Sentosa Bids Farewell to Songs of the Sea

Yesterday, Sentosa waved good-bye to Songs of the Sea with an impressive display of fireworks, zealous sing-alongs and emotional goodbyes from the cast. After a successful seven years and more than 5,000 shows, the world’s only night extravaganza set in the sea has captivated 8.5 million guests with an interesting blend of live cast, dramatic effects and dazzling pyrotechnics. Starting today, the show grounds will close in preparation for the new multimedia night spectacular – Wings of Time.

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Sentosa-SOTS Closing - Cast and CEO in final celebratory jump - web

Wings of Time, produced by the award-winning events company ECA2, will unveil its majestic charm from 17 June 2014 onwards at the same outdoor theatre as Songs of the Sea. The show will present a never-seen-before ensemble of artistically choreographed multimedia effects, a talented live cast, and fun audience engagement. With a new 10-metre tall backdrop against Sentosa’s Siloso Beach’s picturesque scenery, the 25-min spectacular will take the audiences on a magical journey of regal proportions, with new robotic fountains, 3D video mapping and enhanced pyrotechnic effects. A talented cast will take audiences on a journey filled with adventure, courage and friendship in this family-friendly extravaganza.

It tells the story of a fantastic journey through time and space. A bird-like creature, Shahbaz, from prehistoric times goes on an adventure with two modern-day teenagers in search of home. Along the way, they discover the world by exploring wondrous locations around the world. As the teenagers assist their newfound friend to find his way home, they too must face a test of their courage and friendship. The decisions they make will eventually help them (or not) to find their own way home too.

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“Wings of Time will redefine history again, bringing together a breathtaking adventure with the latest multimedia effects and values we can identify with. We are confident that this will again push the boundaries of premium entertainment options for families, even after the sun sets,” said Mr Sam Lee, Director, Island Business, Sentosa Leisure Management.

With just weeks away before the new show launches, Sentosa and ECA2 are embarking on extensive renovations to overhaul the stage area and equipment within the show premise. State-of-the- art technology meets contemporary storytelling as Wings of Time showcases a new choreography of pyrotechnics and special effects tightly woven into the storyline. New equipment including robotic moving water jets with LED lights and coloured lasers will be installed, while existing infrastructure will be boosted with upgrades for a seamless integration to take every guest’s breath away. Casting calls for the new cast have been completed and they will undergo intensive training by Sentosa and ECA2.

Wings of Time will be a ticketed performance, with daily shows at 7.40pm and 8.40pm along Siloso Beach. Premium seats are available at S$23 per person, while standard seats are at S$18 (standard rate), and S$15 (for local residents). Advance tickets are available from 12 May onwards at store.sentosa.com.sg. For more information, please visit www.sentosa.com.sg or call 1800-SENTOSA (736 8672).

Sentosa’s new night show – Wings of Time

  • Date: Starting from 17 June
  • Show times: Daily, 7.40pm and 8.40pm
  • Venue: Siloso Beach at Sentosa Island
  • Nearest MRT station: Harbourfront MRT (take the Sentosa Express train from Sentosa Station located at VivoCity level 3 to Beach Station)
  • Show tickets: S$23 (premium seats), S$18 (standard seats), S$15 (standard seats for locals)
  • How to buy tickets: Available for purchase online from 12 May 2014 onwards at store.sentosa.com.sg

Splurge or Save: 6 Ways to Spend the Ultimate Weekend in Singapore

It’s official, Singapore overtakes Tokyo and is now the world’s most expensive city to live in, according to a report by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). These days, weekends are no longer fun anymore. A weekend trip out with your partner / friends / family can easily cost more than S$100 per person. I hunt down the latest buzz for you to enjoy at a dime, but wait, there’re also options for special treats!

Weekend is the best day of the week for sleeping in. Usually I will spend Saturday hanging out with friends and keep my Sunday to laze around. After all, it definitely cost less to enjoy beer at home than a meal outside. (Read on to find out how to win FREE F&B vouchers GIVEAWAY!)

Suggested Itinerary / Recommended Program

1. Brunch @ MEDZ 

There’s a new brunch in town packed with culturally diverse flavours happening at MEDZ  – the casual dining restaurant for Mediterranean food. Recently launched on 22 February, I ditched my nasi lemak and kaya toast to choose from the wide range of cuisines from France, Spain, Italy, Greece and Turkey.

SAVE: Experience one of the largest range of brunch items with prices from just $12.90 to $14.90. All brunch items come with free coffee. Go in a group of 5-6 and order 4-5 items for sharing. Remember to leave some room for the delightful dessert – The Berry Lust Pancake!

Le Jolly Monsieur (French) - Ham, bacon, Bechemel sauce, cheese, scramble egg & pork bratwurst ($13.90)

Le Jolly Monsieur (French) – Ham, bacon, Bechemel sauce, cheese, scramble egg & pork bratwurst ($13.90)

Stacked Brunch Torte (Italian) - Puff pastry, eggs, ham, mushroom, spinach, cheese & bell pepper ($14.90)

Stacked Brunch Torte (Italian) – Puff pastry, eggs, ham, mushroom, spinach, cheese & bell pepper ($14.90)

Bouncy Benedict (MEDZ style) - Home-cured salmon, baked tomato, rosti potato, English muffin & salad ($14.90)

Bouncy Benedict (MEDZ style) – Home-cured salmon, baked tomato, rosti potato, English muffin & salad ($14.90)

Toasty Tortilla (Spanish) - Scrambled egg, stewed beans with chorizo & Brioche toast ($14.90)

Toasty Tortilla (Spanish) – Scrambled egg, stewed beans with chorizo & Brioche toast ($14.90)

Poseidon's Wrap (Greek) - Prawn, fish, squid, tomato, lettuce, scramble egg, tzatziki & Greek salad ($14.90)

Poseidon’s Wrap (Greek) – Prawn, fish, squid, tomato, lettuce, scramble egg, tzatziki & Greek salad ($14.90)

A Berry Pancake Gala (dessert) - Fresh berries, summer berries, topping cream ($12.90)

A Berry Pancake Gala (dessert) – Fresh berries, summer berries, topping cream ($12.90)

Locations: MEDZ currently has two locations – Orchard Central #B2-01 to 03 / #B2-30 to 43, and Millenia Walk #01-46/47/55/56. Brunch available from 11am onwards at Orchard Central, and from 11.30am onwards at Millenia Walk out. For more information, check out their Facebook.

2. Teo Heng KTV Studio

After a hearty meal, hop on to the MRT and alight at Bras Basah station (Circle Line) or Dhoby Ghaut station (North-South / North-east Line) . A stone throw away is Teo Heng KTV Studio where you can sing your heart out without bursting the seams. For those who are not aware, this budget karaoke studio has a new outlet at Rendezvous Hotel.

SAVE: Happy Hours start from 12pm to 7pm. Medium size room costs only $10 per hour, can accommodate up to 5-6 persons. If you and 4 of your friends sing for 3 hours, that’s only $6 per person! It’s a no-frills concept but drinks available at $1 onwards.

I had a good 3-hour of singing with my UniSIM school mates after our exams

I had a good 3-hour of singing with my UniSIM school mates after our exams

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Photo credit: http://michellelujj.com

Location: Teo Heng KTV studio is located at 9 Bras Basah Road, Rendezvous Hotel Gallery #02-03. Remember to call the outlet at 6338 0603 to make reservations at least 1-2 weeks in advance. They have other outlets spread across the island, check out their website for more information.

3. Platinum Movie Suite @ The Cathay

If you croak like a frog or just tired from singing, take a walk down Orchard Road to The Cathay. Golden Village has its version of Gold Class and Cathay Cineplexes has its Platinum Movie Suite. I was fortunate to enjoy the experience as my friend, Min Lee had a free pair of tickets to RoboCop (2014) from her boss. We were treated to spacious airline first class style couch with butler service and a welcome drink. The butler on duty would tuck us in a comfortable duvet before the start of the movie.

SPLURGE:  This is for one of those special occasions. Perhaps it’s your first date, anniversary or celebration, get a pair of platinum movie ticket at $28 each. Dining & Movie Experience package is at $76 per person (Priority Cardholder: $69). For the budget conscious, there is the 1-for-1 student deal every Monday & Tuesday for screen before 6pm, and discount on popcorn and F&B menu.

Image from Popspoken.com

Image from Popspoken.com

Locations: Cathay Platinum Movie Suites are located at The Cathay, level 5 (2 Handy Road), Cathay Cineleisure Orchard, level 4 (8 Grange Road) and JEM, level 5 (50 Jurong Gateway Road). Visit their website for more information.

4. Ramen Kagetsu Arashi 

After movie at The Cathay, go down Basement 1 for a mouthwatering ramen treat to end the day! Ranked one of Japan’s top 3 ramen chains with more than 290 outlets worldwide, within 6 months, Ramen Kagetsu Arashi has already opened 3 outlets in Singapore. My personal recommendations are their gyoza and the two new exclusive dishes – Ginjiro ramen and Itameshi dry curry rice.

SAVE: Gourmet ramen and tasty curry rice can be affortable. A bowl of Ginjiro ramen is priced at only $13.90 (definitely tastier than any of Ramen Champion’s ramen) and Itameshi Dry Curry Rice, priced at $12.90, gives Pepper Lunch a run for its money. Ramen Kagetsu Arashi provides freshly crushed garlic, special in-house seasoned chives (prepared daily), specially imported black pepper and their chef’s secret recipe soy sauce to accompany your meal.

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Complement the flavours by adding freshly crushed garlic using the unique garlic press tool provided

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I added seasoned chives and a dash black pepper to accentuate the flavours of the signature soup base

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Even those who cannot take spicy food will like the brand new dry curry rice

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No ramen meal is complete without gyoza (5-pc for $6.00)

Locations: Choose from 3 locations – The Cathay #B1-01/02/03, The Star Vista #01-41, or Tampines 1 #02-09/10. Their Facebook page contains more information on contact number and opening hours.

Off the beaten track – Hidden Cafes in the heartland

If a day in town is not your thing, why not try these quiet corners for cafe in Singapore? Forget about heading to shopping malls, I have enough of Starbucks and ToastBox. Here are 2 of my personal choice when it comes to the pastries, moreover, you don’t have to look far as they are probably your neighbourhood.

5. The Audacious Cakery 

Everton Park is slowly evolving into an enclave of vibrant food scene with the addition of The Audacious Cakery being the new kid on the block. Located a short walk away from Outram MRT station, this cozy, vintage theme cafe is hidden from the main road. Though a small seating area for about 10 persons, this unique cakery offers mini cakes, tarts, cupcakes and macarons. Some of my favorites include Lemon Meringue Tart and the Matcha (green tea) Cupcake.

SPLURGE: Come to The Audacious Cakery because it offers a selection of alcohol-infused pastries. I confessed I’m alcoholic hence my choice of these premium cakes. I simply can’t get enough of their Foret Noir ($9.80) and Monet ($9.80) cakes. Two distinctively flavours – one with Kirsh soaked cherries and Kirsh Cream on a dark Vairhona chocolate genoise, and the other contains orange mousse with champagne, served with a tart raspberry compote on a Cointreau soaked sponge studded with red currants.

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Foret Noir (Black Forest) – $9.80 for the petit gateau servers 1-2 persons, warning it’s alcoholic

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Quintessential vintage style environment greets you as you walk into The Audacious Cakery

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Mini cakes start from $6.80 to $9.80 each. Cupcakes at $3.50 each (addition $1.00 for alcoholic cupcakes – Irish Cream, White Russian and Strawberry Daiquiri)

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Order your cuppa to enjoy with the delectable tarts from $5.80 to $8.80 each

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I had a good time with Sophie and Mariana. Alcoholic pastry treats are best enjoyed with your Down Under buddies.

Location: The Audacious Cakery is located at 2 Everton Park, #01-61, Singapore 081002. Opening hours is from 8am to 7pm (closed on Sunday & public holidays). For more information, please visit their website or Facebook.

6. fRoZ Bakery

If splurging on pastries burns a hole in your hole, try these treats from fRoZ Bakery. I guarantee that you will soon be burning calories due to these irresistible muffins, cheesecakes and brownies at affordable prices.  Originally located at 128 Bedok North Street 2, fRoZ Bakery made a business decision to relocate. It’s now located near Dunman Secondary School and All Saints Home. I managed to chance upon it while attending Mr Baey Yam Keng’s monthly Kopi Talk.  Check out the review by Priscilla (Pingerrain.com) and Michelle (Michhysaurous)

SAVE: Muffins are priced at $1.30 each, brownies at $1.70 per piece and miniature cheesecake from $3.50 onwards. My all-time favorite is the Banana Walnut Muffin (only $1.30), consumed when freshly baked is a heavenly treat. Now they also have premium flavour selection muffins at $1.50 each. They have several set promotions like 6-piece Value Box consisting of 2 muffins, 2 brownies and 2 mini cheesecake at only $10.80 (usual price $14.00). Take your time and have your choice.

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12 different flavours to choose from. A box of 6 muffins at $6.80. Ala carte at $1.30 per piece. Premium flavours available at additional $0.20 per piece.

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6-piece Value Box with 2 muffins, 2 cheesecakes and 2 brownies at only $10.80. Let’s call for a tea party!

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Food styling by http://www.pingerrain.com

Location: fRoZ Bakery is tucked in a corner on the eastern shore of the island at Blk 476, Tampines Street 44, #01-175B, Singapore 520476. For details, please visit their Facebook page or website. Opens daily from 9am, except every Thursday (closed).

FREE food vouchers for GIVEAWAY!

I’m doing a Rafflecopter giveaway (10 sets of $25 vouchers to be given away), simply click on the link and follow the instructions.

1. Follow @MalcolmSunny on Twitter

2. Comment on any of my blog posts

3. Follow @MalcolmSunny on Instagram

Giveaway ends on 31 March 2014. Applicable for only residents in Singapore. Good luck! 

“Save time, pay less, travel more – Get cheaper air tickets and hotel rooms with Wego.com“.

Happy New Year!

Year 2013 ended with a bang, thanks to Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) and Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay for the special arrangement to allow Michelle (Michhysaurous) and I to view the fireworks from the rooftop of Esplanade.

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Michhysaurous and I met around 7.30pm on 31 December 2013, perhaps due to the rain, Raffles City and Marina Square were packed with diners and party-goers. Thankfully we managed to find empty seats in Yoshinoya and settle for a quick dinner before meeting the organizer to collect our media passes.

When we reached Esplanade Outdoor Theatre, local band Singapore Char Siew Baos was already entertaining the Colosseum of merry-makers. The amphitheatre was full to the brim with an overflow of audience standing at the back. We managed to elbow through the crowd and find a space large enough for two of us to squeeze in. Michhysaurous loved the band’s version of What Does the Fox Say? and Roar, you can check out their catchy tunes via her Instagram.

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The other performing group, Cat Ong & Sheila De Niro sang the jazz version of popular songs such as When You Believe, You to Me Are Everything, I Will Always Love You, etc. Unfortunately, Tiffany was unable to join us that day due to road blocks. (Here’s a word of caution for next year’s countdown: please arrive at Marina Bay before 9pm.)

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At 10.30pm, we headed up to Esplanade rooftop. Orgo Bar & Lab was having a private event but we were privilege to be given the prime viewing spot as our media corner. The highlight for the night was the 8-minute long fireworks display, here’s a clip from URA:

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After the mesmerizing fireworks display, I bumped into my friend, Ron who was a staff of Esplanade. For the good of the community, he was on duty to help usher the party goers to the nearest exit. A salute to all the unsung heroes who had to work on New Year Eve to ensure that the masses got to enjoy this special joyous occasion.

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However, the journey back to the MRT station was met with lots of road blocks and detours. This was also my greatest fear when attending such mass events. To make matter worse, the security officers were not communicating with each other, we were made to go up the escalator to be told that the exit was blocked. But we managed to make it to City Hall MRT station after 30 minutes of jolting with the crowd. Thankfully the train was not as crowded as we thought it would be.

Did you manage to snap an awesome photo of the countdown festivities at Marina Bay? Send in your photo and you may win the top prize worth S$5,488 from OSIM! For more information about Marina Bay Countdown 2014 Photo Competition, check out the link here. Submission deadline is 6 January 2014 extended to 10 January 2014, so hurry and act now!

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Also remember to vote for me and to check out the coverage by the rest of the official bloggers here.

I’m going Esplanade for Countdown 2014!

Initially, I was skeptical. In fact, it took me awhile before agreeing to be one of the five official blogger ambassadors for Marina Bay Singapore Countdown 2014. To be honest, I prefer spending New Year eve away from crowd but with the comfort of my bed, my sparkling Moscato and telly set.

In all true of the matter, I’m a laid-back guy and being with the big crowd gives me claustrophobia. Sometimes I see myself as a hermit, preferring to spend same major festivals like New Year at home, chilling with friends over wine.

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Esplanade is the best place to visit the fireworks and light display for Marina Bay Countdown 2014

But my exclusive invitation to preview the light installation on Sunday night at Esplanade had turned this non-believer into an evangelist. Standing the roof top of Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay at 11.30pm to get a glimpse of the rehearsal of the light display for the celebration is a magical feeling. Someone must have sparkle mystical powder over those amazing lights which make me fell in love.

This 31st Dec 2013, I will be heading to Esplanade for the countdown celebration. Are you joining me?

Lead by event host, Vivien Tan, come join Cat Ong & Sheila De Niro and the Singapore Char Siew Baos as they use their powerful vocal harmonies and positive tunes to help us reflect on 2013 and usher in the new year.

Esplanade Outdoor Theatre, 7pm to 1am

7.00pm – 7.40pm: Cat Ong & Sheila De Niro

7.40pm – 8.05pm: Short Film – Beautiful Life

8.05pm – 8.45pm: Singapore Char Siew Baos

8.45pm – 9.10pm: Short Film – Beautiful Life

9.10pm – 9.50pm: Cat Ong & Sheila De Niro

9.50pm – 10.15pm: Short Film – Beautiful Life

10.15pm – 10.55pm: Singapore Char Siew Baos

10.55pm – 11.20pm: Short Film – Beautiful Life

11.20pm – 11.50pm: Singapore Char Siew Baos

11.50pm – 12.00am: Lead up to Countdown

12.00am – 12.10am: Fireworks + Music

12.10am – 1.00 am: Singapore Char Siew Baos

Programme may be subjected to change. For more information: Visit Esplanade’s page here or Marina Bay Countdown 2014 page here.

I saw a familiar name and realized that my friend, Jacob Teo is actually a Char Siew Bao! I mean part of the local band, Singapore Char Siew Baos. I hope I get a chance to catch up with him on New Year eve.

The highlight of this year’s celebration is the 40-second LED countdown display on the façade of the Ocean Financial Centre. If Time Square in New York can have their mega LED display, so can we right? After all, we are Singapore and we always can find our own way of doing an international gig in a local fashion.

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Ocean Financial Centre – the building with the red LED lights will be transformed into a large countdown timer for the celebration at Marina Bay

Warning! Please take note the road closure on 31 December 2013.

Lane Closures

Raffles Avenue, extreme left and right lane (from Temasek Avenue Junction to Esplanade Drive Junction) – From 6pm to 2am.

Road Closures

Esplanade Drive (Both carriageways) – From 11.30pm to 1.30am.

Connaught Drive (All lanes closed) – From 11.30pm to 1.30am.

Raffles Avenue (All lanes closed) – From 11.30pm to 1.30am.

Esplanade’s Vehicular Access Advisory

Esplanade’s Basement Carpark entrances and exits will be closed from 11.30pm to 1.30am.

Esplanade’s Waterfront Carpark will be closed from 27 December to 1 Jan 2014.

Esplanade Mall’s driveway entry and exit will be closed from 6pm to 2am.

Taxi Stand at Esplanade’s Mall Driveway will be closed from 6pm to 2am.

For a more detailed advisory on road closure around Marina Bay, please refer to this site.

Those attending Marina Bay Singapore Countdown 2014 need not worry about how to get home as SMRT trains and bus services will be extended. Yeah!

Last trains towards Joo Koon, Pasir Ris and Jurong East will depart City Hall Station at 2.15am, and the last train towards Marina Bay at 2.01am.

Those heading towards HarbourFront and Dhoby Ghaut can catch the last trains at Circle Line terminals at 1.38am.

Tiffany Yong and Michhysaurous will be joining me for the countdown. What say you?

Happy New Year! See you in 2014.

My Christmas Wish List 2013

Season’s greeting everyone! It’s the most wonderful time of the year and especially so this year as I have finally completed the major projects at my new job. Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas, it’s the time of the year when we gets invited to parties and boozing and worry about presents to bring for gift exchange.

For my company, we have Christmas tradition. Each of us are given a piece of paper to write down 3 gift choices, drop it in the bowl and pick the colleague whom we will help to fulfill his/her wish. But if your budget is bigger than mine, you may want to consider these gift ideas:

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For the fashionista, select from Kapok Tools range of quintessential bags and accessories. Kapok is a showcase of brands and their Holiday 2013 and Spring Summer 2014 collections are a juxtaposition of fashion, lifestyle, art – Mismo, Pijama, Sandqvist, Crash Baggage and Seventy Eight Percent.

My personal favorite is the Back to Old School collection (from S$605 onwards) from Seventy Eight Percent. For their full range, head down to Kapok Tools store located at TANGS Orchard, level 4 or Robinsons Orchard, level 4.

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For those who know beauty is not just skin deep, my recommendation this season will be the skincare range from Swiss brand, Skincode and local boutique skincare brand, The Skin Pharmacy. Other great gift ideas are SK-II MEN Starter Kit and Rehab London’s range of skincare products with natural ingredients.

For someone with sensitive skin like me, ensuring the face is well-hydrated is important – to prevent bacteria growth causing acne. Formulated with Vitamin C, Vitamin E, CM-Glucan, Hydrolite-5 and Rice Starch, the 24 hour Cell Energizer Cream (S$88 for 50ml) is a star performer that hydrates and fights the signs of premature aging by stimulating cell renewal process and skin defence mechanism.

DSC00893Skincode products are suitable for sensitive skin as they are 100% free from preservatives, artificial fragrances, animal derivatives and artificial colours. When I was undergoing fractional laser skin resurfacing last two months, I was very selective of the products to use and I found that the 24 hour Cell Energizer Cream aided me during the down time after laser resurfacing. Skincode products can be found at Guardian Plus located at Ngee Ann City #B2-15/23 (Takashimaya S.C.)

Most of us are usually in a morning rush, and I am no different. My skin care routine in the morning consists of cleansing and moisturizing, but due to the down time after laser resurfacing, sun protect becomes an integrated part of my morning skin regime.

Image from http://ibizbook.com

Image from ibizbook.com

My friend passed me a bottle of The Skin Pharmacy’s Natural Sunscreen (S$54.90 for 50g) which suits my personal liking. The sunscreen is light and easily absorb by my skin to give the protection from the harmful UV rays. The Skin Pharmacy also provides personalised products and consultancy amongst the services they offer at their 3 retail locations.

Image from www.facebook.com/AmaSoySG

Image from www.facebook.com/AmaSoySG

Festive feasting can be healthy. Besides boosting our skin with moisture and protecting it from the sun, healthy puddings such as AmaSoy Japanese Soy Puddings are good choice for any house or office parties. Enhanced with collagen and omega3 (DHA), AmaSoy’s puddings (S$2 each) are known for their beautifying properties and health benefits such as boosting brain function, enhancing heart health and lowering triglycerides.

Though I have to make a note here that I am still unsure if collagen’s beautifying benefits are best consumed or applied directly onto our skin, I simply love this dessert as a tasty and nutritious alternative. AmaSoy outlets can be found in 6 locations island-wide.

What better way to end the year with celebration and partying, better still turn your office or house into a makeshift lounge or club with UE BOOM speakers from Logitech and Australia’s Hardys Wine by William Hardy.

Image from engadget.com

Image from engadget.com

UE BOOM is a social music player, a wireless speaker that offers 360-degree sound in a battery-powered device. It’s specially developed acoustic skin is water and stain resistant. Simply placed two UE BOOMs at different corners of the room and connect wireless with the free UE BOOM app (available for iOS and Andriod) and get ready to party.

UE BOOM is available at major retailers and leading electronic IT stores at recommended retail price of S$299. For music, upload Michael Buble’s Christmas album for easy listening. 🙂

Image from nichology.net

Image from nichology.net

But not party is complete without boozing. Personally I prefer wine as the healthier choice to other alcoholic beverages. Drinking wine in moderation can help to cure a wide range of ailments such as lethargy and diarrhea. Aged in French and American oak, Hardys Shiraz (S$37 per bottle from Cold Storage) is full bodied with plum, blueberry, blackberry, vanilla and clove spice lending their piquant flavours.

Image from mezawineshop.com

Image from mezawineshop.com

Unfinished bottle of red wine can also be used to make Spanish cocktail, Sangria. Pour the remaining bottle into a jug (you can mix different types of red wine) and add chopped fruits such as orange, apple, berries, grapes, kiwi. Wrap it up with cling film and let the flavour of the fruits diffuse into the wine.

With fashion, beauty, health and fun in check, it will be good tidings and great joy this Christmas! I’m really excited about this December as I have been selected as one of the five official bloggers for Marina Bay Countdown 2014. Look out as I will be sharing more about this end of the year celebration in town as well as my long overdue travel writing on my trip to New Zealand.

Thai Brings Their Horror to Sentosa Spooktacular 2013

[Guest post by Tiffany Yong]

Ask any movie lovers the best horror shows and Thai’s horror movie will easily be on the top 10. After 5 years of Asian spookiness, Sentosa just upped the horror-o-meter by collaborating with renowned movie production studio GMM Tai Hub Co. Ltd. (GTH) to produced five most realistic horror trails to date (verified!), transporting visitors into the world of Thai horror films.

Sentosa Spooktacular 2013

Coming Soon, Shutter, Body, Dorm and Pee Mak

Fans of Thai horror films might be “delighted” (or not?) to find iconic ghosts from each movie-themed trail. The five most significant characters will be the spiteful starlet Chaba from Coming Soon, vengeful ex-girlfriend Natre from Shutter, resentful chopped-up victim Dararai from Body, faithful wife Nak from Pee Mak and angry child spirit Wichien from Dorm.

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On the Media Preview Night, directors and actors from the featured movies were invited to experience the five trails for themselves and get second scare out of their life (I guess the first time round would be during their movie filming back then!)

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Chantavit Dhanasevi (Ter), best known for his lead role in Hello Stranger and ATM, was the lead actor for Coming Soong, and also as a co-screenwriter for GTH record breaking blockbuster, Pee Mak. Together with him were the gang of four in Pee Mak, Attharut Kongrasri (Shane), Kantapat Permpoonpatcharasuk (Bomb), Nuttapong Chartpong (Freud) and Pongsatorn Jongwilas (Puak).

The Horror-o-meter

1. The Pee Mak House
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After the war, Mak invited his best friends – Ter, Puak, Shin and Aey – to visit his hometown, and introduced them to his beautiful wife, Nak, and his newborn baby. However, they soon heard a village rumour that Nak had died during childbirth. It is now up to the foursome to uncover the ugly truth and save Mak from his ghostly wife.
Follow them into the unholy Temple of Dawn and perform a divine dance ritual to rip off Nak’s façade.
Horror-o-meter: 1/5 *
This is the least scary of the four as the blockbuster was a comedy horror and the Gang of Four were not even ghosts in the film! Learn the Pee Mak dance to stop the stern ghost looking at you!

2. The Body- Haunted Hospital
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Chon, a medical student who has performed countless autopsies, was increasingly perturbed by nightmares filled with horrific flashes of one of the corpses he recently studied; it belonged to Dararai, who had been gruesomely butchered. And it seems the vengeful soul has placed a deadly curse on the whole faculty — including you. To lift the curse, you need to locate and retrieve Dararai’s grisly body parts (gloves not provided) before piecing them together.
Horror-o-meter: 3/5 ***
Realistic body parts

3. Shutter Photography Room
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When photographer Tun noticed mysterious white shadows in his shots, he knew something was amiss. It became clear that the apparitions were Netre, his ex-girlfriend who was raped by his best friends; they had pressurised him to capture the misdeed in order to blackmail her, driving her to commit suicide. She returns to exact her revenge, and it doesn’t look pretty. Vengeance is blind and now you’re part of the picture. Save yourself: collect and burn the foul photographs without getting yourself exposed. Make it snappy.
Horror-o-meter: 4/5 ****
If you don’t like gross photos, I’m sorry to say you are surrounded by them. With the powerful lightings in the room, beware of what you are looking at.

4. Dorm- Haunted Boarding School
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Wichien, a boarding school loner, had no friends; no one noticed when one fateful summer he fell down a well and met his doom. Desolated, he resolved to make his absence felt. Now, with kids going missing one by one, and drowning incidents commonplace at the school, it’s time to face the fear head-on. Armed with only a modest torchlight, you are to navigate the dim, maze-like corridors, and recite the spell needed to put Wichien’s spirit at peace once and for all.
Horror-o-meter: 3/5 *
Little student souls are hanging around, in and out of the trail. Just remember, to check who is in front or behind you after coming out from the trail. It might be someone else.

5. Coming Soon- Haunted Cinema
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In the last scene of a production, starler Chaba suffocated to death due to a technical glitch, while the crew stood transfixed by what they misinterpreted as a breathtaking execution. She’s back for her final act, and no one’s off the hook from her lethal hex. Would you pay for this haunting encounter with your life? Break the jinx with an autograph from Chaba herself. Without her stamp of approval, your only fate is death.
Horror-o-meter: 5/5 *****
The longest trail among the 5, this is unanimously voted by many bloggers to be the scariest. I won’t reveal too much, experience it yourself and scream your lungs out.

What else to expect?

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The largest prop is 10m in height!

Besides the 200 roaming ghosts which might appear suddenly on your way to the different stations, you will see many larger-than-life props, elaborate landscape designs and lifelike figures never before seen in reality warped into scenes from the five horror films.

spooktacular 2013
Open to public on 20th, 25th, 26th (sold out) and 31st October; 1st and 2nd November 2013
Time: 7pm to 11pm (last entry: 9pm)
Minimum age: 13 years old
“Kia Gui” (Scared of Ghost) Pass: $16.60 (Admission to Fort Siloso only, exclude haunted trails)
Standard Purchase $66.60
Fast Pass: $26.60
Tickets available at Sentosa Spooktacular Website and Sentosa Ticketing Counters!

For more information, check out Sentosa Spooktacular Website or Facebook Fan Page, where fear-enthusiasts can get a taste of Sentosa Spooktacular 2013 by re-living the terror from the five films.

[About Guest Blogger]

Tiffany Yong aka tiffanyyongwt, is a Capricorn who loves acting, dancing, movies and bubble tea. Currently an Actor, Blogger & Coach, the ABC girl writes online at tiffanyyong.com

It’s $10,000 at stake and a whole load of ramen!

Food eating contests are gaining popularity in Singapore. Previously MediaCorp partnered with several malls in western Singapore when they launched 8 DAYS Eat app and now Ramen Champion presents the ultimate grand prize of $10,000. But do you have what it takes to stomach it?

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Last month, I was lucky to be present when Ramen Champion opened their second branch at MegaBox, Kowloon Bay in Hong Kong. The highlight of the day was the Ramen “Face-off” between the pretty and petite competitive food challenger, Tomoko Miyake and the TVB stars.

Leading the entourage of popular Hong Kong TV celebrities and radio personalities was one of my favorite actor, Eric Tsang. And Koji Tashiro, the CEO of Menya Koji Group was also there to take part for the eating challenge.

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Fast forward one month later, and I’m excited that Ramen Champion Pte Ltd is launching the Ramen Big Eater Challenge as part of the Food Challenge Asia Championship which involves Ramen Champion outlets in Singapore, Hong Kong and Thailand.

Details of Singapore Contest:

Qualifying Round

Date: 2nd October 2013 (Wednesday)

Time: 3.00pm to 5.00pm

Location: Ramen Champion @ Bugis+ (201 Victoria Street, Bugis+ #04-08/09/10, Singapore 188067)

Final Round

Date: 14th November 2013 (Thursday)

Time: 3.00pm to 5.00pm

Location: Ramen Champion @ Great World City (1 Kim Seng Promenade, Great World City, #01-21/22, Singapore 237994)

Here’s some questions which you probably want to ask Ramen Champion about the Big Eater Challenge:

Will the ramen be piping hot when served?

During the contest, the ramen is prepared on the spot and the chefs will try to control the temperature of the ramen broth so it won’t too hot when it’s served. It won’t be piping hot but it would not be served cold as there’s the need to maintain the quality of ramen. Side bowls will be provided so participants can use them to cool off the ramen.

Is it okay for non local to register for the event?

The organiser accepts non-local as long as they are residing in Singapore and not tourists. For example, foreign students or working professionals are eligible.

Must the soup be finished? Do I also have to finish the sides like egg and seaweed?

With regards to the contest, there is not a must to finish the soup during the contest and the organiser will only be serving noodles and broth for the ramen.

How big is the bowl of ramen and what style will be served?

The organiser are using the regular size bowl which is available at the restaurant and the ramen served will be Tonkotsu style.

Is the ramen served Halal/ Vegetarian?

The ramen served is neither Halal nor vegetarian. Also, the broth for both stalls is Tonkotsu style which means it is made from pork and pork bones, and may contain chicken and/or fish. It does NOT contain BEEF and LAMB.

Can I bring my own seasoning?

Contestants are discouraged from bringing their own seasoning.

Will water be provided?

The organiser will be providing ice water for during the contest and green tea will be served at the waiting areas.

What is the minimum age to join this contest?

The minimum age to join is 18 years old and above. All participants will be required to fill up an indemnity form together with the registration form and fee.

Can I register on behalf of my friend for the ramen eating contest?

Preferably the participant should come in person to register as he/she is required to fill up an indemnity form along with the registration form and registration fee. However, you may write in to the organiser at ramenchampion@gmail.com and they will review on a case to case basis.

How this contest works and how do I qualify the Finals?

The format of the contest will be based on the number of regular size bowls a participant can finish within 15 minutes and that will qualify him/her into the final round. The participants who can finish the most number of ramen will enter into the final round on 14 November 2013 at Great World City.

Do I still get my vouchers if I don’t qualify for the Finals? What vouchers will be given?

All participants will be given the $30 cash vouchers regardless if they qualified into the final round. The cash vouchers will be sponsored by Komars F&B Pte Ltd and can be used for restaurants such as Daikokuya, Bishamon, Menya Koji and Benten Café. There is no minimum spending required but it is not applicable for set meals or other promotional items.

Will there be any other prizes for the finalist other than the grand prize?

Currently, the organiser has decided only the grand prize of $10,000 will be given but they are working on the details of other prizes, if any. Ramen Champion would like everyone to walk away happily and hence $30 vouchers will be given to every participant.

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I had a wonderful time in Hong Kong witnessing the eating power of Tomoko Miyake and an photo opportunity with Eric Tsang, producer of Ramen Champion Hong Kong. Registration for Ramen Big Eater Challenge starts today (26 Sep) and ends tomorrow (27 Sep)! Head down to Ramen Champion @ Bugis+ between 6.30pm to 9.30pm to register.

Though no TVB stars will be joining the contest in Singapore, but who knows, the grand prize of S$10,000 could be yours to keep.  Just a word of caution, join for fun and eat within your limit.

For more information, visit Ramen Champion Singapore at www.ramenchampion.com.sg or Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/RamenChampionSingapore

Lion Earl Roars at Nation Pride

What would you design if you are given the task to come up with the new collection of Singapore Pride? 21 PARCO next NEXT designers took on the challenge, using the most basic staple found in everyone’s wardrode, to present a limited edition t-shirt that represent their interpretation of this nation.

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[Photo: PARCO next NEXT]

It was a pre-birthday party like no one, as I was treated to a night of fashion show, music, champagne and nostalgic bite size treats at the launch of Nation Pride at PARCO next NEXT on 2 August 2013. Furthering the theme of all things local, retro Singaporean treats were served by dolled up Snack Studs and Candy Chicks.

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[Photos: PARCO next NEXT]

“We are celebrating National Day with Pride and Passion. Our young emerging designers came up with an exclusive Tee, inspired by our great Nation. For the first time, 6 of our PARCO next NEXT alumni designers are also invited to show along with the current designers. The cool and eternally hip T-shirt best symbolizes Singapore Style!” said Mr David Wang, Project Advisor of PARCO next NEXT and Chairman of the Designers and Retailers Group, Textile and Fashion Federation, (Singapore) (TaFf).

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[Photos: PARCO next NEXT]

Using white, the color of purity, clarity and virtue. The white cotton top from Lion Earl is inspired from the rectangular outline of the flag with the addition of cut-out sleeves. Designed for the modern woman, one who is strong, capable and confident, the feel of this top portrays a slight military and armor-shell like look to celebrate Her growth throughout the years.

“Singapore to us is a women with strong determination that will keep going forward. She is our home and shelter from which we grew along with her throughout the years.” said Lionel Low, Creative Director of Lion Earl.

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Other uniquely Singaporean designs from the Nation Pride 2013 Collection include:

The iconic Merlion is reinterpreted on an embellished T-shirt by Foreword. 20:TwoThree and KaeHana took a trip down memory lane by re-imagining the Good Morning towel and White Rabbit Milk Candy (respectively) from our childhood. Mash-Up once again displayed their distinctive sense of humor with a hand-drawn map of local hunts.

WSDM’s black T-shirt in camouflage print is inspired by the designer’s days in National Service and evenodd’s T-shirt reflects the various Singapore landmarks from the new (Marina Bay Sands) to the heritage (Kampong Glam & HDB, etc).

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[Photos: PARCO next NEXT]

Ms. Lai Sau Kuen, General Manager Corporate of Parco (Singapore) Pte. Ltd, adds, “Nation Pride has always been a great opportunity for Parco to not only showcase our very own PARCO next NEXT fashion designers, but also actively collaborate with local talents from various creative fields like the arts, music, theatre, etc.  so as to lend our support and help raise  awareness for  these gifted individuals and groups.”

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These limited edition customized T-shirts are available at PARCO next NEXT (Level 2, PARCO Marina Bay) and on sale while stocks last. Head down to the store before they are sold out by this weekend!

Support Budding Local Singers at Music Express XIX

contestant on stage

[Photo: NTU Chinese Society]

I hate Chinese songs and when given a choice, I would normally sing English songs at karaoke sessions with friends. Besides being linguistically challenged  in Mandarin, very often I feel that Chinese songs are always so melancholic in nature.

But what I do support is originality, creativity and local talent. Coming to its 19th year,  Music Express is an annual songwriting competition organized by the NTU Chinese Society (NTUCS).  The aim of this competition is to provide a platform for dedicated people who are enthusiastic in music, encourage them to express own feeling, views, and ideas via originally-made songs.

This year, besides focusing its scope to Universities and Colleges in Singapore, Music Express introduces a new catagory, targeting all Singaporean below 35, with the ambition to increase the songwriting atmosphere in Singapore.

Here’s a short introduction of the contesters for this year:

The Grand Final will be held at Nanyang Auditorium in Nanyang Technological University (NTU) on 25 August 2013. Tickets can be bought on the spot or via pre-order. Supporters can purchase the tickets directly from their official website via this link: http://www.ntumusicexpress.com/ticketselling1.html

Cash payment can be made at NTU Chinese Society Booth during NTU ECA Fair from 12 to 14 August 2013. Each ticket is priced at S$10.00.

For more information, please visit the official website: http://www.ntumusicexpress.com/index.html

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[Photo: NTU Chinese Society]

Free ticket giveaway:

Be the first to submit your name, NRIC and phone number to sunny_creationz@hotmail.com and win 1 Grand Final ticket to Music Express 19. Closing date to take part on this giveaway is 22 August 2013 (23:59 hrs).

What Really Happened at Singapore Blog Awards 2013

6 July 2013 was my first time attending the Singapore Blog Awards. It’s like what was being quoted in the promotional video, the Singapore Blog Awards is more than an award ceremony, it is also an annual gathering where bloggers can come together to mingle and know each other.

Other than the enthusiastic emcee Elaine Kuek (from OKTO) cracking a few jokes on stage and the Best Dressed Award competition, there wasn’t any entertainment on stage. But fear not! Cos we bloggers are a fun-loving batch of people who are good at self-entertaining.

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Many bloggers showed off their best moves on stage in an attempt to wow the audience and win votes for Best Dressed.

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For a minute, Colin Chang was the roadside Char Kway Teow boy offering free packets in exchange for more votes as Best Dressed. 

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Smith Leong attempting to do a striptease, fortunately for us, he was stop by the mata (police man). 

Below are 9 secrets bloggers used for self-entertainment, please do not try them at home.

Method 1: Camwhoring with friends

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Camwhoring is fun and it can be done with different kinds of hand gestures, with the V being the forever popular pose. 

Method 2: Self-cam / self-pic

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Tired of asking someone to help you take photos? Technology has allowed most cameras to be versatile with an option for self-cam. Why take photo alone when you can take with a friend, right?  

Method 3: Posing (with or without the backdrop)

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Obviously Smith Leong is a poser. And he does it shamelessly everything, with or without a backdrop. Ying Zi (left, below) demonstrating the correct way of posing with a backdrop. 

Method 4: Bring your partner with you to the event 

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Don’t like to take photos? No problem, just ask your boyfriend or girlfriend to attend the event with you. Pretending to be talking about secret and everyone will leave you two alone.

Method 5: Surprise birthday party

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A sweet surprise for our Minute Man, Colin planned by Music Girl, Mint Leong. Even the emcee paused for a minute to sing and wish our boy, ‘Happy Birthday!’

Method 6: Take photo with your award (only if you are a winner)

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If you have it, flare it. No winner can escape other people asking for them to pose with their awards. 

Method 7: Posing with random objects, i.e. GOOD MORNING Towel or spatula 

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Random props are fun items. Joyce and Colin showing you that a towel and kitchen utensil are more than just daily items. 

Method 8: Take photo with celebrity filmmaker, Jack Neo

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If I wasn’t so busy taking photos of them and helping them take photos, I would have also requested to have my photo taken with Jack Neo. After all, I grew up watching his Monday entertainment nights on Channel 8.

Method 9: More photo shots after the event

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After the event, I went with Regina and Karen for a drink at Liang Court. After that the girls wanted to have more shots taken with their sponsored apparel by the river side.  

Personal thoughts on Singapore Blog Awards 2013

I really hope that next time, Omy.sg can allow bloggers, who are selected to cover for the event, access to the VIP area, so we can take portrait shots of the VIP and invited guests. My disappointment is that I didn’t managed to take a good picture of the guest-of-honour, Mr Lawrence Wong (Acting Minister for Culture, Community and Youth / Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information), and the two judges who were present (Keith Png & Walter Lim).

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Light-hearted moments: Mr Lawrence Wong playing Scissors, Paper, Stone on stage with Jasmine Koh (left picture above) from Scissors Paper Stone Blog. And Mr Wong checking out Ai Sakura’s sexy back (right picture above).