Category Archives: Singapore

Singapore night

We met some friends from the US in Singapore last week. I had the privilege of showing them around. A few pictures from our two nights in town…

The Fullerton hotel has one of the best views in the city. This is a shot from the rooftop bar looking towards the Marina Bay Sands.

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Gentlemen playing a board game in the park. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose.

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The temple is sacred…

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Caught this young man repairing a temple…

Oldman_-6we are on our way to Thailand… I love Thailand. If this location is on your bucket list, make it happen…

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Most Expensive City in the World

Recently Singapore has been bestowed upon itself as the most expensive city in the world taking the number one spot from Tokyo. This bequeathness (yeah i know this is not a word) is false and determined by the cost of housing and owning an automobile in this wonderful city. For the average traveler, like you and I, Singapore is as cheap as they come, you just need to know where to look.

Along with my friend Ms. E. we are here again in Singapore by chance, and any chance to get to Singapore I’m going to take it.

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Chopstick Store

Chopstick Store

Buda Tooth Temple

Buda Tooth Temple

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Buda Tooth temple

Buda Tooth temple

Marina Bay Gardens at night

Marina Bay Gardens at night

Some of the cleanest hostels in Asia will be found here in Singapore like the Backpackers Inn in China town, $25 a night. A wide range of  hotels can be found for any budget like our room at the Bliss Hotel $70 a night, next to it is the Hotel 81 for $85 a night. Of course if you want to see what a $300 dollar room is like in Singapore see this post here.

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 Gondola ride to Sentosa Island…

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A passenger in our Gondola...

A passenger in our Gondola…

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Therefore, except for the hotel and gondola ride, everything you have seen thus far is free for the traveler and there is so much more. See the other posts on Singapore if you are so inclined.

The food is so good and so cheap like this place the Osaka Ohsho. You order off an iPad and your Gyoza is prepared fresh and delivered ASAP. At $8 this is the best Ramen and Gyoza outside of Tokyo, hands down, take my word for it, it is so good, go here…Singapore022014-116-1Singapore022014-121Heading back to the US for a short visit… Dave

 

In pursuit of the secret recipe to the Singapore Sling Part II

Singapore day 2 and my one main goal is to investigate this so-called drink known as the Singapore Sling. So, if you only have 48 hours in Singapore plan ahead and don’t never every deviate from your scheduled itinerary or you may certainly not get back on track or worse, miss out on a planned event.

“Hey look!” My friend Ms. E. shouts.

I turn and see this sign pictured below. “A toy museum, oh for joy!” Well the best-laid plans are always altered, right?

If you love toys, old toys, toys from your childhood or grandparents childhood, this is the place.

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What I wouldn't give for one of these !!!

What I wouldn’t give for one of these !!!

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There was so much in the toy museum it is well worth a stop.

Okay, back on track, now where were we…

“Hey look!” There she goes again, and so off we go, completely not according to my plan.

“Not on the schedule!” I said running North on Chen Street no, South I think. I’ve got to slow this woman down, we are going to be late for something, don’t know what but something, dammit.

To my surprise, one block from the toy museum, we or she finds this wonderful little French Restaurant, The Saveur. Oh well, screw the itinerary it was time for lunch anyway. Singapore0713-143Duck Confit wrapped in garlic olive oil pasta, topped with dried Daikon! What an amazing dish. Accompany that with some Frog legs and a salad, wow!

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Okay back on track… “Singapore Sling?” I ask, pointing to the map and glancing down at my watch.

“Hey Look!”

Jeez, okay some hours later we do make it… The infamous Raffles Hotel, birthplace of the Singapore Sling, one of the most luxurious MJand fabled hotels in the world. Built in 1887 the hotel catered to the likes of Ernest Hemingway, British playwright Somerset Maugham, and Michael Jackson? Yes Michael Jackson stayed at the Raffles hotel in 1993 during his “Dangerous World Tour” but cut it short due to health problems, unfortunately we know the rest of that story…

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Wikipedia commons 1934

2013

2013

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Here it is! The Long Bar, the very place Ngiam Tong Boon invented the Singapore Sling in 1915, I may even be in the same seat Ernest Hemingway sat in. At last a journey’s end …

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The place was beautiful, old teak and hard wood everywhere, paddle fans overhead and Singapore Slings lined the bar, we order.

One sip of that red drink was all it took to resurrect the memories of my college drinking days. Memories from the depths of what I thought were a well-forgotten past, but that sweet, syrupy, nauseous concoction brought it all to the forefront of that young mans recollections, ugh. This drink was an inevitable hangover ready to happen. Needless to say I did not finish it and quickly switched to one of my favorite beers, Tiger.

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Singapore Sling Secret Recipe: There are varying recipes for the Singapore Sling but the basic ingredients are gin, Cherry Liqueur, Bénédictine, and fresh pineapple juice.

Basically there is no secret to this god awful drink! Ngiam can keep his potion! Flush it down the toilet! Take that cherry and shove it… okay, okay I’ll calm down but the tourist were sucking these down like it was their last, I guess you want to say you had a Singapore Sling at Raffles but believe me, order a beer.

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This was a great trip and I learned something valuable in the past 48 hours, when traveling don’t follow the itinerary too closely.

SingMap

  1. Swissotel Hotel               7. China Town
  2. Raffles Hotel                    8. DBS Complex
  3. French Restaurant          9. TinTin Shop
  4. Toy Museum                   10. Merlion
  5. St. Andrews Church
  6. Court House

And so as we leave Raffles, out into the Singapore night, wondering if history will record our being accounted for at the legendary Long Bar like Ernest and, and, and…

A tug on my arm interrupts my literary, intellectual, profound thoughts and I turn to see what my dear companion wants.

“Hey look!”

In pursuit of the secret recipe to the Singapore Sling Part I

There is just so much to see and do in Singapore one could easily get overwhelmed but 48 hours is just enough time to investigate this drink called the Singapore Sling.

So I find myself on an unexpected trip for two nights visiting friends who have moved to Singapore from my present residence and their hometown of Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. The next two post we visit China Town, The Antique Toy Museum, and investigate the secret recipe to the Singapore Sling located at it’s birthplace the Raffles hotel.

We have booked a room at the Swissotel Hotel, near to China Town and across the street from the Raffles hotel, it’s a great location and many of the sites are within walking distance. From our hotel window we can see the DBS complex, the Merlion, St. Andrews Cathedral and the Court House. Singapore0713-5Singapore0713-3

We meet our friends and it’s off to China Town for dinner. With a hundred plus stalls scattered about my friend recommends to remember the number of the stall so the next time you come back you can return to the best place or avoid the worst, top sign lower right corner 02-194.

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Steamed Fish Head in chili sauce!!!!     Yum …

You’d be surprised at the amount of meat in a fish head the size of a plate but its plenty and the best part is the cheek.

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The colonial buildings of the past occupation of the British Empire still dominate much of the city, a pleasant reminder of Singapore’s past history.

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  1. Swissotel Hotel               7. China Town
  2. Raffles Hotel                    8. DBS Complex
  3. French Restaurant          9. TinTin Shop
  4. Toy Museum                   10. Merlion
  5. St. Andrews Church
  6. Court House

Next the Toy Museum and Singapore Slings…

Singapore – Sunrise from the 41st floor

Marina Bay Sands Hotel – Sunrise from the 41st floor.

Cargo ships can be seen in the bay waiting to be loaded or relieved of their burden.

To the TOP – the Sky Park

The top of the Marina Bay Sands has a structure floating elegantly above all three towers. Resembling a boat it is called the Sky Park and is the size of an aircraft carrier. The pool seems to drop off the edge of the world.

The hotel has some of the best restaurants.

I decided to eat at Mario Batali’s restaurant.

Mario Batali’s restaurant “Mozza” was very good, well managed, and the professional staff, very efficient. I talked to the Prep chefs manning the salad station within the bar enclosure. Most had been there since the beginning.

Mario’s books were stacked for any who would like to purchase one. I wonder who the second author is in his book, Mark Ladner. Second billing and smaller print, hmmm.

Slicers were hard at work cutting paper-thin Prosciutto di Parma and Soppressata.

Fresh baked bread is within arms reach stacked high at the bar.

I had the pasta and clams with a romaine salad. Very good, the salad dressing is prepared at each serving, simple lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper nothing more.

Sky line of Singapore at night

Great Business trip

Singapore – Marina Bay Sand hotel, as good as it gets

This past week I had to go to Singapore on business. I really like Singapore its clean, safe, and has some of the best food in the world, however, i didn’t have much time to sight see. I did however stay in the iconic Marina Bay Sands hotel.

Spiral Walkway

Three towers each 56 stories high

People can be seen lining the perimeter of the Sky Mall.

Each tower has its own lobby and check-in desk.

41st floor bathroom looking over the bay

Next, Mario Batali, the 57th floor or Sky Mall, and night shots…

Singapore Day 2

Little India, Singapore

The first things you notice when you step out of the train station are the wonderful smells. Curry, jasmine, incense, it’s all flowing through the air and in and out of every street. I didn’t have time to eat here but did manage to take a few pictures.

 

Sri Mariamman Temple
China Town, Singapore
A must see and visit while in Singapore is China Town
Yue Hwa Building China Town

 

Yue Hwa Building is a 5 story store catering to the Chinese clientele. The first floor is the most interesting as it contains the medicinal and health merchandise such as shark fin, antlers, rare ginger root, and a vast array of dried animal parts and pieces. Pictures are not allowed inside maybe due to some of the controversial environmental species being sold or the private parts of dried animals, not quite sure.  

Buddha Tooth Relic Temple – China Town, Singapore

The Buddha Tooth Relic Temple was built to house relics of the Maitreya Buddha, the Buddha of the future. Upon entering you see a replica of Maitreya Buddha carved in wood.

In the after room is a statue of the goddess of mercy which sits on a lotus throne. The building is four stories high with the 4th floor containing Buddha’s tooth. They wouldn’t let me see it. I have read it is a 2-meter tall solid gold stupa that weighs 420 kg. On occasion they roll it out for devotees and tourists.

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Goddess of Mercy
I was fortunate enough to arrive durning the chanting session…..
Tea Shop, China Town, Singapore

Next week a hunt for an appartment in Kuala Lumpur.