Musings on Travel, Fashion & Fun

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Photo of the Day – Margaret River’s Wild Roos

Wild Kangaroos in Perth
Caught this pair of wild kangaroos at Gunyulgup Drive in Margaret River, Perth. Apparently, everyday at around 5am and 5pm you can see HUNDREDS of wild kangaroos at the empty green space near Little Fish Restaurant. Apparently, the roos hang out at rural golf courses around the area as well (Vines Golf Course, Margaret River Golf Club, Melville Glades Golf Club, Yanchep Golf Course, etc). Another ‘interesting’ place to see them would be Pinnaroo Valley Memorial Park (yes a cemetery). It’s definitely a must-see when you visit Margaret River :) Be careful of them if you are driving, as they are well-know to be ‘road hogs’ or may just suddenly jump out to cross the road.

Other places that you can try are Yelverton Brooks, Whiteman Park and Cottonwood Reserve (off Dianella Drive and Gay Street by Chanel 9 and Chanel 7 TV studios). Do you know of more kangaroo sighting places in Perth or Australia?


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Hello Kitty Orchid Garden Café in Singapore

Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféReturning to Singapore on an odd-hour flight recently, I was able to skip the horrendously long queue at Hello Kitty Orchid Garden café which opened in May 2016. Located at Changi Airport Terminal 3’s Arrival area, it is the only 24-hour Hello Kitty themed café in the world.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféInspired by Singapore’s garden city landscape as well as the national orchid flower, the cafe is shaped like a glasshouse in colonial black and white, and decorated with orchids. The cafe was full even at an odd-hour, so you can imagine how many feline fans there are in Singapore (my dad included heehee).Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféThe café serves all-day breakfast and desserts inspired by Hello Kitty, as well as locally-inspired dishes such as beef rendang and orange sugee cake.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféA bit of trivia – Singapore’s feline mascot is the only Hello Kitty with 2 bows in the world. Talk about being kiasu (Singapore slang for being afriad to lose out), haha.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféOut of all the character-themed cafes that I have visited in Singapore, this cafe’s food presentation seems to be the tamest. At least I don’t see a 3-D Hello Kitty-shaped rice or pink-coloured Kitty bread around.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféTaste-wise, I would say it is one of the better ones cos’ the food arrives fast and hot (maybe cos’ minimal food styling involved). That said, don’t come here expecting Michelin-star standard. Service-wise, it was the best – the staff were friendly and not looking stressed from the crowd.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféI went for The Cowabunga! Wagyu! which is a rendition of Singapore’s beef rendang as it is exclusive to the Singapore cafe. It tastes authentic, although my mum almost fell off her chair when she learnt I paid almost S$30 for a local beef rendang dish.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféIf you are there for photos, the desserts are more Instagram-worthy.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféWhile most people ordered Camping Under the Stars, I opted for the Kitty Goes Bananas Split sundae. Cos’ I go bananas for ban-nanas.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféFor those looking for souvenirs, the cafe has a retail section offering a range of Singapore-exclusive merchandise such as tea blends, plush toys and postcards.Hello Kitty Orchid Garden CaféTea blendsHello Kitty Orchid Garden Café

Hello Kitty Orchard Garden Café
Address: Singapore Changi Airport Terminal 3 (Arrival Meeting Hall Central), Singapore 819663
Opening Hours: 24 hours daily
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/HelloKittyCafeSingapore



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Hong Kong – Via Tokyo: Matcha Goodness

Via TokyoIf there is a café that gained popularity primarily through social media, it has to be Via Tokyo in Hong Kong – I got to know about the place after seeing numerous Instagram posts about its amazing matcha soft serve and the cafe repeatedly winning OpenRice’s Best Restaurant Awards (voted by users). I only got to try it after two trips to Hong Kong.

Via TokyoThe original store at Causeway Bay is located at the corner of a residential building about 10 minutes walk from Causeway Bay MTR station. Via Tokyo is opened by restaurateur Kosei Kamatani, also the owner of Ramen Jo and even a shisha bar.

Via TokyoThe dessert café specialises in Japanese soft serve ice cream and pastries made with Kyoto matcha powder (finely milled green tea) and 3.6 Hokkaido milk (a brand of premium milk from Japan with 3.6% butterfat recognized for its creamy rich texture and hint of vanilla essence).

Via TokyoThe cafe offers three main flavours of soft serve (Vanilla, Matcha and Houjicha) in addition to seasonal flavours. Naturally the matcha flavour is the most popular. In order to encourage guests to try other flavours, the cafe doesn’t serve matcha flavour on Wednesdays. A very interesting marketing strategy indeed.

Via TokyoThe best times to visit is during odd hours (I visited at 3pm). Otherwise get ready to queue.

Via TokyoWhat would you have today? :)

Via TokyoSince it was my first time, I went for the 3-flavour waffle cup (Vanilla, Matcha and a seasonal Black Sesame flavour) served with shiratama, red bean paste and a candied chestnut. The taste wasn’t overpowering, and the texture was firm and smooth. I was initially worried that I wouldn’t be able to finish 3 servings all by myself, but obviously my fear was unfounded lol.

Via TokyoThe cafe serves tea-based cakes as well. There is a larger cake selection at their Tsim Sha Tsui outlet, which also serves kakigori (shaved ice dessert).

Via TokyoIf you are looking for a dessert place in Hong Kong, Via Tokyo would be a good choice for some soft serve ice cream. Another Japanese dessert place that you can also try is Sweets House Cha Cha. Itadakimasu!

Via Tokyo Causeway Bay
Address: Shop nos. 1A-1B, G/F., Leishun Court, 106-126 Leighton Road, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
Nearest Train Station: Causebay MTR Exit F1, walk down Jardine’s Bazaar towards Pennington St, then Leighton Road. About 10 mins walk
Tel: +852 28951116
Opening Hours: 11:00AM – 10:30PM (Sun-Thurs), 11:00AM – 11:00PM (Fri-Sat)
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/viatokyocafe

Via Tokyo Tsim Sha Tsui
Address: G/F, 29 Cameron Road Kowloon Tsim Sha Tsui
Nearest Train Station: Tsim Sha Tsui MTR Exit B2. About 4 mins walk
Tel: +852 2385 6388
Opening Hours: 12:00PM – 11:00PM (Sun – Thurs), 12:00PM – 11:30PM (Fri – Sat)


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Pompompurin Café in Singapore

Pompompurin Cafe
My gal pals and I recently braved the crowds to check out Pompompurin Café at Orchard Central – patience is utmost essential, from queuing for a table (thanks Jane & SJ for going to queue in advance) to waiting for your food. Of course no one really complains, since everyone is busy taking photos and Instagramming away.

Some may wonder exactly what the oversized yellow creature is (no, he is not Pikachu’s relative) – Pompompurin is a golden retriever dog character created by Sanrio (also the creator of Hello Kitty) in 1996. He wears a trademark brown beret, loves collecting shoes (that I can identify with), which includes his owner’s father’s leather shoes, his owner’s mother’s sandals, before hiding them. The huge puppy enjoys drinking milk and eating soft food and pudding that his mother makes, which also becomes the inspiration for the café’s menu. He was also voted thrice as the Most Popular Sanrio Character in Strawberry News, a magazine published by Sanrio.

Pompompurin Cafe

The 78-seater café at Orchard Central is the sixth Pompompurin-themed cafe in the world and Southeast Asia’s first. Every Pompompurin cafe in the world takes on a different theme that is in line with the local culture, and this Singapore one carries a “garden city” theme. Be greeted by a huge tree centrepiece of Pompompurin and his friends as you enter. Guests can sit at one of the four-seater “Tomodachi House” featuring Purin’s friends (left in photo) – Bagel the Squirrel, Coconut the Monkey, Mint the Frog and Macaroon the Golden Retriever.

Pompompurin Cafe

Dishes at the cafe are all shaped to look like Pompompurin, and are all very Instagram-worthy. Our food took more than 20 minutes to arrive as time was needed to shape the food.

Pompompurin Cafe

Kawaii neh!

Pompompurin CafeFor the undecided, you can try the pasta dishes as each dish comes with a new Pompompurin souvenir mug which you can take home. The price of the pasta dishes are well, a little more expensive that the others which do not come with the mug. Taste-wise, the Mushroom & Cabonara Spaghetti is okaaay.

Pompompurin Cafe

I went for the Taco Rice in a Cup of Friendship made up of minced meat, tomatoes, avocado, eggs, tacos and rice. Just because Pompompurin looked too cute. I hesitated for 5 minutes before dumping him into the sauce and started eating. Taste-wise, it wasn’t too bad but the rice was way too much. I could only eat about half the amount, so you can definitely order this to share for 2.

Pompompurin CafePuru Puru Pudding Shake

Pompompurin Cafe
Banana and Caramel Pancake which was a bit dry.

Pompompurin Cafe

It was a fun night out with the girls, and we had fun chilling out and taking photos of our food. Not exactly a cheap meal as we shelled out about S$50 each (which is about what a meal at a theme cafe costs). It’s good that they are regularly introducing new menu items, like this Beautiful Day High Tea Set (available from Monday to Friday, 2-5pm, Photo from Pompompurin Cafe Facebook page), to entice re-visits. There is also a small retail corner for fans who would like to bring home some Pompompurin merchandise.

Pompompurin Café
Address: 181 Orchard Road, #04-08, Orchard Central, Singapore 238896
Phone: +65 6509 8672
Opening Hours: 11:00AM to 10:00PM daily
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Pompompurincafesg