Creative Finds in the Land of Fines

A new breed of entrepreneurs is fueling and firing up the city state’s once humdrum lifestyle of mass market and luxury, carbon copied city life.

I am not referring to the government initiated Art Stage, Gillman Village, Singapore Arts Festival, even Kampong Glam (if the government designates it to be a “hip” area, it no longer bears the pureness of a grassroots driven ‘creative’ society. It is more a ‘creative’ government!) etc.

Dig deeper into the streets off Singapore’s mainstream neon lit shopping strips (Haji Lane included by the way) and you will find hip ideas from a fresh generation of hoteliers and F&B enthusiasts. They are the new blood who have been creating an alternative culture to the otherwise a-typical modern city.

We came across these hip funky creative hostels:

Pillow And Toast
Ruck Sack Inn

Wink Hostel

These coffee places:

Toby’s Estate
Jimmy Monkey Cafe
Smitten Cafe
Penny University
Group Therapy
Chye Seng Huat Hardware

As more Singaporeans come home from their travels from abroad and foreigners flocking the city for new opportunities, the culture and lifestyle of the city dwellers (i.e. the entire 4 million in population!) are also changing.

Surprisingly, the road less travelled is being explored amongst the locals. Many no longer consider the conventional occupation as the only way of life. Lawyers turned Chocolate Cake Connoisseur; Banker turned Tailor, Gaming Business Developer; Accountant (Auditor! Gasp!) turned music teacher/keyboardist/composer/performer; Web and Mobile Application entrepreneurs are in abundance, and in a recent news article, two top students decided against becoming doctors in favour of becoming engineers, so that they can design useful equipment  And she got it right – she can still design medical equipment to contribute to the practice, if being in the medical industry means so much to her parents.

I must point out that these “deviants” of typical Singapore stereotypes are not results of the Singapore Design University, or the SOTA, or the many design schools that have popped up in the last two to three years as a result of the government’s revelation that the country lacked creative people. Those who have been pigeonholed into being designers and artists have yet to graduate and they have no idea what lies in store when they finish (that you don’t need to study creativity to be a creative person).

If you know about more creative set ups in Singapore, do add them on to our list!


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