Like you probably know, blogger is not my job, I’m a legal counsel and reconcile the two is not easy especially when I’m invited to some blog trips. I don’t have an unlimited number of vacation leaves so I cannot accept everything, however tempting these blog trips proposals might be and I need to keep some days off to go on holidays with the Boyfriend.
But, there are some offers that you can’t refuse like Singapore!
Why that? Because there are so many countries in the world that I’d like to visit, Singapore wasn’t on top of my list (same thing for South Korea, if my brother hadn’t lived there, I would had probably never went there) and this opportunity will probably not come around again.
If I accepted this trip it was also because it was different from what I’m used to, it was about traveling alone! Interface Tourism launched « Singapore Live » project. The purpose of this project was to send 10 bloggers from different countries of Europe to Singapore at different periods of time and to prepare a “custom-made”programme according to their interests to provide an overall picture of what there is to see and to do at Singapore.
This trip was such a great experience for me, it was the 1st time I was travelling alone but Singapore was also a huge surprise, I wasn’t expecting it to look like this! This country/city is generally a transit destination (I’m not talking about intestinal transit even thought you’d better have a good one because in Singapore they eat all the time) but it deserves to be more than just a stopover and I will train to explain to you why through several blog posts.
I’m gonna begin with the fact that going to Singapore is a true change of scenery and it has a rich cultural diversity that you can find nowhere else. In a few meters you have the impression to have crossed China and India to end in an Arab area. First, let’s go to Chinatown!
It was the 1st time I took a flight from Singapore Airlines, known to be one of the best airplane company in the world! The service was really nice and the seats were confortable even in economy class. After a 12 hour flight, I finally arrived at Changi airport.
Each room is decorated by a different designer so they all are different. Here are some pictures of mine to give you a better idea of the offbeat universe.
Yes, that’s right, I had 2 bathtubs just for me!
It looks pretty different from most hotel rooms isn’t it? I’ve also visited the rest of the hotel and as you can see, we like a lot bathtubs and design chairs here. :)
Look at this swimming pool, isn’t it beautiful? And it was awesome because I was always all alone!
If you’re looking for a well located hotel in Singapore but you want to avoid big international hotels, the New Majestic Hotel is made for you!
New Majestic Hotel -31–37 Bukit Pasoh Road, Singapore
The area around the hotel is also worth seeing. If you expected Singapore to be sad and superficial, with only grey skyscrapers, just look at the pictures above and I think you will immediately change your mind.
Bukit Pasoh Road (the road of the New Majestic Hotel)
Keong Saik Road (the road behind the hotel)
In Singapore there are so many colorful shophouses, it is worth just as much as Notting Hill and even less as our French rue Crémieux. Singapore = an Instagram city! There are also old tiles everywhere, and you know how obsessed I am with old tiles! I’m sure you’re surprised by Singapore, you weren’t expecting that were you? And you didn’t see everything yet, you will probably be more and more surprised (at least I hope so) but several of you who are following me on Snapchat told me during my trip that they weren’t expecting Singapore to be that beautiful and interesting.
Club Street is a trendy district very popular for expats. You can fin here a lot of bars and chic restaurants.
In Chinatown you can also find buddhist temples of course. I’ve visited 2 of them, the first one was Thian Hock Keng Temple, one of the oldest buddhist temple of Singapore.
Thian Hock Keng Temple – Telok Ayer Street – SINGAPORE
The 2nd one was the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, it’s a sanctuary on 5 floors reached by 2 elevators (it’s pretty weird to see them in a temple) where there is an alleged Buddha tooth replica.In the main room, the faithful pray and make offerings, on the upper floors there are exhibitions which tell the history of the temple and its construction and on the roof there’s a pagoda with an orchid garden!
Budda Tooth Relic Temple – 288, South Bridge Road – SINGAPORE
Beside these colorful shophouses and buddhist temples, there are a lot of traditional restaurants in Chinatown and souvenir shops.
The fruit you can see on the picture above is called “durian”, it’s a South East Asian fruit. It’s known for its bad smell (trust me, it stinks so bad that it’s forbidden in some public places) but I’ve managed to forget about its smell to taste it. The taste was not as bad as the smell, but I didn’t think it was anything good either…
Now, here are some addresses where I’ve been.
I had lunch at the restaurant Ember which is inside Hôtel 1929, another Unlisted Collection hotel. The food was refined and delicious despite the fact that the flavors combined in these meals were odd for a European like me like this dessert made of beer sorbet (it was more specifically Tiger Beer, the local beer), pineapple chunks and… « lap cheong » a Chinese dry and smoked sausage! It was suprisingly good!
Ember restaurant – 50 Keong Saik Rd, Singapore
Just next to it there is Potato Head Folk, a restaurant on 4 floors in an Art Deco building. I loved the crazy decoration that is changing depending on the floor. Here you can have a nice burger or a cocktail on the rooftop.
Potato Head Folk – 36 Keong Saik Rd, Singapore
One evening, I met Tahiana (Le blog d’Olive) who used to live close to me and who is now living in Singapore with her husband. It was so great to talk to her about her new life, her impressions about this country, the difficulties she’s experiencing. We met in a small restaurants behind my hotel called Kok Sen. The decoration there is surely not a priority but the food is and that’s what is the most important. It’s known to be one of the best Singapore « Tze Chars » (a Chinese place where you can eat cheaply).
Kok Sen – 30 Keong Saik Rd, Singapore
In the trendy area of Club Street there is Bar A Thym, a French restaurant which offers a mix of mediterranean and Japanese cuisine. It was so good! Usually I don’t go to French restaurants when I’m travelling because I like eating local but I don’t regret it because it wasn’t just French food, it really was original.
Bar A Thym – 18 Gemmill Lane – Singapore
Finally, I tasted the local specialty: kaya toasts. It’s toasted sandwich bread with salted butter and spread with coconut marmelade. One of the famous place to get them is Ya Kun Kaya Toast. To be totally honest with you I didn’t like it that much but try it to shape your own opinion (it’s the 2nd time in this post that I talk to you about food that I didn’t really like, you’re gonna think that I didn’t like the food in Singapore but it’s so not the case, you will see in the next blog posts).
That’s it for today, next week I will take you to the Malay quarter and to Little India for a true change of scenery! Anyway, I hope you liked this 1st blog post and that it made you want to know more about it.
Have a nice weekend folks!