Category Archives: Singapore

Penroads: Connecting Solo Travellers

It’s always fascinating to hear of tales of friendship sparked by solo journeys to faraway lands. But what if you aren’t a social butterfly and need a little extra help in making friends with other travellers? The Penroads application does just that.

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We realised that we could start making friends before, or even while planning, a trip. Here’s how to do it: simply key in your travel destination, arrival and departure dates, and the app will show you a list of travellers whose travel plans coincide with yours. All it took us was a few seconds and we had a list of potential friends and travel buddies awaiting our trip.

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With this app, we embraced the concept of social travelling and could make plans with people we’ve never met in the flesh- yet. The app’s chat room function enabled us to make contact with our new found friend(s), where we can then discuss travel itineraries and plan for activities together.

So join the community with us to seek out adventures with other soloists travelling to your destination!

Have insider information or travel stories to share? Contribute to the Travelog blog & engage with travel-lovers like yourself (credits will be given). Email us at hello@travelog.me to find out more!

All you need to know about Shine Festival 2015 in 2 minutes!

If you’re in Singapore, chances are, you’ve probably heard about Shine Festival happening tomorrow. Here’s what you need to know in just 2 minutes (or less)!

  1. Party away

Shine Festival a youth festival slash open street party and urban playground, hosted by the National Youth Council. This free 3-day event will feature both international and local celebrities, meet-and-greets, as well opportunities for participants to get involved in performances and competitions. More on these activities in a bit! But first, be prepared to…

  1. Ditch the car

Or at least, don’t expect to be able to drive along Orchard on Saturday (11 July)- it’ll be closed from 6 to 11pm. The area affected is the segment between Scotts Road and Bideford Road as well as the carriageway of Mount Elizabeth in the direction of Orchard Road.

For Friday and Sunday, it probably won’t be a good idea to drive either since there’ll be much competition for parking spaces as the festival will be ongoing.

Now, onto the highlights of the festival…

  1. Turn it up

A large part of this festival will be on music and dance. You’ll get to see the likes of Shigga Shay, Arden Cho, Charlie Lim and many more. Plus, you can sign up for the show choir competition too!

  1. Urban Sports

Marvel at freestyle football, slacklining, freerunning and more. Also, pick up a few tricks from Football Freestyle World Champion himself!

  1. Get Artsy

There’ll be a 3D art installation, an interactive tunnel, a graffiti competition with Shigga Shay, and more for the creative and artsy folks out there!

  1. Local Talent

Get to see 987 stars and djs, pick up a tip or two from them, and don’t forget to hang out with the Night Owl Cinematics crew!

Here’s an infographic of all of the activities and locations:

shine festival

For specific timings of competitions and activities, visit this link here: http://www.singaporestreetfestival.com/schedule.php

Have fun!

Image courtesy of: greatdeals.sg.

Visit travelog.me for more places to go when in Singapore!

Have insider information or travel stories to share? Contribute to the Travelog blog & engage with travel-lovers like yourself (credits will be given). Email us at hello@travelog.me to find out more!

Singapore’s Most Unique & Unusual Cafes

1. 1942 Alfresco @ Changi 
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1A cafe, museum and bar all rolled into one, 1942 Alfresco is the place to go for history buffs and travellers who are curious about the country’s past, and 1942 was the very year Singapore fell to Japanese rule, hence the name. After exploring the artefacts and play fighting with the fake swords and guns, the war themed cafe serves up some amazing dishes for you to fill up on as well- from soups to salads to pasta, and not to mention, desserts!

Find our more about 1942 Alfresco here >>

2. Antoinette 
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Quaint and classy, the design of Antoinette is centred around the theme of French royalty, with the cafe and restaurant named after the last French queen, Marie-Antoinette. Head over enjoy the desserts that are probably delicious enough to be served to royals themselves! These include French pancakes, macarons (of course!), and other desserts such as the Baked Alaska (above), which is a meringue with vanilla ice cream, almond nougatine and fruits. They’ve also got mains like steak, as well as a selection of aromatic teas.

Read more about Antoinette here >>

3. Kombi Rocks 
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This Singapore cafe looks like a perfect place to film a drama or movie, and it’s no wonder why some locals have their wedding photos take there. Designed with a 60’s theme centred around Volkswagen cars, this is the place to be for lovers of anything vintage or retro! Besides the themed design, this diner and cafe offers a variety of Thai food, along with some refreshing iced coffee and other drinks to wash everything down.

Find out more about Kombi Rocks >>

4. The Little Prince Cafe 
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As the name suggests, this cafe was inspired by the popular book The Little Prince, straight from the pages of the childhood novel. Step into this whimsical cafe and you’ll find yourself surrounded by hand-drawn prints around the walls, making up a black and white interior. Their menu offers a variety of items including savoury sandwiches and coffee, but the crowd favourites would have to be their ice cream and waffles. With interesting names like Pink Panther and Mango Kiss, the staff at the ice cream counter will gladly let you have samples to taste the myriad of ice cream flavours before you decide!

See more on The Little Prince Cafe >>

5. The Reading Room 
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Be surrounded by books in the Reading Room. What seems like a grand library is actually a cafe by day and a bar by night. And unlike your experience in a library, you can have food and drinks while reading here, so book lovers, rejoice! Located along a stretch of bars and cafes, the Reading Room is a lovely hideout for bookworms to grab a cup of coffee and have a leisurely read. You don’t have to worry about food either- the cafe serves up a tasty brunch menu as well, so you can sit around and enjoy your book for hours on end.

Read more about the Reading Room >>

6. Rider’s Cafe 
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When thinking of leisure activities in a concrete jungle like Singapore, horse-riding isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. But at Rider’s Cafe, you can do just that. Plus, the cafe serves up a delicious menu for brunch so you can replenish your fuel after a horse-riding session. Tucked away in the Bukit Timah area within the Saddle Club, this place might take a bit to time to locate, but it’ll be worth it once you’re on a horse’s back enjoying the fresh air.

More details on Riders Cafe >>

7. Old School Delights 
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21Go back to Singapore in the ’90s (or some say ’80s) in this cosy cafe, with its decor inspired by classrooms of the past. It even sells some of the typical, nostalgic snacks that school children back then loved. Try a few of those and then order some of the traditionally Singaporean drinks off the chalkboard, such as Bandung and Milo Dinosaur, which Singaporeans enjoy. If you’re feeling hungry, they also serve up local dishes like Laksa, Curry Chicken and Nasi Lemak, along with a variety of cakes. For those who want to immerse themselves in Singaporean culture and food, Old School Delights is as local as it gets- no other cafes can compare!

More details on Old School Delights >>



Visit travelog.me for more interesting & unusual things to do when living in or visiting Singapore.

Need more information to help you find the best things do in Singapore?

Images courtesy of (from top to bottom) The Smart Local (1 & 2), Cafe Hopping, Pinky Piggu, Facebook, carrmenntann.comJennifer Teo Photography (7 & 8), Winterruby, Rubbisheatrubbishgrow, ThefoodjournalWisatasingapura.webBehance, Misstamchiak.com.

Where to Shop for the Best Local Accessories in Singapore

Shopping is one of Singapore’s national pastimes and it isn’t difficult to see why. As a crowded cosmopolitan city with no lack of consumers, brands are flocking to the nation-state to set-up shop. But for those who want to bring home something special, sidestep the commonly seen brands and seek out these uniquely Singaporean accessories designed by local designers!

See more about Singapore shopping >>


 

Carrie K

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Featured in magazines like Simply Her and Women’s Weekly, Carrie K provides a variety of accessory designs from quirky statement pieces to elegant chic. And who says jewelry are for girls? The brand offers a range of items for guys as well, so have fun shopping with your significant other or simply with your friends. No more boring waiting while your girlfriend shops, guys!

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Depression

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Another brand that offers pieces for both genders, Depression is located the heart of Singapore’s shopping district. Those who love unusual accessories won’t want to miss this brand, which has a knack for avant-garde designs. Other than accessories, expect to find black and white clothing designs as well.

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Ling Wu Bags

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Other than jewelry, bags are also an important accessory that can glam up your outfit. From elegant clutches to sophisticated and practical sling bags, Ling Wu’s extensive collection has got you covered, so seek the brand out and shop their high-quality pieces while you’re in Singapore!

View more details >>

 


Article by Amelia Ang.

Visit travelog.me for more information on planning a shopping trip in Singapore.

Need more information to help you find the best accessories in Singapore? Check out these useful links for more ideas:

Images courtesy of (from top to bottom) Carrie RocksShop Depression (3 and 4), Ling Wu.

Where to See in 2015 in Singapore

If you’re welcoming the New Year 2015 in Singapore, here is a list of places to head to if you want to join in the celebrations:

1.  Marina Bay Countdown for New Year 2015

Marina Bay Countdown

Set against the city’s skyline, with live music performances and a huge fireworks display to cap off the night, this is THE place to be when ushering the New Year in Singapore. 25000 ‘wishing spheres’ will be set afloat in Marina Bay to form a giant number ‘50’ to commemorate Singapore’s 50th year of independence. If you’re already in Singapore, be sure to pen your wishes (it’s free!) at any one of the 31 wishing stations around the island. There will be video projections on the façade of The Fullerton Hotel and the Merlion and 400 drummers will be performing to the 8-minute firework display at night. Definitely a sight to behold for both friends and family!

For more information on the Marina Bay Countdown, click here >>

Click here to learn more about Marina Bay >>

2.  Dance in the Park – A Neon Countdown to 2015

Dance in the PArkBring on your neon as USS covers itself with LEDs and UV lights for the New Year! Going for a glow-in-the-dark theme, this will be an interesting event where you can dance along the boulevards of Hollywood and New York with your favourite characters and catch fascinating light shows. Fans of the Black Eyed Peas can catch the tribute act ‘Black Eyed Tease’ who is coming down all the way from Las Vegas to add some beats to the party as well! The park timings will be extended to 1am on 31st December so get your tickets early here for an online special of $61 (min 2 tickets) or $68 (single ticket purchase)!

Click here for more information on Universal Studios Singapore >>

3.  Marina Bay Sands – Sky High Social

Sky High Social

For those looking to party it up and we mean literally high up, book a spot at the Marina Bay Sands’ SkyPark Observation Deck. Toast to a new year under the stars as you get a perfect and unobstructed view of the city skyline as well as the fireworks display from the Marina Bay Countdown. Enjoy live performances, party packs and lots of photo opportunities. Tickets start from $172, which include a glass of champagne, and can be reserved here. Perfect for couples or group of friends who are looking for a lavish and memorable start to the year.

Click here for more information on Marina Bay Sands >>

5.  Siloso Beach Party

Siloso beach party

All the party people, this is where you should be headed for the New Year’s! From 6pm to 6am, there will be 12 hours of non-stop music, dance and partying. With a line-up of international DJs, 5 party zones and a giant foam pool, make the beach your dance floor this New Year’s! Come dressed in your beach’s best and go crazy till dawn breaks. For more information, click here.

This event has a minimum age entry of 18 years old.

For more information on Siloso Beach, click here >>

6. Tanjong Beach Club ‘Brand New Day’

Brand New DayIf partying for one night isn’t enough, head down to Tanjong Beach Club’s 2 days long New Year’s party. On 31 December, there will be a countdown party featuring one of the best resident DJs from London’s Ministry of Sound, DJ Jon White, who will be spinning beats from house to electro until dawn. Fire-twirlers, floating lanterns and loads of confetti can be expected as well adding to the celebratory atmosphere! On 1st January, the party continues with the Brand New Day Celebrations! Be sure to check out their Facebook page to look out for more updates.

Click here for more information on Tanjong Beach Club >>

Still not sure what to do when visiting Singapore this New Year’s? Check out Travelog for more useful, up-to-date information on things to do and places to visit in Singapore. Click here >> 


Images courtesy of (from top to bottom) Singapore 50, RWScoop, Marina Bay Sands, Expat Living, Lifestyle Asia.

Still not sure what to do for New Year’s Eve in Singapore? Check out these useful links for more ideas:

 

5 Ways to Get Into The Christmas Spirit in Singapore

The festive season is upon us all in sunny Singapore. While the notion of a white Christmas may be still far  away, Singaporeans are definitely getting into the Christmas spirit! Here’s a list of things to do if you’re visiting Singapore during this period

1.  Orchard Road

Orchard Road

Lights! Camera! Action!

That’s basically what you’ll be seeing when walking down Orchard Road during the Christmas season. Beautifully lit up at night, it’s practically a 2.2 kilometre light show that will leave you dazzled. The buildings light up one after the other as though participating in a pageant show, trying to outshine each other for the coveted Best Dressed Building Award.

Remember your camera because this will be one of the prettiest and liveliest sights you’ll catch in Singapore. Whether it’s a loved one posing with the Christmas decorations or a stranger being entertained by the street performances, many photo opportunities will behold on this stretch and it’s not something you’ll want to miss out on!

Lastly, action! The action comes in the form of street performers. From carol singing buskers to magic shows, a ‘carnival-esque’ air permeates and surrounds the street Allow the myriad of performances put a smile on your face as they entertain and enhance the joyous mood.

Learn more about Orchard Road here >>

2.  Feast Like a King at Raffles Hotel

Feast

Singaporeans are known to love their food and love their food they shall! Best part? You get to join in the fun! Chances are, if you head to any food outlet, you’re bound to find some kind of Christmas promotion. We could write a whole book if we were to list out all the Christmas dining options so here are just two of the many that we’ve heard are awesome places to eat at for Christmas!

 

The 5 star Raffles Hotel serves one of the grandest Christmas feasts consisting of roasted chestnut stuffed turkey, glazed Christmas ham, traditional chocolate log cake, gingerbread ice cream and an array of seafood, cold cuts and even a cheese selection. The festive lunch and dinner will take place from 13 to 23 December 2014 and costs $78++ per adult and $35++ per child for dinner. Take a look at their menu if you’re still unconvinced!

For a Peranakan twist to the Christmas feast, check out Violet Oon’s Kitchen where a buffet lunch spread will be available on the 25th of December. However, make sure you book early, as there are limited seats available.

For more information on Raffles Hotel, click here >>

3.  Experience Snow at Universal Studios Sentosa or Tanglin Mall

Pictures in the News: Singapore

Since 1996, Tanglin Mall has been granting Singaporeans their wish for a white Christmas. With artificial snow and a gorgeous Christmas set-up, both adults and kids will have guaranteed smiles on their faces. Light foam mimics the action of snowflakes, as they fall slowly down to the ground culminating in knee-deep foam (for the kids of course) to wade through.  Chances are your kids are bound to engage in some kind of ‘snow’ fight, so make sure you dress down and have loads of fun!

Another place to experience ‘snow’ would be at Universal Studios Sentosa .  Showcasing the biggest snowfall in Singapore, Universal Studios Singapore will be experiencing snowfall hourly every day! Not only will the park be decked out in Christmas tinsel and holly, its characters will be dressed up in Christmas wear to complement the festive mood. With a Christmas tree made entirely out of plush toys, a dancing Christmas lights display and a Christmas themed Sesame Street show titled ‘Sesame Street saves Christmas’, Universal Studios Singapore takes Christmas joy to a whole new level. End off the night with Christmas Fireworks display to add some sparkle and shine to the day. And to make sure your tummy doesn’t lose out on Christmas goodies, Santa’s Kitchen will be opened with a delectable Christmas dinner buffet served!

Click here for more information on Tanglin Mall >>

Find out more about Universal Studios Singapore >>

 4.  Attend a Christmas Service

Christmas Service

While we may all be in the rush of getting decorations up, ordering some turkey and wrapping gifts for your loved ones, Christmas isn’t necessarily all about that. For those who prefer to take this period to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas, take a walk into one of the many lovely historic churches in Singapore and imbue yourself in the atmosphere.

St Andrew’s Cathedral will be holding a Christmas fair from 2pm on the 24th of December. There will be carolling, open-air performances and a Christmas trail around the grounds with life sized displays of the Nativity scene and Bethlehem.  Make sure to check out the Armenian Church, the oldest church in Singapore. The Anglican St George’s Church is popular among expats especially on Christmas Eve.  Most churches in Singapore would have Christmas services at midnight and Christmas pageants starting earlier.

 5.  Enjoy the Christmas Carols

Carolling

What’s Christmas without some festive carols? Embrace the Christmas spirit with voices of angels (or humans with voices that sound like that of an angel’s).

Gardens by the Bay will not only be beautifully decorated but will feature carollers singing at the Casa Armonica every Friday, Saturday and Sunday all the way till 21 December 2014. There will be a two and half hour performance with a special line up of choirs from the different schools across the country.

Raffles Hotel will also be featuring carollers from the Victoria Junior College choir. While some of the performances are for hotel guests only, there will be others which are open to the public so be sure to catch those especially when you’re passing this historic building!

For those partying away in Clarke Quay, carollers will be cruising down the Singapore River in boats every Thursday to Saturday evening till 21 December 2014. Enjoy your drinks while listening to the carollers chime away.

Victoria Concert Hall will be treating their audiences to a free performance by the Singapore Symphony Children’s Choir to celebrate their re-opening. Listen to the cherubic voices of the children and even join in with an obligatory carol sing-a-long. Registration is required so make sure to book a ticket for admission if you’re looking to attend this event! Make a note for the 8th of December 2014 in your calendars for this one!

For those along the Orchard Road stretch, Tanglin Mall will be featuring the choirs of National University Singapore, Raffles Hall and Vocca Inc Productions who will be carolling on the evening of 20th December and the afternoon of 21st.

On the 24th, Tong Building Plaza will be inviting Celebrate Christmas in Singapore (a group dedicated to bringing the festive spirit into Singapore) for a mass carolling and sing-along session. For those who just want to soak in the festive atmosphere and sing your hearts out, head to this event!

Still looking for more inspiration for fun things to do in Singapore? At Travelog we’ve got loads of recommendations for fun things to do and places to visit on your next trip. Find out more here >>


Images courtesy of (from top to bottom) New Year’s Eve Blog, Raffles, Your SingaporeLA Times, Pop Culture Online.

Not found what you’re looking for? More useful resources for things to do in Singapore at Christmas :

About Travel – Singapore Christmas Celebration

New Year’s Eve Blog – Top Cities in Asia for 2014 Christmas Celebrations

5 Late Night Singapore Supper Joints Not to be Missed

Looking for somewhere to eat in Singapore, but the kitchen of your favourite eatery has closed for the night?

For all those with late night hunger pangs, here’s a list of Singapore’s well-known supper places:

1.  Swee Choon Dim Sum Restaurant (Jalan Besar)
Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday, 6pm-6am [Closed on Tuesdays]
Cuisine: Dim Sum
Swee Choon Tim-Sum

Calling all dim sum lovers, this one’s for you! Swee Choon serves up an assortment of dim sum including some signature dishes such as ‘Shanghai Xiao Long Bao’ (Shanghai steamed bun), ‘Mee Suah Kueh’ (vermicelli cake) and ‘Egg Yolk Custard Buns’.

If you are feeling a little more peckish, they also have substantial dishes, namely, their signature ‘Shanghai Pork Chop La Mian’, ‘Century Egg Porridge’ and ‘Double Boiled Chicken Soup’.

To end off your hearty dim sum supper, choose from a selection of Chinese desserts such as ‘Mango with Pomelo & Sago’ or ‘Yam Paste with Pumpkin & Ginko Nut’.

You wouldn’t expect top grade dim sum from Swee Choon, but for its affordable price, it’s definitely worth the quality and quick service.

Here’s a tip: Planning on heading there around 10pm?Be prepared to queue, as Swee Choon is popular amongst Singaporeans. However by 1am, the crowd usually clears up and you should be seated pretty quickly.

2.  The Roti Prata House (Upper Thomson)
Cuisine – Indian
Opening Hours: 24/7
The Roti Prata House
Cheese and Egg Prata, Paper Prata, Milo Prata and Durian Prata – you name it, they probably have it.

The Roti Prata House has one of the largest assortments of prata. From savoury to sweet, at least one, out of the extensive menu is bound to hit the right spot.

They are known for their unique way of cooking prata, which is to deep-fry it till it becomes especially crispy. For those who enjoy the extra crunch, this prata would definitely sit well with your taste buds.

If you are looking for other Indian delicacies, the Roti Prata House serves Chicken Briyani, Nasi Goreng and a hearty variety of curries, just to name a few.

Don’t expect brilliant service for the price you pay. You would probably have to wave the waiter over a few times before you get his attention due to the crowd but once the food is served, leave not your stomach wanting.

3.  Timbre @ Substation (Armenian Street)
Cuisine – Western
Opening Hours: Monday to Thursday and Sunday – 6pm to 1am
Saturday – 6pm to 2.30am

Timbre@SubstationLive music from local bands, a bar and delicious food, come together at Timbre @ Substation.

Timbre@Substation2Timbre serves up a Western selection comprising of pizzas (sometimes, with a local twist as seen in their Roasted Duck Pizza that’s topped with crispy Popiah Skin), pasta, steak and delectable finger food. The pizza portion is considerably large and can easily be shared between 2 to 4 people. And if you’re spoilt for choice with regard to pizza flavour, go with the ‘The Half & Half’. It allows you to pick 2 flavours of pizza from their interesting selection to fit into one.

One downside would be that once the music starts playing, it’s difficult to hold a conversation, as your voice is likely to be drowned out. However, the atmosphere and food more than makes up for it and you will be guaranteed a night of great food and company.

Also, it’s best to make a reservation (call them up before 3pm), so as to avoid the long queues. If you are a UOB member, the card entitles you to the priority queue and 10% off your food bill.

4.  Ippudo SG (Mohamed Sultan Road)
Cuisine – Japanese
Opening Hours: Mondays to Thursdays – 5.30pm to midnight
Fridays to Saturdays – 5.30pm to 2am
Sundays – 11.30 am to 11pm
(Last orders: 1 hour before closing time)

Ippudo SG @ Mohamed SultanA hot bowl of mouth-watering, flavour bursting ramen is bound to satisfy a hungry stomach especially late at night.

Ippudo serves up bowls of ramen that come with a flavourful Tonkatsu broth. Their special broth, which is rich and hearty, should be enough reason to pay them a visit. The ramen noodles can also be customized according to the level of tenderness and if you are adventurous enough, ask for the noodles to be ‘very hard’, which means cooking it in boiling water for just 3 seconds!

Many enjoy Ippudo’s Akamaru Shinaji. What they call the ‘modern ramen’ is ramen, which includes pork belly, garlic oil, black fungus and ‘umami-dama’ a special miso paste to add on to their original Tonkatsu broth. Don’t be fooled by the simple ingredients. The combination of broth and noodles definitely packs a powerful punch.

As with every late night supper joint, it’s evident that long queues should be expected. Parking is also slightly tricky at this Ippudo branch, so carpooling or public transport is recommended. However, despite all odds, this is one meal that will leave you coming back for more.

5.  Spize (River Valley)
Cuisine – Fusion
Opening Hours: Weekdays: 12pm to 5am
Weekends: 12pm to 6am

Spize @ River Valley

If you can’t decide on whether to have Chinese, Indian, Western, Thai or even Mediterranean, you can have a little bit of everything all at one place – Spize.

Spize serves a huge amount of food, both in portion and assortment. Try their Roti John Chicken Special, which oozes with cheese, mushroom and chicken with every bite. The Nasi Goreng and Char Kway Teow are favourites too amongst the late night supper crowd. Those who fancy something a little more unique should try their truffle fries.

Spize’s motto should be ‘go big or go home’ because they deliver in quantity and size. The seating area itself is pretty huge, so while that probably guarantees you a seat, it also means that service isn’t all that tiptop. Expect one or two orders to be forgotten but give the waiters a gentle reminder and your food should be on its way.

After a late night of partying in the Clarke Quay area or if you’re just feeling peckish, Spize is a one-stop food spot to satisfy all late night hunger pangs.

For more information on restaurants and where to eat our in Singapore, click here.


Images (from top to bottom) courtesy of FoodieFC, Hungry Ang, Timbre Facebook (3 and 4),  YelpTripAdvisor.