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Singapore: The Sassy Mama City Guide by Shabnam Melwani-Reis

TravelPost Category - TravelTravel - Post Category - By CountryBy Country

Shabnam Melwani-Reis offers up her tips and picks for a great family getaway in her hometown:  Singapore.


Describe Singapore in 3 words.
Green, Clean and Fun!  Safe too! Sorry, that’s 4!

Best hotel in Singapore when travelling with kids?
Hard Rock Hotel in Sentosa

Your favourite place to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner? Why?
Breakfast on Sundays is great at Spruce as it has an outdoor playground, lunch at PS Cafe on Demspey for its super salads and a great view of the state lands, dinner at Tatsuya’s at Goodwood Park which is my favourite place for Japanese.


What is your favourite thing to do with your kids in Singapore?
I have one son, Zachary who is eight and we love going to Universal Studios, The Night Safari and on the Luge rides in Sentosa.


Kid friendly museum?
The Mint Toy Museum on Seah Street where toy fanatic Chang Yang Fa has a massive collection of over 50,000 rare and vintage toys from around the world – great for showing our kids the types of toys we used to play with.


Best outdoor activity?
Forest Adventure. Its a tree-top aerial course built 4m above ground through the trees comprising ladders, bridges, swings, nets, trapezes and giant zip lines. Equipped with a harness and a helmet and attached to a safety line, kids and adults get to swing from tree to tree and zip across the course, and go across a lake on a cool flying fox!


Favourite spa?
Spa Botanica in Sentosa.


I get my hair done at….
Casey’s or David Gan’s Passion, both at Palais Renaissance.


I get my Manicure pedicure at
The Nail Room at Taman Warna/Holland Village  for all my favourite polish colours by Deborah Lippman!


The three shops I can’t live without are:
Giuseppe Zanotti Design at Ion, Vanilla Home for amazing homeware accessories, furniture and Culina gourmet supermarket at Dempsey Road.

Who I have on my Singapore speed dial…
My husband, my son, my two sisters and my mother


Best place for sweet treats?
Marmalade Pantry at Ion have the best ever sticky date pudding and cupcakes with hundreds and thousands sprinkled on them!


An unforgettable moment?
Spending Sunday’s with family and friends at the newly opened Tanjong Beach Club in Sentosa, I feel like I was transported to Bali for a day!

Can’t live without…
My weekly Hainanese Chicken rice from Boon Tong Kee



Don’t miss…
The Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden at the Botanical Gardens.


What advice would you give families visiting Singapore?
Do a family day together at the Singapore Zoo, I think it’s the best in the world!  The white tigers are spectacular!



Of all the shopping spots Singapore has on offer which would you try not to miss?
Our amazing local fashion designers – Nocturnal by ReshamM at Tribeca/Mandarin Gallery, Sifr at Haji Lane, All Dressed Up at ION Orchard and Raoul at Paragon.


Adults should check out…
The newly opened Marina Bay Sands Skypark which has an incredible view of the skyline of Singapore, pop by Ku De Ta there for a drink to check it out. I also love the newly opened Fullerton Bay Hotel, the rooftop bar Lantern is the new hot spot to hang out for drinks and light nibbles.


Tell us one thing about Singapore we don’t know
Everyone knows Singapore for its shopping, but its really a food haven too! The local delicacies like rojak, chilli crab, laksa, nasi lemak are not to be missed!! The Straits Kitchen at The Hyatt Hotel on Orchard Road has it all, or for a more local atmosphere, Newton Circus is the best.

*Shabnam Melwani-Reis

Shabnam Melwani-Reis is the daughter of the late fashion retailing pioneer, Moti Melwani. She is a Director of her family fashion, lifestyle and time piece distribution business, Jay Gee Melwani Group which distributes brands such as Giuseppe Zanotti Design, Aigner andLiz Claiborne as well as kid style brands OshKosh B’Gosh, Levi’s® Kids and Adidas Kids.  The group also retails leading Swiss made watches branded through its arm of Watches of Switzerland.

She started her career at MTV and co-founded a digital music distribution business Soundbuzz which was aquired by Motorola, making it the first Singaporean company to be taken over by a US multi-national. A mainstay of Singapore’s best dressed lists, she is also heavily involved with various charity endeavours. She lives in Singapore with her husband and son.

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