Singapore


Top 5 for Singapore

  • Check out Arab Street for some funky little boutique shops and cafes.
  • Wander through Raffles hotel – famous for the invention of the Singapore Sling. However, at $20 I don’t think it’s worth actually consuming one.
  • Take in one of the cities’ museums.
  • Sample some of the great and varied cuisines here.
  • Head to the top of the Marina Bay Sands for a cocktail and amazing view.

RECOMMENDED ACCOMODATION

  • High-Range: Sheraton Hotel. I used more Aeroplan points to book a night at this new and gorgeous hotel.
  • Mid-Range: J8 hotel. Good price: quality ratio, despite very small rooms.

Singapore was a small stopover for me – to break up the flight from Germany to Australia. Given that I had accumulated a rather huge amount of Aeroplan points due to Business travel all over the place, I made a big splurge and booked a business class ticket – from Frankfurt to Istanbul with Turkish Airlines and then Istanbul to Singapore with Singapore Airlines. The flight to Istanbul was short and rather uneventful, but when I stepped on my Singapore flight . . . oh goodness honey child. Having flown business class on Air Canada, United, and Lufthansa, I had an idea in my head how big my seat might be but Singapore Airlines really takes it over the top. I had a full-blown mini room – with a TV almost as big as mine at home and a seat which converts into a fully-flat bed if you want to sleep. I put my wooly socks on and settled in for the ride J First, the attendants come around with a cocktail list and write down your order so they can be prepared before take-off. Then, as soon as you’ve reached cruising altitude, you are delivered hot nuts and your cocktail of choice- a Singapore Sling for me, naturally. Then comes a three-course meal with a wine list. This was really the most enjoyable flight I’ve ever been on. Normally I’m a little more low-budget – but if you have the chance to fly business – pick Singapore Airlines. Head and shoulders above the others!

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I knew from rumours and friends who had travelled to Singapore that it tends to be a rather expensive city. I certainly discovered while looking up hotels that this was the case – I stayed at the J8 Hotel – costing about 60 euro a night for a TINY single room. My seat on Singapore Airlines was bigger. However it was efficiently designed and spotlessly clean, and within walking distance to the main attractions. The rate also includes breakfast, served in the café on the ground floor. My first day was spent wandering through the sweltering heat and humidity to Arab Street, Raffles hotel, the Marina Bay Sands hotel, and the visiting “Earlier Mona Lisa” exhibition at the city museum.

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Arab Street area

Arab Street area

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The next morning I woke up and decided to try a local café with a strange-sounding concept – a Danish breakfast joint called Gaest. As far as I can tell, what made it Danish was the freshly baked bread, served un-toasted with Danish butter and jam. And strong coffee. Hmmm. Ok. It was good, but I have to say I noticed there is a strange affinity for toast in Singapore. As in, there is a chain called “Toast” where you go to order. . . toast. With butter and sugar, or peanut butter, or whatever. Is this a big thing in Singapore? I think most North Americans consider toast the most generic breakfast ever. Anyways. I was thoroughly hyped up on the strong coffee and did some shopping and more site-seeing until a positive MONSOON started and I retreated indoors.

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Singapore was fine for a couple-day stop, but I can’t say I saw anything that really drew me in. I know friends that love the city, so it may be “I wasn’t there long enough to really get it” situation.

Categories: Cities & Culture, Weekend EscapesTags: , , , , , ,

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