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Seoul, the capital of South Korea, has a rich history and culture, making it a popular destination for tourists. One of the most famous attractions in Seoul is Gyeongbokgung Palace, a magnificent example of traditional Korean architecture.

This palace was built in the 14th century and was the main royal palace of the Joseon dynasty. Visitors can explore the palace grounds and see the changing of the guard ceremony, which takes place every hour.

Seoul is also famous for its street food, a must-try for anyone visiting the city. From savory dishes like tteokbokki and hotteok to sweet treats like bingsu and churros, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

In addition to its cultural and culinary attractions, Seoul is also a shopping paradise; no wonder, you can easily find hotels in Seoul for tourists. The city is home to numerous shopping districts and markets, where visitors can find everything from traditional Korean goods to high-end fashion brands.

Best Hotels in South Korea

1.     LOTTE City Hotel Myeongdong

Address: 362, Samil-daero, Jung-gu, Jung, Myeongdong, Seoul, South Korea, 100-220

Price: starts from SGD 241

The LOTTE City Hotel Myeongdong is a great choice for travelers looking for a comfortable stay in a convenient location. The hotel is situated 0.76 km from the Seoul Subway. In addition to its convenient location, the LOTTE City Hotel Myeongdong is close to the Sejong Cultural Center (1.15 km) and the National Theater of Korea (2.03 km). Get set for a stay with deluxe amenities and personalized service.

2.     Marigold Hotel

Address: 112, Yanghwa-ro, Mapo-gu, Hongdae, Mapo, Seoul, South Korea, 121-893

Price: starts from SGD 116

The Marigold Hotel is a hotel that can be found in Hongdae, which is known for being a pleasant area. The distance between the hotel and Seoul Station is a mere 4.43 kilometers. Not only is the Marigold Hotel in a convenient location, but it is also one of the hotels that is located near the Sejong Cultural Center (5.49 kilometers away) and the National Theater of Korea (7.14 kilometers away).

3.     Migliore Hotel Seoul Myeongdong

Address: 115 Toegye-ro, Jung-gu, Jung, Myeongdong, Seoul, South Korea, 100-011

Price: starts from SGD 185

The Migliore Hotel Seoul Myeongdong is a hotel in a desirable location, as it can be found in the Myeongdong district of Seoul. The hotel is about 0.2 km away from Seoul Metro due to its location. Not only is the Migliore Hotel Seoul Myeongdong in a convenient location, but it is also one of the hotels that is located close to the Sejong Cultural Center (1.49 kilometers away) and the National Theater of Korea (1.69 kilometers away).

4.     Brown Suites Jeju Hotel & Resort

Address: 94, Goseongojo-ro, Seongsan-eup, Seogwipo, Jeju Island, South Korea

Price: starts from SGD 60

When visiting Seogwipo, staying at Brown Suites Jeju Hotel & Resort is a great choice. Because of its convenient location near numerous services, this motel is easy to locate. Get set for a stay you will remember, thanks to the hotel’s deluxe amenities and personalized service. The front desk is open around the clock to help you with everything you might possibly need, from checking in to leaving. Be bold about asking the front desk for additional services (i.e. such as late check-out) if you need it; they’ll try their best to meet your needs.

5.     Hotel Leo

Address: 14, Sammu-ro, Jeju City, Jeju Island, South Korea, 690-813

Price: starts from SGD 88

Hotel Leo is a hotel that can be found in Jeju City and is situated in a pleasant neighborhood. The hotel enjoys a very convenient position, as it is only 2.41 kilometers from Jeju International Airport (CJU). Not only is Hotel Leo located in a convenient spot, but it is also one of the hotels that is located close to the Folklore and Natural History Museum, which is 4.38 kilometers away, and the Jeju Education Museum, which is 4.66 kilometers away.

You can check out these hotel recommendations while planning a trip to South Korea. Some of them are hotels in Jeju if you are looking for the best accommodations in Jeju. So, pack your things now and get ready to have a wonderful time in South Korea with Traveloka.

Multicultural Singapore is no stranger to diversity. Since the beginning of the country’s post-independence history, Singapore’s mainstream school system has sought to accommodate the needs of the country’s ethnic Chinese, Malay, and Indian populations. This has proven to be a remarkable undertaking given that most of the world’s school systems practice systemic forms of cultural chauvinism that elevate one group over others.

However, there is a growing realisation that Singapore’s publicly funded schools, while already diverse by world standards, may not be keeping up with the growing cultural heterogeneity that has resulted from the country’s leading role in globalisation. Thus, there has been an increased demand for educational options that offer even more diverse learning environments.

Compellingly, there is plenty of evidence supporting the benefits of a diverse educational background, particularly in early childhood. In particular, a meta-analysis of educational diversity studies by The Century Foundation, a New York-based think tank, associates student exposure to a variety of different perspectives with better learning outcomes. Here are some of the many benefits of diverse learning backgrounds according to current scientific understanding.

Diverse Learning Environments Help Build Confidence

Putting students from an outsider culture in a homogenous learning environment may impair their self-esteem and consequently degrade their ability to overcome various challenges. School systems that encourage diversity can help students from various backgrounds maintain and cultivate their self-confidence, ultimately allowing them to pursue their development on their own terms.

Students in Diverse Communities Feel More Understood

The feeling of being understood is important for a young person’s sense of identity, mental health, and ability to become a fully formed individual. This is especially important for young children of expatriate families, as many will struggle to fit in the kind of environment present in local school systems meant to accommodate native cultural diversity.

Fortunately, Singapore is now home to a variety of international schools that offer a wider multicultural experience that’s appropriate for children in the expatriate community. Expat parents can easily now find choices for an American school in Singapore as well as schools catering to other nationalities.

A Multicultural Environment May Stoke Lifelong Curiosity

The underlying sameness of a homogenous school community can often lead children to make assumptions that their experiences are universal. This may, unfortunately, make them less curious about their surroundings than they would be, otherwise.

On the other hand, children in a diverse school community will often develop a curiosity about cultures different from their own. Once developed, their curiosity will often manifest in other parts of life, providing a firm foundation for their intellectual development and academic success.

An Education Steeped in Diversity Teaches Inclusion

Students who have contact with peers and educators from backgrounds different from their own may develop a positive attitude toward inclusion. A positive perception of inclusion is highly beneficial as it helps mould children to be accepting, respectful, and empathetic individuals. This can help them profoundly later in life as they interact with people from different social and cultural backgrounds.

Diversity Helps Young Children Learn How to Socialise Appropriately

Individuals who have a homogenous cultural upbringing often struggle when they’re placed in different social and cultural contexts. Education in a safe multicultural environment can do much to mitigate these kinds of challenges. Children who frequently interact with peers from different cultures are often better at understanding different social norms, making them more capable of navigating a wider set of social situations. Thus, children who have inclusion as one of their values may be better equipped to thrive in an increasingly globalised environment.

Children Feel Safer in a Diverse School Community

Children from outsider cultures often feel less safe expressing themselves in a homogenous learning environment, as their differences can be misjudged and make them targets of bullying. In contrast, a diverse learning environment may allow students to be true to their own cultures without fear of negative consequences, making it easier for them to develop a positive attitude toward learning.

Diversity Sparks Creativity

Being part of a diverse community exposes children to different ideas and more ways of doing things. The increase in the number of potential inputs makes it easier for children to draw unexpected connections when they generate their own ideas. Additionally, diversity allows for more cross-pollination of different ideas, potentially creating a richer pool of ideas and further stoking more creativity in the school community.

Multicultural Education Helps Prepare Students for the Real World

It’s often said that school environments do not resemble the real world, and this is much truer for homogenous learning environments. Without frequent exposure to people from diverse backgrounds, students can develop a skewed view of the world around them, which may make it more challenging for them to thrive outside of their school.

A more diverse learning environment, on the other hand, can help students acclimatise to divergent value systems and thought processes, making it easier for them to understand experiences outside of school. This makes it easier for them to build positive lasting connections with others from different social and cultural backgrounds.

There Is Strength in Diversity

Diverse school communities bring together children and other individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, creating a rich and engaging backdrop with which to frame educational experiences. Having your child enter a school with a culturally and socially diverse community is likely to not only help them academically, but also assist in their holistic growth, moulding them into tolerant and outstanding individuals even when outside the school system.

Hong Kong, a vibrant city known for its bustling streets, skyscrapers, and delicious cuisine, is a must-visit destination for travellers. With the covid restrictions in Hong Kong eased, my family and I seized the opportunity to explore this fascinating city and enjoyed its unique blend of cultures, history, and modernity.

We chose to fly with Singapore Airlines, and it was a comfortable and enjoyable experience. The flight was smooth, with friendly and attentive service from the flight attendants. The in-flight entertainment was excellent, with a wide selection of movies, TV shows, and games to choose from. As we brought our children along for the trip to Hong Kong, we did not have the luxury of time to enjoy the in-flight entertainment.

Singapore Airlines offers a range of services and amenities for travellers with children to make the flight more comfortable and enjoyable for both kids and parents. These include kid-friendly meals, entertainment options, and activity kits with games and toys to keep little ones occupied during the flight. There are also baby changing facilities on board, and the crew is happy to assist with any special requests, such as heating up baby food or providing extra blankets and pillows.

Throughout our trip, we stayed at the Royal Plaza Hotel, which is located in the heart of Mong Kok. This luxurious hotel offers spacious rooms with stunning city views and amenities, including a fitness centre, swimming pool, and multiple dining options. The hotel’s central location made it easy to explore the city, and we like how convenient and accessible it is.

One of the attractions we visited in Hong Kong was the Cup Noodles Museum. Located in the Kowloon Bay area, the museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the history and production of one of the world’s most popular instant noodle brands. We even created our custom cup noodles to take home as souvenirs. However, if you have been to the Cup Noodles Museum in Japan, you might consider giving this a miss.

Another highlight of our trip was exploring the vibrant Mong Kok Street. This bustling district is famous for its street markets, which sell everything from clothes and electronics to street food and souvenirs. We spent hours wandering through the narrow alleyways, admiring the colourful neon signs and soaking up the lively atmosphere.

We also visited Fung Ying Seen Koon temple. The temple is a beautiful and peaceful place to visit, offering a unique glimpse into Hong Kong’s rich spiritual traditions. Nestled amid lush greenery, Fung Ying Seen Koon features intricate architecture and artwork. We enjoyed the peaceful ambience and the chance to learn more about the history and traditions of Taoism.

Our trip to Hong Kong has been a memorable and enriching one. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, or delicious food, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city. Travelling with two young kiddos was fun but tiring. Here are some tips that we have if you’re planning to travel to Hong Kong with young children:

  1. Pack plenty of snacks and drinks to keep your children fueled throughout the day. Hong Kong is a busy city, and you may find yourself on the go for hours at a time.
  2. Bring comfortable shoes and clothing for both you and your children. You’ll be doing a lot of walking, and the weather can be hot and humid.
  3. Consider bringing a stroller or carrier for younger children. Hong Kong’s streets can be crowded and uneven, so it’s important to have a safe and comfortable way to transport your child.
  4. Plan your itinerary with your children’s interests and energy levels in mind. Hong Kong has a lot to offer, but it’s important to pace yourself and prioritise the activities that your children will enjoy the most.

Psst. If you recently won yourself a round-trip Cathay Air Ticket to Hong Kong or planning a trip to Hong Kong this coming Easter, we have some exciting news for you!

Pirata Group, the city’s undisputed leader when it comes to memorable dining experiences, is taking things one step further with a variety of egg-citing promotions across all venues. From tandoor towers and unlimited sushi to all-you-can-eat chocolate dessert stations and limited-time Easter brunches where kids eat for free, there’s something for everyone in the family to enjoy before or after partaking in the many kid-friendly activities around town. So, hop to it and start making those Easter memories with Pirata Group’s guide to the best things to see, do and savour in Hong Kong this holiday season!

Central

Victoria Peak, otherwise known as The Peak, has always been a must-visit Hong Kong destination for its iconic views and historic funicular railway. After a major upgrade that was completed last year, The Peak Tram now offers an even more exciting and efficient experience with new, larger-capacity green-coloured tramcars and an array of entertainment zones showcasing the area’s intriguing history and wildlife. Once at The Peak, be sure to check out Monopoly Dreams, the first Monopoly-themed attraction in the world that features an array of AR and other interactive experiences. Then, make your way to Sky Terrace 428, which at 428m above sea level is the highest viewing platform in Hong Kong. From here, the whole family will be wowed by 360-degree panoramic views across the city and harbour, which are impressive morning, noon or night! 

“SomeBunny Feed Me!” Easter brunch menus with free-flow champagne and all-you-can-enjoy chocolate buffet at Chaiwala & TokyoLima, 7–10 April 2023

Once you’ve worked up an appetite, it’s just a quick tram ride back to Central for a special Easter-themed dining experience. Fans of modern Indian cuisine won’t want to miss Chaiwala’s “SomeBunny Feed Me!” brunch feast (HK$388pp, HK$398pp champagne free-flow, HK$198pp classic free-flow) complete with a trio of chaat for sharing, choice of vegetarian or mutton biryani, a tandoor tower and dosas for sharing, and choice of six curries. A children’s menu is also available for HK$50. For a taste of innovative Japanese and Peruvian fusion food, head a few blocks north to TokyoLima and its adventurous take on “SomeBunny Feed Me!” (HK$398pp, HK$398pp champagne free-flow, HK$198pp classic free-flow). Designed for sharing, the brunch feast begins with a selection of appetisers including causa and ceviche before moving on to the Weeknd Salad, Edamame Hummus and Pop Ki-Mo-Chi, and finishing with a choice of mains such as chicken katsu with aji panca rice or pan-fried mackerel with potato puree and Nikkei escabeche. Both brunch menus are available 7–10 April 2023 and include an extravagant all-you-can-enjoy chocolate buffet – so be sure to leave some room!

Sheung Wan

Tsim Sha Tsui & West Kowloon

Just a short ride on the Star Ferry or a quick trip on the MTR from Hong Kong Island and you’ll find yourself in the always-buzzing Tsim Sha Tsui commercial and entertainment district or the up-and-coming West Kowloon cultural district. Must-visits on this side of Victoria Harbour include the new M+ Museum showcasing some of the world’s foremost collections of 20th- and 21st-century visual culture. The Herzog & de Meuron-designed building and surrounding outdoor spaces are worth a visit even on their own. After admiring the architecture, budding builders should definitely check out Legoland Discovery Centre. The ultimate Lego indoor playground is designed for children ages 3-10 and features workshops, play areas and even Hong Kong’s top attractions built out of bricks. Finally, burn off any residual energy at Kids Kids Car indoor electric-vehicle driving playground. The 20,000 sq ft space has three different themed zones where kids can zoom around and even experience various occupations. 

Enjoy limited-time Easter specials at Pici & The Pizza Project, 5–10 April 2023

Cap off your Kowloon adventures at neighbourhood Italian spot Pici, which from 5–10 April 2023 is offering two limited-time additions to everyone’s favourite pasta bar brunch. The new specials are available all day and include the lavish Truffle Carbonara (HK$190), a tagliatelle with black truffle, guanciale, pecorino and Japanese egg yolk; and the Coppa Malu (HK$140) a velvety mousse dessert for two made with 70% chocolate, whipped cream and almond meringue. The famous, much-loved Italian treats are available all around the city, with more branches in Lai Chi Kok, Sha Tin in the New Territories but also buzzing Causeway Bay, Wan Chai, and Central amongst other prime locations. Another must-try Italian Easter dining destination for the whole family is The Pizza Project in Central – check out the two limited-time specialsDown the Rabbit Hole (HK$160), a pizza with a red hot chili cheddar stuffed crust, testa di coppa, black garlic pesto and fior di latte; and Bu-Nana (HK$65), a sweet treat consisting of banana and chocolate ganache stuffed gnocco fritto, dusted with icing sugar. 

Stanley

Tired of the hustle and bustle of the city? Let’s head over to Stanley for a lovely seaside stroll with your little ones. The Stanley Bay promenade is a picturesque boardwalk overlooking all the small boats parked at the bay – this is a scene you can’t find in other parts of Hong Kong. With a backdrop of colonial heritage buildings, lots of locals come here to walk their pets and enjoy a peaceful afternoon. 

Looking for a seaside cafe to enjoy the view? Pirata has got you covered! Located on Stanley Main Street, Pane e Latte will celebrate Easter with spring specials across three weekends from 1–16 April. Feast on Bomboloni al Torroncino (HK$48), a nougat cream-filled doughnut covered in chocolate couverture; the Gnocchi di Pasqua (HK$158), a dish featuring spring vegetables, ricotta and poached eggs; and the Easter Egg (HK$78), a sweet treat made with lemon madeleine, strawberry jam and fromage blanc. A giant, eye-catching Easter basket and eggs will also be installed at the bakery for the ultimate holiday experience. 

Don’t miss the limited-time Spring specials at Pane e Latte, 1–16 April 2023!

Easter is an incredible time to enjoy Hong Kong’s fine weather, fun attractions and friendly hospitality. Hop over to piratagroup.hk to start planning your mealtime celebrations and make this year’s holiday your most memorable one yet!

From the producers of Aladdin, The Lion King and Mary Poppins, Disney’s new hit musical Frozen opens at the Sands Theatre, Marina Bay Sands this 2023 as the ONLY STOP in South East Asia!

Based on the popular Disney animated film, the musical production has been wowing audiences with its stunning visuals, memorable music, and heartwarming story since its premiere in 2018. My daughter and I were really thankful that we had the opportunity to see Frozen on stage, and I can honestly say that it was an unforgettable experience.

The story of Frozen centers around two sisters, Elsa and Anna, who are torn apart by a magical power that Elsa possesses. Elsa is forced to flee into the mountains and live a life of solitude, while Anna sets out on a journey to find her and bring her home. Along the way, Anna meets a loveable snowman named Olaf and a brave ice harvester named Kristoff, who help her on her quest.

The musical begins with a spectacular opening scene that sets the tone for the rest of the show. From the moment the lights came up, I was captivated by the stunning set design and eye-catching costumes. The intricate details and imaginative use of colours and lights brought the world of Arendelle to life in a truly magical way.


Photo Credits: Disney Theatrical Productions and Base Entertainment Asia

The characters in Frozen are perfectly cast, and the actors bring a level of energy and emotion to their performances that is truly breathtaking. Jemma Rix, who played Elsa, was especially impressive. Her powerful voice brought the character of Elsa to life, and her rendition of “Let It Go” was nothing short of spectacular. Sarah O’Connor, who played Anna, was equally amazing, and her comedic timing and chemistry with the other actors were spot-on.


Photo Credits: Disney Theatrical Productions and Base Entertainment Asia

The music in Frozen is simply phenomenal. The songs, which were written by Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez, are memorable and catchy, and they perfectly complement the story. From the upbeat and cheerful “For the First Time in Forever” to the emotional “Love is an Open Door,” the music in Frozen is a major highlight of the show.

In addition to the music and acting, the special effects in Frozen are genuinely stunning. From the swirling snowflakes to the blazing fire, the effects are perfectly executed and add a level of excitement and wonder to the show. The use of projections and lighting is especially impressive, and the images that are created on stage are nothing short of breathtaking.


Photo Credits: Disney Theatrical Productions and Base Entertainment Asia

One of the things that I love about Frozen is that it is a musical that appeals to people of all ages. Whether you are a fan of the original film or not, there is something in this show for everyone. The story is timeless, and the characters are relatable and lovable.

In conclusion, Frozen is a musical that is not to be missed. The stunning visuals, unforgettable music, and heartwarming story make it an experience you will never forget. Whether you are a fan of the original film or not, I highly recommend you go and watch this musical and bring your family along. You won’t be disappointed!

Get your tickets here!

Have grand plans to start the new year with a burst of optimistic energy? Let ‘Viva Magenta’, Pantone’s Colour Of The Year for 2023, energise you for the year ahead — and even guide you to some incredible destinations around the world.

Viva Magenta is said to signify courage, strength and power, encouraging experimentation and self-expression without restraint. Rooted in nature, the sight of this audacious hybrid shade of crimson, purple and pink brings vibrancy and excitement to anyone who views it.

Luxury travel operator Scott Dunn is well-versed in finding stunning locations around the world — and planning for exceptional journeys. Below, discover Scott Dunn’s top picks for where you can discover the incredible shade of Viva Magenta and more on your next adventure. 

Adventure through Mexico’s Ancient Yucatan Peninsula

Laguna Rosada is Yucatan’s beautiful, lesser-known pink lake 

Yucatan is known for its tropical rainforests and jungles, and for being home to the ancient Mayan people. These highlights come together in Scott Dunn’s paired tour of the Yucatan and Riviera Maya. Guests will be given insider access to famed archeological sites like the Chichen Itza, accessing areas of ancient Mayan structures and viewing remarkable restoration areas that are not open to the general public.

In the Yucatan Peninsula, guests will also discover the incredible pink lakes of Las Coloradas. Located at the tip of the Yucatan Peninsula, these lakes are an incredible, ethereal sight of brightly-coloured waters spanning across a dreamlike landscape.

Scott Dunn’s travel guides can also arrange for a unique way to experience the region: Visit another of Yucatan’s cenotes in a spectacular private horseback tour. Follow the traces of ancient narrow-gauge railroad tracks that covered Yucatan to reach Kankirixche cenote, where you can take a refreshing bath, or snorkel in its clear waters.

Witness a Brilliant Display of Birdlife in Kenya

Kenya, the iconic heartland of safari, is home to big cats, endangered rhinoceros and rare species of zebras. With its great plains and vast wildlife, magenta seems like an unlikely colour to encounter. But at Kenya’s very own Lake Nakuru, the most brilliant show of birdlife occurs as thousands of flamingos gather and the intense sea of fuchsia and magenta plumage contrasts against the deep blue alkaline waters. The flamingos feed on the abundant algae thriving in the warmth of the lake. Lake Nakuru National Park is also home to a whole array of wildlife including white rhinos, lions, giraffes, impalas and more.

With just nine rooms, Loldia House, one of Kenya’s oldest colonial farms, is situated on the lush green shores of Lake Naivasha in the Great Rift Valley. For proximity to Lake Nakuru, Loldia House is an excellent base: There, you get to observe The Great Migration of wildebeests in search of grazing, learn about the life of the Samburu tribe and have breakfast with giraffes.

Discover Monumental Natural Sculptures in Arizona 

America’s Southwest is a region of extraordinary landscapes, stunning national parks, Native American history, and Wild West folklore. In Arizona, discover Lake Powell’s magnificent Antelope Canyon — so named for the herds of pronghorn antelope that once roamed the area. 

At midday from March through October, the position of the sun creates light shafts that reach the canyon floor and illuminates the pink, red, orange and gold patterns on the canyon walls. Winter colours are more muted but no less spectacular. There are two parts to this monumental natural sculpture: the Upper Antelope Canyon which is easier to hike, and the Lower Antelope Canyon which attracts the more adventurous, requiring hikers to manoeuvre through stairways and ladders to get into the canyon. You may take a captained boat tour on Lake Powell, and get the opportunity to visit some of the unique slot canyons the area is famous for as well. 

For more incredible displays of nature, Scott Dunn’s travel experts can organise a full day guided tour that brings you to Arches National Park. Alternatively, kayak along the Lower Salt River for a beautiful view of the surrounding land. 

Bask in the Serene Majesty of Kyoto

Kyoto’s Daigoji Temple boasts a stunning red and magenta cloak come autumn

Come Autumn, discover the serene majesty of Kyoto, which promises a hallowed ensemble of gardens, shrines and temples, made all the more stunning by the autumn foliage in shades of magenta, red and gold. As the cultural heart of Japan, Kyoto’s temples number in the thousands. One of them is Daigoji Temple, a Shingon Buddhist temple with over 1,100 years of history and a designated world heritage site. The grounds include several buildings and an expansive Japanese garden. Savour a scrumptious dinner with seasonal and local ingredients as you indulge in a magnificent view of dramatic fall foliage and the temple grounds illuminated in the dark.

Warm autumn colours are one of the highlights of Kyoto during the year-end season, but the city offers much more than that. In Scott Dunn’s curated Ultimate Japan itinerary, guests will be taken through some of Japan’s most spectacular regions, including Kyoto — Scott Dunn’s experts are familiar with all the best dining spots and locations, many privy only to locals, and can put together a wonderfully intimate itinerary for guests to experience the traditional Japanese way of life — these experiences include taking a traditional tea ceremony at one of Kyoto’s traditional wooden townhouses, the Flower Teahouse, to experience the meditative, centuries-old art of a Japanese tea ceremony.

Be Amazed by Australia’s Magenta-Coloured Lakes

Australia is known for its blue pacific waters for surfing and the colourful Great Barrier Reefs, one of the most complex ecosystems in the world. Unbeknownst to many, the island continent also possesses wondrous pink lakes. 

In Western Australia, the country’s largest state, lies the iconic Lake Hillier, Pink Lake and Hutt Lagoon. The Viva Magenta colouring of the water is often caused by the presence of salt-tolerant algae that produces carotenoids, usually in conjunction with specific bacteria, which may vary from lake to lake. While there, Scott Dunn’s seasoned experts can help to plan an adventure of a lifetime: There, you can take selfies with furry quokkas, hit the waves, swim with whale sharks, and snorkel through crystal clear waters. 

One such exhilarating itinerary that the Scott Dunn team can help to plan is the Exceptional Western Australia tour. You’ll get the chance to stay in luxurious homesteads by the beautiful Chamberlain River, offering a million acres of breathtaking, untouched scenery — there, head out on horseback to delve into the bush and spot rarely-seen wildlife like bustard birds, frill-necked lizards, and brolgas cranes.

So, wait no more & start planning your trip for an optimistic start to the new year!

The Show Master, a new blockbuster entertainment arm by Uncle Ringo, revives our festive cheer with a bang after a three-year hiatus with The Great Bay Fiesta from 1 December 2022 to 1 January 2023 at the Bayfront Event Space.

The Great Bay Fiesta, presented by Trip.com, is held in conjunction with Marina Bay Singapore Countdown 2023, presented by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Open daily from 1 pm to 10 pm, this event spans over 20,000 sqm at the Bayfront Event Space with a lineup of merrymaking activities clustered into four main event segments – The Great Cirque de Cascades, The Great World Carnival, The Great Food Fiesta, and Ice Magic: The Great Fantasy on Ice.

We brought our two kiddos to check out the latest happenings at The Great Bay Fiesta, and it was unfortunate that the weather wasn’t on our side. It poured quite heavily in the afternoon, but thankfully, the rain subsided, and all that was left was drizzles. The first thing we checked out was The Great World Carnival by Uncle Ringo.

Apart from the usual carnival games where carnival-goers can have a go at winning mega-sized plushies; classic rides like the Big Carousel, Bumper Car, and Pirate Ship are also available for the thrillseekers. Mikayla rode the Big Carousel, and it was the only ride she took because she did not meet the minimum height requirements for the other rides. In case you are wondering, a ride on the Big Carousel costs $6. We noticed that many other rides were not in operation when we were there, and given the bad weather, the giant inflatables were a no-go for us as it was “flooded” with rainwater, and we did not pack any spare clothes for the kiddos.

Something different from the regular rides and games was an experiential inflatable playland reimagined and redesigned from one of OpenSea’s renowned projects, Prime Ape Planet. This is Uncle Ringo’s first foray into the web3 landscape to explore an omnichannel integrated experience for its visitors using the NFT IP space. If there were some utility that Prime Ape Planet’s NFT holders could take advantage of at The Great World Carnival, we would have found it super interesting and even more newsworthy, but it was interesting to see a giant inflatable that is designed after a popular NFT collection. 

To enter The Great World Carnival, you will need a Carnival Admission Ticket that will cost SGD$10, which comes with SGD$5 Carnival Credits.

As a strategic partner of the annual SG Cares Giving Week, The Show Master is proud to announce that The Great Bay Fiesta will be the main Giving Hub throughout December. On four consecutive Tuesdays, i.e. 6, 13, 20, and 27 December, the opening act of The Great Cirque des Cascades’ 7 PM shows will be performed by charities or non-profit organisations such as Breast Cancer Foundations, SASCO Khatib Active Ageing Centre, and more. The Show Master will also be donating 5% of the total revenue earned from their Tuesday 7 PM shows to the performing beneficiaries.

Before The Great Cirque des Cascades show, we went to The Great Food Fiesta to grab a quick dinner. There were many food options available, but we felt the prices were not wallet-friendly and the food quality (at least for the ones we had) was subpar. As some of the stores are serving Thai cuisine, including grilled meats, seafood and desserts (and were specially flown in from Thailand), this might explain why they are so pricey.

We ordered one serving of Pad Thai, one serving of octopus, one serving of fried sweet potato balls, and one serving of beer, and all these added up to SGD$34.50. For a carnival-styled setting (which is what we would also refer to as a street-hawker setting or food-festival kind of setting), the pricing was definitely on the high end.

After a quick dinner, we went to queue up to enter the climate-controlled 1,000-seat Big Top where The Great Cirque des Cascades was taking place.

Proudly presented by Gandey’s Circus, one of the best international circus acts the world has to offer, the 80-minute circus show features nine premium circus acts specially curated from all over Europe. The thrilling performances put us on the edge of our seats, and we were very glad that Jacob managed to take a nap during the show and did not kick up too much fuss. As for Mikayla, she was dancing away to the music and got very excited when she saw balloons in some of the acts.


If you have not been to a circus performance before and you have no plans to travel, The Great Cirque des Cascades is a good option to consider. For the best views, avoid booking the Standard Ticket. As seats are not numbered, do queue up early before the showtime so that you can secure the best spots. Bookings for The Great Cirque de Cascades tickets are now exclusively available at Trip.com.

Due to the lack of time, we did not check out the Ice Magic: The Great Fantasy on Ice, which is part of The Great Bay Fiesta and the biggest pop-up winter-themed attraction in Singapore. However, from what we know, tickets to Ice Magic: The Great Fantasy on Ice cost SGD$45 for an adult and SGD$35 for a child (aged 2 to 12). The Family Package for 2 adults and 2 children is worth considering as it costs just SGD$140.

This pretty much sums up our experience at The Great Bay Fiesta and if you have any thoughts about this event, feel free to share your comments with us too!

Aries Gold is a Singaporean watch brand founded by CK Woo in 1970. CK Woo dedicated his life to mastering the art of watchmaking after falling in love with watches at a young age. Aries Gold prides itself on the manufacturing of mechanical timepieces and bringing them to the modern world. Since its inception in 1970, its designs and manufacturing have been done exclusively in-house in its workshop in Singapore. Combining traditional watchmaking craftsmanship and premium materials at an affordable price, Aries Gold has grown an international presence in more than 35 countries. 

Recently, Aries Gold launched The Samurai Code Series and I was very intrigued by the collection because it depicts the Samurai way of life and there are  7 designs to choose from. Each design is named after the seven virtues of the Bushido Code and I was honestly spoilt for choice because all of them looked good. In the end, I settled for the virtue that strongly resonated with me and chose JIN 仁, which is also translated as mercy or benevolence.

Jin is one of the highest-regarded bushido tenets. Samurai possess physical and legal power. Instead of exercising power, they should show mercy and benevolence. Love, care, sympathy, and pity are some traits that a Samurai must possess. This ensures that the warrior fought for the right reason and belief; it also guarantees that if there were no need to kill, the samurai would have mercy.

The watches from The Samurai Code Series are powered by the trialled and tested Japanese Miyota automatic movement, the 8215. The case size is 42.5mm and the glass used is Sapphire crystal. Yes, you read that right. Although Sapphire crystal is mostly used by high-end watchmakers, Aries Gold believes in creating quality timepieces that everyone can afford. Sapphire crystal scores a solid 9 out of 10 on the Mohs mineral hardness scale (which is just below diamond), thus making it more scratch resistant than mineral glass. The material used for the watch strap is made of rubber which makes the watch suitable for outdoor sporting activities.

If you would like to immortalise your precious moments on the watch, there are personalisation options available and you can either print text/picture on the watch dial or print text/picture on the glass case-back. As for me, I got the character, 仁 printed on the glass case-back. Every purchase of the watch comes with a free classy travel watch pouch that comes with extra slots for additional watch straps.

Check out the entire collection of The Samurai Code Series by Aries Gold on H2 Hub. For the price of $398, I feel it is reasonably priced considering the unique one-of-its-kind design, the automatic movement, and the durable sapphire glass!

MO BAR at Mandarin Oriental, Singapore has crafted a new December 2022 Afternoon Tea menu as well as the Christmas Eve and Day Afternoon Tea. The new menus combine the rich flavours of Western influence with the diverse cooking cultures of Asia into a singular experience. 

MO BAR’s lavish décor and breathtaking views of Marina Bay make it the ideal spot for an afternoon meeting to unwind. Their extensive collection of exotic teas from Asia’s renowned tea-growing areas relaxes and calms, with robust or subtle tones to suit every palette.

Start your tea with a light and refreshing Red Wine Pear Granite, one of eight delectable courses inspired by local favourites and holiday classics. Work your way through the savouries with bites such as Chilli Soft Shell Crab encased in a savoury tart, topped with cucumber salsa, and the Guinness Stout Chicken paired with pomelo, pickled onion, and puffed rice. The Christmas Mushroom, a foundation of chocolate genoise covered with spiced cherry coulis and ivory chocolate mousse with kirsch for the ultimate enjoyment, is one of the rich and decorative sweets that bring the crescendo of indulgence to a close.

The Christmas Eve and Day Afternoon Tea Experience at MO BAR will keep you in the holiday spirit. Expect elevated gourmet delicacies such as the Poached Lobster coupled with cucumber, chives, shallots and yuzu mayo, garnished with avruga caviar, and many more to make your Christmas really memorable. 

The December Afternoon Tea Experience is available at S$88++ per guest throughout the month and includes a flute of Champagne. Served daily from 3 to 5 pm with additional seating available from 12.30 pm to 2.30 pm on weekends. The special Christmas Eve and Day Afternoon Tea menu, available exclusively on the 24th and 25th of December, costs S$108++ per guest and includes a flute of Champagne. The Afternoon Tea experience is presented with personalised service for which MO BAR is renowned. 


MO BAR’s Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Afternoon Tea Menu

MO BAR’s December Afternoon Tea Menu


Reservations can be made by emailing mosin-dining@mohg.com or calling +65 6885 3500 or online.

I was recently at Winestone to have a preview of their festive 4-Course Lunch and Dinner Menu, and it was overall a pleasant dining experience. 

Winestone’s festive 4-Course Lunch & Dinner Menu is available on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day and is priced at $108++ per person, including a glass of house wine. You can choose from two options for the Soup, Salad/Appetizer and Main Course. When I was there, I went for the Creamy Seafood Chowder (Soup), Grilled Prawn Salad (Salad/Appetizer), and Pink Sauce Tagliatelle (Main Course).

Here is my honest opinion/review about the festive 4-Course Lunch & Dinner Menu

Soup – Creamy Seafood Chowder

The Creamy Seafood Chowder is one of the best seafood chowders I have had, and its flavour was well-balanced. The bacon bits added to the chowder gave it a smoky flavour which I like very much. This can be a suitable main course on its own.

Salad – Grilled Prawn Salad

As a seafood lover, the Grilled Prawn Salad made the perfect sense for me. It was light, refreshing, and zesty. The pomegranate and radish added a nice touch of colour to the greens; overall, the presentation was neat.

Main Course – Pink Sauce Tagliatelle

Now, I don’t take beef, and the only option available for their main course other than beef is the Pink Sauce Tagliatelle. I would have preferred if they had three options instead of just two options because, for the price of the menu, I am pretty sure many people would feel the same way about it too.

The Pink Sauce Tagliatelle is what I consider comfort food, and there is nothing much to shout about except maybe the pink-hued sauce, which is tangy and creamy.

Dessert – Matcha Lava Cake

The Matcha Lava Cake is the perfect ending to the whole dining experience. I like the rich flavour of the green tea infused into the lava cake; it was just so satisfying. This was probably the highlight of the entire dining experience. 


Winestone is a restaurant, bar, and retail space combined into one, and they serve modern European cuisine. They have an elaborate wine list that is reasonably priced, and if you are looking for a place with a fine collection of wine coupled with a 2-hour free-flow wine package that starts from $28++ per person, Winestone is the place for it!

If you’re an oyster-lover like me, Winestone has a Tuesday Special where they serve Fine De Claire Oysters at $2.99++ per oyster and if you happen to be around the area in the afternoon, their 3-course weekday set lunch at $35++ is pretty decent as well. So, whether you’re looking to dine or drink, I’m sure Winestone has something for everyone (yes, including kids under 12)!

Winestone is located at 30 Stevens Road, where the Mercure Novotel Hotels On Stevens are. Mercure Singapore On Stevens has 518 guest rooms, and Novotel Singapore On Stevens has 254. Both hotels are part of the Accor group.

Do you want to make your yard a fun place for you and your dog to hang out? In addition to being a low-maintenance landscaping option, artificial grass also has various advantages for pet owners. It’s low maintenance and addresses frequent concerns of those who maintain pets on natural grass.

Let’s examine the advantages of fake grass before you go out and buy some.

Easy To Maintain

Numerous pet owners appreciate artificial turf because of how simple it is to maintain. This implies that there will be no difficulty in keeping it tidy after your dog utilizes it as its personal bathroom.

The liquid waste may be quickly removed by hosing down the grass, and the solid waste can be easily identified, picked up, as well as disposed of in an appropriate manner. This ensures that your family can have a picnic or enjoy other fun activities on this grass with no worries.

Even if your dog doesn’t defecate there, you should still clean it regularly. You can make the grass look brand new and perfect for lounging on by hosing off any dust or grime that may have accumulated on it.

This is preferable to natural grass, where an unwelcome surprise might easily be overlooked and lead to an unpleasant experience for the person standing or sitting on it. If the terrain is uneven, the grass is long, and there is mud present, it can be hard to see anything hiding in the grass. Follow the link for more  https://www.whingewhingewine.co.uk/fake-grass-dogs.html.

It’s Not Muddy

As little as an eighth of an inch of rain may turn your entire yard into a muddy mess. And if your dog does find it, he or she may bring it inside, making a mess that will be a minor disaster to clean up.

This is not an issue with artificial grass. Dogs may go around and have fun in the rain, whether it’s light morning dew or a torrential downpour.

Looks Great No Matter What

Another major perk is that artificial grass won’t get worn down or damaged by your dog’s constant romping. It can be a big, active dog that plays ball for hours on end, but yet you’ll still see a beautiful garden after it’s done.

It makes no difference if your pet’s still playing outside in the snow or the rain. As a matter of fact, the grass will always look fantastic regardless of the weather.

Obviously, anyone with a rambunctious dog as well as a natural grass garden knows that he may make the grass seem uneven or muddy if it spends a lot of time on it, especially if it plays out there with kids or even other pets. Having an active dog in the household makes the already challenging task of maintaining natural grass even more so. Read more on this page.

It’s Fun to Play With

The fact that a synthetic lawn is so much fun to run and play on is perhaps the largest perk for your dog. He’ll especially enjoy the softness under his paws of a plush, spongy variety of grass.

Anyone in the family that enjoys life and wants to spend as much time as possible outdoors with their dog can benefit from this. Throwing oneself to the ground, rolling around, and generally having fun with one’s dog is a common activity for both children and adults.

The surface is perfect for playing on because it is smooth and level, making it a safe environment for kids to run around in. In other words, you may relax and let the kids and the dog run about without worrying about them tripping over the uneven terrain.

A natural grass area relies heavily on the flatness of the ground and the regularity with which it is mowed and watered. Playing on the lawn can be a lot of work, but with artificial turf for dog, you can have that experience without the hassle.

It Is Not Vulnerable to Dog Digging

Does your dog frequently dig up the garden, perhaps to hide bones? If you care about keeping your outdoor area looking well, this can be frustrating, but preventing the behavior may seem difficult.

Fortunately, preventing your pet from doing this in the future can be as easy as installing high-quality artificial grass. While your pet won’t be capable of digging as deeply as he once could, he can still have a good time here.

Because of this, you can rest assured that your lawn will be left looking great and ready to be shown off. Alternatively, he can have pleasure with other games, like throwing and catching a ball or stick, or perhaps just running and playing. If your dog tries to dig a hole and hide a bone in this grass, it won’t be able to.