Reviews written by dawntillmidnight
Last updated: June 17, 2012
I've recently visited the newly renovated Bishan Park, accompanying a friend to walk her dog. The place is now huge, with tiny streams converging into a large stream through its length. It is definitely a beautiful sight - a perfect place for a picnic or a photoshoot!
My friend unleashed her dog at the park, and did she frolic through the place as happy as a lamb! We simply followed her as she explored the park. There were pathways for joggers to enjoy, and also little 'brick' roads away from the usual routes, leading to steps of stones across the large stream. We certainly felt like kids again, jumping from stone to stone to cross the stream!
It is certainly a place where an adult can relive her childhood days, and also for little kids to enjoy the beautiful outdoors instead of facing the computer all day. At Bishan Park, we spotted many kids trying to catch the little fishes in the streams. It certainly reminds me of the times my aunt brought me to Qianhu Fish Farm to catch the fishes in the drains when I was younger!
We were there on a weekday afternoon, so we basically had most of the park to ourselves, but I heard that on weekends, the place would be packed with people, so if you are looking to spend a tranquil day at the park, perhaps it would be better to avoid family days like Sundays!
|Food / Beverage:||4.5|
Awesome Aglio Olio
I've always mistook TCC as just another Starbucks or coffeebean. I've always thought they served overpriced coffee, and I already have my favourite drink at Starbucks, why would I need another coffee place? I guess that is why despite passing by the TCC outlet in Orchard millions of time, I've never once stepped in to try the food until very recently.
Thanks to GSS, TCC is now having a 1-for-1 promotion for their main courses and pastas. It was this very promotion that enticed my friends and I to give it a try. The usual price for its mains can easily go beyond $20, which is really pricey. The food, however, is well-worth the price, in my opinion. The Seafood Aglio Olio I had was close to perfection, and I enjoyed every single forkful of it! Not only does it come topped with tasty marinated prawns (most places simply dump boiled prawns, if any at all), it also came with scallops in it! It was definitely a blissful meal, and the portion was quite generous. The Aglio Olio is not for the faint-hearted though. If you are not a huge fan of spice, I'd recommend you request for your aglio olio to be cooked less spicy, or you're sure to burn your tongue!
A friend of mine had a Baby Crayfish Spaghetti and I thought it was awfully tasty as well. It tasted a little like spaghetti drowned in chilli crab paste - definitely an interesting twist to the usual cream and tomato-based pastas! I'd love to order that the next time I dine at TCC, if I could give up my aglio olio!
We also ordered a New York Cheesecake to share. The presentation was enticing, but it was nothing to be raved about. I'd stick to the mains next time.
As for the service, it was impeccable. My friends and I stayed for closed to 2 whole hours, chilling and catching up, and was not once disturbed by the crew. Instead, they promptly refilled our glasses of water as soon as we finished them, even though we stopped ordering food and drinks since they cleared our plates of pastas.
I'd definitely be back for more!
Fun for the young and old
Toys 'R' Us is the toy heaven for kids. Since I was a little kid, I always enjoyed going to Toys 'R' Us. The place is a humongous playground, filled with all kinds of toys - ranging from the boyish ones like Lego and water guns to girly ones like barbies and dollhouses. I could easily spend a whole afternoon there while my mum went shopping elsewhere!
Every single franchise of Toys 'R' Us I've been to have been huge, and unlike many other toy shops, they actually put out displays for you to try out the toys before purchasing it. Even if you are not thinking of purchasing anything, you could still play around with the assortment of toys without being penalized by the staff! When I was younger, there were ample outlets of Toys 'R' Us, and I remember always visiting the one in Northpoint. My mum always had a hard time pulling me out of the place because I was always very fascinated with the variety of toys there. It was my favourite place to be outside of home! It's quite a pity that Toys 'R' Us have scaled back on their franchises. Now, there seem to be only a few outlets in town and I hardly see them in heartland malls anymore. The few standing ones are still huge though, and till today, I can still kill a few hours just walking around exploring the playground.
Every time I need to get a gift for a child or a newborn baby, I'd definitely head to the nearest Toys 'R' Us. The large selection of toys is sure to satisfy even the brattiest kid in the world. I'll always be able to find the perfect toy for my nieces and nephews birthdays at Toys 'R' Us! It was a huge part of my childhood, and I hope it will continue to be the happy playground for kids for years to come!
|Food / Beverage:||3.5|
Quaint and good!
Toast Box is a pretty quaint cafe. Although it is similar to Ya Kun, selling toasts and coffees, both its exterior and interior designs are very cute and inviting. I've recently tried the toast and egg from Toast Box and it was pretty good! The only qualm was that for a set meal, there was only 2 pieces of toast, 2 half-boiled eggs and a drink, which was very little for its price. Also, the toast was not crispy enough as compared to Ya Kun.
I tried the laksa for lunch too and it was delicious! Instead of the usual noodle, the laksa at Toast Box used Mee Tai Mak, and it reminded me of the famed Katong Laksa! The soup base was very tasty, and not oily like some places. It wasn't really spicy too, so people who cannot really take spice can try it. I'd definitely recommend the laksa!
Price-wise, Toast Box is definitely not considered cheap. Despite the fact that it is practically franchised everywhere in Singapore, a set meal comprising a main and a drink can easily go up to $8. The mee siam and laksa set meals are yummy, but it is really costly if you compare it to the ones outside, which on average are priced from $3. However, I'd still say it is worth a try!
Last updated: May 29, 2012
PaperMarket is one of the few shops I'd definitely visit each time I visit Plaza Singapura. Be it to purchase a craft kit to make a card for my friend's birthday, or just to explore the place for new and arty knick-knacks. The shop is definitely interesting enough to entice anyone in - even if you are not a fan of arty farty stuff!
If you are a fan of scrapbooking, PaperMarket will definitely be a heaven for you. There, you can find many cute designs and prints of card-stocks, stickers and marker pens - a must-have for a beautiful creation of a scrapbook! Also, they also display many handmade scrapbook designs where you can gather inspirations from.
For those who are not artistically-gifted, they also have ready-made and idiot-proof scrapbook kits, for beginners who are interested in scrapbooking but have no inkling on how to start. These scrapbook kits include all the basic items and decorations you need to make your very first scrapbook, and all you have to do is print pictures and follow the instructions and voila! You have made yourself a beautiful and artistic memory book!
The items sold at PaperMarket are pretty pricey for most though, as compared to the arty items you can purchase from Spotlight and Daiso. However, unless you are an avid fan of scrapbooking, it would be difficult to put together all the bits and pieces from the other places into one artistic creation, so I recommend PaperMarket as you'd actually save a lot of time and effort by using their instant card-stocks and stickers which are all ready-to-use.
A permanent 'Night Market'!
Bugis street is considered a shopping haven for most youngsters in Singapore. It's concept is similar to the night markets overseas - open-air with lots of different shops selling street foods, souvenirs, bags and apparels, anything you could possibly think of!
Stepping into Bugis Street, your adventure begins. It is known as the place where you can haggle the price and for cheap finds, something definitely rare in Singapore island. In level one, the market is a mash of small shop fronts selliing various items. In the 'main entryway', you can find mostly street snacks and souvenirs for the tourists. As you venture deeper into Bugis Street, you will find many shop fronts selling apparels at a steal! Most items are priced between $5-20 range, and if you buy more pieces, you can usually haggle for a better price.
Most of the clothes are not of really good quality, but they are usually pretty similar to those you can find online for double the price, so it is usually worth the heat and crowd. Usually, with $50, you can easily purchase 3-4 pieces of apparels and even shoes!
If you'd prefer to shop in an air-conditioned area, head up to the upper floors. They have upgraded in the recent years to house many more shop fronts, and you could easily spend a whole afternoon exploring the place! Other than many apparel shops, you can also find some snack stalls and tattoo parlors in the upper floors.
One thing about Bugis Street though, most of the shop fronts sell repeated items, so be sure to not be lazy and scour the whole area thoroughly before making a purchase because you might just find an identical item for sale at a cheaper rate at another shop!
The place is almost forever packed to the brim, since the shops usually don't open until 11am in the morning, but going earlier in the day on weekdays should save you from having to squeeze in the crowd.
|Food / Beverage:||4.0|
A Life-Size Dollhouse!
I visited Fullhouse Themed Cafe to celebrate a friend's birthday, and I must say, I am very much in love with the whole concept of the place! The theme of the cafe is a house - with different sections as different 'rooms' for distinct functions and celebrations.
Be welcomed by a fountain in the courtyard as you step into their grounds, where you can enjoy 'alfresco' dining if you please. If not, you can occupy one of the tables in the living room, beautifully furnished with victorian vintage wallpapers, lamps and quirky items. If you prefer a more private surrounding, have dinner in one of the study rooms for small groups. If you have a function, they also have a huge room with a number of tables in the Entertainment Room you could utilize. Looking for some shopping? Check out the bedroom with a huge wardrobe!
Fullhouse is definitely one of a kind. We spent more time exploring the place and taking pictures than actually sitting down and enjoying the meal. Speaking of meals, we visited the place during lunchtime and got to enjoy the set lunches, which came with an ice lemon tea, a main and a soup of the day! The soup of the day was Cream of Potato and Onion on the day we visited, and it was amazingly good. It is definitely different from the other soups of the days outside - this was thick and mash potato-ish, you can totally tell they did not scrimp on the ingredients making it!
While some of my friends had the Spaghetti Pasta with Turkey Ham and Mushroom Cream, I had the Wok-Sear Chicken Chop with Daily Vegetables. My chicken chop was pretty good, a bit charred but still nice nonetheless. It would have been better if they were more generous with the pepper sauce. My friends' spaghetti was really tasty, I tried a few mouthful and practically swooned. I'm definitely going to have their pasta the next time I visit the place! The portions were huge too. We were filled up quickly with the thick soup and barely managed to finish our mains. On top of the set meals, we also shared a side of calamaris, which were big and crunchy as well.
All-in-all, I recommend a visit to the place, especially if you are into a quaint and different type of dining experience. We went during the day and the place was practically empty. If you are one who prefer a quiet meal - afternoon would be a choice time to visit the place. The beautiful place will put a smile on anyone's face, and satisfy a hungry stomach at the same time. I'll definitely be back!
Last updated: May 27, 2012
Best movie experience ever
The Omni-Theatre in Singapore boasts a massive dome screen - guranteed to provide you with the best huge screen experience ever.
I've recently revisited the Omni-Theatre for the movie 'Born to be Wild', and it's definitely mind-blowing. The massive dome screen is so huge, sometimes, you really don't know where to look! The characters in the movie, thanks to the big seamless screen, feels so life-size and alive, it felt as though we were part of the movie despite it being 2D! The latest screening is an undersea Coral Reef Adventure. I believe with the large screen, it will be an amazing way to learn about the beauty of the underwater world, without having to get wet yourself!
The IMAX movies are priced at $10 per adult and $7 per child. With an OCBC credit card, there is also a 20percent discount on the prices!
Recently, the Omni-Theatre has also introduced the 3D experience to some of its movies. I haven't had the chance to try that yet, but I'll definitely be keen! I heard that they will be playing some of the old Disney classics in 3D, like Beauty and the Beast!
Other than the IMAX movies, the Omni-Theatre also often have exhibitions and educational showcases from time to time.
The Omni-Theatre is located right next to both the Singapore Science Centre and Snow City, so if you are visiting either of the two attractions, why not give catch one of the 40-min long documentary at the Omni-Theatre? Not only are the documentaries educational, they are also very real and you will definitely be awestruck after the watching them!
Last updated: May 27, 2012
|Food / Beverage:||4.5|
I Love Taimei is a street-concept selling authentic taiwanese street bites from the night markets of Taiwan. Akin to Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks, I Love Taimei also offers the famed XXL Chicken - but in a variety of flavours to choose from! The different items on the menu are all quirkily named after famous artistes in Taiwan, like S.H.E, Jolin Chai and Elva. My favourite is the plain piece of chicken (Ella, I believe?). What's more? You get to add your own condiments for the chicken! I love the freedom of being able to add as much spice as I like without having to tell the person behind the counter, "Can you add more spice?" again and again.
Not only that, other than the "mains", I Love Taimei also has sides to boot! Every time I crave for the seaweed shaker fries from Macs and it isn't available, I Love Taimei would definitely come to mind. The seaweed fries at I Love Taimei definitely comes close to the ones in Macs! Other than seaweed, they also come in a variety of other flavours, like the cheesy bacon, BBQ and Spicy Mexican!
The best part of I Love Taimei? You get to buy a combo meal, with a XXL Chicken, a fries on the side and a milk tea! It's like satisfying your cravings for KOI, Shihlin and Shaker Fries all at the same time! The bubble tea, although not as awesome as KOI, is also of good quality, with the right thickness and tangy pearls.
I've been a frequent patron of I Love Taimei since I first tried it in Bugis Village, how about you?
Beautiful on the outside, Tasty on the inside!
Sticky sells handmade hark rock candy in a wide selection of flavours. Since I first chanced upon a Sticky outlet, I have been intrigued by the skillfulness of the confectioners. They will stand behind a clear glass, tossing and crafting the next batch of sticky candies right before your eyes! I've always found such creations fascinating, and could just stand and stare at them work.
Not only are the rock candies flavourful and tasty, Sticky also offers customized candies, whereby you get to choose the picture or words you'd like 'crafted' on the candy. My friend had her 21st door gift specially ordered from Sticky, and each and everyone of us who attended her birthday had a packet of sticky sweet with her '21st' engraved on it. It's so intricate and special!
Moreover, a packet of Sticky just costs a few dollars, and it can last for quite some time! My favourite flavour from Sticky would be the Watermelon Rock, but there are also many other flavours which can easily satisfy each and everyone of you! You can even order Sticky online, how amazing is that?