[Christmas 2014] Supermarket shopping for Christmas!

It’s the time of the year again when all the tinsel and festive baubles adorn every shop and building in Singapore. It’s also the time of the year where once again, I wish I could be in some wintry climate, experiencing a white Christmas. I quite like that it rains a lot in Singapore during December, the gloomy weather seems more Christmassy than fine sunshine. Although speaking of which, I will be in New Zealand next week, where the weather couldn’t be less Christmassy, and the sun sets only after 9….

I’ll have to get my fill of the Christmas mood from the Orchard Road malls while I still can. One place I never fail to visit to get into the festive mood is Cold Storage. I really LOVE looking at all the festive goodies, chocolates and candies of all manner wrapped up in golden ribbons, log cakes, hams, roast turkey…. the list goes on! I could spend an hour or two just walking through the aisles, imagining the sumptuous Christmas dinner I’m going to prepare.

Confectionery

When all else fails, Christmas chocolates still make for convenient Christmas gifts. I still think that Ferrero Rocher is the best chocolate to get for Christmas because they look so festive in gold! Cadbury seems to have come up with some gold foiled chocolates too.

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Parkland Green at East Coast Park (Now Open!)

With 8 F&B establishments, 2 sports retail stores and a laser tag arena, Parkland Green has finally opened at East Coast Park. If you find the location or name familiar, this is because this place used to be occupied by the former Parkland Golf Driving Range / Singa Inn.

As an Eastie, I have been watching the development grow with great interest, and now that it’s finally open, I couldn’t be more overjoyed. I have to say, Parkland Green is probably one of the few places in Singapore, where you can dine al-fresco (under cool shade) while enjoying the sea views and sea breeze, while your children play in front of you in the open lawns. I was there just last weekend, and it was heart-warming to see little kids running around blowing bubbles on the lawn.

Parkland Green

Here are some pictures of the development and the outlets. Will progressively update this page with more photos and information so do stay tuned! 11 outlets in total, pictures start from the outlet nearest the sea, to the last outlet next to the underpass leading to near Marine Parade NTUC.

~~ SandBank ~~

SandBank (1)

See the stairs on the right of the photo, that’s leading into the huge plunge pool they have right in their restaurant! The pool is not ready just yet (as of 25 Nov 2014), but I can’t wait to see it when it is filled with water and people!

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Ethnicraft Singapore – Emorational Furniture

I have been fervently scouring the furniture stores in the last few weeks to jazz up my upcoming study room that #DuluxSG recently helped me paint in the colour America’s Cup. I have never been a fan of contemporary styles that feature glass, plastic or leather. Instead, I like stately looking rooms with a touch of Parisien flaire or old-world charm. I also love the woody look so I do like Scandinavian designs as well. The irritating thing is that it is an uphill task to make the tiny apartment that we live in stately looking in the literal sense. Hanging an ornate mirror on the wall practically takes up the entire wall already! So it’s becoming clearer to me by the day that I may have to give up my stately looking furniture and just stick with Scandinavian. (I am however not giving up my dream of having a study desk 2 metres length x 1 metre depth!)

IKEA is one place that would definitely spring to mind when you think Scandinavian furniture. They have some good pieces at affordable prices if you keep your eyes peeled, but IKEA’s certainly not the only place to sell affordable Scandinavian furniture. I just found out last week about the existence of Ethnicraft. Ethnicraft is an international furniture company started in Belgium. The furniture sold at Ethnicraft is made of solid teak wood either reclaimed or from plantations in Java in Indonesia. Teak is a dense hardwood with high natural oil content, naturally repelling moisture. Apparently, no other wood shares teak’s exceptional strength and durability.

I love the furniture designs offered by Ethnicraft! I wish I could buy up everything! Some ladies buy branded bags but I’m the type that would consider it money well spent (not splurge!) if I spent it on good quality, long lasting furniture that would make me happy every time I step into the house. Zoomed to the Ethnicraft furniture showroom in Eunos within 3 days of checking them out online. You can scroll down to check out the photos or go to their website to look at individual pieces.

Ethnicraft (1)

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[New Year’s Eve] Salt Grill & Sky Bar

It seems like the turkey has hardly been stuffed before one needs to contemplate a fitting way to end the year with a blast. The truth of the matter is that I’m always quite shocked to discover (after Christmas) that the New Year is but 7 days away.

Well, what to do for New Year’s Eve has been put on the front burner after I received this invitation to sample Salt Grill & Sky Bar’s New Year’s Eve menu. And should I call it New Year Eve 2014, or New Year Eve 2015? December 31 is undoubtedly still in 2014, but put another way, it is also the eve of the new year of 2015! You tell me the answer.

Salt Grill New Year's Eve Menu (3)

I love dining at Salt Grill & Sky Bar. If you’ve been there, you’d know that the view is fantastic. You can see out for miles and miles, and some how, it feels like Singapore has fewer high rise buildings than I would have thought. Singapore boasts quite a number of roof top / sky high restaurants, but many are in the financial district. So, another thing that Salt Grill has going for it is its convenience, being perched 50 storeys above the ION Orchard shopping mall. This is probably why they’ve come up with a brunch menu as well as an afternoon tea service, to cater to the ladies of leisure (or aspiring ones) who may feel peckish after a spot of shopping. The private room, perched one level higher is also the spot for many a business dinner, as was the case the last 2 times I was there.

Salt Grill NYE Tasting Menu

Anyway, after arriving for dinner, I was promptly told that I would be sampling ALL the dishes on New Year’s Eve 2014/2015 menu. No problem! I had just spent 1 hour at the Takashimaya Trim Shop jostling with the other early bird Christmas shoppers so I had dutifully worked up an appetite. As always, you will be greeted with a welcome soup, in the form of a coconut broth with Sydney spice served in a shot glass. It tastes exactly as its name suggests, and not only warms you up but whets your appetite in anticipation of what’s in store.

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Brasserie Les Saveurs Restaurant Week Lunch 2014

Because I love St Regis Hotel so much, I decided to dine at TWO St Regis restaurants for Restaurant Week. Yes, TWO in the span of one week, or shall I say 5 days? But of course, this can only happen without robbing the bank, during Restaurant Week. If you haven’t heard of Restaurant Week, you should watch out for the next one in March 2015! And make sure you arm yourself with that American Express Platinum Credit Card to snag the early bird seats.

I must say I forgot to peruse the menu in my haste to secure my reservation for Brasserie Les Saveurs and I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was a buffet rather than the usual 3 course set meal. For $40++ for a lunch buffet at St Regis Hotel, is that a steal or what? It even comes with coffee or tea, something which most other Restaurant Week restaurants do not serve. The drink itself may be nothing to shout about, but I’ve always felt it necessary to end a nice meal with a hot cuppa, just to slow things down, enjoy the ambience and round off any remaining conversation.

Brasserie Les Saveurs Restaurant Week Lunch (4)

This was what greeted us at the front entrance, the strategically placed dessert buffet counter. A strategic move, and well played if I may say so.

Brasserie Les Saveurs Restaurant Week Lunch (8)

Brasserie Les Saveurs Restaurant Week Lunch (9)

Whenever I go for buffets, I find myself going for multiple rounds at the cold cuts and salad sections rather than the main courses. Love all those tasty smoked meats and the refreshing zesty prawn or sashimi salads.

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