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Escape to: Singapore

Delicious as it is diverse

by SHFamily | Mon, September 25, 2017

Swing over to Singapore for a holiday that's as delicious as it is diverse. Amidst the iron trees and abundance of flavors, Singapore sits as a culinary Mecca shrouded in tropical greenery. Whether you're here for the food, the views or the melding of cultures, Miranda Yu highlights some of what this multi-faceted gem has to offer.

Culture

Little India

Heritage sites are sprinkled throughout the colorful, winding streets of Little India. Upon arriving, take a moment in Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, one of Singapore’s oldest Hindu landmarks. Wander into another space and time as you weave through the streets, mingling with the scent of curry, fresh roti and flowers. Here, stands sell traditional patterned fabrics, scarves, hot cups of chai or henna tattoos; and right in the center, you’ll find Little India Arcade, carrying it all. You won’t want to leave this compact series of alleyways without purchasing some aromatic herbs and spices for your pantry back home. Be sure to stop by Moghul Sweet Shop for a sugary snack to power you through. 

Nature

Park Singapore

If you’ve visited the famous Gardens by the Bay, Sungei Buloh is the next best place to get up close with nature. This wetland reserve is just an hour away from the city by car and boasts a 500-meter long boardwalk that takes you through the mangrove swamps. Avid bird-watchers will appreciate the Aerie Tower – an 18-meter tall bird watching observatory that will also give you a great view of the park. Head over on Saturdays at 9:30am for a free guided walking tour, where you should be on the lookout for tree-climbing crabs and mud lobsters. You can even take art classes in the reserve itself, bringing home a little piece of the park with you. www.nparks.gov.sg/sbwr

Eat

Singapore Laksa

Singaporean cuisine is a melting pot of culture, heavily influenced by Chinese, Malaysian, Indian, Thai and Peranakan cuisine. While options are endless, there are a few dishes you’d be worse for missing out on: the chili crab is a messy, rich and wonderful staple, while curry laksa and hokkien mee, or udon-like egg noodles with seafood, are two casual must-tries. Hainan chicken rice and the lesser-known chicken clay pot rice are another two local favorites that will leave you happy and full. For a no-frills food tour, find most of these delicacies in the Maxwell Road Hawker Center, boasting over 100 stalls to choose from and conveniently located in the Central Business District. For a cleaner, more contemporary experience, head to Candlenut on Dempsey Road – the first Michelin-starred Peranakan restaurant. comodempsey.sg/restaurant/candlenut

Drink

Singapore Drink

While there are no shortage of places to imbibe, not all alcoholic beverages are created equal. At Tippling Club in the Central Business District, cocktails are specifically crafted to evoke your childhood through sensory memory, and patrons are encouraged to choose based on scent, not spirit. USD 16 (¥107) will get you an aromatic affair with grass, rain and campfires, matched with tastes that will do more than surprise. For those who prefer wine over spirits, head to Caveau Bar, offering over 250 labels mostly from the French regions of Bordeaux, Burgundy and Rhone. If you’re craving something from the groves of California’s West Coast, the heavily bodied Napa Valley Zinfandel won’t disappoint at USD 18 (¥120) a glass. tipplingclub.com; caveaubar.com.sg

Sleep

Singapore Sleep

Right next to Clifford Pier, The Fullerton Bay Hotel – not to be confused with the Fullerton Hotel two blocks away – is the perfect stay if you’re looking to indulge in this city’s glitz and glamor. Situated in the Central Business District of the Marina Bay, the hotel’s unforgettable views are its number one selling point. Overlooking the financial district and the bay, between the decadent rooms and the rooftop Lantern Bar, you’ll never find yourself short of engaging scenery. If you’re traveling with the kids, their booking packages offer deals on excursions to family friendly places like Adventure Cove Water Park on Sentosa island (usual entry price ¥186/adults, ¥147/child), while their notoriously warm and attentive staff makes the hotel a perfect home away from home this vacation. For an extra-special stay though, book one of their rooms with an ensuite, private bayside jacuzzi. fullertonhotels.com/the-fullerton-bay-hotel