All posts tagged: Asia

Singapore III

This year 2015 Singapore celebrates 50 years of independence. And it’s also been acclaimed as the world’s best country to visit due to it’s excellent shopping, rich cultural life and food culture. I skipped the shopping on Orchard road completely to focus on for me a much more important thing – the food, which was fantastic. Eating out is everyone’s favourite pastime here. Singapore is a hotpot of cuisines. Influences from the Chinese, Malayan and Indian cuisine of course as well as other Asian countries, the Middle East cuisine and pretty much from all over the world as a result from the country’s history with immigrants from many countries. There is an endless variety to choose from. From really good and affordable street food found in the hawker food stalls, food courts to high end restaurants. My first night I went to a hawker food court just up the road and sought out the stall which had the most customers and had a big bowl of tasty soup for nearly nothing. As I’m a soup …

Singapore part II

Of course I had to visit Raffles Hotel. Not only to sample the obligatory Singapore Sling, which I did. But the building of this iconic hotel is truly beautiful. Now it’s surrounded on all sides by the modern life of high-rises and busy roads. But it also sits in a garden that somehow keeps the outside world at bay giving it a serene splendour. This however is slightly taken away by the fact that it’s also swarming with tourists, well that’s includes me too I guess. On a spur I felt like I wanted to have afternoon tea here but that was a no go as one has to book that one week in advance! You get the picture. Oh well there’s always a place in the bar so I went there and had a Singapore Sling instead. This classic cocktail was invented by the bartender Ngiam Tong Boon in 1915. At this time women were not allowed to consume alcohol in public. But he cleverly thought out a way to create a cocktail that …

Singapore part I

Singapore is a city, an island and a country. Small in size but with a population of 5 million people. I found Singapore very green, humid and…unfortunately very hazy. But also with striking architecture, old colonial houses and the sometimes surreal new buildings and stunning structures such as the Supertree Grove in the Gardens by the Bay. As the haze was so prominent during my visit I have to mention this issue. I stayed at first with Joe and his friends and his flat that has this amazing view over looking the Gardens by the Bay. This huge recreational park area created from a vision Singapore had, to transit from “A city with a garden” to become “A garden with a city” opened in 2011. I had envisioned sitting on the balcony looking out over all this splendour, but unfortunately the haze was so bad that most days we couldn’t even have the doors to the balcony open. The haze is seasonal apparently and is the smoke that drifts in from, mostly illegal, slash-and-burn fires …

Hong Kong part II

I moved to another part of Hong Kong, to a studio on the 31st floor of a high-rise with it’s own private rooftop terrace. I have always been interested small space living and this studio is a perfect example of this. The cleverly designed solutions worked very well and despite the limited floor space it didn’t feel cramped at all. I believe that the spectacular views on the three sides were a part of this but that the calm colour setting also contributed. Samuel who this home belongs to was currently working in Shanghai and therefore I could stay here. I really enjoyed living here. I liked the design and the views. And it’s location too. Not to mention the private roof terrace! How cool wasn’t that! I managed during the photo shoot on the rooftop, to crouch on the edge of the roof in order to take a shot downwards towards the street way below. It was seriously scary, as I have a fear of heights. Also as it was a seriously hot and humid day, working on the rooftop left me totally faint and drenched in sweat. But …

Hong Kong part I

Arriving to Hong Kong straight from Shanghai, my first impression was – that it felt small! Who would have thought this? It’s also an extremely vertical city. Densely populated and confined in a relatively small area, makes this a necessity. It’s actually one of the world’s most densely populated metropolises. Also the fact that it’s surrounded by green hills and water makes it a very beautiful place. I also found Hong Kong very clean, orderly and well organised. Many pavements are raised above the streets, with roofs and glazed walls that provided both shade from the sun and shelter from the rain. Also they make a very efficient passage for the many business people who hurries through them morning, noon and night. Hong Kong is one of the world’s leading financial centres and many of the tallest skyscrapers are the homes of various banks and financial institutes. In Hong Kong rules the principle of ”one country, two systems”. Meaning that although a part of China since 1997 when it was returned to Chinese sovereignty, it retains it’s own capitalist economic and political systems. It was such a relief that the taxi drivers, at …