We all grew up in Singapore. Right? Most of us. Well, after considering the concentration of Singaporeans to foreigners in the country, SOME of us grew up in Singapore.
But anyway, my point is we all grew up in a neighbourhood and have lots of memories tied to a certain area in Singapore.
Since my colleagues hail from different parts of Singapore, I decided to do a little investigation to find out where they grew up.
“I grew up in Bedok North, Fengshan. It was the quieter side of Bedok because the people living there were mainly elderly. Time moved slowly in the area, which made it very homely and cosy. This was before the trend of food bloggers hyping food in neighbourhoods.[caption id="attachment_35283" align="aligncenter" width="680"] Image Credit: Image Credit: Sportify Cities[/caption]
You know how they have the ice cream uncles who would sell ice cream downstairs? Yeah, mine wasn’t an ice cream uncle. It was the kacang putih man.
I moved to Yew Tee in my early Primary years, but to be honest, Marine Parade was more exciting. Don’t put that in.”
“I grew up in Pasir Ris all my life. Though I shifted from Pasir Ris East to Pasir Ris West.
But I remember that the area was like a ghost town, because nothing was really developed yet. And the only mall we had at the time was White Sands Shopping Mall, that’s still around today.[caption id="attachment_35281" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Image Credit: Wikipedia[/caption]
There was also West Plaza and Elias Mall. Every outing with friends was always at Downtown East. This was before Downtown East expanded into e!Avenue today.
My Sports Days were a little more special because ours wasn’t conducted in-school, rather the school put up a huge tent and held Sports Day at Pasir Ris Park.
Also, I think every Pasir Ris kid will remember that we had our very own theme park in our neighbourhood. Yes, Escape Theme Park was ICONIC.[caption id="attachment_35280" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Image Credit: Image Credit: meme generator[/caption]
I liked that everyone living in Yishun had each other’s backs. The neighbourhood spirit was palpable. Can feel one. There was this sense of unspoken security in the neighbourhood. So actually no need to build wall because we already feel secure.
Even though Northpoint wasn’t much, it was great because it had Toys ‘R’ Us. For a kid, any place that had a Toys ‘R’ Us was a wonderland.[caption id="attachment_35285" align="aligncenter" width="350"] Image Credit: Choa Chu Kang
“I grew up in Choa Chu Kang. I lived in Teck Whye until I was 3 or 4, but to be honest, the areas are just next to each other.
I remember taking the feeder bus to the MRT, because LRTs weren’t created at the time. There was also Choa Chu Kang Park. I mean, it’s still around today, but back then it was really an empty park with sand playgrounds.
There was a bicycle shop at Choa Chu Kang MRT interchange. My first bike was bought there. Sadly, the shop is gone now.
Lot 1 Shopper’s Mall was the only mall we had in the area. It was quite….limited, in the past. Now they’re trying to expand the MRT so it’s cool.”
Finally, there’s me. I live in Jurong West, the armpit of Singapore. Left or right? It’s up to your perspective.
I used to hate living in Jurong West. As if Jurong wasn’t already “West” enough, I had to live in Jurong WEST. Everything was far. Can you imagine what my life was like when I had to book in every Sunday night during NS?
The only shopping we had was Jurong Point and it was boring. I mean, it was fine for a while when they decided to open a Toys ‘R’ Us there. But it eventually closed.
[caption id="attachment_35288" align="aligncenter" width="700"] Image Credit: SRX Property[/caption]
That’s not all, we were near Tuas, so factory smog and weird smells were common. Not to mention the presence of Tengah Air Base, which ensured that the 2 or 3 months leading up to National Day was filled with daily sonic booms of passing aircrafts.
I’m pretty sure my hearing is damaged thanks to the RSAF. Patriotism, I guess.
But to be honest, I grew to love Jurong West.
I love that the neighbourhood is quiet, even in the day. I love that we don’t have a huge amount of traffic passing through. I love that I don’t have to deal with crowd when I take the MRT, unlike Jurong East.
I guess there are benefits to living in the corner of Singapore after all.
Where did you grow up in Singapore?
(Header Image Source: Melissa Chan)
Today, there are more than 1 million public housing flats in 23 towns with over 80% living in HDB flats. With a focus on eco green living, other “vertical villages” like high-rise and high-density private condominiums and apartments are on the rise as well.
But, are these ‘green’ apartments merely just buildings with expensive solar panels and high technology mechanisms?
Well, we debunk this myth by introducing 5 high rise apartments that are role models because they’ve successfully incorporated eco green living in Singapore.
You’d totally want to live in a home like that.
1. The Topiary
Located at the west of Sengkang New Town along Fernvale Lane, The Topiary Fernvale EC is the first Executive Condominium launched in Sengkang.
It is equipped with full Condo facilities including aerobic/yoga rooms, hydrotherapy beds and even an onsen!
Designed by DP Architects, The Topiary was built with sustainable materials, and its building configuration and site orientation promotes natural ventilation and daylighting.[caption id="attachment_16067" align="alignnone" width="1800"] Image Credit: Kheng Leong[/caption]
Not only can residents enjoy the common sky terraces outdoors, but they can also enjoy energy-efficient air-conditioners indoors that all units come with!
Address: 11 Fernvale Lane
2. Punggol Waterway Ridges
We all know Punggol is increasingly popular with many up and coming developments. But what we may not know is that many of these developments promote sustainable living.
One of these is Punggol Waterway Ridges, which was recently awarded the HDB Design Award in September and is due for completion this December.[caption id="attachment_16260" align="alignnone" width="1000"] Image Credit: HDB[/caption]
Located along Edgefield Plains and on the northern bank of the Waterfront town, residents can enjoy waterfront living while conserving water![caption id="attachment_16100" align="aligncenter" width="850"] Credit: Car-Free Sunday.
Punggol Waterway Ridges
Address: 669 Edgefield Plains
3. SkyTerrace @ Dawson
Located in Dawson Estate in the Alexandra area, this project has ecologically conscious technologies like drip irrigation, rainwater harvesting, bio-retention basins and solar energy systems.
At SkyTerrace @ Dawson, there are five towers ranging from 40 to 43 storeys and elevated gardens with lush greenery.
These link through bridges, allowing residents to enjoy the natural environment and enjoy interaction with fellow residents.
Sky Terrace @ Dawson
Address: 89 Dawson Road
4. Casa Clementi
Landscaping in public housing has definitely reached a whole new level.
Casa Clementi in Clementi Avenue 1 has an award-winning landscaped deck that links ten blocks in the estate.[caption id="attachment_16264" align="alignnone" width="1280"] Image Credit: Greenroofs[/caption]
Not only is the green roof multi-functional with paved open plazas, but there are also children’s play stations and perimeter pathways.
These pathways can double as a 660m jogging track. They serve many purposes – as a water irrigation system, and also to conceal the carpark.
Residents can unwind in this gardenscape after a long day and enjoy the feel of what may otherwise be mistaken as a private condominium!
Address: Clementi Ave 1
5. NTU North Hill Residential Hill
Who would have thought that a residential hall in a school could be so popular?
Not only are these NTU’s residential halls the first public high-rises in Singapore to use a “Lego-style” construction method, but they are also one of the newest eco-friendly high-rise buildings.[caption id="attachment_17261" align="alignnone" width="1444"] Image Credit: Straits Times[/caption]
There are sustainable features such as energy-saving lighting and solar-powered systems. One of the green features is that all rooms in the residential halls have special “Low-E” glazed windows. These windows reflect heat using a special coating.
NTU North Hill Residential Hall
Address: 50 Nanyang Walk
Singapore has definitely upped its green game in the recent years.
The next time you’re looking for a new home, you may want to consider if it is eco-friendly!
Pokemon Go has taken Singapore by storm for weeks now, with throngs of Singaporeans gathering at parks, malls and even the streets of Orchard Road and Marine Bay Sands till the wee hours.
Don’t expect any fast food joints on this list, it’s all local food that is bound to fuel you up after a long night of Pokemon catching!
1. Night Safari
If you have decided to go to the Night Safari to enjoy both the real and virtual animals, you would probably have stayed long past the closing hours of the Night Safari eateries.
We found the closest eatery to this national attraction, and the good news is they’re open way past the Night Safari. The bad news? They’re a pretty long walk from the Night Safari.
Image credit: Just Go La
For those staying in the North and Central Singapore, Upper Thomson is the best place to grab some grub. With quaint cafes serving up some really good coffee in the day and small restaurants offering really affordable and delicious food by night, it’s no surprise that it’s grown so popular.
A great place to get some cheap supper? If you’re a night owl who prowls the island for late supper you would have definitely heard of the Roti Prata House. They have a wide variety of pratas including durian and milo but if you’re a little more traditional stick to the firm favourites.
Distance: 5 mins by car, 23 mins if you’re walking
Address: 246M Upper Thomson Rd, Singapore 574370
Contact: 6459 5260
Opening Hours: 7am – 2am
4. Tampines West
Image credit: 6785 1265
Opening Hours: 24 hours
Image credit: Foursquare
A stone’s throw from Al-Azhar is Saffron’s Cafeteria, if you’re starving and need something to fill your stomach this is the place to head to. A firm favourite among patrons is the Briyani, according our sources the servings are huge, enough to fill two adults and they’re really affordable, at an average price of $6 that is a steal! Best part? It’s 24 hours! So you know where to head to when those midnight Bryani cravings hit!
Address: Blk 201D Tampines Street 21, # 01-1163, S529393
Opening Hours: 24 hours
5. Chinese Garden
Image credit: 6266 4466
Opening Hours: 6:30AM–3:30AM
Image credit: 6345 5225
Opening Hours: 24 hours
6. Marina Bay Sands
Image credit: rare Pokemons, but with so many eateries either closing before 11 or way beyond our price range, Makansutra Gluttons By The Bay is one place you can definitely have you fill under a budget.
Makansutra Gluttons By The Bay is the perfect place to grab a bite to eat no matter the company, if you’re riding solo grab some Mee Goreng from The Old Satay Club or Soon Lee’s Fried Hokkien Prawn Mee. If you’re in a big group, do supper family style, share the famous Huat Huat BBQ Chicken Wings or the Alhambra Padang Satay.
Distance: 3 mins by car, 15 mins if you’re walking
Address: #01-15, 8 Raffles Ave, 039802
Contact: 6336 7025
Opening Hours: Mon-Thurs, 5pm-2am; Fri-Sat, 5pm-3am; Sun, 4pm-1am
7. Lot One
Image credit: Pokemon Go Guide: How To Catch Pikachu & Where To Catch ‘Em All!
Singapore may be small. We might not have any seven wonders of the world, but our tiny island has pretty spots too! If you’ve liked our previous post of enchanting and secret photography spots, we have curated another list of beautiful photography spots in Singapore to explore!
1. Raffles MarinaImage credit 500px.com, photo by Edward Tian[/caption]
Sitting at the end of the pier overlooking Raffles Marina stands Johor Straits lighthouse, otherwise known as Raffles Marina lighthouse. The location is about as far West of Singapore as it can get. You can actually bring your passport and cross over to Malaysia! This lighthouse overlooks Tua Second Link and acts as a guide for yachts navigating into and out of the marina.
Visit during sunset and enjoy the fresh air and sea breeze. You might even get a picturesque photo with a backdrop of a pastel-hued sunset with Malaysia in the background! In addition, within its proximity is the Raffles Marina Club. You can even take photos with the backdrop of expensive yachts! This is certainly one of the best photography spots to add to your list!
2. The White Rabbit[caption id="attachment_11543" align="alignnone" width="800"] Image credit: antonchia[/caption]
Located at Dempsey Hill, The White Rabbit is a restaurant housed in the beautifully restored 1930s Ebenezer chapel. It has a charming garden, which is great for an enchanting photo shoot.
This restaurant lends a whimsical touch to those who seek its delightfully themed surroundings. Based on the story of Alice in Wonderland, this one is for those who love a little whimsy and magic with its gorgeous walkways, delightfully-mismatched furniture and well-manicured lawns.
3. Botanic Gardens[caption id="attachment_11526" align="alignnone" width="640"] Image credit: bittersweetbyjoseph[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11528" align="alignnone" width="640"] Image credit: bittersweetbyjoseph[/caption]
Known for its beautiful gardens and structures for wedding pictures, here’s another location to consider for your nature photography spots. Arrive early to avoid the crowd and curious stares of on-lookers at Botanic Gardens. You’ll get to enjoy the beautiful, soft morning glow of the sun and the peaceful atmosphere for being an early bird!
Although Singapore Botanical Gardens is very large, almost every part of the garden serves as a good backdrop for your shoot. Other than popular photography spots such as Healing Garden, Sun Garden, and The Swan Lake, you can also hunt down hidden photography spots around the garden.
You’ll be amazed at the amount of magical and enchanting photography spots you can find in Botanic Gardens!
4. Bukit Timah Saddle Club[caption id="attachment_11518" align="alignnone" width="769"] Image credit: gallerieck.com[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11519" align="alignnone" width="956"] Image credit: gallerieck.com[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11523" align="alignnone" width="900"] Image credit: AndroidsinBoots[/caption]
Come in the morning and spend a day with these lovely horses. You could even bring along rustic props for country-inspired snaps!
Do note that a fee is required to take a photo shoot with the horses. If you’re not in for paying extra, the spot near the hill is also a great place for a nice shoot. Walk up the hill to the other side and you can find beautiful greenery. In addition, have your brunch at the highly raved brunch spot at Riders cafe!
5. Little Guilin[caption id="attachment_11546" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Scott KJ Photography[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11539" align="alignnone" width="896"] Image credit: Instagram user @withoutstrings[/caption]
Known as Little Guilin or Xiao Guilin, this park is located at Bukit Batok is similar to Guilin in China as a huge granite rock sits within the lake. The park is beautifully landscaped so you can walk along the banks of the lake and take really pretty shots with the gorgeous landscape backdrop.
In addition, the two dome shaped shelters at Little Guilin can act as a beautiful frame to your photo.
6. Chinese and Japanese Gardens[caption id="attachment_11268" align="alignnone" width="1024"] Image credit: Instagram user @nubusaploy[/caption] [caption id="attachment_11544" align="alignnone" width="536"] Image credit: Instagram user @leahaldous[/caption]
Located just a stone’s throw away from Chinese Garden MRT station, the gardens are picture perfect from every angle. With expansive green lawns, trees, and pagodas, what more can you ask for?
Do visit the gardens in the cooler late afternoon and evening to avoid being scorched under the hot sun.
Spend your next weekend exploring a whole new part of Singapore you’ve never visited. Get your DSLR ready or simply bring your iphone along and visit these beautiful photography spots!
(Header image by Scott KJ Photography)