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Category Archives: Holidays

SINGAPORE: MARMALADE PANTRY

I’d passed by The Marmalade Pantry when Chris and I were shopping around ION Mall in Singapore, and it caught my eye because it looked both refined yet casual, if that makes sense.. It tends to be busy on weekends but has more of the “ladies who lunch” crowd on weekdays. I actually like the open-air surroundings of the restaurant because it makes for great people-watching ;) It was here that I met up with for a spot of lunch and catching up :)

Marmalade Pantry

The service here is top-notch. Very attentive, eager to please, and polite. My request to move to one of the sofa tables was promptly attended to and I liked how they kept an eye on us throughout, yet were unobtrusive. Their menu poses quite the dilemma though! Everything looked so appetizing!! And don’t even get me started on the Desserts section….. Even their Drinks menu looked fabulous! I had the Sakura green tea which was a delightfully subtle blend of green tea with a hint of floral.

The Crab linguini was a generous tumble of warm pasta with a swirl of crab meat throughout. There was an impressive amount of crab in here, and I really enjoyed the subtle flavour of it, matched with the tart tomato sauce. An excellent dish! The Mushroom and truffle risotto was another winner, with an impressive number of assorted mushrooms hidden under the creamy rice. The truffle taste really came through and the meal was lovely comfort food. Our French fries weren’t on the menu, but they obliged us when we suddenly decided “WE MUST EAT FRIES” :P Soon after, a large bowl of crisp goodness arrived. The fries were beautifully golden and crisp, but fluffy on the inside. It would have been even better with truffle oil and herbs IMHO :)

Crab linguini

Mushroom and truffle risotto

French fries

Dessert was a Red velvet cupcake, which are so so so hard to find in Singapore. Why is that? They’re amazing!! The deep red cake was moist and rich, and the cream cheese icing blended perfectly. We both weren’t fond of the coconut flakes on top though – but that’s personal preference as I don’t like coconut and thought the texture interfered with the smooth lusciousness of the icing.

The Sticky date pudding had me in foodgasms. A small pat of very moist cake, studded with sweet melty dates and with lashings of sticky caramel. The vanilla bean ice cream was the perfect match for it and it was one of the nicest sticky date puddings I’ve had in a long long time. I really enjoyed the luxe approach of the ambience and service, despite the casual location. It’s a nice combination so you don’t feel like you’re dining, yet you benefit from the quality food and service. A winner for me :)

Red velvet cupcake

Sticky date pudding

Fans of lazy lunches ;)

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Posted by on 18 November 2010 (Thu) in Food, Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized

 

SINGAPORE: COVA PASTICCERIA

My lovely cousin took me out for a posh afternoon tea at the beautiful Cova Pasticceria in Paragon mall. Originating in Milan, they specialise in afternoon tea type desserts and pastries, as well as drinks. The prices are pretty exorbitant IMHO, but I suppose we are in a luxury brand mall in the middle of Orchard Road, and the furnishings are so luxe. My peppermint tea (my favourite!) was around SG$7 which made my head feel a bit woozy when I was ordering it.. so I made sure I had them re-fill the pot 3 times (!!!) to get our money’s worth, hehe.

That said, their Lunch Set is actually a pretty good deal. That’s what my cousin had and the food was delicious. In particular the Gnocchi with blue cheese and basil – I’d go back for this dish alone! I thought the gnocchi was cooked beautifully and was a very simple dish yet stood out, thanks to the punch of blue cheese. I had the Peanut…… crumble-something – it was a slice of cake but wasn’t actually cake, kind of crispy (like rice bubbles) and also creamy (like mousse or fudge). I ADORED IT. Lovely rich flavours and wasn’t too heavy in the belly so eating the whole slice is no problem. I want to go back next time for another slice of this :)

Cova Pasticceria

Chilling out

My (expensive!) peppermint tea

The peanut thingy dessert that I had, which was AMAZING.

Platter of desserts (of your choice) that came with the lunch set.
That choc cake was luscious!!

Ohhhh YUM these are my fave!!!

You Are a Krackel Bar

You create a spark and leave a mark everywhere you go. You’re very bold.
Your days are full of fun and laughter. You love life, and you never take it too seriously.

You enjoy brightening someone’s mood, and you are always an optimist.
Things may not ever be perfect, but you’ll always find something to smile about.

 
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Posted by on 17 November 2010 (Wed) in Food, Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized

 

SINGAPORE: JASMINE SPA SUITE

On our last night staying at the Raffles Town Club in Singapore, we stayed in their Jasmine Spa suite, which was an upgrade from their Straits Suites (where we were staying beforehand). I was quite taken aback when I stepped into the room…. it was impressive, but a bit strange – haha! I guess they call it “spa suite” for a reason… imagine if you went to a nice hotel for a spa/massage. You know the private room you have the treatment in? Well, that’s what our room looked like…. with a bed stuck in the middle. The bed looked really out of place and it actually didn’t feel like a true hotel room, but like we were bunking in a hotel’s spa room or something. Hard to describe, but hopefully the photos make it a bit more clear!

The jacuzzi in the middle was incredible though – large and on a raised platform with a TV. Better yet, the water was only lukewarm so I could get in there (since pregnant women shouldn’t be in hot tubs). It was quite divine :)

Unbelievably, our room also had its own sauna, and a steam room. I’ve never been in a hotel room with those 2 private rooms! So strange :P Sadly, I couldn’t enter either one since pregnant women can’t use them full-stop :(

Overall, the jacuzzi in the room was the best, mainly because it was the only one I could use. However, given the higher price to our previous room, the previous one is better as it’s more of a classic suite – I found this one a bit random :P

The living room of the Jasmine Spa suite

Looking towards the open bedroom area

Our private jacuzzi on a raised platform

From the jacuzzi looking towards the bathing area on the right

Private steam room

Private sauna room

Bathroom and shower area

Having drinks by the pool before our pool-side cafe dinner :)

 
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Posted by on 17 November 2010 (Wed) in Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized

 

SINGAPORE: CHOWING DOWN ON BEEF NOODLES

Had lunch with the lovely whilst I was in Singapore. She is (yet another!) fellow pregnant soon-to-be mama, because for some reason, a HUGE number of women are! I know around 20 pregnant women right now, which is quite extraordinary and humbling, because it makes you realise you’re not the only one… an important thing for pregnant women to realise IMHO because we easily fall into the “it’s all about me me me” trap.

We had a freakin’ delicious lunch at Hock Lam Beef Noodles. At least I think that was the name.. that famous beef noodles store opposite China Square Central… help?? Anyway, whatever the case, my interest was piqued when I was driving past in a taxi to meet her, and so I promptly suggested that for lunch :P

Being really crowded (be prepared to queue) and most definitely classified as casual dining, I was surprised at how super-sweet the service was! Specifically an older gentleman that noticed we were pregnant and found us a table, insisting we sit down and order at the table instead of joining the queue. But I was stubborn and wanted to be in the queue (they cook right there, so I wanted to be where the action was!). The people cooking were really really accommodating. When I forgot and asked for “no bean sprouts” (hate those bloody things!!!) after he had cooked, he smiled and promptly whipped up another one, with no complaints. For that reason alone I’d go back.

But of course, the food. It was GOOD!!!!!!! I know it’s crazy, but it’s the first time I’ve had beef noodles in Singapore. I know, what rock have I been living under?! I really liked the silken texture of the slippery rice noodles, and the starchy thick gravy it came with – all rich and flavourful. Plus, that bowl of steaming hot beef soup was divine. You can read more about why they’re special HERE. We ordered a Small sized bowl each and I would recommend the Medium size at least, because the Small is more of a snack-size so I had to go eat a curry puff and have a milky drink afterwards to re-fill myself up. Plus, it’s SO yummy that you really want a bigger size to savour it ;)

I’d definitely go back for more next time I’m in Singapore!

Forgot to take a pic in my excitement (oops) so stole one off their site

(Pregnant) ladies who lunch :)

 
 

SINGAPORE: BUFFET AT MARINA BAY SANDS

Met up with my lovely girl friend whilst in Singapore and we had a bit of an eating blitz :P She took me to the new Marina Bay Sands and we stuffed ourselves silly at their international buffet. Excellent food, and I even had 3 slices of sashimi for the first time since I’ve been pregnant.. I figured 3 small slices isn’t that bad and it was a very top-notch restaurant with the chef having just sliced it all up – certainly wouldn’t dare to eat sashimi in China! Boy I enjoyed those 3 slices of silken pleasure… mmmm…. I think I will go to a sashimi/Japanese buffet the day after I give birth ;)

The only downside of buffets now is that my appetite is about half of what it used to be!! Very depressing. Plus, I tend to eat quickly, so I end up gasping from breath at the end of the meal when all the food settles into my (downsized) stomach.. and it’s the reason why Chris is banning me from buffets from now on, citing my lack of self control :P I did manage to eat my way around this buffet though, so I’m pleased! The food was awesome :)

We went wandering afterwards around the shops, but since it’s basically all luxury boutiques there, I didn’t buy anything. Oh, except at Sephora where we spent ages and I came away with a bunch of stuff :)

At Rise restaurant in Marina Bay Sands hotel

One of our many plates :P

Some of the desserts… nommity

It was so bright!

Tucking in :)

After a bit of shopping, it was off to Canelé Pâtisserie for… errr… more sweets

Crepe filled with Nutella, salty caramel, caramelized filo, nougatine ice cream and vanilla crème chantilly

 
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Posted by on 14 November 2010 (Sun) in Friends, Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized

 

HELLOOOO FROM SG!

Having a grand ‘ol time in Singapore! It’s meant to be “scattered thunderstorms” the entire week, but incredibly, it’s only been raining overnight/early morning and the whole day time is lovely sunshine but also cool enough so I don’t die from heat exhaustion. Love the weather :)

We went on an epic 2-day baby shopping trip and bought everything we need, so that’s a big load off our minds. We’re pretty much all set now – very exciting!! Being pregnant in Singapore is soooo much easier than in China. Namely, you don’t fear for you (and your child’s life) the moment you step outside your front door – traffic is orderly and people aren’t shoving you. We were quite shocked to also get some “excuse me” and “oops, sorry” from people – AMAZING!!!!!!!! Such a novelty to hear those precious little words :P

We’re staying in the Raffles Town Club here which we picked because of their awesome pool where I can lounge in the mornings. Their suite is divine – very spacious and lovely amenities and service :)

Between meeting up with cousins and friends, baby shopping, and general traipsing around Singapore.. we’ve been totally flat out. At least it’s been a very productive trip so far :)

In the hallway

Living room area, with bedroom behind those doors

From the bed, looking towards living room now

In the toilet room, looking towards the bathroom

Jacuzzi to the right, and shower. Love how big the bathroom is!

View from our window

Chilling by the pool with my massively SWOLLEN ankles, thanks to 2-days of
nonstop walking and shopping around Orchard Road…

People often laugh at Chinglish stuff around China. Singapore somehow got in on the act too ;)

Chris insisted on a photo of this. Roti prata wrapped around cheese sausage = WIN!

 
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Posted by on 9 November 2010 (Tue) in Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized

 

SINGAPORE HOLIDAY!


We’re off to SINGAPORE!!!

It’s going to be our…… Babymoon :D I know, I know, it’s a weird place for a Babymoon. I originally had my heart set on Boracay as I wanted to laze by the beach. But Chris vehemently and promptly vetoed that because he only wants to go for a Babymoon somewhere with top-notch hospital facilities, “just in case anything happens”. Which took Boracay, Bora Bora and Maldives out of the mix.. and basically anywhere near the beach! The single country he only agreed to was Singapore.. which he thinks is a good idea because we can stock up on our baby essentials for a lot cheaper than in China, so it’ll be a productive trip too. I’d have preferred Australia, but the trip’s too far for me (10 hours) :(

Incredibly and hilariously, my parents aren’t going to be in Singapore the entire time we’re there! They’re off skipping around Australia on (yet another) holiday. D’oh!! But at least I’ll have a nice lazy time around Singapore, catching up with relatives and friends, and doing much-needed baby shopping.

Hellloooooo sunny weather, here we come!

 
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Posted by on 5 November 2010 (Fri) in Holidays, Living in... Singapore, Uncategorized