Archive for Entertainment

Another great movie night – Night Crawler (4th Dec 2014)

Another night, another fun catch-up with Dheeraj – a great friend from work. We decided to watch ‘Nightcrawler’ – must admit I didn’t even read-up on the synopsis of the movie or even the reviews, but I was pleasantly surprised that it was a good movie, not amazing, but good enough.

It related to a chap that wanted to become a TV star, but without the fame, so it involved amateur video of accidents and the like which was then sold to the US cable networks for a fee. The irony is that I bet this is how it works in the US today, but sad that this is what people do to make money – make money of the misfortunes of others – especially when there is blood and gore…alas, we watch the news for this, I guess.

Anyway, a nice way to relax and catch-up with a great mate.

The Mad Hatter Christmas Party (12th Dec 2014)

It is towards year-end, so it is always customary to enjoy a festive party with the work colleagues.  This year, the team planned a party at Una Restaurant at One Rochester.  It was a bit of a way out from the MBFC office.  Luckily for me, it is not that far to my ‘other home’ – so it was easy to get home after the party (unless there is an after party – which is very unlikely in the current set-up).

The theme was ‘Mad Hatter’ (remember the Disney movie – “Alice in Wonderland”?) – well it basically meant HATS HATS and HATS.  With the customary theme comes the challenge of trying to locate something appropriate for the Party… Last year, I tuxed up, and won the “best dressed man at the party” – but this year, I thought I just go with the flow and dress modestly…haha! :)  I decided to go with a cheapish hat, and managed to get a red top hat from a shop that had lot of glitter (yikes) – at least it had a Christmas-y feel!!

Also part of the celebrations was the classic ‘Secret Santa’ – the person I picked opted with the easy option of selecting what they wanted…hmmm…spoils the fun a bit, don’t you think.  I always go with the ‘anything’ option, to see how creative the gift-bearer is.  So anyway, my option wanted a Gift card – so I decided to buy them a $30 Robinson gift card.  That will do – quick and easy, as I hate trying to find some suitable – very difficult indeed, when you don’t really know the person.

The buffet food was actually very tasty, the wine was nice, and the service very attentive – I really enjoyed the place, and it turned out to be quite a nice party.  The only downer is that is it should be a party – e.g. people should be letting their hair down, having fun, and partying hard…but here the ones I’ve been too, is that people just eat, drink, do their stuff and then leave.  And when I say ‘leave’ – I mean the party ends around 9-9.30pm – hmmm…isn’t that meant to be the start of the party.  Anyway, I opted to go with the group, as I wasn’t aware of any of the folks I know were interested in staying or going somewhere else, but managed to join a colleague and we went into town to continue drinking and having more fun elsewhere.

Una at One Rochester
1 Rochester Park
Singapore 139212
Tel: +65 6773 0070
URL: http://www.una.sg

Club Street Night Session (21st Nov 2014)

Another weekend, another excuse to go out and have some fun.  Club Street is all the rage these days, with the street turning into a pedestrianised area on Friday and Saturday night – which makes it even more of a fun atmosphere, as the restaurants cover the road with tables and chairs, and people spill over the streets.

We wanted to make the most of it, and Amex had a Chillax offer – as they partnered with many of the hip bars around Singapore to offer fine discounts, exclusive to Amex of course!  The only issue we found is that many of the offers are not applicable on Friday – hmm…shame we only found out after we had settled in for our drinks.  Silly terms and conditions, diluted the fun of the Chillax promotion in my opinion, as Friday and Saturday are the key nights for chilling and relaxing – as the promotion was centred on doing!

Our tour went something like this:

  • :pluck – for a cocktail each…a nice place and a nice ambiance inside.  We sat at the bar and watched them work away.  We had a snack (possible our ‘starter’) as well, as we drank away.
  • Lolla – we then went to our next venue – to have another drink to accompany our Sea Urchin dish – plus other dishes. The Sea Urchin dish was definitely a very different type of dish – never had it before, and I am still on the fence on whether I will have it again, but it was a very interesting dish indeed.
  • Noti - this place had a nice vantage spot, right along the main part of Club Street, we went inside for what will be our dessert snack.  Chocolate cake with ice cream – yummy!
  • Sugarhall – we then walked around to Amoy Street, where we were looking for the infamous Jigger & Pony cocktail bar…unfortunately, it was full, so we decided to go next door to Sugarhall, which I believe is owned by the same owners as Jigger & Pony – but Sugarhall is focused more on rum drinks and delightful meat dishes – my favourite choice.  We had a couple of cocktails, before we decided to call it a day.

 

What a session this was – it was chilled, relaxed, with lots of good food and drinks experienced.  Certainly brings a smile to both of our faces :)

Halloween Party (1st Nov 2014)

I am not normally keen in dressing up for a party (apart from dusting off the DJ for a few company doos), but this time, I was invited to one of Carmen’s friends Halloween party at their place. It was a theme doo, based on the Rocky Horror Picture Show – quite a funny horror movie – well a mix of comedy and horror mixed together, but some memorable movie tracks.

I kinda didn’t really do much on the fancy dress scene, but decided to go with the ballroom dance scene – so just required me to wear a suite, with a red shirt. To top this off, I was convinced to wear some eye liner and shadow (e.g. make-up) to mix it up a bit…hey-ho, all for the fun of it.

The party was great fun, some folks really make a big effort to play the parts of the characters of the show, pretty impressive. The best part was the fact that the whole place was themed – including showing the movie, the soundtrack, and the food – wow…what a fun night.

Ergh…and the end of the night, I was down to my boxes and in the swimming pool with a few of the others – apparently, this was the induction ;) I apparently made a good impression. Haha.

PQs and RQs Wedding (13th Sept)

Rong Quan (RQ) and Pearly had already had a long life-time together and we all knew it was only a matter of when, rather then if they will marry. After 10+ years of having a relation, it was great that the lovely couple decided to make the plunge and agree to marry.

The wedding ceremony was held at Capella in Sentosa – a delightful location away from the hustle and bustle of the Singapore life. It was calm and relaxed, and it was great to see so many people come to celebrate this delightful occasion. There were 3 Amex tables that were created – and it was also great to see some faces of ol’ (old Amex days, and old GNS days) appear…everyone looked so well, and I am glad that the post-Amex life are treating these folks very well indeed (yup, there is life after Amex!).

The ceremony was very scripted, and you can tell these types of ceremony are like a well-oiled machine…a bit too process drive to my liking – but the event was fun and enjoyable. It was a 6 course banquet, with various events held between the courses, the classic cutting of the traditional Chinese “yum seng” (drink to success), cutting of the [fake] wedding cake, the champagne flute fountain, the first dance, the toast from the best man and brides maid. It’s still quite interesting to observe having now attended 3 Chinese-style weddings and receptions. What was weird is that after the wedding most people made their own way home, there was no party/dancing or similar, there was no post-dinner celebrations / drinks etc – but that’s seems to be the custom here.  It was more of a lunch/dinner banquet and that was it.  Still find it strange that there was no wedding ceremony as such, but I guess that’s a private event for the family and close friends only.

Now the big question was around the Ang Pow – and to determine how much is appropriate for a wedding function here in Singapore. After asking around, most thought that $150-200 would be appropriate, so I did a bit of research and noticed that there was even a website dedicated to Wedding Ang Pow’s – it seemed to different between on the year and the location of the wedding function – so I located Capella’s rates, and that prescribed what was appropriate. It looked like a wedding table would cost around S$1588 here at Capella (about £800) and the weekend dinner Ang Pow was outlined to be $187 (about $90), so I gave precisely $188 (as 8 is an auspicious (lucky) number in Chinese).

Post-Function Drinks

Post-Function Drinks

After the drinks, I managed to find a location for some post-wedding drinks.  I went with a fun colleague to Boat Quay, and we decided to go for a few more drinks and chatted about the day.

The only challenge was that we were both still wearing our suits from the wedding – and it unbelievably hot and humid – totally uncomfortable, but luckily we had some beers to keep us cool :)

It was also good to chill post-wedding, and decide what to do for the rest of the day…ergh eat and drink more … that is!

Overall, it was a great occasion and I am glad to have been fortunate to spend it with the great couple and some great friends and colleagues, and toast to their success and many years of happiness together.

Capella Singapore
1 The Knolls
Sentosa Island
Singapore 098297
Tel: +65 6377 8888
URL: http://www.capellahotels.com

Birthday Drinks at Wine Connection Rob Quay (2nd Aug)

A great group of people always make for a great birthday celebration, so we went to the Wine Connection in Robertson Quay, to have a few wines and bevvies and food – to celebrate a fab mate’s birthday…what a young man he is :)

After a few drinks, some grub and a birthday cake, we decided to continue the night (the night was still young!), and ended up at Fern and Kiwi – which is actually one of the nicer of the bars in Clarke Quay. The night continued with drinking and dancing, and more drinking, followed by more dancing.

I decided to leave around 1.30am, as I was getting sooo sleepy … seems I do struggle doing these type of sessions now…maybe it is the lack of practice :) But it sure was a great night!

Beerfest Asia 2014 in Singapore

Beer Fest Asia 2014

Beer Fest Asia 2014

Well it is traditional annual event in Singapore, and I have managed to skip it for the past 2 years I was in town, so this year I decided to go and pay it a visit. This year it was scheduled for 12-15 June, so it is a short event to enjoy the sights and sounds of some delightful beers.

It’s located near to the F1 circuit, in the Marina Promenade, just behind the Singapore Flyer, and the entry fee was $30 for a day entry – you get a complimentary beer, and then you have the buy beer credits to ‘buy’ the beers on show. It was a great location, and a great venue for this event, and I am still amazed on the amount of beers, flavours and alcoholic beverages that are available – you have such a choice.

We got a few beers – one Crabbies (still like that), and then we went for a Banana Beer and a Double Chocolate stout – which was quite ‘interesting’ to say the least.

Anyway, it is certainly worth to pay a visit, although just need to quick yourself hydrated as it gets very hot in the mid-day sun!

Beerfest Asia
1 Old Parliament Lane #02-01
Singapore 179429
Tel: +65 6338 8277
URL: http://www.beerfestasia.com
E-mail: info@beerfestasia.com

Singapore Gun Club – Shot-Gun Shooting (15th June)

After an episode in the US, where I held a rifle too close, and ended up getting a bit bruised on my forehead, I was a bit weary of guns…I am not a gun person by norm.  So when a group of friends scheduled a Clay Pigeon shooting session at the Singapore Gun Club, they kindly invited me along!  I didn’t even know that a Gun Club was actually allowed in Singapore, yet alone that one existed, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was one.

I knew it was going to be a great experience, but I was also a bit concerned that I was going to be pretty crap at hitting the target.  The location of the place was a bit far to the west at Choa Chu Kang…in fact any further west I would be in Malaysia…I recognised the name, but couldn’t recall why, only to realise that it had its own MRT station on the North-South line, the one I use to get to work, so I knew I had seen the name somewhere before!  Haha!

Anyway, I knew it was still quite west of the MRT station, so I decided to go by taxi…I jumped it and then told the driver where I wanted to go, I could tell he was pretty annoyed, as it was soooo to the West, it almost out in the sticks…he agreed to go (unlike other taxi drivers) and we went on our way.  As we approached the area, I noticed that there was a lot of defense and military and similar installations around, and the driver told me that this is where all of the Singapore defense offices are largely based…now makes sense why there is an official national gun club just along here.  There was also a lot of cemeteries too, the driver made a poignant comment that they were intending to move the graves because they needed to build on the land – which I still find very distasteful – but alas, that’s the issue when you are in a Country / island with limited land around!

To the sport in hand, when we arrived, I registered which was a temporary 3 month membership for $82, which allowed you to visit for this period of time. We were then led to the Clay Pigeon shooting range and provided the gun handling and safety awareness course instructions (health and safety briefing) on what to do, and how to hold the shot-gun etc. After this, we went for the Trap Shooting, which means that we stay at one position along the line, with various severity of aim, and the clay then came out of a central location. We had 25 clays in total each, and as we were still novices, the guide went down the line to ensure that only one person was firing at any one time, so it took about 2 hours all in all to finish the session. It was actually very tiring, and you could feel your arms and shoulders aching, but it sure was great fun – I ended up hitting the target about 70% of the time, so hit around 17-18 clays, not bad for a beginner! I would certainly do it again, at some point, just need to rest my brain and arms a bit! Haha!

Singapore Gun Club
Gun Club 990 National Shooting Centre
Singapore 689810
Tel: +65 6466 1575
E-mail: info@singaporegunclub.com
URL: http://www.singaporegunclub.com/

Comedy Night at Grand Park City Hall (13th June)

Comedy Night - Line-Up

Comedy Night – Line-Up

I am always game for some laughs, so when the Comedy Club Asia website featured another comedy night set, I decided to go for it.  I arranged a group of friends to visit on Friday, 13th June event – locate at the Grand Park City Hall, so we could go straight after work…well okay, after a few drinks first.

The line-up looked okay, although I had not heard of the cast before, and I know there are always 2 good ones, and 1 mediocre ones in the line-up in most type of sessions, so I was expecting a mix bag reaction.  Unfortunately, the place itself wasn’t that packed, so we were ushered to the front row (always a mistake on a comedy event), and the jokes just kept on coming.

Getting ready for the laughs!

Getting ready for the laughs!

I actually felt bad for another member of the audience who was poked on throughout the night, as soon as you give a comedian a little of bit of fun info, they truly take advantage of us…so luckily for us, our involvement was ‘limited’ in comparison to that poor fella!

Overall, a fun end of the night, and we certainly laughed a lot!  Comedy events are such a great way to chill, relax and drink a bit – although it does help when the comedians are a bunch of funny arses too!

Comedy Club Asia – Singapore
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheComedyClubAsia
Email: info@thecomedyclub.asia

Drumming at Raffles Town Club

We had our annual team meeting, which involving joining our Marketing team at a seasonal off-site team build, this time located at the prestigious Raffles Town Club – a members only club near Tanglin and juts down from the Botantic Gardens.

It was a nice venue, very intimate, and looked very relaxing indeed. It was also good to mingle with the team from the various locations in Singapore again…always a pleasure!

Anyway, we performed some nice drumming – from Drum Cafe, an events company based in Singapore. It was a great idea, to bring the harmony of everyone together. We did a similar thing in the Las Vegas global town hall where we had all of division playing instruments together – and that was fun indeed…it certainly did come together!

We played 4 type of drums (or originally from Africa) – each one with a set melody to play, which seemed pretty boring on its own…you then bring the other groups together and it sounded like a fantastic sound coming out of the room. As they say, the sound of an orchestral playing in harmony is truly inspirational and beautiful!

I definitely would recommend something similar, if you are looking for team build ideas…a great experience, and a great laugh – definitely a great way to get to know your colleagues better.

In fact, the Drum Cafe website, the benefits of drumming has the following 4 benefits:

  • Break down barriers to create a more open organization.
  • Align to a common goal, mission or vision.
  • Improve Communications through accurate feedback.
  • Accelerate Productivity by motivating staff and getting them to listen to each other.

I certainly do agree on all four-fronts!  Great fun indeed!

We finished with a team dinner at Sentosa – Jumbo Seafood Restaurant – for Black Bean and Chili Crab – and a steamed fish. What a yummy way to end the busy afternoon!

Drum Cafe
05-01 Kingly Building
46 South Bridge Road
Singapore 058679
Tel: +65 6438 8949
Email: info@drumcafe.sg
URL: http://www.drumcafe.sg 

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