The National Parks Board (NParks) announced plans for the development of an approximately 1 hectare Ethnobotany Garden at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. This new themed garden which should be completed by late this year, will allow visitors to learn about plants used by indigenous cultures of Southeast Asia, including Singapore. The Ethnobotany Garden, the first of its kind in Singapore, will enhance visitor experience by providing insights into the various uses of plants in the region, and strengthen the Gardens’ position as a world-class botanic garden.
Development of the Ethnobotany Garden will complement the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ UNESCO World Heritage status, supporting its Outstanding Universal Value by showcasing its unrivalled collections of economic, medicinal and ethnobotanical plants, the largest such collection in Southeast Asia. This new garden feature will also enhance the Gardens’ role as an educational provider, which is in line with UNESCO’s mission.
The Ethnobotany Garden will be set up in the Bukit Timah Core and located at an area historically known as the Economic Garden (See map in Media Factsheet). This section of the Gardens was traditionally used for experimenting with plants with potential commercial uses, many of which were first derived from traditional uses.
Singapore's first 50m-tall bungy tower on Siloso Beach Sentosa will be opening soon. The new attraction is AJ Hackett Sentosa, a 2,500 sq m adventure playground with various features that meet different appetites for thrills.
AJ Hackett Sentosa will also be their first site globally to offer a full-time commercial vertical skywalk, which will allow visitors to walk vertically 44m down the centre shaft of the tower while supported by static ropes. This is similar to systems used by military and uniformed forces for training. The structure has other exciting components like the 47-meter high Double Bungy jump decks, Duo Giant Swings from a height of 40 meters and at a speed of over 100km/h or take in a panaoramic view of Siloso beach from their Skybridge which is 40 meters long and 50 metres above ground.
The Istana Heritage Gallery, located at the Istana Park along Orchard Road and opposite the Istana, offers visitors the opportunity to understand the historical background of the Istana.
Gazetted in 1992 as a National Monument along with Sri Temasek, the Istana mirrored the development of Singapore in its nationhood through time. The exhibition in the Gallery captures the Istana’s transition from being the Colonial Governor’s House to its current role as the Official Residence of the President.
The Istana Heritage Gallery will provide visitors with a glimpse into the Istana’s rich history through a specially curated range of heritage displays including state artefacts, artworks and collection of state gifts received from foreign dignitaries by our past and present Presidents and Prime Ministers. The Gallery will complement the guided tour programmes at the Istana Open House in providing the public greater access to Istana’s rich heritage. It will also showcase the President’s constitutional, ceremonial and community roles and the Istana’s special place in these aspects of the Singapore story.
The second permanent Rolex Exhibition in the world is now open in Singapore.
As a legendary brand that needs no introduction, a Rolex can be an absolute necessary to own for watch aficionados. But for those of us looking to learn more about the brand before we put down the necessary cash, the newly-opened Rolex boutique, created in collaboration with long-term retail partnerCortina Watch, is a great place to learn more about this fabled manufacture.
The new store is a sprawling 513 square-metre boutique and is located in the new wing of Marina Square, a mall that’s sure to be getting a perception-upgrade with the new store. Inside, Rolex fans and new watch buyers alike are given a glimpse into just what the brand’s “passion for excellence” means. That includes a look into its history, from the invention of the waterproof wristwatch (the Oyster) to more of its legendary designs, as well as to include its partnerships with various brands.
The exhibition includes The Rolex Way which highlights the brand’s history, from its founding in 1905 by Hans Wilsdorf to its current-day incarnation. Along the way, visitors can look at six automated showcases featuring exclusive Rolex components including the latest Perpetual movement, the steel case, the President bracelet, the Cerachrom bezel and the new Chronergy escapement.
The next part, The World of Rolex showcases the brand’s many impressive partnerships with athletes who have broken world records, and explorers who have made new discoveries and crossed various frontiers. The area includes video screens in the lounge area where guests can relax and indulge with a drink at the bar that features a bronzed mirror finish and aqua wall.
Rolex and the Deep focuses on Rolex’s signature relationship with the sea, highlighted by two landmark submarine expeditions that were made in 1960 and 2012 to the Mariana Trench. It includes the only two watches to have ever been on manned dives to the deepest point in the oceans — the experimental Rolex Deep Sea Special, and Rolex Deeps Challenge.
Beyond the exhibition, guests looking to make a purchase can take a look at the Oyster and Cellini collections in their full glory. Spacious and well-lit, the boutique is a true taste of the brand’s history and personality, featuring the latest interior design concepts created by Rolex in Geneva. Only the best material from Vistosi Murano from Venice for the chandelier, to imported marble finishes from Italy. This marks only the second such store in the world for Rolex, with the first being in Shanghai.
The Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum is Singapore’s best contender for A Night at the Museum. Located within the NUS campus, it showcases nature’s very own - from dinosaurs to critters from the deep sea.
Explore 16 themed zones that will open your eyes to the biodiversity and environmental issues that may affect their livelihood. Apart from the skeletons of an orang utan, dugong and pilot whales, you’ll also be surprised that Singapore is home to dinosaur fossils of our own.
Japan-listed lifestyle and entertainment company Koshidaka Holdings, opens its Asian karaoke flagship outlet in Orchard Cineleisure. Termed Ganso (which means Founder or Pioneer), this Manekineko outlet will be the seventh in Singapore and the largest in Asia, with 80 newly furnished karaoke rooms, 5 VIP rooms with pool tables and a 150 pax capacity function hall for holding company and private events.
Koshidaka Holdings made in-roads into Singapore in September 2015 when it launched its Manekineko Karaoke Chain, after acquiring shares in K Box Entertainment. K Box is a subsidiary of Koshidaka Holdings. By establishing Manekineko in Singapore as a proven business model and showcase, Koshidaka Holdings hopes to springboard its expansion into ASEAN within the coming year, with plans to introduce outlets in Europe and North America as well. Here in Singapore, they will continue to proactively scout for suitable locations to expand the chain. Koshidaka Holdings, which has more than 400 stores from Hokkaido to Okinawa, is the first Karaoke chain from Japan to embark on overseas expansion. Its initial foray was into Korea, where it currently has thirteen outlets.
Ganso Manekineko Orchard Cineleisure features rooms that are bright and vibrant in four coloured theme zones (orange, green, blue and red), each adorned with illustrations of the mascot cat. Targeted at young adults, families and even senior citizens, prices are kept affordable (from $12 nett onwards for three hours) with free-flow soft drinks, snacks and ice cream included. Manekineko @ Orchard Cineleisure will also be the only karaoke outlet in Singapore to offer a buffet spread for lunch on weekends and dinner daily so that customers will have a more fulfilling experience, singing and eating to their hearts’ content. Its Singapore chef has also come up with a new ala carte menu, to include local favourites such as Laksa, Braised Pork Knuckle and Chicken Rendang, to name a few.
Chestnut Nature Park is Singapore’s first nature park with separate mountain biking and hiking trails, measuring 1.6km and 2.1km respectively. If you are planning to bring the kids for their first taste of hiking, great news - the hiking trail is slightly undulating and pretty straight forward.