This isn’t a hippy outfit, though the posters of creative patterns worked into buzz cuts on the shop’s wall-to-wall glass windows may suggest otherwise. This hair salon prides itself on using plant-based, ammonia-free hair products (ranging from shampoo to hair dye), hence the name, Natural Organic Salon.
Costs: Vary according to the length of hair. Hair colouring starts from $60, perming from $70 and rebonding from $100.
Where: 1 Thomson Ridge
Contact: 6556 0521, www.nossalon.com
When: Daily 10am-8pm
Royal Petique Pte Ltd
Owner Roi Tay was way ahead of the game when he set up this pet-grooming outfit 16 years ago. The shop offers day-care and grooming services for your canine and feline friends, as well as a range of pet-related products and accessories. They also have a studio where you can get your furry friends photographed for posterity. A delivery service is available as well, with charges waived for purchases of $50 and above.
Where: #01-07, Tower 1 Sin Ming Plaza, 2 Sin Ming Rd
Contact: 6456 8233/9231 8448
When: Daily 10am-7pm
If you aren’t conversant in Korean you are pretty much on your own, as Sharon, the manager, speaks very little English. Luckily, the shelves of this small, neatly arranged store are stacked with translated Korean favourites. Look out for wakame laver, dang myun noodles or sweet potato vermicelli, tuna in bulgogi sauce, hot pepper paste, their traditional Korean rice cake Topoki, and all manner of snacks such as Korean barbecue-flavoured ramen, prawn crackers and Lotte candies.
Where: #01-04 Thomson Imperial Court, 200 Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6352 0447/9177 8450
When: Mon-Fri 9.30am-9.30pm; Sat 10am-9pm; Sun & public holidays noon-8pm
Heng Soon Pawn Shop
This neighbourhood fixture stands out in a row mostly dominated by food shops. A family business since 1976, pawn items fetch as much as $20,000 – when cash-strapped yuppies bring in their branded watches – to as little as $20 for a single gold earstud.
Where: 244K Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6459 3298
When: Mon-Fri 9am-5pm; Sat 9am-1pm
At Ming’s everybody knows your name, and even if they don’t, they will soon. This friendly neighbourhood hangout has been around for 18 years. Attracting a strong following of regulars, made up mostly of 30-plus locals with a smattering of expats. Beyond nursing a cold one, patrons can try their hand at a game of pool, shoot some darts or just karaoke (English songs only) the night away. On Saturday nights, sit easy and be entertained by the live band.
Where: 195 Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6251 3187
When: Mon-Thu 4pm-1am; Fri, Sat & public holiday 4pm-2am
This new indie-on-the-block, open since January, has already won brownie points with neighborhood diners for its tasty North Indian cuisine, affordable prices and above-average service. The menu offers a good selection of vegetarian, chicken, mutton and seafood stews as well as an array of rice and naan.
Where: #01-03 Thomson Imperial Court, 200 Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6255 4730, www.spicesutra.com
When: Tue-Sun 11am-2.30pm; 6-10.30pm
Hankook Rice Cake House
This neat corner shop, an extension of Auntie Kim’s Korean Restaurant down the road, sells traditional Korean rice cakes made on-site. Expatriate Koreans flock here for the authentic selection of rice cakes with fillings like red bean, peanut with sesame seed and pumpkin seed with red bean.
Where: 9 Thomson Ridge
Contact: 6456 3456
When: Daily 11am-5pm
Fashion in Thomson? Surely you jest. Laugh all you want, but here you’ll find racks of colourful, grungy threads imported directly from Hong Kong, Japan, Paris and Italy. Check out HK designer Chau Ming’s creations that are sold here exclusively. The collection, marked by updated oriental designs, effuses bright colours and heavily features those familiar woven buttons. Customers can also request for modifications to be made.
Where: #01-21/29 Thomson Plaza, 301 Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6459 2893
When: Daily 11.30am-8.30pm
Lego enthusiasts can find a treasure trove of new and out-of-production Lego sets here. They stock perennial favourites like Star Wars sets, collectors’ items and vintage sets. Hard-to-find spare parts are also sold here, so customers can replenish their missing building blocks. If you are hunting for sets that are not produced or sold in Singapore, the shop is more than happy to help you place an order.
Where: #01-18 Thomson Plaza, 301 Upper Thomson Rd
Contact: 6552 4338
When: Daily 9.30am-9.30pm