Feb 23, 2017

Port of Lost Wonder's Pirate Ship re-opens with FREE entry for ALL! (But you'll have to be quick)

In case you didn't know, Port of Lost Wonder at Sentosa had closed its doors since 27 December last year. Yes, the water play park with the iconic pirate ship comprising of plenty of water slides and cannons for the kids to splash around and run amok.



Did you know that Port of Lost Wonder has re-opened?

And even better, ENTRY IS FREE FOR ALL!

Well, technically only the Pirate Ship water play area is back.

Re-branded as Palawan Pirate Ship, the water play area retains all the play features that the kids love.

And while the kids have their share of fun, parents can chill at the sheltered rest areas and benches located nearby. After all, who can say NO to a free water play area with slides???

Planning to head down one of these weekends? Here are a few things to note:

- While the Pirate Ship has re-opened, play zones such as the Curiosity Island, the Play Den, the Picnic Area and other activities are no longer in operation.

- The cafe and shop are also closed permanently.

- Opening hours are from 10am to 6pm daily.

- Entry is FREE, but all kids must be accompanied by adults.

- Visitors will have to be dressed in swimwear to enter the water play area.

- The water slides and Ship are suitable only for children. Adults should not go onto the water slides and Ship for safety reasons as there are specific weight restrictions.

- No pets, bicycles or scooters are allowed in the premises.

- There is a sand play area and a mini playground for younger kids.

- Sentosa’s Beach Patrol Officers will be on duty at the Palawan Pirate Ship between 10am – 6pm daily, to ensure the safety of all guests.

- Shower rooms, nursing rooms and paid locker facilities are available for all visitors.

- Kids can still have a birthday party at the Palawan Pirate Ship! There are two party packages to choose from: the Ultimate Island party will be held at the Celebration Island while the Little Explorers party at the Party Cove Tent. Both party settings are located just next to the water play area at the Palawan Pirate Ship. Visit HERE for more information and to book.

Rumour has it that the Pirate Ship will stay open for until June 2017 but there is no fixed date. (Especially with the recent water price hike)

So if you are looking to bring the kids for some FREE water play fun, JUST GO AS SOON AS POSSIBLE! And remember your swimwear!

Useful Details

Palawan Pirate Ship
Palawan Beach, Sentosa
Opening Hours: 10am - 6pm daily
Admission: FREE
Getting There:
By Sentosa Express: Alight at Beach Station. Transfer to the Sentosa Beach Tram.
By Bus: Sentosa Bus 1, Bus 2 and Bus 3 and alight at Beach Station. Transfer to the Sentosa Beach Tram.
By Sentosa Beach Tram: Alight at  Palawan Pirate Ship Stop
Nearest Carpark: Beach Car Park, Blue Zone

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Feb 22, 2017

The Wonderful World of Disney On Ice Tickets GIVEAWAY


TWO more weeks to the March School Holidays and I am sure it is a welcome break for all kids and parents in Singapore! More so for Ash, who has been swamped with school work and tests in his PSLE year... which makes the planning of something fun for the whole family during the school holidays even more important.

And if your kids (or you) love all things Disney, then the March school holidays is that time of the year when Disney On Ice skates its way here! The amazing thing about Disney on Ice shows is that a brand new production of the show is created EVERY SINGLE YEAR.

So for this year's instalment, get ready to bring the children to enter a dazzling world where adventure awaits at The Wonderful World of Disney On Ice!

Join Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy on a walk down memory lane in colourful celebration of magic, spirit and family fun. Dory is back along with loved ones Nemo and Marlin from Finding Dory. Dive deep into the ocean with your favorite school of fish in a brand new journey of discovery as they learn a few things about the real meaning of family.

Travel to the wintry world of Arendelle with sisters Anna and Elsa, and the hilarious Olaf from Disney’s Frozen as they learn that true love is the greatest magic of all.

Nothing is out of reach for Rapunzel as her friends help light the way.

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs make their own magic and learn we can do ANYTHING with our friends in tow.

Buzz and Woody will have you jumping out of your seat in a foot-stomping showdown; Simba, Timon and Pumbaa prowl the Pridelands; Jasmine, Aladdin and Genie show friendship is fearless; and your favorite Disney Princesses stay strong and journey on.

WOAH, those are plenty of characters!!!

The Wonderful World of Disney On Ice skates into the Singapore Indoor Stadium from 15 to 19 March 2017 and ticket price start from $25. Be sure to book your tickets early!

Or you could just win a set of FOUR tickets to the show!


And I have not one, not two but THREE SETS to give away! How awesome is that?

Each set of tickets is worth $260 and consists of 4 CAT 1 tickets to The Wonderful World of Disney On Ice 6.30pm show on 15 March 2017 (Wed). *NOTE: The show date and time CANNOT be changed.

To participate, simply complete the following steps:

1. LIKE Disney On Ice's Facebook page HERE.
2. COMMENT and tell us which character your child (or you) will be most excited to catch at the show. Leave your response either in the corresponding Facebook post HERE or in this blog post.

SHARE this blog post of the giveaway on Facebook for a BONUS chance! Remember to set your profile to public so that I can see the shared post.

Giveaway ends on 1 March 2017, 2359 hours.


Useful Details

The Wonderful World of Disney On Ice
Dates: 15 March 2017 – 19 March 2017
Tickets: $25, $45, $65, $95, $120
*Maybank Credit Card holders enjoy a 15% discount off CAT 1 tickets and 10% discount off CAT 2 tickets. Promotion ends on 5 MARCH 2017.
Venue: Singapore Indoor Stadium

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Feb 20, 2017

My Customised Hair Treatment with TK TrichoKare

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A lot of factors can cause one's hair to drop: genetics, stress, diet, and kids.

Well, the last part is not scientifically proven (yet) but after being a parent for 12 years, I can tell you there are times when the monkies drive me up the wall and make me feel like ripping my hair out!

But despite not having control over most factors, there are ways to put a stop to hair problems. Just as how having hair problems isn’t an overnight affair, different people require different solutions when it comes to hair care treatments. Because let's face it, not all hair care products suits everyone hair conditions.

Which is why TrichoKare prides itself in providing customised European herbal hair remedies for different hair and scalp conditions.

First things first, what is Trichology? Simply put, it is the science of the structure, function, diseases and care of the human hair and scalp and it covers the anatomy, chemistry and physiology of the hair and scalp, as well as nutrition, genetics and microbiology.

So what is the role of a Trichologist? He or she is a certified individual who understands the chemistry and effects of ingredients used in the manufacture of hair products, nutrition and lifestyle on hair and scalp.

And TrichoKare takes its business seriously enough that it is the leading trichological centre in Singapore that features customised treatments validated by certified trichologists with products formulated by a professional herbalist.

Everyone hair and scalp conditions are different, thus you need a customised treatment to get to the root of your hair problems.

All well and good... but one question remains - how healthy is my scalp?

Unfortunately, it wasn't too good as the scalp analysis in the above photos show. My scalp was rather greasy and had little flakes of dry scalp at certain parts. See the orange spots in the bottom right photo? Those are signs that the pores are blocked and if left further unchecked, it will result in more hair fall.


My TrichoKare Hair Specialist - who has been trained under the hands of certified Trichologists - recommended a suitable treatment programme tailored to my scalp needs: a detox session involving a mask, wash and treatment for the scalp.

TrichoKare only uses premium European herbs in its treatments so as to deliver a natural solution for its customers. So what goes into the masque is the healing herbal essences of Lavender and Melaleuca extracts, which is ideal for unclogging hair follicles by removing excess sebum and debris such as dandruff and other impurities from the scalp.

My scalp treatment was then topped off with a hair tonic rub and Infrared treatment, which served to improve the blood circulation beneath the scalp, as well as to ensure that the tonic was further penetrated deep down to my hair roots.

And then came the big reveal.

The after-treatment hair scan showed that the treatment was really effective in unclogging my follicles, and I have to say that I was impressed. Just take a look at the before and after photos of my scalp.

The left photo shows my scalp before the treatment and you can clearly see the clogged pores and greasy scalp. I guess you can pretty much tell the difference in the after-treatment photo then.

Clearly, the detox masque helped to remove dead skin cells on my scalp as well as opened up the clogged pores... which will help to encourage new hair growth. All these, after just one session! And it was not just through the photos... my scalp felt less greasy than before and come night time, it still felt remarkably fresh (and non-itchy).

Looks like I am just one of the many thousands of customers who TrichoKare has helped regain their hair and scalp health since 2004. In fact, many celebrities including Xiaxue, Mediacorp's Jaynesh and Anand, have visited TrichoKare to have their hair problems solved.

But perhaps the greatest testament to TrichoKare's effective customised hair treatments can be attributed to the numerous awards it has received in the previous year:

  • ELLE Beauty Treat List 2017 – Best Treatment For Hair Loss
  • Her World Spa Awards 2016 – Best Treatment For Damaged Hair
  • Harper’s BAZAAR Hair Awards 2016 – Best Sebum-Regulating Treatment for Oily Scalp
  • The Singapore Women’s Weekly Hair Awards 2016 – Best Anti-Ageing Hair Treatment

And to top everything off, Gladys (the hair specialist who attended to me) really knew her stuff and was very warm in the consultation.

So if you are looking to get to the root of your hair problems, GREAT NEWS!

TrichoKare is currently offering its award-winning Hair Fall Prevention Treatment programme for $42. This includes a detailed analysis, Hair Care Kit and Restorative Scalp Serum with a total value of $669!

Book your appointment online HERE.

Useful Details

TK TrichoKare
Velocity @ Novena Square #03-19 | The Clementi Mall #05-11 | nex #02-24 | orchardgateway #02-12 | CompassOne #04-10
Hotline: 6-3388-680
Website: www.tk-hair.com

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Feb 16, 2017

5 Things at Syonan Gallery that will Appeal to Families with Kids

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UPDATE (17 Feb 2017): The exhibition has been renamed to Surviving the Japanese Occupation: War and its Legacies.

Say what you want about the naming of the newly-opened Syonan Gallery but one thing is for sure, the new exhibition within the Former Ford Factory is full of riveting, compelling and sometimes outright depressing exhibits.

After all, this was the place where the formal occupation of Singapore started.

On 15 February 1942, the British forces led by Lieutenant-General Arthur E. Percival surrendered unconditionally to the Japanese 25th Army led by Lieutenant-General Tomoyuki Yamashita at 6.20pm in the factory's boardroom.

A designated national monument and formerly known as Memories at Old Ford Factory, the building was closed for the past year for its contents to be revamped. Now, Syonan Gallery: War and its Legacies features refreshed content and sports a new focus.

Syonan or Syonan-to, meaning “Light of the South”, was the name given to Singapore by its Japanese rulers between 18 February 1942 and 12 September 1945. The gallery subtitle highlights a new area of focus for the exhibition by looking at the impact of the war and the Occupation years, including the immediate and longer-term legacies of this period on Singapore and the region.

The exhibition space is broadly divided into four zones and I will briefly introduce each of them.


This section tells the history of the Ford Factory and sets the scene in pre-war Singapore. Visitors will learn how the building evolved through the years, from its start as Ford Motor Company's first motorcar assembly plant in Southeast Asia in 1941 to being gazetted as a national monument in 2006.


On 8 December 1941, the Japanese dropped the first bombs on Singapore and World War II reached here. Visitors will be able to see the timeline as to how the war in Singapore unfolded, right up to the moment the British forces surrendered.

Here, besides gaining fresh perspectives on the fall of Singapore through three intertwining narratives on Japanese aggression, British defences and how civilians in Singapore were caught up in the larger forces of imperial struggle and war, the highlight of this zone has got to be stepping into the ACTUAL boardroom of Ford Motor Factory where the surrender took place.


After the British surrender, Singapore was renamed Syonan-to. The Japanese Occupation was a period of suffering and unfulfilled promises. Through the personal items and oral history recollections on display, visitors get the chance to find out about the diverse wartime experiences and the different ways people responded to these challenges.

The most shocking section however, deals with the Sook Ching Massacres where three days after the British surrender of Singapore, the Japanese carried out a mass screening of the Chinese community to sieve out suspected anti-Japanese elements, marking the beginning of a fearful period of state-sanctioned violence. Through oral history accounts in a video, we get to learn about the harrowing experiences of those who were screened and escaped the killings.

The final section showcases the fight that the resistance forces engaged with the Japanese army in a bid to overcome oppression and the gradual fall of the Japanese Empire.


On 5 September 1945, the British returned to Singapore, to relief and rejoicing amongst the locals. But the legacies of the war manifested on various levels: the British grand plans for decolonisation; the social challenges of postwar reconstruction; the people's political awakening. The exhibition ends on a contemplative note on how we remember the war and its enduring legacies.

For families with kids, one questions remains:

Is Syonan Gallery suitable for kids?

Most of the exhibits require reading so that one can understand the meaning behind the archival materials. Older kids who are interested to find out more about the darkest period of Singapore's history will not be disappointed. For younger kids, thankfully there are still pockets of oral history interviews and interactive elements within the exhibition to keep their interests piqued.

Here are some elements of the Gallery which will appeal to the kids:

1. Historical Walk

At the main gate entrance of the Former Ford Factory, it was where Lieutenant-General Percival started the walk of surrender together with other members of the British forces.

Here, kids can take a step back in time by re-tracing the path taken by the surrender party.

2. Surrender Room

Kids will be able to step into the actual boardroom of Ford Motor Factory where the British forces surrendered on 15 February 1942. The photo displayed on the screen should be familiar to all those who have studied Social Studies in school, no?

Through the use of archival footages and records, visitors will be able to witness the events leading up to the surrender. While the surrender table in the room is a replica, the four chairs in the room are original chairs used in the Ford Motor Factory. Even the electrical sockets in the room have been faithfully preserved!

3. Poignant Exhibits

Personally, I feel the third zone 'Becoming Syonan' houses the most compelling exhibits. It is here where some of the most vivid Sook Ching accounts are presented through oral history accounts in a video. Listening the accounts sure beats reading through pages and pages of history books!

Expect to see other authentic exhibits too, like this Overseas Chinese certification of registration.

During Sook Ching, those who were screened and allowed to leave had the word 'examined' stamped on their arms or clothing. In addition, kids will be able to experience how big (or small) the actual cell size was for the Prisoners of War (POW).

More heartbreaking are the displays of various letters that family members wrote to the POWs, like this one from a POW's daughter.

4. Interactive Elements

With kids being kids, I have always come to expect them to come with itchy fingers. Fortunately, there are a few interactive exhibits within the Gallery which are highly educational as well.

I love the idea of having visitors guess how much a dozen of eggs cost from 1942 to 1945. Due to the rapid depreciation of the 'banana money' currency, the same number of eggs cost a whopping $432.60 in September 1945 compared to just $0.60 in February 1942!

Another interactive exhibit not to be missed is 'Choices' found in the third zone. Visitors can pick 1 out of 3 characters and make a series of decisions during the Japanese Occupation.

Here's one example:

What will you do?

There are certainly no easy choices. Kids will be able to put themselves in the shoes of suffering Singaporeans during the Japanese Occupation and make some pretty hard decisions. And more often than not, the outcome may not be pretty.

5. Syonan Garden

After you are done with the exhibits, do not hurry home because the experience does not end there.

Tucked beside the Former Ford Factory building is the Syonan Garden, where visitors are able to find a variety of food crops that were widely grown in Singapore during the Japanese Occupation.

Crops such as tapioca, sweet potato, yam, banana, and coconut were planted by many people in order to survive. Kids will be able to learn about the creative and ingenious ways in which people used these crops to deal with scarcity during this period.

There is also a Tsuda pump (developed by Tsuda Kijiro in 1920) on display. A manually operated water pump, it was used in Singapore back then and offers visitors a glimpse of how life was in the 1940s.

Another interesting exhibit on display in the Garden is a disused railway signal which was originally located along Jurong Road. It serves as a reminder of Former Ford Factory's link with the nearby Bukit Timah Railway Line in transporting goods and resources for the assembly of motor vehicles.

What I love about the exhibition is it features contributions from several archival materials, many of which have never been displayed before and they all warrant an intriguing look. So while it is tough to expect the kids of today to fully understand the tough living conditions back in the days of the Japanese Occupation, Syonan Gallery serves as an important reminder that we should never our peace for granted.

Useful Information

Syonan Gallery: War and its Legacies
Address: 351 Upper Bukit Timah Road, Singapore 588192
Opening Hours: Mondays to Saturdays, 9am – 5.30pm | Sundays, 12 noon – 5.30pm
FREE Admission for:
- All Children under 6
- Singaporeans and permanent residents
- Singapore student pass holders
- Museum Roundtable members
Others: $3 per person
Getting there: Visit HERE (On-site parking is limited)
Website: www.nas.gov.sg/formerfordfactory

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