar was opened under Tatsu Group, the same company who started up Tatsu in CHIJMES. Located in CHIJMES as well, Kome Bar offers Japanese food as well under a different philosophy. They wanted to provide Japanese goodness in a rice bowl or a maki roll and opened up Kome Bar to serve up Makis and Donburi for their customers. Personally, I love Japanese donburi. A donburi is a Japanese rice bowl typically served with a huge layer of ingredients at the top. It's a convenient meal that can be luxurious as well depending on what you put on top. Serving up only the freshest imported ingredients and prime cuts, you can expect to find interesting mixes of Japanese food and sauces in their maki and donburi, which you can pair with their sake, whisky, wine or beer!
I loved Kome Bar's ambience. It was decorated to resemble Japanese diners, which was very apt. The seatings were comfortable but tables were limited. I expect this place to be quite packed especially during lunch or dinner time, but the tables were placed apart with a considerable amount of distance so there shouldn't be any discomfort. The staff were all extremely friendly as well and immediately asked if I wanted a beverage.
Kome Bar had an interesting selection of maki and donburi and the doburi menu really caught my eye! There was a Kome 6 Donburi which consisted of caviar, wasabiko, tobiko, ikura, minced tuna belly and uni, which sounds absolutely delectable and luxurious. They also had a Salmon Mentai Donburi, Bara Chirashi Donburi, Wagyu Don and many more! We ordered the Kome 6, Salmon Mentai, Bara Chirashi and Wagyu Don to share since we were so spoilt for choices. We also ordered a Salmon Asparagus Maki as well. We didn't wait long before our orders came piling in and when I saw the Kome 6 Donburi, I knew I had to try that first.
It looked absolutely amazing. The different toppings were separately laid over a mountain of rice and they all glistened beautifully under the light. The Bara Chirashi was calling to me too. The seafood pieces were huge and looked extremely fresh. I couldn't wait to dig in. There are two types of people when it comes to eating donburi - ones who mix up the entire bowl or ones who just take spoonfuls as it is served, and I belonged to the latter but since we were sharing we all just took spoonfuls of whatever we wanted to eat.
Of course, I went for the Kome 6 first. I made sure to take a little of everything and took a huge mouthful. People often say that uni, which is sea urchin, has the taste of the ocean and I definitely felt like I was transported to the beaches of Maldives. The uni paired with the rest was just amazing. I loved the texture of all the different fish eggs and when you bit into them, the savoury umami flavour spilled out in your mouth, mixing with the rice. The minced tuna belly was rich and luxurious and definitely added a necessary texture to the rice that was soft and melted in your mouth. The Kome 6 was a donburi that was extremely easy to eat. You could just eat mouthfuls after mouthfuls and each mouthful melted in your mouth. Before you know it, it'll be over, which is the exact opposite of the Bara Chirashi Don.
The Bara Chirashi Don was substantial. You had huge chunks of salmon, tuna, egg and avocado on top a mountain of rice. The seafood was fresh, the tamago (egg) was just the right amount of sweet and the avocado was extremely creamy and rich. Every mouthful can be different, depending on which ingredients you want to pair the rice with. I couldn't see myself finishing the bowl and I was glad we were sharing because the portion was truly generous.
I moved on to the Salmon Mentai Don. This don was extremely easy to eat. The salmon seemed to be grilled and had a layer of mentaiko sauce over it. The chef then took a flame to the sauce to char it, releasing this fragrant aroma. The sauce paired perfectly with the salmon and it was creamy, yet light. The sauce definitely kept you wanting more and prevented the rice from being too dry. I loved it!
Last but not least, the Wagyu Don didn't disappoint. Tatsu group knew their Wagyu beef and the chefs at Kome Bar knew what they were doing. The beef was juicy and cooked just right. The Wagyu juices seeped into the rice, making the rice bowl savoury and absolutely delicious.
All the rice bowls were truly amazing in their own right, depending on your personal preference. I personally loved the Kome 6 the most, even though the rest came close to beating it. We then went on to try the maki. By this point, we were quite full and didn't expect ourselves to finish the maki but we did. It was so good! I don't know exactly what the chef put in the maki but when we popped one in our mouth, we just kept going. The sauce, salmon and asparagus combo was done so well that we unknowingly finished everything. It was truly a satisfying lunch and I will definitely be coming back to this maki and donburi heaven, especailly for my Kome 6!
30 Victoria Street #01-10 Singapore 187996 (Nearest MRT City Hall)
Mon - Sun: 12:00PM - 2:30PM, 6:00PM - 10:30PM
Many of our milestones and happy occasions are celebrated with cake. When there's cake, there's almost always something to be happy about, be it a birthday, a baby's first month, a wedding and... you get the idea. With gifts and sweet treats, it's always sweeter and more heartfelt to receive something handmade and I guess cakes are no exception. Hence, Yvonne, the founder of C'Qua actually started out crafting cakes made with love to celebrate happy memories for her friends and families. Whilst being able to show her appreciation and love for her loved ones through her wonderful creations, she also derived a strong sense of joy out of doing this.
Despite having more than a decade's worth of experience in the corporate world, Yvonne took the plunge into the world of baking to pursue her passion, learning from world renowned Pâtisserie chefs from France, Korea, Singapore etc. In C'Qua, they have a special motto whereby "they don't just create cakes, they're all about creating moments of happiness", and their phrase certainly rings true because their cakes are not only perfect accompaniments for happy moments, they also make me extremely happy when I see them.
Currently, C'Qua is confined to the digital walls of the internet and you can order their handcrafted cakes at their website here.
The website is extremely easy to navigate, and the design is elegant, simple and tasteful, just like the cakes you can order from C'Qua.
There are currently three flavours available on her website - Lychee Litchi, Choco Royaltine and finally her signature, Watermelon Rose. When in doubt, go for the signature, am I right? The name of the cake was already extremely intriguing and I could not wait to try it. Opening the box, the sweet aroma of watermelon and rose greeted me. At first glance, the cake simply looks amazing. On the very top, strawberries, pistachios and edible rose petals beautifully garnish the cake. Taking it out of the box, what greeted me was a pleasant surprise, because there was a whole watermelon layer in the middle of the cake!
Usually, when people include fruit in their cakes, you'd expect to find it on the top, as bits in the cream or even have the flavouring mixed in the sponge or the cream and that's about it but C'Qua went ahead and included a whole watermelon layer! I feared that cutting the cake open would collapse the cake but the process went smoothly and it was really easy to cut myself a slice.
Personally, I wasn't really a cake person. On occasions, I'd get the smallest slice and eat it out of respect for the celebration so I didn't really expect much from this but I went in with an open mind and absolutely fell in love. Let me tell you why I'm not a cake person. I think cakes are gimmicky. They look pretty and they're lathered with cream but it always leaves you feeling really surfeit. The cream to sponge ratio is never right for me and sometimes, the cream isn't as flavourful as I want it to be. However, this Watermelon Rose cake from C'Qua ticked all my boxes and more. What amazed me was that I didn't really like watermelon or rose-flavoured food to begin with but this combination from C'Qua... just wow.
It's light, slightly sweet and extremely fragrant. As you bite down on the watermelon, its juices mix with the aroma of the rose cream while you get the fluffiness of the sponge. If you got some strawberries in that bite, you'd get little snippets of tart and sweetness as well. My advice is, get everything in a single bite. Drive your fork right down the slice and grab everything. Then, savour that bite. It will definitely leave you wanting more. I would know, because I've had 3 huge slices. I definitely would've been able to finish the cake, had I not been sharing it. This is the cake that I want for my birthday every year. It's that good! As a person who feels "meh" about cakes, trust me when I say this cake is very much worth the try. This cake truly was made with love to celebrate happy memories.
Mon - Sun: 24/7 Online
Pick up Services and Self Collect Available
Piercings are versatile statement pieces. They look good and allow you to change up your look and practice self-expression just by switching a few jewellery pieces but if you have a low pain tolerance like me, then you might have a love-hate relationship with piercings. No matter how good they look, the thought of having a needle go through my ear and leaving a gaping hole scares me. Not to mention, how painful would the experience be? The expectation and anticipation leading up to the moment the needle goes through your ear can be excruciating. When you think it's all over, you have to consider the after care. Will it lead to an infection? Will you be unable to sleep on one side for at least a month? I think visiting a sterile and credible piercing salon is the first thing you should make sure of, and one location you can visit for a painless and sterile piercing is B*dazzle!
B*dazzle specialises in ear piercing service and retails nickel free jewellery for sensitive skin, which I really appreciate. You see, cheap jewellery can cause allergic reactions and increase your chances of getting an infection and having to get your earhole closed back up. You would've then endured the pain for nothing! Furthermore, B*dazzle strictly uses disposable ear piercing cartridge systems suitable for one-time use only, that complies with international health standards. The staff in B*dazzle are also specially trained to give jewellery advice based on face shape and carry out the piercing procedure safely and efficiently! It is simply all you could ask for in a piercing salon.
B*dazzle's Raffles City outlet is an unassuming looking jewellery shop but the moment you enter and peer closer, you will definitely find hidden gems that suit you. When I entered to get my piercing done, I admit I was skeptical it would be painless. After all, a needle is entering your skin, there definitely has to be some degree of pain. I took my time coming here and almost backed out but I steeled myself and put my fate in the hands of my trusty piercer at B*dazzle. I told her what kind of piercing I wanted and she reassured me to take my time to decide exactly where I wanted my piercing to be. She was patient and understanding throughout my indecisiveness.
When I finally decided where I wanted it to be, she marked it carefully and prepared the disposable ear piercer. She swabbed my ear gently with alcohol swabs and just did it. I was shocked because I expected worst when really it was just over like that. I had been to previous piercing places to do my piercings, so I had a general idea of how it was supposed to be like and my experience at B*dazzle was nothing like that. It was truly as painless as it could be, and now I have a beautiful helix piercing that I can't wait to accessorise with.
After that, I went around the place to find an earring that I would be able to wear when it's healed. I didn't do it alone though! When I needed help, my piercer actually told me that since I had a slightly sharper chin, I should try a hooped helix piercing. I picked a metal one that was versatile and wearable for everyday use. While I loved my new earring, I can't get over my painless (and sterile!) piercing experience. When I find more piercing inspirations, I might just come back!
252 North Bridge Rd, #B1-31, Singapore 179103 (City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 10:00AM - 10:00PM
Who doesn’t love karaoke? Regardless of whether you sound like Beyonce or whether you sound like a wheezing cat, belting out a song fit for the occasion or your current mood simply feels amazing, especially if you’re surrounded by friends or family! Music is something that connects different generations and people from all walks of life, after all. However, it can be difficult to find a karaoke place that is convenient for everyone regarding space, time and costs so karaoke plans can fall through if everyone isn’t on the same page. And the absolute worst thing is having your song cut off because you’ve used up the 2 or 3 hours that you’ve booked the karaoke room for. And that’s why Popsical is here to save the day! With it, you can enjoy karaoke, anytime, anywhere! Sound too good to be true?
Popsical is a portable karaoke set and when I say portable, I really mean portable! It’s about the size of my palm and it can be used by simply connecting it to a television at home and a speaker. That’s all! The Popsical set also comes with 2 mics so you can have all the duets you want. The Popsical App, that you use with the Popsical karaoke set, also has a massive song library, so you never have to worry about not being to find all your favourite songs.
The set up was easy enough. It felt instinctive even but for people who aren’t too sure, a quick Google search can absolutely help you. The main menu popped up and from there it’s easy to start your karaoke session. You can queue songs and adjust the volume of the mic and stuff just like at an actual karaoke place and best of all, the Popsical app provides over 13 languages, such as Bahasa, Korean, Tagalog, Chinese, Japanese and so on! For all you K-Pop or Mando-Pop fans, Popsical absolutely does cater to you. We all had a blast singing our favourite songs from our favourite artists.
Best of all, this was done in the comfort of my home which I really loved. I don’t have to go out of my way and have to make the tiring journey home after our singing session. Now, everyone can gather at my place with some drinks and snacks to sing our hearts out. We can even take turns holding karaoke sessions at each of my friends’ houses because the Popsical karaoke device is so incredibly small and lightweight. This is definitely a good investment. Even if my friends aren’t around and I just want to sing my heart out, I can! I could do this lying on the floor or sitting on my sofa. It is entirely up to me and I love the feeling of knowing I can enjoy karaoke anytime, anywhere!
Funan Mall 107 North Bridge Road, Singapore 179105 (City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 9:00AM - 6:30PM
Life can be tough and stressful. Sometimes, life throws things at you that can cause your body's energies to go out of whack, resulting in headaches, twitching and just generally a sense of feeling uncomfortable in your own skin. If you've gone for massages, holidays, heart-to-heart talks and somehow you still don't feel better. It's time to relax, reset and recentre yourself. Where, you may ask? You can go to Spa Esprit. Spa Esprit is an all-round energy healing and remedial spa, the first of its kind in Singapore. From embracing new-age therapy to revisiting traditional techniques, Spa Esprit captures the best of both worlds to offer fresh alternatives to supply you with good vibes from the inside out.
Spa Esprit is definitely not your typical spa. While most spas tend to focus on your physical well-being, Spa Esprit believes that they should heal you mentally as well, in order for you to fully reap the benefits of a physical spa experience. As our emotions and moods change from day-to-day, it can be difficult to discern if you've gone through any changes but your body can be screaming for help in ways you cannot see, and that is why they specialise in what they call a "Super Vibrator" experience to heal you through kneading, scent and sound; all tailored to bring you back to balance
Spa Esprit's Raffles City outlet is on the smaller side but I quite liked it. It felt cozy and homey. The moment I entered, there was a faint scent of something I could not quite put my finger on but it was fragrant and made me feel at ease. This is what I found on their website when researching about the entire process. It looked interesting.
When I began my treatment, the staff brought me to a corner to read my EPS (Emotional Positioning System) and map my energy. The process was quite simple - all I had to do was to scan all my fingers and palm, and the results will be tabulated soon. When it was done, my consultant gave me a run down on my energy-readings and some of the readings shocked me because of how spot on they were about my anxiety regarding several things in my life. They further explained what each reading was related to, such as the Heart, Third Eye, Throat, Root and many more. There are 7 and they are referred to as the 7 major chakras. I'm not an expert but the staff made it super easy to me to understand. Everyone's condition is different so I highly suggest you get your own reading done.
Afterwards, it was time to customise my blend. My consultant showed me a wide array of customized blends. She recommended a few to me. Several ones that stand out include the Garnet and Amethyst blends but some are better suited for you than others!
Then it was time for my favourite part - the massage! The room was dimly lit and had the perfect atmosphere. The room was filled with the soothing scent of the Garnet essential oil that I picked and I loved it. My masseuse was also incredibly skilled. She made me feel relaxed and focused on creating the perfect experience for me. I almost fell asleep. I only didn't because I wanted to feel every single second of the massage, because it was that good!
Step 4 was unlike anything I've experience. She put a Tibetan singing bowl of water on my back and I don't know what she did but I felt slight vibrations as she used the Tibetan singing bowl. The room was quiet except the slight trickle of water from the singing bowl and since my eyes were closed, I could feel the vibrations travelling over my body. She placed it on different parts on my body. I assume this was due to the chakra points. And I was skeptical at first, but I really felt myself loosening up and slowing down. They truly helped me relax, reset and recentre myself.
252 North Bridge Road, #B2-24 Singapore 179103 City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 10:00AM - 9:00PM
Plagued with hairy legs, arms, armpits or privates? Don’t worry, because you’re not alone. While it’s great to embrace your natural self, sometimes you just really get the urge to shave and wax it all off so you can experience what it’s like to be hairless. I feel this way about my legs and my armpits. Luckily I was blessed with arm hairs that were finer and wasn’t very obvious so I never felt any need to get rid of it. However, the problem that comes with shaving is that over time, you realise that you’re agitating your skin with rough razors and causing micro-cuts that eventually leave semi-permanent dark abrasions. True, they sell whitening deodorants in the market but usually they cannot revert your skin to its original tone and well, waxing can be painful. However, with Strip’s AFT technology, you can rid yourself of any unwanted hair! The AFT (Advanced Fluorescence Technology) can actually eliminate up to 80% of your hair with comfort and minimal risk.
Furthermore, Strip can be considered the pioneer in waxing services in Singapore, who made waxing safe, hygienic and classy when it was deemed dodgy and painful! They have top hygiene standards so you never have to worry because you know you're always in safe hands, especially if you wish to get treatments done for your privates. Speaking of that, they are extreme advocates for vulva care and have products and treatments specifically for that! ladies, if you wish to pamper yourselves, you know where to go.
The place looked good, clean and modern. It shared an outlet with Browhaus i’m Funan Mall and I felt at ease approaching the staff. They seemed very knowledgeable and when it was my turn, i was led into this private room with the hair removal therapist. She laid me down on the bed and opened up a sealed plastic packet that contained a razor, towel and all the other equipment needed. I felt at ease that she was using new equipment instead of ones that have been used on others before, especially since Strip provides hair removal on privates.
She started off by shaving my hair with a razor very gently before dropping a dollop of cold gel on me. She spread the cold gel evenly and started up the AFT machine to zap away my hairs. Since this targets the root of the hair, over time, the hair will not grow as quickly as before. I liked the idea of this semi permanent hair removal! She used the machine on my leg, ensuring she aimed at the cold gel and it was painless! Other than a little bit of heat, it was extremely bearable. In fact, I wasn’t worried at all! And this all took maybe less than 30 minutes, which in my opinion, was really quick! After the session, she moisturised my leg and my leg felt really smooth. However, i understood that for the AFT treatment to really show the results of slower growing hair, I had to go back for treatments but I didn’t mind. The session was quick, easy and painless after all! Furthermore, the therapist made me feel at ease and comfortable. I will most definitely be going back to this pioneer in waxing services!
Funan Mall 107 North Bridge Road, Singapore 179105 (City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 10:00AM - 9:00PM
By now, I'm sure everyone knows the importance of our brows. If the eyes are the windows to our soul, then the eyebrows must be the curtains that accentuate and frame them. No matter how beautiful your window is, a great curtain will only serve to enhance the way it looks. Similarly, a drabby curtain will only be wasted on beautiful windows. Eyebrows truly can make or break a look. If you don't believe me, click here. If you did click, I hope you had a good laugh! A well-designed pair of brows really can transform your features and there is a lot more to a pair of brows than just shaving or plucking them. If you stress about a good haircut, you should put the same emphasis on your brows but I understand that many of you may not know the best place to start and might not even know what kind of brow shape, length and arch suits them. That's okay, because at Browhaus, they believe that there’s always a way to make your arches the best they will ever be. Whether you feel that your brows are too sparse or bushy, they will design them to enhance your best features. You will be surprised at what a pair of arches can do to complement your skin tone and hair colour. Browhaus is a good place to start and a good place to stay with to achieve morning-ready brows!
Browhaus shared an outlet with Strip at Funan and since they are under the same company, it wasn't really a surprise to me. The place was designed in a modern manner and the place was well lit with tons of mirrors. I suspect this was for customers to appreciate and admire their transformed brows after they were done. The staff were friendly and made me feel comfortable. With beauty services, it can be intimidating talking to staff about wanting to correct what you think is a flaw, because you need to bring attention to your insecurity when normally, you'd try your best to conceal and hide them out of sight. I did feel the insecurity at the beginning but my worries subsided when I was speaking to the reassuring staff about what could be done for me.
I decided to go for the Brow Resurrection and the Plasma Lift. The Plasma Lift was relaxing and painless! The Plasma Lift treatment delivers precise, controlled pulses of energy to the targeted area, regenerating skin cells to tackle the effects of time and I could really use this on the bottom of my eye, where my dark circles reside. Immediately after the treatment, my eye area brightened up significantly, making me look less tired. Since this was the first session, I knew I was not going to see drastic results but my eye area did look slightly firmer and I will most definitely be going back to continue my sessions. My therapist told me that customers usually see results on the third or fourth session and I really look forward to that!
After my eyes have been pampered, I went for eyebrow embroidery. What the Brow Resurrection does is create realistic hair strands from root to tip to give you perfect brows and this is a technique that is unique only to Browhaus! This treatment uses an advance embroidery technique to create natural-looking strokes, resulting in a finer finish. Before getting started, the brow therapists asked me for my preferences before making suggestions based on my face shape, features and hair colour. I preferred a natural look and was worried that it might come out too artificial looking but my worries subsided when I saw the final look. It truly did transform my features and made me look more put together. This was going to save me so much time in the morning! The session was relaxing and suspiciously painless! I kept waiting for the pain but it never came! My experience here was truly enjoyable and I felt very pampered. Being vain can be an expression of self-love, girls! I do recommend you all to check out Browhaus and show some pampering to your eyes, eyelashes and eyebrows.
Funan Mall 107 North Bridge Road #04-19 TO 21 Singapore 179105 (Nearest MRT City Hall)
Mon - Sun: 10:00AM - 9:00PM
Playparks always look fun, regardless of what age you are. The kids always look like they're having the time of their life and it's not long before you think to yourself "Wow, if only I could join them." Well...you can because SuperPark is the friendliest all-in-one indoor activity park you will ever come across. Originating from Finland, SuperPark was actually the result of a frustrated parent, who had to follow his child into a playpark, only to be unable to follow through the kid-sized spaces. I think all parents can relate to the back pains from crawling into a play space for kids because you had to supervise or play with them. With over 20 activities over 2 levels in Suntec City Mall, SuperPark truly is the playpark for all ages!
I could feel the excitement even before I entered the playpark. SuperPark had a very distinctive purple theme going on, which I kinda liked. Getting the tickets from the counter, we were all given wristbands to wear. These wristbands are your ticket to enter and leave the playpark but they don't just allow you access to the playpark, it also allows you access to a locker! This is great because usually with playparks, you see parents or the designated guardian sitting outside, taking care of everyone's belongings while the rest enter and have the time of their lives in the playpark. Here, at SuperPark, that occurrence is significantly reduced and I could really see that they really thought it through and were planning to deliver when they dubbed themselves the friendliest activity park.
The lockers were decently sized and to gain access, you just needed to scan your wristband on the touchscreen. You can open and close it as many times you'd like as long as you have the wristband with you. We took off our shoes, put it on the shoe ranks, donned our SuperPark socks and excitedly entered!
The place was massive! Spanning 2 levels and housing 20 over activities, there was a go-kart track, supersized arcade games such as pin ball, a football net, a basketball court, a rock climbing wall, trampoline park and even a skate park! An air-conditioned, indoor skate park! Can you imagine? All of the staff were trained and super friendly as well! We had a blast trying out all the different stations. There was even a baseball batting machine and a huge slide.
The skate park had skateboards and scooters for us to use. We had to don protective gear and given a brief safety run down by the staff before we were allowed to enter. The staff even showed us some skateboard tricks. It felt nice to know that someone who knew what they were doing and experienced in the sport were looking over us and the many other guests of all ages.
SuperPark also incorporated technology in most of their stations, At the rock climbing wall, we could use the touch screen to gain access to a bunch of games. One of them was where you'd set up a route and the person on the rock wall would have to attempt to tap on the buttons in order from button 1 to 5. The buttons were projected onto the rock wall and we'd have to climb and tap them. It was fun and of course I deviously put the buttons as high as I could so I could see my friends struggle to reach them. We had a blast!
We were all also extremely stoked to visit the football court. It has a net with an AI goalkeeper, named the Robokeeper. This AI goalkeeper once had Messi as his opponent and guess what? The AI won! We walked up all gung ho to kick the ball and all of us were trashed by the goalkeeper. It really got our competitive spirits high. You could change the level to suit your age and competency and we cranked it all the way up to test our lucks!
Our experience at this playpark for all ages was unbelievably fun. It checked all our boxes and most importantly of all, I could tell that they took their safety seriously too! Despite it being a playpark for all ages, they made sure that they did not sacrifice safety to make it more fun for the teens or the adults. I will most definitely be coming back.
#02-477, Suntec City (North Wing), 3 Temasek Boulevard, Tower 1, 038989 (City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 10:00AM - 9:00PM
Tours and guided tours leave a sour taste in my mouth. I'm a tour skeptic. When you think of tours, you think of tight schedules and not having enough time to stay longer at certain places you're interested in because you've got to follow the group. Your time becomes a collective of everyone's time and you've to learn to share. Tours often include you tirelessly walking to endless destinations, only to stay for way less time than you'd prefer, and then having to rush off to the next. That really isn't the best way you'd like to experience your holiday destination, isn't it? Well, here's a tour you can feel rest assured with because it promises a pleasant, informative and unique land and sea experience that does not include any of the above mentioned inconveniences - the Duck Tours
You no longer have to worry about walking tirelessly because you enjoy the tour right from the comfort of their Duck vehicle. Endearingly painted to resemble a duck, it is actually a refurbished Vietnam War-era amphibious vehicle. Yes, you've read it right - it most certainly can be used on land and on water, and I especially loved that they refurbished a vehicle. instead of building new ones because sustainability, am I right? A Singapore Tourism Award Winning Attraction, it also holds an impressive 17-year safety record and have had more than 1 million passengers, so I was truly able to go on this tour with a peace of mind.
English guided tours depart every hour from 10:00am to 6:00pm daily and Mandarin guided tours depart at 10:30am, 11:30am, 12:30pm, 3:30pm, 4:30pm, 5:30pm daily. You can make reservations by their guest hotline at +65 6338 6877 (9am to 6pm) or sending them a Whatsapp/WeChat/SMS at +65 9321 7400. You can also try your luck by going down directly to buy tickets!
I decided to go for the English tour and we were required to be there 30 minutes before the vehicle departed just to purchase our tickets and maybe take some photos with the stationary duck vehicle. There was also a mini souvenir shop beside the counter and everything inside is duck-themed. There were soft toys, mugs, home slippers and even a whistle, which emitted a duck sound when you blow on it! I was sold on the whistle and definitely had to get one. It was shaped like a duck's beak and it was just adorable!
When we boarded the vehicle, a tour guide entered the vehicle with us. The tour guide with me was named "James" and he was an absolute delight to have on the trip. As you might've guessed, I truly did not expect to be wow-ed by this tour or even enjoy myself but surprisingly, I did! I sat nearer to the front and saw a sign on top that stated the Duck vehicle's name, which was a cute touch. I definitely chuckled.
James greeted us all and started to give us the run down on the safety stuff and begun his introduction of Singapore. We drove from Suntec towards Marina Bay, where James welcomed us tourists to Singapore and gave us some fun facts about our Mass Rapid Transit (MRT). His speech was clear and he was articulate. I never felt like I couldn't understand him or like he was at a loss for words. He knew his Singapore. I imagined he must've memorised this long monologue about all the facts that he would tell us on this tour and he delivered it perfectly, without making it a bore, which in of itself was already quite an impressive feat.
Before we knew it, we had reached Marina Bay. James asked us to brace ourselves and we did a splash-in to the waters of Marina Bay. It was honestly a fun experience. We all squealed as the vehicle picked up speed and splashed into the waters.
We then went down all the way to the Merlion Park, going past Marina Bay Sands, Gardens By The Bay, The F1 building and many more. We had equal opportunities to snap photos and James offered to help us all take photos on our mobile phones. As we waddled past the landmarks in the water, James gave us many fun facts about the place and I think what I liked best about his speech was that even though it was clearly rehearsed, he didn't bombard us with information. He made sure to engage us and include us. It was almost like a conversation.
We went back up on land and drove past the Singapore Flyer and into the Civic District where we saw the Civic Gallery, the War Memorial Park and many more, before we returned back to Suntec.
The entire journey took an hour but honestly, time flew past. It was an enjoyable tour and I didn't dread a minute of it! Duck Tours really do provide a unique sea and land adventure and I'm glad I took the step to give this tour a chance. I would definitely recommend this tour to anyone visiting Singapore and want to cruise past iconic landmarks and learn all about them within the comfort and confines of a vehicle. It's a very worth-it 1 hour tour!
3 Temasek Boulevard #01-330 Suntec Shopping Mall, 038983 (City Hall MRT)
Mon - Sun: 9:00AM - 6:30PM
I'm sure many of you are familiar with VR, with games such as Beat Saber blowing up online. However, the problem with these games is that you'd have to cash out a huge amount of money to buy yourself the set up and then buy the game to experience the VR gaming experience at home, alone. There are many limitations to playing at home, with space being a huge factor. You'd move two steps and end up breaking your mother's prized vase! With Zero Latency, you never have to worry about any of that! Zero Latency originated from Australia and has captured the hearts of its visitors by providing a one-of-a-king virtual reality gaming experience, catapulting themselves onto the world stage and setting up venues across the globe. Naturally, they've come to Singapore to give us a taste of the adrenaline that comes with their free-roaming, multiplayer virtual reality concept.
What this means is that you can freely move around this large space, wearing the VR equipment on you. Using their state-of-the-art wireless technology and motion tracking, it'll be just like you've entered the game world and you've truly stepped into the shoes of the protagonist in game. What's even better is that you can experience this with friends!
There were a number of game stories and packages we could select.
Sol Raiders (approx. 15mins)
This was a PvP (Player VS Player) competitive team-based shooter experience where you'd explore the 3 unique maps raiding of Sol - a valuable power source. This map is set in a post-apocalyptic future where technology is advanced beyond understanding. The last remnants of humanity are travelling the universe in search of new worlds and new wealth, and in this case you've just stumbled across Sol with your team and unfortunately, you enemies. Team up with your friends and fight it out!
Engineerium (approx. 15 mins)
Engineerium is a laid back gaming experience, perfect for those who need some extra time to get used to the VR experience. You can walk among flying whales and parrot rays and connect the platforms to progress through the puzzle. Characters are bright and colourful, and friendly music accompany you along this trippy journey. Teamwork is key in this unique virtual reality game that lets you walk up and down ramps and twisty, curvy walls, defying gravity. Engineerium is suitable for all ages and is the first game to use VR to experience physics based puzzles, which means this will be both a fun and educational experience.
Zombie Survival (approx. 15 mins)
Zombie Survival is my personal favourite. If you game often and you've heard of or played through popular franchises such as Resident Evil and Left For Dead, this experience will not lose out to those! Zombie Survival is an intense and immersive VR experience for those wanting to test their zombie apocalypse survival skills. You’ll need to work with your team to fend off swarms of ruthless zombies, rebuild defensive barriers and hope you can survive long enough for help to arrive. Will you survive or will you succumb to the deadly virus?
Singularity (approx. 30 mins)
Singularity is also set in a futuristic world where you've to battle robotic enemies with four weapon modes (scatter, beam, pulse rifle, or rail gun), all powerful enough to obliterate anything in your path. You’ll also be equipped with a deployable force shield that’ll keep you protected under heavy fire. To survive, work together with your team and find the answers you’re looking for. Why are the robots after you? Find out!
Outbreak Origins (approx. 30mins)
Outbreak Origin has the strongest storyline out of the 5, A deadly virus is wreaking havoc, creating hordes of zombies that are taking over the cities. Your squad needs to do something quick! Prepare yourself for epic battles on your mission. Will you find the truth behind this outbreak or will you be another casualty?
These are the package details.
Package 1: 1 x Zombie Survival + 1 x Engineerium ($59/person)
Package 2: 1 x Singularity ($59/person)
Package 3: 2 x Zombie Survival ($59/person)
Package 4: 1 x Outbreak Origins ($59/person)
Package 5: 2x Sol Raiders ($59/person)
I recommend package 1 if you think you'd need some time to get used to the VR world before throwing yourself into danger but if you're confident enough, you can always try any of the other packages! I went for Package 3!
Entering Zero Latency, the place was dark and the atmosphere promised of a fun time. The staff were all very friendly and as excited as you are to let you undergo their experience. First, we registered on iPads at the side and then we were ushered into the briefing room.
In the briefing room, we were given a brief introduction of the game stories we've chosen and some house rules. We were taught how to use the equipment and how to wear them. As we all geared up for the experience, the excitement was buzzing in the air.
We were handed a backpack looking thing to wear. Apparently, it was a military-grade backpack that contains a high-performance Alienware PC gaming computer, and this was what powered our free-roam experience. We donned the backpack and it was okay. Not too uncomfortable or heavy.
We were then given the VR headset to wear and this is what would be transporting us to the game world. We were also given Razer headphones to wear so that we could truly immerse ourselves. Then, we were given a custom-made simulated weapon. It was in the form of a gun, with reload buttons and pumps as well! It wasn't too heavy and the grip felt just right.
We were then escorted into the game room, which was essentially a large empty room. I felt safe to know I won't be knocking into anything anytime soon. Furthermore, in game, it'd show you warnings when you're too close to your friends or close to a real-life wall. When the game started, I truly forgot that we were in a game. It felt so real and it was amazing and horrifying at the same time, seeing zombies rush to you. The sense of achievement of actually aiming and moving away was amazing. With the headset, you can communicate with your friends as well and at one point of time, we were all just screaming in panic and excitement!
This is truly an experience that you cannot miss. Bring your friends down to try out the VR gaming experience brought to you by Zero Latency.
3 Temasek Boulevard #03-346 (between Tower 2 and 3 Suntec City Mall, 038983 (Promenade MRT/City Hall MRT)
Mon - Fri: 11:00AM - 10:00PM
Sat: 10:00AM - 11:00PM
Sun: 10:00AM - 10:00PM