Sept 3, 2012 (noon-evening)
No matter how excited I was during my first day at MBS, I was a bit suspicious of myself because my appetite for lunch didn’t pan out as usual. But then the reality came out by itself, I was about to have a fever.
MBS shopping mall was indeed huge and full of sunshine. The spaciousness intrigued me to just simply scour the place up to the highest elevators, down to the lowest MRT station, or just simply do the window shopping, boating around and even having fun on its skating rink. We arrived at one corner of the mall for our lunch at Todai. It’s full of with anticipation but my appetite’s not there yet and I didn’t know why. I decided to just give everything a try from the sushi & sashimi section, churrasco section, and every savory foodstuffs I can found. It was fun and cheated my hunger although not really fulfilling.
Next we headed for The Social Pavilion or the photo booth that can connects to your Facebook and you can have as much picture as you want for free here. Here, we finally got a good look of other teams from Malaysia and Australia. Every team was led by MBS’s PR officer and they were constantly switching each other neatly. The schedule of every team was different as well but each team gets the same itinerary.
The rooftop tour
It’s time for the rooftop tour then, ladies and gents. Off we went to see the legendary Sands SkyPark and the Banyan Tree clubs for gym and spa. They’re all located up high and each one of them has impressive view of Singapore in 360 degrees. As much as doing sport can be something that we food bloggers least wanted but I would really love to try doing a bit cardio, weightlifting or even some yoga for just viewing the city! The spa was also appeared so appealing yet relaxing. Imagine having a massage up high in the sky.
A small tour to the luxurious suites high above was also quite interesting. Not only that these suites are spacious but they are also well-equipped with basic gym equipments, grand piano, meeting table, and Nespresso coffee machine. I had to stop for a while just to sit and rest my legs, much to my amazement of how weak I had become for even a very easy tour like this. I gritted my teeth and psyched up myself to let this day over merrily!
By the way, the Sands SkyPark was even more breathtaking although it was around 2 pm in the afternoon and packed with people. I’d love to dip in first thing in the morning before anyone gets here or just even to see the skylines during the evening. Surely it’s a comeback later tomorrow or my last day here. I was getting unwell at this point. I figured that I should head back for a while to the room and get myself a dose of energizer just to keep the day running. The rooftop tour was supposedly to continue with the spacious observation deck but most of us preferred to just retreat for a while and have a quick shower.
Waku Ghin and CUT
We then gathered around again at the lobby to continue for two sessions of cocktail refreshments at one of the world’s best Waku Ghin owned by Chef Tetsuya Wakuda then at Chef Wolfgang Puck’s CUT. Located just above the casino, Waku Ghin and its neighbor Guy Savoy were indeed very special. Before getting inside we witnessed how massive and colorful the casino was from above.
We were greeted warmly by the beautiful manager of Waku Ghin, Ms Hitomi Matsumoto and its famous bartenders, Mr Akihiro Eguchi and Mr Kazuhiro Chii. Then Mr Eguchi led the presentation on how to create proper ice for cocktails and formulated their signature drinks such as Gimlet and Moscow Mule for us all. Additionally we were also served delicious finger foods such as the small portions of duck confit over mashed potato and scampi drowned in salted water to be pulled up and reached olive oil – intriguing! It was interesting and enlightening for all of us especially when presented neatly by the duo bartenders of excellence, as one of them Mr Eguchi frequently travels to Jakarta for cocktail events and has won several championships.
On the other hand, CUT is located within the corridors of MBS shoppes. Different than Waku Ghin’s bar that appears dark and intimate, CUT presents its bar with a cheerful yet elegant atmosphere. It’s basked with setting sun but the bartenders are gazing straight towards it. I had to applause them for being very resilient in their arduous tasks of bar tending. They have to carve the ice everyday with their bare hands, some learn on how to jug bottles and stuffs, they have to formulate new drinks and innovations with the risk on getting intoxicated every day (though I assume that they like it instead), and finally here at CUT, they have to work against the simmering sunshine. With glasses that dominate the whole architecture of MBS, the air conditioned temperature gets beaten sometimes with the heat coming from the sun especially during noontime.
But it’s a bit of shame that they treated us less generous than Waku Ghin with each of us only sipping a small amount of liquids from their drinks with divided food. But here we saw more samples of drinks at the very least. The restaurant itself opens only for dinner but according to our itinerary, CUT will serve only small cocktails and no dinner for this media trip. Well, in this case I had to suggest MBS on how to treat media on a more elaborated scheme if they want us to write properly. It’s a different policy though at Sky on 57 and db Bistro Moderne on my upcoming posts as they’re pretty much doing the opposite and decent enough for full coverage.
The finale of the first day
As we head into the evening with my ailing body, Au Chocolat became the place for our dinner. Au Chocolat itself is a chocolatier, ice cream shop, toy shop, cake shopand also a bistro. Occupying a large corner equals for three shops, Au Chocolat is indeed one of the largest tenant there. Under normal condition, I’d be very much tempted with the beautiful gelato – arranged stylishly like Gelatissimo, the cakes, the chocolates, and of course the dinner! Well, anyway I had to eat to beat this feverish crap out of my body.
It was a dinner course of limited choice there. For the opener, I chose French onion soup to boost my morale again to be continued with fish and chips. I was thinking also on having roast chicken or duck confit as the alternative but then again, I have to beat this appetite problem with something easy and I guess the fish n’ chips would be the best choice.
Well, the onion soup worked well but still cannot help my appetite any further. I had to take away my fish and chips and leave early. Just in case, I brought home also the dessert which was a decent cheese cake made by Pastry Chef Mai Mai – a good old friend of my entourage, Mr Jed Doble. He told me that they both used to work at the same bank years ago and set course on different paths. Pastry Chef Mai Mai went for the States to learn more about baking and Mr Doble set course for Indonesia to explore more about photography and finally, he becomes a prominent journalist there.
Before everyone finished their dinner, I returned back to my room to struggle against the fever and hoping that tomorrow it will subside somehow. But before that, I also dropped by to the luxurious Louis Vuitton store there to collect a sunglasses owned by my friend back at Bandung. The rest of the team went for a river cruise and to see the fireworks show known as Wonder Full. It’s a shame but an obligation is an obligation and it is my obligation to be healthy for tomorrow’s busy schedule. Not only that, my spirit remained high and really looking forward for the next adventure, even if that means that I have to sleep early.
TO BE CONTINUED WITH DAY 2