Time Required : 2-3 hours
There was a time when three hills existed in the Telok Ayer area of Singapore. Ann Siang Hill, Mount Erskine, and Mount Wallrich formed the trio which together was known as Telok Ayer Hills. In the 1890s, work started for reclaiming the Telok Ayer Basin. In this process, Mount Erskine and Mount Wallrich were levelled, leaving Ann Siang Hill to the highest ground in this area. Once a Chinese Migrant settlement, the hill today is a vibrant district which is home to many renowned restaurants, pubs, and boutiques.
The hill gets its name from Chia Ann Siang (1832-1892), a businessman who owned both this hill and Mount Erskine. Before him, John Gemmil was the owner of this hill. The land has also been a nutmeg plantation.
Meander through the exotic and colourful shophouses and have a look at the old well which was the only source of water in Chinatown during the past days. Taste the district's heritage at Al-Abrar Mosque which now has been standing since the 1850s. A walking trail in this enclave amidst the bustling Chinatown will give you a gist of the place's rich traditions. Spice up your walk by the nutmeg tree which was re-introduced to restore the historic grandeur.
During the 19th and the 20th Musical Boxes were taken as an essential symbol of European culture. Singapore played a significant part in the development and progress of these musical boxes in the South-East Asian Continent. This museum depicts the historical background of the rise and fall of musical boxes and their entry into the Singaporean Culture in the 19th century. Besides working as a repository of education and academic research, it also aims to preserve these artefacts for the coming generation. The Museum houses 40 antique musical boxes and is located in the Chong Wen Ge building which is the first educational institution established in 1849 by the Chinese Community in Singapore.
The street comprises an overwhelming variety of restaurants that provide you with finger licking dishes. No matter which eatery you choose, your time spent will be the best and obviously the food you eat too. Below are a few restaurants that are a must try-
Boasting a classy interior, the restaurant follows the concept of cooking in front of its customers. Meat lovers swear by the taste of their special Japanese Grilled Meat. It is as juicy as it can ever be. It has everything from Japanese wagyu to Australian Grass-fed Steaks. The operation timings of the restaurant are between 6:00 PM to 11:00 PM.
The Coconut Club
Giving you food goals with its "Nasi Lemak", which is a fragrant rice dish cooked in pandan leaf coconut milk, served with an array of dishes such as fried fish and omelette, the Coconut Club is loved by every local. Otak Otak is another dish that comes in a must try category at this outlet. The extensive menu of the place is evidence of chef's ultimate research and hard work that every employee does to make your meal the best meal. The restaurant operates between 11:00 AM- 3:00 PM, 6:00 PM- 9:30 PM on Monday to Saturday and 11:00 AM- 3:00 PM on Sundays.
Coriander Leaf Grill
It is a contemporary Asian inspired grill restaurant situated in the vicinity of the happening Chinatown. Offering a relaxed dining, it has mouth-watering varieties of steaks, desserts, and burgers that you can enjoy at a place of your choice, indoors or outdoors. Baby Lamb Chops with Harissa, Burrata with spiced lentil salad, Harissa chicken burger, Smoked duck with red pepper and Pear Tarte are some of its specialities. The restaurant operates on all days except Sunday between 12:00 PM - 11:00 PM (Monday-Thursday) and 5:00 PM - 3:00 AM (Friday and Saturday).
Here you will get the cheekiest yet delicious food combinations. Southern fried chicken served with thick gravy, Lebanese fried chicken covered in honey, lemon and za'atar, and Bangkok fried chicken tossed with kaffir lime, garlic, and lemongrass, are few of them. The milk braised doughnuts are a show stealer. An overeating sin is sure to be committed at this place. The timings for the restaurant are 11:00 AM - 11:00 PM (Tuesday-Sunday).
As the darkness takes over, Ann Siang Road bestows its vibrancy over its visitors. The nightlife here is unimaginably amazing and safe too. It is famous for some fantastic bars and pubs. To name a few-
Gem Bar & Kitchen
Hidden deep in the districts of Chinatown, Gem Bar stands in stark contrast to the narrow alleys and old shophouses in its neighbourhood. With a chilled beer and prompt service, this place is every partygoer's dream. The best time to visit here is in the evenings of Fridays and Saturdays. The street is shut to traffic. Hence, you can have some time in serenity. It's flower soft drink is something you should try. It operates from Monday to Saturday between 4:00 PM-1:00 AM.
Known as the Number 1 Wine Bar in Singapore, this place is all set to give you moments full of joy and excitement. Located in a culturally rich surrounding, Beaujolais has been serving fantastic wine since the year 1988. It provides you with premium quality wines and classic steaks. The outlet runs between 12:00 PM- 1:00 AM from Monday to Wednesday, 12:00 PM- 2:00 AM on Thursdays, 12:00 PM- 3:00 AM on Fridays, 6:00 PM-2:00 AM on Saturdays and remains closed on Sundays.
Shopping is not just an activity but a therapy, and if you are in Ann Siang, this therapy is a must take. The streets of this place are in themselves a tourist attraction. You might come here to explore, but it's impossible to leave without doing a little shop. Due to its prime location, the place has some crazy fashion boutiques and shophouses. Some of them are Lorna Jane Singapore, Finespun Clothiers, and Innitbangkoksg.
So, this was a little guide to Ann Siang Road in Singapore. Words seem less when it comes to talking about its goodness. It is a place that needs to be explored with one's own eyes.
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