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Half-day Itinerary: A Southern Night

By: markhsx on 02 Jun 2011

Singapore's southern districts, like many areas around the island, have recently been updated and upgraded through new projects and redevelopment of existing destinations. This half-day itinerary gives you a taste of New Singapore, starting at the seaside VivoCity megamall which is the gateway to Sentosa Island, now enveloped in a flurry of activity as visitors flock to the new Resorts World Sentosa. Head further inland to the Henderson Waves bridge of the new Southern Ridges Walk, a 9km trek of nature trails and boardwalks that links three hilltop parks – Mount Faber, Telok Blangah, and Kent Ridge. End the day at Holland Village, a timeless destination of bars and cafés, or St James Power Station, the massively iconic clubbing destination.


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Dinner and Retail Therapy at VivoCity (5pm)


As temperatures drop and the sun begins to set, board the MRT at any station around Singapore and head to the North-East (Purple) Line, and transfer to the train heading to Harbourfront. Alight at Harbourfront [NE1/CC29] and follow the underground passage to VivoCity.


Start your evening with a manic session of retail therapy at Singapore's largest retail and lifestyle destination, VivoCity. Inspired by the waves of its harbour-front location, VivoCity stands out from other shopping malls with its wide, open spaces that are perfect for relaxation and entertainment by the waterfront. The expansive complex houses over 300 retail options from luxury and high street names such as Ted Baker, Topshop, Forever 21, and Zara, to family stores and speciality shops such as Toys “R” Us and Singapore's only National Geographic Store.


The top deck of VivoCity, known as the rooftop Sky Park, boasts an open-air playground, splash pools, a large amphitheatre, and breathtaking views of surrounding area, both land and sea. Singapore's largest cinema multiplex, Golden Village Vivocity is located here. As for dinner, VivoCity features al fresco dining along a 300m-long promenade, with joints such as Carnivore, Marché, and Modestos. Alternatively, head indoors to one of the many restaurants and cafes, or either of the two food courts (air-conditioned hawker centres) - the basement Kopitiam, and the more nostalgic and quaint Food Republic at the top level.


(2 hr. 1 Harbourfront Walk. +65 6377 6860. Daily 10am – 10pm. Nearest MRT Station: Harbourfront [NE1/CC29].)


Henderson Waves


Henderson Waves (7.30pm)


Board bus 131 or 145 from the bus-stop outside VivoCity and drop off at “Aft Telok Blangah Hts”. You will be able to see Henderson Waves looming across the hills around you - this 274m-long, 36m-high bridge spans across Henderson Road, connecting Telok Blangah Hill and Mount Faber Hill. This is the highest pedestrian bridge in Singapore, and is worth visiting for its artistic structure – a wave of steel “ribs” undulates around the walkway, which also function as alcoves providing shelter to the public. The unique wave-form lights up with LED lights nightly from 7am to 2am, giving the bridge a distinctive glow.


(30 min. Henderson Road. +65 1800 471 7300. Daily 7pm – 7am.)


Holland Village (chilling in bohemian style) or St James Power Station (dancing till you drop)


As midnight approaches, head to either of two iconic nightlife destinations in Singapore's south – chill in luxurious style at the bars and pubs of Holland Village, or dance the night away at the massive St James Power Station.


Holland Village (9pm)


Board bus 145 from “Aft Telok Blangah Hts” and alight at “Blk 46”, taking a short stroll through the public housing estate (don't worry, it's still safe) to Holland Village . Known as the heart of expatriate affluence in an area which is often considered to be the domain of the prosperous, Holland Village's suburban restaurant-bar strip retains its unique neighbourhood feel that remains iconic amidst other up-and-coming locales such as Dempsey Hill. This off-beat bohemian enclave stands as a juxtaposition between the local flavours of hawker food and newsstands against the aromatic air of red wine, cafés and restaurant-bars, punctuated by quaint shops selling knick knacks, beachwear and accessories.


For classy late-night indulgence in sweet treats, head to 2am Dessert Bar (21A Lorong Liput. +65 6291 9727. Daily 4pm – 2am, except Sunday closed.), which pairs beautifully-crafted desserts with expertly-chosen wines. Alternatively, for something more raucous and friendly, choose Wala Wala Café Bar (31 Lorong Mambong. +65 6462 4288. Mon - Thu 4pm – 1am; Fri 4pm – 2am; Sat 3pm – 2am; Sun 3pm – 1am.), a long-standing favourite with young expatriates for its breezy vibe and live-music bar, where the theme centres around danceable, singable, air-punchable tunes.


(2 hr. Holland Avenue. Nearest MRT Station: Holland Village [CC21], Buona Vista [EW21/CC22].)


St James Power Station (9pm)


Heading back the way you come before, board bus 131 or 145 at “Bef Telok Blangah Hts” and alight at “Opp VivoCity”. Looking out for the trademark chimney, walk to the easily recognised late-night entertainment district that is St James Power Station. Converted from a 1920s coal-fired power station, St James Power Station is the largest all-in-one clubbing destination in Singapore and is home to ten different and interconnected venues, each catering to a specific music genre. As all these venues are linked, one cover charge allows entry to every clubbing venue in the complex; bars have no cover charge.


Powerhouse plays a unique blend called pop-house that is aimed at younger crowds dancing in a large industrial space. Dragonfly is a hugely popular Cantopop and Mandopop club featuring live bands. Movida features Afro-Cuban beats in a Latin dance club, with an excellent and eye-catching band from Paraguay. The Bellini Room is the stylish and classy venue where fans of jazz and swing jitterbug the night away. For those who want to chill out, check out the Mono karaoke bar, the Gallery Bar lounge, The Boiler Room pop-rock club, or the outdoor Peppermint Park bar.


(2 hr. 3 Sentosa Gateway. +65 6270 7676. http://www.stjamespowerstation.com/ Opening hours varies between venues. Admission men/women Sunday – Thursday $12/$10, Friday & Saturday $20/$15, Sunday Ladies' Night. Nearest MRT Station: Harbourfront [NE1/CC29].)


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