The roads begin twisting and the architecture shrinks as my taxi snakes through the weathered shophouses of Singapore’s Chinatown. The historic neighborhood was almost demolished last decade to make way for more of the skyscrapers that sparkle in the distance on all sides. But these colorful remnants of a colonial past survived, and now they contain the city’s trendiest independent restaurants and designer boutiques, standing shoulder to shoulder with outdoor food courts that scent the air with curry and charred banana leaves. The taxi pulls up to Restaurant André, 41 Bukit Pasoh Road, a heritage house whose pristine white walls, blue door, and ancient olive tree set it apart from its neighbors. Continue reading →
No matter how well you think you know Singapore, unless you’ve traveled there recently you won’t recognize it. No longer just a stopover on the way to somewhere else, this tiny island nation (247 square miles; 5 million residents) in the South China Sea has emerged as one of Asia’s most vibrant destinations. And it’s not just the skyline that’s evolved. The very heartbeat of the city has changed—her pulse is racing. Literally. Two years ago, Formula 1 Grand Prix launched the circuit’s only night race on the downtown streets.
The city/state’s new attitude is perhaps best captured by Marina Bay Sands (10 Bayfront Ave., +65.6688.8888), a 57-story skyscraper whose massive triple towers share a single, spectacular rooftop Sky Park… Continue reading →