Riverside Point, Singapore River

Well, after my previous terse remark about Clarke Quay and Orchard Road (#18 of my 23 facts about Singapore) you wouldn’t expect me to have anything nice to say, but I would have to say no trip to Singapore would be complete without at least window shopping through both areas.

Orchard Rd is where it all happens for the westerners looking for a piece of home. All the trendy names in fashion are represented here, alongside all of the leading hotel names and more. Everything is twice the price of other areas in Singapore, and there is a certain level of sterility about the place which haunts me.

Of course, the MUJI shop is here, and Meredith and I were guilty of spending hours in there alone. I think this was our only visit to a Starbucks (gasp!) whilst we were in Singapore as well.

Clarke Quay, riverfront place to be for trendy locals and tourists is home to all the big names in the local club scene – Ministry of Sound for example are here, along with great American export Hooters. This would have to be the biggest cringe factor of our stay – local Singapore girls are not designed to be stuck into tiny fluoro orange shorts, it’s just not natural to say the least.

Thanks to our local contact, Steven, we also visited Brewerks – a great brewery and restaurant, which sells everything from small 300ml glasses through to the 4 litre tabletop keg, Party Pig and Takeaway Kegs, although at a fairly steep price.

Looking for desserts and coffee (in my case, Affogato) to die for? Then you must visit local Italian Deli Ricciotti (20 Upper Circular Rd, The Riverwalk Ph (65) 6533 9060).

Clarke Quay is also the destination for rides on traditional bum boats (Ph (65) 6339 6833), complete with tacky soundtrack and English commentary. This isn’t as bad as it sounds, and was definitely a highlight of our Singapore visit.

Photo: Riverside Point, at night along the Singapore River.

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