Spa Treatments for Less in Singapore

The one thing that I really love indulging in is a good spa session and I believe it’s the same for many Singaporeans who accumulate that stress from work and being cooped up in a hectic environment. I know that there are several amazing spas in Singapore like this list of stunning spas compiled by Yahoo.sg but they also require me to break the bank.

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photo credit: dMap Travel Guide via photopin cc
Read more!

Review: 5 Footway Inn – Project Boat Quay

Remember that one time when I did the post on accommodations under $30 in Singapore? Well, I featured 5 Footway Inn and briefly mentioned that it would be nice to have a night at the hostel. Lucky me, the kind people at 5 Footway Inn did contact me and invited me to experience their lovely accommodation! Here are my thoughts on it.

Personal Experience

I’ve only been to the North Bridge Road branch since my office is in the area. I was expecting a more obvious entrance like the other branch but I found my way to an inconspicuous door. Kinda felt like Alice when I was walking up (courtesy of the whimsical cafe beside the entrance). However, as I weaved my way through the maze to the reception area, I was pleasantly surprised.

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“inconspicuous entrance”

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“through the corridors of the hostel”

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“picture of the reception” – taken from their fb page cause mine turned out to be too dark!

The reception is a very comfortable place to relax and lounge with the other hostel guest. There are a few iMacs available for the guests and if u have your own device, wifi is available throughout the building. After checking in, I was led to my (standard double) room and I was also given a key card. The key card allows access into your room as well as the cupboards inside for extra safety! Honestly, I was quite impressed because the only other place I know/stayed at that does this is Urbany hostel in Barcelona.

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“Entrance to my room – #67”

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“Key card access to my room”

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“The card also locks the cupboards in the room”

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The room isn’t very big but it was adequate and cosy. It comes with a bed, a table and a cupboard. You see that white box thing on the wall? There’s actually a plug in there so that you can charge your phone and leave it there for the night! How clever.

There isn’t a TV or lounge area in the room but honestly, you chose to stay in a hostel, so get out there and mingle! There is a very inviting roof terrace for guest to mingle (I made a few friends at the terrace myself). It is opened 24/7 with available wifi so you can just head up there whenever you like and feel absolutely at home. The roof terrace is also where breakfast is served.

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“sign leading up to the terrace”

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“entry to the terrace – how perfect does it look? that couch, that light, that tv, the frames on the wall, oh and the people of course.”

The terrace is actually also a gallery (Gallery 76) featuring works by local award-winning photographer Edwin Koo. So in love with the pictures.

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“I love all the gorgeous photographs at every turn”

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“I want that sliding door”

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“Morning view from the terrace”

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“More award-winning photographs”

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“Ingenious use of squeeze bottles”

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“And this is where you get your breakfast – toast & cereal”

The people behind the hostel are very thoughtful and they prepared guides, maps and plenty of information for their guests. If you’re feeling thirsty at night and you’re too lazy to walk to the convenient store, drinks are also available for sale at the reception!

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“Maps marked out for tourists”

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“MRT guide to get to your nearest attraction”

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“More information about various attractions”

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“The iMacs as mentioned earlier”

Location

For the price you pay, the location is an absolute bargain. Being right in the middle of Boat Quay, you’re an arms length away from many pubs like Molly’s, Penny Black, Red Dot and London Bar. Cat cafe NEKO no NIWA is also round the corner.

You won’t be afraid of going hungry as there are plenty of awesome food eateries like BK eating house (BAK CHOR MEE!! ‘beef ball noodles’), Yong Tau Fu with the perpetual long queue next door and the famous Nasi Padang down the road. The hostel is also in the middle of many attractions. A short turn and you’ll find yourself at Chinatown; walk the other way and you’ll get to the museum district. Esplanade is also conveniently close-by. Bottom-line, the location is fantastic.

Oh and I must point out, even though you’re so close to the hustle and bustle, you can hardly hear the noise from the hostel!

ADDRESS: 76 Boat Quay, 049864

HOW TO GET THERE:

DIRECTIONS:

  • Proceed to Changi Airport MRT and take the East West line heading towards Tanah Merah MRT (EW4).
  • Alight at Tanah Merah MRT (EW4). Proceed towards platform B (East West line) and board train going towards Joo Koon MRT.
  • Alight at Outram MRT (EW16) and board the purple Northeast line towards Punggol MRT.
  • And finally alight at Clarke Quay MRT (NE5).
  • At the station lookout for EXIT F and then turn right and walk along the Singapore River and you will see 5footway.inn to your right three minutes later.

The journey will take approximately 30 min.
The single trip MRT ticket will cost S$ 2.10.

  • From Changi Airport, by MRT and bus: view map.
  • From Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, by MRT and bus: view map.
  • From Harbourfront Ferry Terminal, by MRT and bus: view map.
  • From Tuas checkpoint, by MRT and bus: view map.
  • From Woodlands Checkpoint, by MRT and bus: view map.

Overall Ratings

Rooms – 4/5 ;  Service – 4/5 ;  Location – 5/5 ;  Value – 5/5

Do  visit their website for more information! (http://www.5footwayinn.com/index.html)

5 Footway Inn, Thank you for having me. 🙂

Peace & Love,

Eileen x

Review: Hotel Clover – A Hidden Vintage Gem (literally)

Simplicity in Luxury – Hotel Clover.

Just recently, I’ve had the opportunity to be hosted by Hotel Clover and I must say, I’m pretty charmed by this hidden vintage gem. The minute I stepped into the hotel, I’m greeted with a rustic feel. All around the hotel lie pieces that dictates what used to be there. From a gramophone to an old school sewing machine, a bell telephone to a chair that used to sit in a barber shop.

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“Reception/Waiting Area”

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“An Old Telephone”

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“Reception Area – iMac available for Hotel Guest”

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“An Old Gramophone”

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“More Vintage Pieces”

 

Personal Experience

Hotel Clover 769 North Bridge Road comes with 4 different types of room including the: CLOVER SELECT, CLOVER PLUSH, CLOVER EXECUTIVE and CLOVER LAVISH.

Clover Select Queen

“Clover Select Room – s$320++ (Ground Floor Rooms w no windows)”

Clover Plush King

“Clover Plush Room – S$360++ (Second Floor, Queen Sized Bed)”
The Clover Executive is similar featuring King-sized bed priced at S$400++

Clover Lavish Suite

“Clover Lavish – S$600++ (Suite featuring Outdoor Jacuzzi)”

I was offered a stay in the plush room and I was drawn to the furniture and decorative items the moment I stepped inside. What I really like about room was the attention to details. The room came prepped with a selection of drinks – coffee, tea and water (I’ve stayed in some luxury hotels which doesn’t even provide kettles!). There is also an independent local guide (DOTSG) to help you pick out your next attraction or the hipster joints in Singapore. The room I stayed in had a window and the tea set is places strategically by the window with tatami mats for you to chillax while you people watch from your hotel room. I was told that the design of the room and the furniture were made specially for Hotel Clover 769 North Bridge Road.

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“Reflection of my room from the wall mirror”

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“DOTSG & Complimentary Water”

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“Tatami chilling area equipped with hot beverages”

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“A rustic lamp in the corner of the room”

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“Furniture designed for Hotel Clover (I love the hanging lamp!)”

The bathroom wasn’t very big but the clear glass doors made it look more open. I guess it can be quite romantic if you’re sharing the room with your partner (wink wink). I love rain showers and I was so happy the showers came with it. Also, as mentioned above, the attention to details is pretty commendable even in the toilet. The toiletries are complete with sewing kit! And the towels are placed in nice little cute baskets that matches the rest of the room.

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“Shower cubicle”

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“Toiletries set”

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“A basket of towel”

The stay came with breakfast and I really like how the rustic/vintage decor extends to the dining area. Breakfast comes with a choice of Eastern or Western. I went with Western. Overall, I do think that there can be more variety on the breakfast table.

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“The dining area”

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“The breakfast spread”

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“The Western option”

I did a tour around the building and found more interesting decorative pieces. What I also appreciated was the little quotes found on the walls of the hotel. The quotes certainly enhanced the wanderlust spirit. There is also a cosy courtyard for guest to mingle and hang out. Oh, WIFI is also available throughout the building.

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“Er hu (Chinese instrument) as a wall decoration”

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“Old school posters around the hotel”

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“The Courtyard”

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“Wanderlust quote”

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“Wanderlust quote”

The Location

Address: Hotel Clover (769 North Bridge Road)
769 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198737
Main: (+65) 6340 1860 | Fax: (+65) 6340 1869

Hotel Clover 769 North Bridge Road is located in the middle of the Kampong Glam district. The area is bustling with hippy cafes, boutique shops and plenty of Mediterranean Cuisine and of course awesome Malay Cuisine. My favourite murtabak is in the area as well (it’s a battle between Zam Zam and Victory). Anyway, this is an area where you certainly wouldn’t get bored in. Hotel Clover 769 North Bridge Road is strategically located such that you’re well within the area but away from the noise!

HOW TO GET THERE:

By MRT: Bugis Station within 10 mins. walking distance to Jalan Sultan direction
By Taxi: About 20-25 mins. from Changi Airport
By Airport Shuttle Bus: Please enquire at Changi Airport Terminal 1/2/3 counters

Do visit their website if you want to find out more or make reservations!

http://hotelclover.com/reservations/

or call +65 6340 1860

Overall Ratings

Rooms – 4/5 ;  Service – 4/5 ;  Location – 4.5/5 ;  Value – 3/5

Bonus:

Before I end my review, I want to give a special shout out to their new Hotel – Hotel Clover The Arts, which is absolutely gorgeous. I’ll let the pictures do the talking!

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“Exterior for Hotel Clover The Arts”

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“Room 1”

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“Room 2”

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“Room 3”

Do check out their Arts-themed boutique hotel!

Thank you Hotel Clover again for the stay. 🙂

Peace & Love,

Eileen x

 

Naiise Conversations and some Personal Traveling Tips

I had the opportunity to work with the Naiise team and curated a collection for their travel campaign. I even had the chance to come up with the theme! I went with”Into the Wild“. If you’re unfamiliar with Naiise, they sell really well-designed products.

Like this Milk Jug Glass Vase

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And this Outdoor Sky Planter

Boskke_Outdoor_Sky_Planter_a_grandeOr this slick Roadster from my Into the Wild Collection

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In addition, I answered a series of short questions and provided some travel tips. Thought I could share some of my answers here.  

‘Top 3 must-haves while travelling?”. 

1) Smartphone

– Smartphone. I know this may sound like a luxury and as much as we wish to disconnect when we travel, it’s hard to discredit the convenience of having one. I am able to go paperless and carry all my documents such as itinerary, boarding passes in a device (just don’t forget your travel adaptor and charger). I also rely on the language app that allows me to communicate with the locals easily. There’s also offline maps and XE currency app, which keeps me moving. I have written an article about useful travel apps, which can be read here.

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photo credit: JD Hancock via photopin cc

2) Sarong

– Sarong. A sarong is so versatile. You can wrap it around when you’re cold, shield yourself from the sun when it gets too hot, use it as a mat on the beach, a towel or turn it into a dress. For ladies, it can be handy when you visit temples!

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photo credit: the apostrophe via photopin cc

3) Trusty and comfortable pair of shoes 

– Trusty and comfortable pair of shoes. I tend to do a lot of walking on my travels (and steer on to off-beaten paths once in a while). Therefore I need proper footwear to take me to places. You don’t want to be worrying about sore feet when there’s so much to see!

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photo credit: Joaquin Villaverde Photography via photopin cc

Best Traveling Tip?

Keep an open mind – travelling is all about seeing new things, learning new cultures and trying things that you’ve never thought about doing. Do not be afraid to embrace it with all your senses.

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photo credit: dlemieux via photopin cc

You can read the rest of my interview here, and remember to check out all the other cool stuff on Naiise!

PS: For the benefit of all those who love knick-knacks and designs with a Singapore touch, Naiise.com has a great selection of such items. Including accessories inspired by nostalgic Singaporean snacks (i.e. Gem biscuits, Kueh Lapis), Singlish Perpetual Calendar, as well as the Kan Cheong Spider watch.

Thank you Naiise team again for this wonderful opportunity! 🙂

Peace & Love,

Eileen x

Accommodations in Singapore for $30 (and under)

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), Singapore has been crowned the world’s most expensive city! I’m not certain if that is something to be happy about but we’ll leave that debate for another forum.

In the interest of attracting more (budget) travellers into Singapore, I’ve collated a list of accommodations that cost $30 and under. However, before you get all excited and read on, I have to say that most of the accommodations I picked are hostels (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). And also, the prices are according to their cheapest bed available i.e. from $22 for mixed dorm. There are a couple on the list that offer private rooms for a pretty reasonable rate and I will state them accordingly. Either way, these accommodations are definitely a steal for an atas* country.

*local slang to describe something that is high-class or to imply that something is expensive

5 Footway Inn (From $22)

Private rooms: $68
Selling point: This chic boutique hostel has four locations in Singapore to choose from. All of them are located centrally (Boat quay, Bugis, Chinatown x2) for your convenience! Looking at the interior, even I feel like having a night at the loft!


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(photo credits to 5 Footway Inn)

B88 Hostel (From $26)

Selling point: The lounge has a unique touch and reviews rave about their cleanliness.

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(photo credits to B88 Hostel)

Bunc@Radius (From $29)

Private Room Ensuite: $169
Selling point: This hostel aims to bring you both comfort and style. There is also a game console room and a movie room – a perfect hangout for you and other travellers alike! The private room is beautifully decorated as well!

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(photo credits to Bunc@Radius)

mOni Gallery Hostel (From $22)

Classic Room for 4: $106
Selling point: The artsy theme stands out amongst other hostels. There is a in-house gallery with art paintings and sculptures. Perfect for the art enthusiasts!

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(photo credits to mOni Gallery Hostel)

Pillows & Toast (From $28)

Selling point: Pillows & Toast is like your home away from home offering you utmost comfort and cleanliness during your stay.

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(photo credits to Pillows & Toast)

ABC Premium Hostel (From $30)

Selling point: This is another hostel that is known for their homey touch. According to reviews, the beds are very comfortable. I haven’t tried it myself but comfort is definitely a selling point worth mentioning.

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(photo credits to ABC Premium Hostel)

Beary Good/Nice Hostel (From $28)

Selling point: There are 3 beary hostels and they have achieved several accolades since they started. From best value to best staff to best cleanliness and best hostel last year on hostelworld.com!

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(photo credits to Beary Good Hostel)

WokeHome Capsule Hostel (From $30)

Selling point: Even though this is a capsule hostel, it has everything you need, even a 15 inch TV in your own capsule! 

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(photo credits to WokeHome Capsule Hostel)

Rucksack Inn (From $29)

Selling point: This is one of the most popular backpackers in Singapore. It has a somewhat spontaneous and adventurous vibe and promises a lots of fun during your stay!

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(photo credits to Rucksack Inn)

G4 Station Backpacker’s (From $28)

Private Room: $80
Selling point: G4 Station Backpacker’s promises a no frills place to snooze! The humble team strives to provide their guests a relaxed atmosphere during their stay.

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(photo credits to G4 Station Backpackers)

Fernloft City Hostel (From $20)

Private Room: $36
Selling point: Fernloft Hostel pride itself for its customer service. They abide by the 6 Cs: comfort, cleanliness, convenience, care, cost-friendliness and character, to ensure that each and every one of their customer receive a great hostel experience.

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(photo credits to Fernloft Hostel)

The Sleepy Kiwi (From $20)

Private room: $89
Selling point: This is an absolutely chilled hostel located right smack in the Arab district. Soak in the culture as you lounge at the front porch. For the location and the price, this is definitely a hostel worth considering!

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(photo credits to the Sleepy Kiwi)

Bonus: Under $20!

Shophouse: The Social Hostel (From $18)

Shophouse is a newly established hip and indie boutique hostel. The lounge has a vintage touch to it and there is even a roof top terrace where you have a perfect view of Kampong Glam. I’ll let the pictures speak for itself.

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(photo credits to Shophouse: The Social Hostel)

So you see, even though Singapore is expensive, it shouldn’t deter you from visiting! Aside from the accommodation you can also fill your tummy with awesome food with just $2!

Hopefully you find this post useful, or informative. And enjoy your stay. 🙂

PS: If you enjoyed this post, do check out my Accommodation Guide for South Africa and Sri Lanka. I also did one for Alternative Staycations in Singapore.

Disclaimer: The prices quoted are valid as of 08/03/2014 and may vary according to season (peak vs non-peak). If you are interested in any of them, please contact them directly.

Peace  & Love,

Eileen x