Spanning a whopping 131 metres along Bali Lane and 107 metres along Ophir Road, the five-metre high Hall of Fame is Singapore's largest art outdoor gallery and is also set to become one of the most prominent street art experiences in the region. Originally erected as noise barriers for ongoing construction works, the metal canvases will become an evolving stage for the best muralists from Singapore and eventually, the world.
Led by One Kampong Gelam, the association representing and supporting the interests of stakeholders in the precinct, Hall of Fame @ Kampong Gelam is an initiative that is supported by the Singapore Tourism Board, Urban Redevelopment Authority, Land Transport Authority, GS Engineering & Construction Corporation and Blu Jaz Cafe.
Home to traditional businesses and the iconic cultural landmarks, Sultan Mosque and the former Sultan’s palace, Kampong Gelam naturally became one of the city state’s arts and cultural hubs. It was gazetted as a conservation area in 1989 and was a popular spot for catching performances like wayang kulit and ketoprak in the past.
Over the decades, artists, musicians, and business owners have maintained an organic growth for the thriving and diverse urban arts hub we know today. Murals and street art sprouted in Kampong Gelam as early as 2010, many of which were commissions pioneered by business owners. The addition of Southeast Asia’s first official graffiti Hall of Fame strengthens Kampong Gelam’s position as Singapore’s leading street art precinct and the country’s largest open-air gallery.
New venture in one-north offers 21 hawker stalls and 14 restaurant brands in an industrial-chic environment.
Food may not be the first thing people think about when it comes to the Timbre Group. It is better known for its live music venues, music festivals and pizza parlour 12-inch Pizzas & Records.
But that is changing. It has embarked on its most ambitious food and beverage venture so far, one that has been three years in the making.
The 24,000 sq ft Timbre+ has opened at JTC Corporation's LaunchPad at one-north, just across the road from Fusionopolis, a research and development complex in Ayer Rajah.
The sprawling 700-seat non- air-conditioned venue houses 21 hawkers and 14 restaurant brands, and will cater to the working population of more than 40,000 in the one-north district.
JTC tore down the canteen that used to occupy the site and built a larger space for Timbre+. Large containers are part of the industrial- chic aesthetic, complete with vibrant graffiti designs.
Instead of the usual hawker centre-type stalls, some stallholders will operate out of repurposed containers, while others serve and cook food in specially imported Airstream caravans from the United States, food-truck style.
There are also dedicated restaurant spaces in Timbre+ for some brands, good for 20 to 30 diners.
The latest edition to the Keong Saik district is an urban Izakaya, Neon Pigeon.
Inspired by the world of flavours found in the hidden spots of Tokyo and the underground culture of buzzling cities like New York and Hong Kong, the establishment is a vibrant social house offering great value for money and the soul of a Japanese Izakaya with a punch of urban grit.
With a selection of starters (appropriately named ‘Bird Feed’), soups, greens, seafood and meats, Japanese snacks are given a modern and in-house twist at Neon Pigeon. The Izakaya-style menu, designed for tastings, serves up dishes in ‘small’ or ‘large’ portions and you are recommended to order six to eight small dishes to share between two people.
A look at the menu and you will notice the heavy use of classic, no-frills Japanese flavours in the condiments and among the assortment of "Bird Feed", is a cold dish of Chilled Cucumber with home-mixed crushed chilli peanuts, nori (seaweed) and goma (sesame), as well as the Tsukune Sliders, an east-meets-west combo of a Japanese meatball patty and a western slider bun, coupled with pickled kyuri (Japanese cucumber) and tare (soy basting sauce) aioli.
Keeping up with the fun-sharing concept, Neon Pigeon also offers a large format dining option of Barbecued Pork Shoulder for groups of four to six. With a two-day advance order required, the hearty fare of pork shoulder is slow-cooked for 20 hours and served in a black pepper teriyaki glaze, with a ginger scallion dipping sauce, bibb lettuce wraps, steamed buns, a spring onion salad, onigiri rice cake, kimchi and pickles to complement.
Also an integral part of the concept’s underground vibe is the Neon Pigeon bar. The bar’s Japanese-inspired drinks list includes a selection of Japanese beers and whiskeys, each a representative of different prefectures, as well as a curated list of spirits and Japanese inspired speciality cocktails. These include Throw A Kyuri-Ken, a vodka-based cocktail with a refreshing touch of lemon juice, yuzu and cucumber, as well as Harajuku Girl, a mix of gin, shiso leaf, and plum bitters.
The bar also houses a selection of sake of varying fragrances and complexity, including a range of Junmai, Daiginjo, Ginjo and Honjozo sakes, that were all hand-picked from sake distilleries across Japan to complement the dishes offered at Neon Pigeon.
Specially designed by US-based EDG Interior Architecture + Design, the Neon Pigeon space at The Working Capitol building on Keong Saik is built to own the vibe of a hidden spot off the main street only known to the locals, as a veiled corner of an urban metropolis. The exterior shows only a fluorescent pink pigeon, lit when in business, while the interior is paved with raw elements of steel and bricks that are softened with sophisticatedly designed wood finishing, giving the social hangout an urban grit with comfort and familiarity – an atmosphere reminiscent of Shibuya district in Tokyo or East Village in New York. A semi-open concept kitchen is also featured, with the action in the kitchen open for a close-up view.
A final and crucial touch to the space is the loud graffiti work plastered on the walls of the interior that gives the restaurant a touch of the underground New York City vibe. The team had specially commissioned local visual artist, ZERO to create these murals.