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  • Writer's pictureBruce

Day 2: Singapore

After the long journey from Seattle, we arrived in Singapore and headed straight for our hotel, the Ascott Orchard Singapore. This property was unlike a traditional hotel and more like a serviced apartment. Our room wasn’t ready yet when we arrived at 7 am, but they had a lounge for us to relax and freshen up.

Again this felt more like someone’s apartment – albeit a very nice one and without any other guests. I was even able to take a shower here. After getting ready, we headed out to Chinatown for some breakfast.

nitially, we wanted to go to the Maxwell Hawker Center to try their famous Chicken Rice, however it just so happened that it was closed that day for ‘Spring cleaning’. We found a local coffee shop nearby instead.

his was all pretty good and I loved the sweet but strong Singaporean coffee (kopi). There was a funny Singlish translation guide at the store as well.

fter breakfast, we strolled around Chinatown and then stumbled upon the Singapore City Gallery. I love architecture and urban design so this was pretty much my dream museum. I have always thought that Singapore was one of the best designed cities in the world, so it was really fascinating to see behind the scenes of a city planner.

his replica of the city was amazing and so detailed. We also learned about the history of Singapore.

here was an interactive area where you can design your own city and see how it fares it in real life.

his was a great way to start our trip. It gave an overview of all the major places in Singapore so we have an idea of where to visit and how to get there. I highly recommend it if you are into this kind of stuff.

By now it was close to lunch time, so we headed back to the area around our hotel, Orchard Road. This is the main shopping district of Singapore and the most popular area to stay for tourists. The street is lined with malls – if you love shopping, you might never leave. At the bottom of each of these malls are food courts, which unlike those in the west, are not only cheap but have high quality food. We got some local classics like Chicken Rice and Oyster Omelette.

ne of the malls, the Paragon, was connected directly to our hotel by a convenient sky bridge.

ur room was ready by now so we headed up for some rest. This was a pretty stunning suite (or apartment). The design was very modern, clean, and luxurious. There was plenty of natural light from the floor to ceiling windows and soft under-mount lighting everywhere else. There were separate spaces for the living room, kitchen, and bedroom.

didn’t have any status so there was no upgrade, which made it even more impressive. Pricing was around $200/night which is quite reasonable for a city as expensive as Singapore.

The Singaporean heat means it always a perfect temperature to go for a swim.

After a refreshing dip, we took a long awaited nap after the red-eye journey. As we awoke, we were greeted by the sounds of Singapore’s famous afternoon showers that seem to roll in and out like clockwork. Singapore, located right by the equator, has very consistent weather all year round – 32 degrees, hot, sunny, and a heavy shower or thunderstorm in the afternoon. While this might not sound great, it dramatically cools down the city, making it much more pleasant to be out in the evening. Once the showers cleared, we headed out for dinner at Clarke Quay, a popular riverfront shopping and dining area.

We went to Keisuke Ramen, a popular local ramen chain.

The unique thing about this ramen shop was that they supplied unlimited seasoned bean sprouts and hard boiled eggs on each table. My girlfriend loves all those things so this was pretty much heaven for her. We literally came back to Singapore a couple years later just for this ramen. After dinner, Clarke Quay was even more beautiful with all its lights on.

e strolled along the Singapore River towards the Marina, passing by many cool bridges along the way.

inally we arrived at the famous Merlion, the symbol of Singapore.

cross the water stood one of my favourite buildings in the world, the Marina Bay Sands.

e watched a beautiful laser show on this architectural masterpiece.

hat a way to end the night, see you tomorrow Singapore.

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