Archive for December, 2005

The city at night

Orchard Road after midnight - space

The best time to walk Orchard Road, really, is after midnight — when the pavements become the province of the teenage cyclists, the gungho rollerbladers and the cosying couples. The road itself is quieter once the buses stop running, enough that everyone turns to look when a Harley-Davidson triumvirate guns casually down the middle lane.

Oddly, there are always people taking photographs with the glittering buildings and peculiar street fixtures, from the mausoleum-like grandeur of Ngee Ann City to the quirky white statues in front of Paragon. I suppose night’s the best time to take such pictures without worrying about passersby walking into your shot.

For anyone looking for a post-midnight non-alcohol-oriented hangout, it turns out that the Coffee Club beside California Fitness along Orchard Road is a 24-hour joint, and the NYDC across the street outside Heeren seems to stay open pretty late too.

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Ministry of Sound

Figured I might as well write about the Ministry of Sound since I’m sure a lot of people are going to be checking the place out (or at least trying to) during the holiday season.

A bunch of us decided to check out the newly-opened MoS at Clarke Quay last weekend. When we got there around midnight, there were throngs of people waiting in line to get in. The line was ridiculously long – it stretched around the block and was barely moving. I can’t imagine there were people patient enough to stand in a line that didn’t even look like it was ever going to get anywhere. But that probably just added to the allure of MoS, I suppose. In any case, thanks to some lobang, we managed to score VIP entry and got to bypass the line. I wouldn’t even have bothered to attempt getting in if not for that…getting too old for that lah. ;)

I’m not going to go into the details of the interior and all, since there’ve been lots of reviews on that. Suffice to say we were pretty impressed. It was plush, luxe, cool, and ghetto, depending which room you were in. Very cool. The club really wasn’t all that packed (I’m guessing there was crowd control in place, hence the long lines outside), which was perfect since I’m not a big fan of the whole sardine experience.

As expected, the music at MoS is good – there’s something for whatever you’re itching to move to. The one room that was packed to the walls (“To the window! To the wall! To the sweat drop down my“…oh wait, never mind…) was the hip-hop room Smoove, which I personally thought was the coolest get-up in the whole complex, with its chain link fence and mock Harlem b-ball court set up. My friends preferred the upper level though, particularly the 54 (retro) and Pure (I wasn’t in there long but I think they play chill-out in there) rooms. And of course there’s the main dance floor on the lower level that plays electronic/dance.

You know, I’m going to have to say that I like MoS more than I do Zouk. It’s definitely worth checking out, although I’d probably wait for the hype (and crowds) to die down a bit.

Happy New Year everyone! =)

Hmm…


Been wanting to take this picture for a long time, and I finally got the chance to when I was at Clarke Quay last night.

Interesting isn’t it? Apparently someone out there thinks that we need to know exactly how many steps there are to reach the concourse. Well it sure looks demoralising at first glance. Or perhaps it was done to encourage others to use the escalator and the lift instead. Sneaky sneaky.

Loof-top rendevous

When Jasmeet was in town for a stopover last Tuesday, we (along with Jeremy) decided to pop by and check out Loof. It’s a new rooftop bar at the Odeon Towers Extension, and while I don’t think it’s officially been launched yet, it’s already had its soft launch earlier this month. Saw quite a few acquaintances there, and I hear the place is owned by a friend of a friend (having said that, everyone seems to be a friend of a friend of someone else in Singapore…).

So Jas was suitably impressed by the whole concept of an open-air rooftop bar, which seems to be getting increasingly common here – in his own words, Loof scored a very enthusiastic “5 out of 5! No, make that 11 out of 10!” (If you haven’t already noticed, Math has never been his forte. ;) )

In any case, Loof’s a nice place to kick back and relax, and to just chill out at the end of a long day. It’s not too packed (then again, it was late on a Tuesday when we were there), the music’s decent, and you can carry on a conversation without screaming your lungs out. Only gripe I had was with the menu…I’m sure they could add more drinks and better food.

But yeah, I’d go back there again sometime soon.

‘Tis the season to be jolly…

…so why is it I’m all bummed out about the weather? The rain’s a right pain when you’re lugging around tons of X’mas (and post-X’mas/pre-CNY) shopping, and there’s not a cab in sight.

Urgh.

But anyways, not to be a Scrooge or anything – happy holidays to one and all! =)

Why I love my countrymen

Well I took this some time back, but it still doesn’t fail to put a smile on my face whenever I see it.

It was at my University bus stop I think, when I saw this. For the purposes of protecting the poor guy’s identity, I removed his name and contact. Check out the little smug comments at the side. So much for being helpful I guess.

The grand old Botanic Gardens

pavillion 2

I have fond memories of the Botanic Gardens. Growing up, there were only two places that we went during the holidays – either the old MPH bookstore on Stamford Road, where I would read to my hearts content, or the Botanic Gardens, where my family would walk through the park from one end to the other. I still go back there once in a while, though this time with an eye to photography.

It’s still a magical place to visit, despire the changes over the years – mostly for the better, though I remember there were fewer buildings and far more parkland before. The gardens are also resonant with history – every school-child knows that rubber was first successfully grown in south-east asia at this very spot, and the Botanic Gardens have a long history of growing orchids. Mostly though, they are a quiet green heart to a crowded city – a landscaped oasis of serenity only a few bus-stops away from the crowds of Orchard road.

Grand Plaza ParkRoyal

Grand Plaza ParkRoyal

Why do I like this hotel?

First of all, the location. It’s pretty much right next to Funan, (I have never seen so many tech shops) and there’s a Sex Shop accross the street! (Note to self, go visit said Sex Shop for a review. Any MetroBloggers wanna tag team?)

The breakfast spread the morning I was leaving, was just plain amazing. I had the worst hangover (Thanks Nat and Jer!) ever, and the food which was nice and fresh, got me a little bit through the hangover. And they had Guava with Asam! Hell yeah!

Rooms comes with wired broadband connection, which is about $30 tops a day. I would recommend bringing something like an Airport Express (make sure you have a three pin adapter!) because if you end up sharing the one connection with multiple computers (plug into one NIC, and then into a different NIC) it’ll start the charge as new. Pricey!

WiFi in the lounge area, but you have to get an access card of some kind. That’s just kinda lame, if you ask me.

Next trip, I’m staying here again!

Time to get a move on..

It’s been almost a year since the Asian Tsunami Crisis which practically devastated many Asian countries. Television channels over here are releasing collections of footages as well as documentary as a form of rememberance of the deaths as well as those who suffered during the crisis.

I wouldn’t say that I don’t approve of making disaster footage documentaries, but wouldn’t that actually remind those who were involved of the pain and suffering of the event? As if the memory of it isn’t enough, they now get to see and relive that fateful day all over again. I’m not sure that’s really effective as a rememberance. We’re treading a very thin line here between letting the rest of the world understand what happened that day, and actually reminding those affected of the pain they went through that day.

Sometimes it’s just better to look ahead, pick up the pieces and get on with life. As they say, walk towards the sun and you’ll never see the shadow. Escapist, but it works.

Serenity

For those who follow quality US TV programming either legally through Cable or illegally through Cable here’s a note: Serenity, the movie of the Firefly TV series is hitting our shores. (Finally!)

Fantastic series to watch for those who have never seen it before. Wild Wild West meets space flight.

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