What's on in Singapore this week
Dancing queens and kings, if you just can't get enough of Zouk's mambo nights as much as we do, then here's some good news. The retro club night is back featuring all of your favourite '80s to '90s classics. So, dust off your dancing shoes and get ready to boogie 'til dawn to ABBA, Salt-N-Pepa and Bella Heart's 'Hey Mickey'.
Can you name all the animated the flicks from this American movie giant? If the answer’s yes, then this one’s for you. Join the 5km fun run with the fam or kick back at the carnival featuring photo ops with your favourite characters like Shrek, and a Kung Fu Panda-inspired rock wall.
Geylang Serai Bazaar 2017
Brace yourselves for the heat – and a grease feast – as you flock to the annual food market to binge on Ramly burgers, otah-otah and other sinful street snacks (err, candyfloss burritos and 'rainbow planet' ice cream buns, anybody?). Keep an eye out for massive Instagram-worthy installations inspired by the Malay culture and heritage, including a 4.4m-tall wau display, planted along the stretch. There's also plenty of activities held in conjunction with the market, such as free movie screenings, gigs, a pop-up museum and a heritage race, where participants can learn more about Hari Raya celebrations as they dash around the precinct. The bazaar spans around the Geylang Serai market, Joo Chiat Complex and along Haig Road, from May 25 to June 24. The official light-up ceremony is on May 20.
Istana Nature Guided Walk
For five times a year — that’s Chinese New Year, Hari Raya Puasa, Labour Day, National Day, and Deepavali — the Istana opens its gates to the public. This year, aside from touring the Istana Main Building (for a small fee), you can also take guided tours through the gardens (also with a small fee). Use this opportunity to teach the little ones about flora and fauna, and maybe learn a bit about our history while you’re at it.
Yayoi Kusama: Life is the Heart of a Rainbow
She’s famed for her iconic polka dots and pumpkin motifs – and you’ll get to admire an extensive collection of Yayoi Kasuma’s works with over 120 paintings, installations, videos and sculptures on display alongside the Japanese artist’s experiential infinity mirror rooms. It all comes together in an examination of the societal and personal challenges that Kusama’s overcome to create an impact in the world of art.
New restaurants and bars in SG
Guenpin Fugu and Snow Crab Japanese Restaurant
Japan’s largest pufferfish restaurant chain with 96 outlets, Guenpin, has opened its first overseas outlet here. Specialising in Tora-fugu – the highest grade of fugu in the market – the restaurant serves it sashimi-style ($28), grilled ($48) or in a hot pot ($55) with its signature ponzu sauce. Aside from pufferfish, Guenpin also carries Japanese snow crab that you can have fried or grilled. A five-course pufferfish menu that feeds one to two people starts from $88, while set lunches with items such as a snow crab tempura rice bowl go from $19.90.
Bird Bird (new location)
Singapore's cheekiest chef is at it again – Bjorn Shen's Bird Bird moves from the CBD to the eastern 'hood of Frankel. The humble chicken ($29/$49) takes centre-stage. Choose from three flavours: Southern fried chicken served with a side of thick gravy, Bangkok fried chicken tossed with lemongrass, kaffir lime and garlic, and Lebanese fried chicken coated in honey, lemon and a sprinkle of za’atar. If that's still not enough, complement your chick with a bevvy of sides including mac and cheese, milk-braised pork doughnuts or a healthier selection of salads to help ease the guilt of the sinful meal. Be sure to leave room for dessert – the durian softie pie is a winner with its medley of textures, but if you're not a fan of the pungent fruit, there's also a range of doughnuts glazed in honey buttercream and other unique flavours.
No monkey business, only seriously good Indian food and cocktails at this joint on Bussorah Street. Served tapas-style, expect bites like tandoori chicken ($10) and tulsi cod ($15) fresh from the on-site tandoor. For big plates, the Nalli Gosht ($26) is a lamb shank dish that’s simmered overnight in a creamy peanut and cashew curry ‘til the meat falls off the bone. The cocktails are infused with Indian flavours, too. Expect drinks like the Goa Mamma Lassi – an alcoholic twist on the classic mango lassi – featuring a mix of mango, passion fruit, Aylesbury Vodka, Plantation Dark Rum, milk and yogurt.
Ding Dong (new menu)
This contemporary South-East Asian restaurant by The Spa Esprit group is all things cheeky and fun. Dishes lean towards local comfort food, with items such as rendang beef brisket buns ($21) inspired by chef Miller Mai's grandmother's recipe, and the crispy pork trotter ($29) served with spiced vinegar that's large enough to share among three. Large plates like the pork collar char siu ($26) and lobster tail in tom yum broth ($30) can be shared or had as a main with a plate of steamed rice.
An à la carte dim sum menu is available during weekday lunch, and on weekends, head down for a brunch buffet that has a selection of over 50 dishes at only $39 for adults and $19 for the little ones. Expect staples such as siew mai with abalone and shrimp dumplings, as well as unique creations like deep fried taro paste wrapped in truffle and mushroom. Don’t miss chef Leong Chee Yeng’s signature osmanthus char siew bao, either – the fluffy steamed buns are meaty and bear a hint of floral fragrance that perfumes each bite. Modern Canto classics are also served in individual portions, including its eight signature dishes – the crispy roasted pork belly and sauteed diced beef tenderloin are exquisitely prepared using traditional and often labour-intensive cooking methods.
Pretty cakes paired with exquisite teas, all housed in a beautifully decorated space adorned with handpainted floral murals – that's what you can expect from Nesuto Patisserie. Helmed by Alicia Wong, the head pastry chef who's spent five years in Capella's kitchen, Nesuto serves cakes, entremets and plated desserts alongside tea pairings by Antea Social. Our favourites include the Noisette Rocher, Wong's take on a Ferrero Rocher made from hazelnut praline mousse, Guanaja 70% ganache and a caramalised hazelnut feuilletine for an added crunch. For something lighter, opt for the yuzu raspberry. The light yuzu meringue and delicate Japanese cotton sponge feel like a cloud on the tongue, with a slight tartness from the raspberries coming through.
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Telok Ayer may have taken its name from the Malay community (it translates to ‘bay’ and ‘water’, respectively), but the area was mainly populated by Chinese immigrants back in the day. Originally a coastal road situated along the island’s old waterfront, the street has transformed itself into a buzzing lifestyle district, teeming with restaurants and bars to feed the CBD office crowd. Pay a visit to one of the museums around the area or pop into the lean shophouses that dot the strip, where boutiques, gyms and a dance studio are tucked away. RECOMMENDED: Check out our guide to the Ann Siang Hill area
Anyone who tells you Amoy Street is 'boring' has clearly never stepped foot down the lane before. Because trust us, it's the complete opposite of that. Previously known for its opium-smoking dens during the British colonial era, the shophouses lined along this one-way street now house chic cafés, bars and even gyms. But if you'd like to have a taste of Singaporean flavour, hit up the hawker centre in the area that's always buzzing with people. RECOMMENDED: Check out our guide to the Ann Siang Hill area
The small stretch between Club Street and Amoy Street – whose namesake is 19th-century banker John Gemmill – is home to a handful of stylish restaurants and bars, making it the perfect spot for a laid-back hangout. Don't stop at the end of the road either, the back alley of Amoy Street has a few hidden restaurants to wind down at for an after-work dinner and drinks sesh. RECOMMENDED: Check out our guide to the Ann Siang Hill area
Ann Siang Road and Club Street
Named after Chia Ann Siang, a wealthy businessman, Ann Siang road is home to restored shophouses (some are still decorated with Peranakan tiles) that house clan associations, restaurants, bars and niche boutiques. There’s also a hidden green space behind the row of shophouses for a quiet stroll. On Friday and Saturday nights from 7pm to 1am, both Ann Siang Road and Club Street – the name comes from the Chinese clubs that used to line the stretch – come to life as the area is closed off to traffic and the crowd spills out onto the streets. RECOMMENDED: Check out our guide to the Ann Siang Hill area