Seoul Garden HotPot at Orchard Cineleisure

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Launched in 2010, Seoul Garden HotPot is an extension of the popular Seoul Garden brand that’s known for its 2-in-1 BBQ and Steamboat Buffet. Steering away from the buffet concept, Seoul Garden HotPot offers a variety of premium Korean dishes in an a la carte menu.

Located at three bustling malls, Orchard Cineleisure, HarbourFront Centre and IMM, Seoul Garden HotPot appeals to young diners, families and executives.

The menu was last updated in July 2013, which brings about an addition of new inventive creations to the existing traditional favourites. Continue reading

(National Day Celebration) NDP Picnic Party at SAFRA Jurong

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Happy birthday Singapore! 9 August marks the independence of Singapore. This annual affair never fails to unite Singaporeans with the impactful and heart-warming atmosphere. The elaborate celebration includes marching contingents, military bands, dance performances, choirs, the flypast of military aircrafts, fireworks and more.

One of the highlights for me would be the goodie-bag! It is always filled with delightful surprises and treats. This year, the NDP 2013 Funpack is designed by a group of 10 students from Nanyang Polytechnic. Incorporating selected ideas submitted by some 200 students, it is a simple and functional design that can easily be converted from a sling bag into a backpack. The funpack also includes a collapsible light stick that can be extended to a 75cm light sabre.

The patriotic aura is present, whether one is watching National Day Parade at the lively venue itself, or in the comforts of their own home. I had the privilege of joining the crowd at SAFRA Jurong to enjoy the live broadcast of the National Day Parade, while nibbling on the picnic treats that we prepared. Continue reading

(Travel Feature) What to do in Boracay

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So you’ve seen the breath-taking possibilities of Boracay, and taken down notes on where to stay. Finally, it’s time for some itinerary planning. Here’s a list of activities you can consider filling your days and nights in Boracay with, on land and at sea.

The tempting crystal-blue waters surrounding the island beckons for a relaxing dip Continue reading

(Dream Destination: Boracay) Travel and Flight Information

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If I could paint a picture of a dream destination on a blank canvas, I would paint a seaside scene –rendering gradual shades of blue and turquoise to portray the soothing gradients of the clear seawaters, interspersed with gentle swirling blobs depicting the mild crashing of waves that juxtapose white sandy beaches imprinted with footprints; applying stiff bristled strokes of green and brown delineating sleek palm trees and the striking lush foliage; and smothering the remaining space on the canvas with a thin wash of baby blue, chaperoned by a nimble dabbing of white to represent the wispy passing clouds against the baby blue sky.

This is exactly how I would describe Boracay.

I blogged about how much I was looking forward to my trip to Boracay (read here), and coming back to Singapore, I bring with me an abundance of memories of that beautiful island, and I hope to share that with you through a series of blog posts.

In this post, I will share some general information about Boracay and the available routes from Singapore to Boracay.

Continue reading

(Hari Raya Feature) A Nasi Biryani Expedition

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Here’s wishing all Muslim friends Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri! Foodies, keep your eyes peeled, and stomachs ravenous, because this post is all about Nasi Biryani –a common dish in Malay households, especially ubiquitous at special occasions such as Hari Raya.

Check out the video to follow our expedition from Jalan Kayu to Race Course Road to North Bridge Road, intent on singling out the most outstanding rendition out of the 5.

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Thohirah Restaurant
258, Jalan Kayu, Singapore 799487
Tel: (65) 6481 2009

Our first stop was Thohirah Restaurant –a 24-hour eatery situated at Jalan Kayu, famed for their roti prata. How does their Nasi Biryani fare then?


Chicken Biryani ($6.50 nett)

For those in the know, the usual practice of serving Nasi Biryani is burying the meat underneath the rice. As our order of chicken biryani arrives at the table, we were greeted by a massive heap of rice accompanied by a separate bowl of curry. For just $6.50, the portion is more than substantial.

Continue reading

(Movie Review) RED 2

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Red 2 Official Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9s-lQliuCTc

A continuation of the action-packed sequel RED, movie RED 2 (directed by “Galaxy Quest” Director Dean Parisot) stirs excitement and anticipation, spotlighting a gang of agents who are marked “retired but extremely dangerous”.

This globetrotting action-comedy shuttles between cities such as Paris, London and Moscow.

Ex-CIA agent Frank (Bruce Willis) is fixated on settling down with sweetheart Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker), but his somewhat-eccentric amigo Marvin (John Malkovich) showed up with intel of “leaked classified papers” claiming they were involved in a mission they’ve never heard of, and that the federal authorities were after their lives.

Marvin’s prediction came to live when an assassination attempt was made on him, just minutes after he shared the discovery with Frank. Sending anxiety swimming through our minds, Frank manages to overcome the multitude of ordeals, and is set to fulfil his mission of saving mankind from brilliant but bizarre physicist Dr Bailey (Anthony Hopkins)’s intention to test his weapon of mass-destruction on mankind.

When the news of Marvin’s survival reached his perpetrator, they immediately turned to preeminent contract killer – also known as the best in the world – Han (Lee Byung Hun) to “tie up the loose ends”.

Frank’s wife accompanies Frank and Marvin on this dangerous mission, who is also capable in her own quirky ways.

The movie involves mixed elements of breezy humour and heart throbbing action, including infiltrating through walls of the Kremlin via a bathroom, and an incredibly substantial amount of firing of bullets. Eye candy includes some very fast and sleek auto-manoeuvres, and actor Lee Byung Hun’s well worked-out muscular body in its half-naked glory.

The draw to RED 2 is its casual and fun approach towards a seemingly serious theme of terrorism against mankind.

(Dining at SAFRA) Ishi Mura Express –Affordable and Tasty Japanese Meals

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Ishi Mura Express is a subsidiary of Ishi Mura Japanese Foodstreet, and as its name suggests, it presents itself as a Japanese fast food joint, providing a convenient and quick solution to rumbling tummies –especially after an intensive day of fun-filled activities at SAFRA Club.

The most attractive aspect of this eatery is its unbeatable pricing. It is indisputably the cheapest option in SAFRA Jurong Club, and possibly one of the cheapest dining options in Singapore for Japanese meals.

The menu spans across four categories: bento sets, donburi, omu rice, sushi, and ramen & curry don.


Saba Teriyaki Bento ($6)

Bento options include the Saba Teriyaki, Teriyaki Chicken ($6), Unagi ($8.50), Chicken Katsu ($6), Pork Katsu ($6), and Chicken Katsu & Yakiniku Beef ($7).

For those working or schooling in the vicinity, you’re in for a treat. Bento sets are affordably priced from $6, which includes a generous portion of rice, watermelon, chawanmushi and your choice of protein. Continue reading

In dire needs of an escapade –a Boracay Beach Escapade

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“I wish I could simply drop my immense workload and jet off to a neighbouring country to release my tensions, recharge, and return to Singapore with regained zest.” Mental pictures of beaches, mocktails and snorkelling run amok as my musings go wild.

Google “Beach Escapade” and Boracay easily emerges as one of the top results. An award-winning island destination in the Philippines, Boracay is located on the northern end of Panay Island, stretching across just 7 kilometres –highly possible to cover by foot in a single day effortlessly.

Despite its size, this tiny island has the whole schmear to fulfil travellers’ needs. Apart from the white sandy beach surrounded by enchanting turquoise waters that allures you and your swimsuit, Boracay is also known as ‘the white beach that never sleeps’ with its pulsing nightlife. Encompassing a plethora of over hundreds of restaurants featuring cuisines from all around the world, Borocay is often described as a food haven –exactly what this food-loving individual is looking forward to the most! Also catering to travellers with diverse interests, purposes and budgets, accommodations range from the most luxurious 5-star hotels to mid-range lodgings and backpacker hostels.

I’m so looking forward to my upcoming trip to Boracay with TigerAir –the only budget carrier flying direct from Singapore to Kalibo, Boracay. During fare sales, prices can go as low as $160 all-in!

Do check out my instagram (@melicacy) and twitter (@melicacy) for live updates from Boracay, from 18th-22nd July 2013.

Lotte Koala’s March Biscuits; The Choco Ball Experiment

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Lotte Koala’s March biscuits have been part of my growing up years. These bite-sized crunchy biscuits, filled with rich, premium quality cream filling, imprinted with a koala character on its surface, are always a delight to have.

Lotte is a confectionery brand founded in 1948 in Japan.

There are a total of 365 Koala characters thus far. I can’t even keep track of the number of characters I have come across!

Have you heard of the Choco Ball experiment? It’s very popular in Japan, Thailand and Taiwan.

Here’s a video of my attempt at the Choco Ball experiment!

Watch the original video of how Koala’s March biscuits transform into a giant Choco Ball here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fEWQwDpjwLg

This is not the most successful attempt though! Instead of obtaining a giant choco ball from all that vigorous shaking, I’ve gotten several choco balls! I probably didn’t shake long or hard enough, but do try it at home and I’d love to see pictures of your Choco Balls!

Submit Photos of Homecooked CP Foods Products & Stand to Win Great Prizes

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Singapore’s leading news and entertainment portal, omy.sg, launched its third Singapore Social Media Day (SGSMD) campaign in partnership with one of Asia’s leading premium food brands, CP Foods, to promote home cooking in Singapore.

Did I mention I’m a HUGE fan of CP Shrimp Wontons?


CP Shrimp Wonton in Tom Yum Soup ($3.30)

This snack is quick and easy to prepare, and most importantly, delicious!

Sizeable crunchy prawns encased in a smooth wonton skin… it’s irresistible.

The SGSMD website will be featuring LIVE Instagram photo feeds from the public using the hashtag #SGSMD2013 and #CPFOODSSG. Continue reading

A Breath-taking Experience at Borobudur Temple in Yogyakarta, Indonesia

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Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Borobudur Temple is a Mahayana Buddhist Temple in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia, built in the 9th century.

The monument comprises 504 Buddha statues and 2,672 relief panels, according to Wikipedia.

Preserved through several restorations over the past centuries, Borobudur is an exceedingly popular tourist attraction that’s swamped with visitors throughout the day and year.

The best time to visit Borobudur is before the breaking of dawn, when the sky is still pitch dark.

Your experience begins from absolute darkness. Armed with a torch light and an adventurous outlook, you commence walking up steep steps to get to the peak of the temple, find a cosy spot that gives you the best view of the ensuing sunrise, watch the sky gradually change colours, and keeping your eyes peeled just so you won’t miss a single moment.

As the sun slowly emerges from behind the mountains, constant bolts of anticipation skimmed through my nerves.

Tickets for the Borobudur Sunrise are priced at Rp. 380,000 (about SGD $50-ish). It might be a tad pricey, but it’s absolutely worth every single cent.

Pictures in this post are taken using the SONY RX100. It’s a compact camera that boasts impressive image quality and sharpness coupled with brilliant colours. It’s a great carry-about camera, small enough to fit comfortably in one’s pocket, without compensating on image quality.

Describing the view as spectacular is an understatement.

I’ll let the pictures do the talking. Continue reading

Fruity Dessert inspired by “Ice Kacang” and “Cendol”, made using the Panasonic Mixer Grinder

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A common sight in the 1960s, the first ice-cold dessert introduced in Singapore was ‘Ice Ball’, which is essentially finely grated ice moulded into a ball by hand, and coated in colourful sugar syrup.

In those days, life was tough. Our forefathers sweated out in the farms, on the fields and, along the docks to make ends meet; all these in hope for a better tomorrow. Without the comforts of the air-conditioned rooms, the ‘ice ball’ was a gift descended from above. Not only did it cool down the warm bodies and aching muscles, the sugar also helped give them keep the adrenalin pumping.

Here’s a video of how this traditional ice-ball desert was made:

As standards of living improved, so did expectations of this humble ‘ice ball’. Later variations include the Ice Kachang, comprising jelly, red beans, sweet corn, attap chee (palm seeds) and drizzled with coloured syrups and condensed milk.

Another widely popular dessert sold on pushcarts during the 1960s is Cendol. Its basic ingredients are coconut milk, jelly noodles donning a bright green hue, shaved ice and palm sugar.

Inspired by these two desserts, I’ve decided to come up with a healthier version that’s refreshing and nutritional at the same time.

I’m using the Panasonic Mixer Grinder for this recipe, which helps to blend the fruits to a smooth consistency in a remarkably short amount of time. Continue reading

AirAsia –Our Preferred Airline to Yogyakarta, Indonesia

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When I speak of having visited Yogyakarta, replies were mostly of how beautiful the place is. Its cultural aspect draws endless enthusiasm and eagerness.

Worth mentioning are scenic views of mountains and lush greenery, notable landmarks encompassing temples that are several centuries old and historical sites with fascinating architecture.

A pioneer in low-cost travel, connecting Yogyakarta to the rest of Asia, is our trusted airline, AirAsia. Continue reading