3.14.2015

MEL meets Singapore

It was November 2013 when I got my first airplane ride. I met Merlion on my first step outside the Philippines. 

November 2013- MEL visits Singapore!

At age 27, I had my first airplane ride. Haha! I know right, I am so late for the journey. Nevertheless, better late than never! 

My first trip is a 5-day trip to Singapore. This is a business trip so I never had a hard time passing through the immigration. 

THE WALK AROUND SG TO MERLION PARK
It was on the second day that we get to roam around. It was also when I get to see the famous Merlion. You've never been to Singapore if you've never had a photo op with this Mermaid Lion at Merlion Park. Marina Bay is within view so you just have to take another photo op there! 

From our place at Orchard Road, we just took the brisk walk around to the Merlion Park.You get to see the beauty of Singapore by just walking around. I appreciate the very clean streets, tall buildings, fresh surroundings - a very modern and rich country so to speak!

Merlion Park, Marina Bay Sands and the Suntec City Fountain of Wealth
THE CARLTON HOTEL

From my room at the Carlton Hotel, I get a view of the Metropolis and it was such a sight to see! You'll know you're at the heart of a very rich city/country because of the view of those buildings that stand tall on piles of colorful lights by the hotel window. Raffles City is just outside our hotel along Orchard Rd.
Singapore by Day and Night as viewed from my Room at Carlton
This is my hotel room at Carlton. I've got a double bed but I am actually alone. It was the only room available by that time so they got me booked here. Since I stayed here for 5 days, I slept alternately on my two beds just for fun! :) The room is already big for a single person and the amenities are commendable. One haggle through is that the W-Fi on the room is not free. You have to go to the lobby for free Wi-Fi or you have to pay for extra charge to have your room connected.
My home for 5 days at Carlton Hotel, Singapore
Since there is no Wi-Fi in the room, I never opted to pay for extra charge so I just took it as a chance to lurk around the lobby and see its great interiors and exterior as well as the busy guests that comes in and out of the hotel. The couches on the lobby are very comfy so staying there is more of a relaxing experience as well!

From the hotel door you get to see really luxurious cars arriving here and there. For us we took a Toyota Prius as a ride from Changi Airport. Maserati and Porsche are just a common view in Sg! I heard it's quite expensive to acquire a car in Singapore that of which explains why there are really high end cars just around the corner because owning a car in SG is more of like for the rich of the rich!

Carlton Hotel Interiors and Exteriors
THE ESRI ASIA PACIFIC USER CONFERENCE 2013

It was my first time to join a region-wide User Conference. For 2013, it was held at the Suntec Convention Center at Singapore. I learned a lot and met lots of professionals within my field. I love to join them as a delegate and I love to really discover how our field has much more to offer than just maps! I am so looking forward to discovering more at the future User Conferences. :) Hopefully, I get to visit ESRI's main office at Redlands Califrornia and join the International User Conference as San Diego as well.

ESRI Founder Jack Dangermond and the Delegates of the 2013 ESRI Asia Pacific User Conference

AROUND SINGAPORE

On my last day of stay in SG, I took it as a time to just roam around the city by walking. I love that I get to see these structures that seems to be so old but are preserved within the busy streets of Singapore. From our place at Orchard Road, I took the walk to their Parliament and some Art Museums around. The Fullerton Hotel and the Bridge is just iconic.The parks are so clean with just a few people around in the mornings. I know there are so many fines in Singapore so I am very careful of being charged of fines as I roam around.

From my observation, the people here in Singapore are so busy for work. Few people on the park and streets, few people on the mall and cafe during mornings. Very different from what we have here in the Philippines where people are jampacked all around may it be day or night!
Singapore Parliament, Museum and the Fullerton Hotel

Just so cars are so expensive to own, the public transportation in Singapore is already sufficient as I may say. The people are so wary on Bus Stops and the subways are just as commendable!

Of course, we can't leave Singapore without shopping and buying pasalubongs! There is the Funan Digital Mall for the technology savvy.Raffles City for the eye candy expensive finds. Now if you're up looking for Hawker Foods and affordable Pasalubongs, there's a lot along Pearl Street where affordable trinkets can be bought. We got some souvenir bags, shirts, key chains and other novelty items for like 100 pesos each. The price for these goes triple or even more at Changi Airport so better grab a lot from these thrift shops before heading the airport. How's that?

Shopping around Funan Digital Mall, Raffles City and Singapore Souvenirs at Peal Street with Hawker's Food


THE AIRPORT and THE AIRLINES

I was also very lucky to board via Singapore Airlines. I've read that it is one of the best airlines around so I am just so happy to be on board with them! The food is very good and the amenities are really thumbs up. I got an economy ticket but based on the other airlines that I have taken, this one is much more like a Business Class treatment for an Economy Class passenger. I must love Singapore Airlines that is why when I went to Indonesia the next year, I just opted to take the Singapore Airlines route MLA-SG then SG-Jakarta.

Changi Airport is just so BEST! The amenities are great, the Duty Free shopping is first class and the stay inside it is already a tourist experience for the books! Kudos to a very high customer satisfaction rating that I just have to give to Changi Airport! How I wish we just have the same amenities as that of Changi here in the Philippines :)
The Prius Ride, Singapore Airlines by Changi Airport in Singapore

My first airplane ride and my first trip abroad is just fun-filled amidst the fact that I am missing the kids and honey back home. It was one for some me time and reflection and the much coveted rest after the hustles and the bustles of the busy days at work.

Here are the Top 5 Things that I love about my Singapore trip.

  1. Changi Airport and Singapore Airlines is a tourist spot in itself. I love that I was being taken cared of really well during my Singapore Airlines flight (s). The airport in itself as well as real taker for their pampering amenities and great sights to see and shop! 
  2. The Carlton Hotel for the very accommodating staff and the great food at the buffet. They offer a variety of meals everyday so I did get to enjoy my daily breakfasts during my 5 days stay. 
  3. The Merlion Park is just as busy and the view around is really a tourist photo op attraction. I am glad to see some boat within the lake, the busy highways, the Marina Bay Sands and the very clean walkways that I just wish to happen too here in our country. Kahit sa Metro Manila lang muna! :
  4. The Suntec Convention Center. It was one modern mall with I guess that largest LCD Display in the world. We get to shop around after the conference and do some lurk around the park where the Suntec Fountain of Wealth is. It was walking distance from our hotel so we don't mind staying late. The streets are safe so we have no worries too!
  5. The Singapore Souvenirs, thrift shops and Hawker's Place! Hawker foods are affordable, good to the taste and clean. It is our break from the first class food from the buffet breakfast at the hotel and along Suntec Convention Center. These hawker foods offer more of like the real Singapore culture. A must try! On the side are some thrift shops where you can go get affordable pasalubongs that the loved ones back home would surely love.:)
Thats's all and I hope I get to touch Singapore grounds again for I know I missed some fun at the Sentosa and the Night Safari. Will definitely go back to Singapore for MORE!


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