Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Heineken Cities Festival

I was invited to the Heineken Cities Festival about 2 weeks ago on the 30th of August 2014 & I was so thrilled! The idea behind this entire festival sounds really fun to me. The urban street festival was held at Ann Siang Hill & Club street where the streets were "closed" for the night for the party go-ers to enjoy a night of new experiences and adventure. 

The 1 night only event aims to bring the experience of 6 major cities around the world to us & inspire city dwellers to "open their city"! 


Are you able to name the 6 cities?

I had an epic night of fun with my friends whom I eagerly invited because I knew that they would really enjoy this rare opportunity to party on the streets of Singapore.


Here's me & SX at 1 of the entrances. 
We were there pretty early, like 8-ish pm.

A huge hint to 1 of the 6 cities is in SX's hands.. can you spot the red fan that he was holding? 


The entire street was filled with people with Heineken in their hands.
We didn't feel like we were in Singapore that night. There were so much going on the entire night and we were thoroughly entertained.


Here's the line-up of the performances & entertainment for that night. 
It was hard to decide which entertainment I wanted to catch but I managed to catch a few of them.

Here are the 6 Heineken City experiences!


Over at NEW YORK, I managed to spot my friend, Mandy, in her US-inspired dress. She was taking pictures with everyone and giving out these US themed hats. There were also hiphop dance performances & a painted tin man street performer. 


& here's AMSTERDAM, where  local artist Mindflyer was painting a wall mural.


When we reached LONDON, there were busker performances and who can resist taking a picture with that iconic red phone booth?


Over at RIO DE JANEIRO, we were in awe by the performances by the Samba dancers & drummers. There were also face painting & I spotted a couple of people walking around with awesome painted faces!


& lastly, when we arrived at SHANGHAI, we have these pretty ladies traditionally dressed in cheong sams & performing fushion jazz dances. & yes, this was where SX got his red fan as part of the city experience.


After all that entertainment, SX & I decided we needed a break & a drink.
Here's a friendly bartender handing us our City Edition bottle!


An ice cold beer was much needed as we were all feeling the heat from the crowd & being all hyped up!


Here are the 6 Heineken City Edition bottles in a shot!

The Heineken Cities Festival celebrates the launch of the 6 limited Heineken City Edition bottles 
London, New York, Rio De Janerio, Singapore, Shanghai, Amsterdam.

These bottles will be available at all bars which serves Heineken island wide till the end of September (while stocks last). The special Singapore City edition bottle is exclusive only to Singapore & it is retailing between $12-$18 each, along with the others in the series!

Have you collected yours yet?


It was truly a fun night that I never thought that I would have experienced in our tiny island Singapore.


One of the moments that I loved that night, when the green confetti was shot & raining down on all of us. 
Everyone just went insane & starting cheering. I was one of the mad ones too. HAHA.


DJ Rae, an internationally renowned singer-songwriter-producer was also spinning that night, keeping everyone busy on their feet with her music.


The Heineken Cities Festival was a great way for us to catch up with our friends. (Here's us with Eve & Ken)
I mean, who would turn down an invite to a party like this?!


With Madeline & Jasmine from Nuffnang.



This is really a first (at least for me) in Singapore where 2 streets are closed & everyone was able to party & hop from one pub to another.


See what I mean by the entire street was just filled with people hanging around & having a good time?

We were making our way to a rooftop bar/restaurant to continue our evening.


Happy me snapping pictures as I made my way through the crowd.
I was just exuding happy vibes the entire night. 
I couldn't keep still or stay calm at all. LOL.


Super enthu with the props given out that night.


With my other 2 friends, Sarah & James, who gamely came down after I mentioned that I was here and having a ball of a time! I was glad they enjoyed themselves too. It was nice to take a breather from the crowd and just hang out at the roof top bar where we had the skyscrapers as our backdrop.


& this was the view that I saw when I looked down from the roof top bar.


Now, this is what I call a street festival. 
It was truly a huge success and I really wish that Heineken will organize one EVERY SINGLE YEAR!

SX & I were saying that we will attend it every year if there is because this experience is really quite eye-opening and just something you wouldn't get in your day to day lives in Singapore. This urban festival with 6 different city experiences has allowed us to discover the world in Singapore. 

Thank you so much, Heineken, for having this street festival.

We are looking forward to the next one!

To check out more hidden gems and open your city, head over to..

Diving.

Hey there, its been along time since I last "talked" to you guys here. The amount of advertorials here is too damn high and I really really hate that. I'm so sorry and I promise I'll try to inject my daily life entries here more often as I kinda miss blogging actually. But it is just that I'm too busy everyday with work + advertorials + events to attend + friends to meet + pole dance classes, that I seldom have time to blog anymore.

A couple readers have been asking me to share about my new found hobbies, which are diving and pole dancing. So today let's talk DIVING.

I've had friends, Juan & Esther, who dived way before me. Esther became a hardcore diving addict after her sister introduced it to her and then Juan decided to try it out with Esther too. Never in a million years would I imagined that I would be one of them. They did ask me along for their diving trips but I was too into my whole "I WANNA BE SNOW WHITE FAIR" phase that I just rejected them because I didn't want to get tan. I mean, I still do want to stay as fair as I can but after I did my first dive, I realized, life is too short to sacrifice all these experience just because of my vanity.

So long story short, about 9 of us decided to learn diving and we managed to book an entire yacht for our 3 days 2 night diving trip to Tioman. The group consisted of 9 beginner divers and about 4 advanced divers. For the beginners, we had to take 2 lessons in Singapore before we were allowed to go for our diving trip. (I'm not sure if every school is the same, but I know of some schools that allow you to just go for the diving trip straight). But I'm kinda thankful that we had the 2 lessons in Singapore first because at least before we jumped into the open sea, we knew what to expect and won't be as blur and afraid.

Our 2 lessons were held at a Secondary School's swimming pool (can't remember which school), and we had to wear the full diving suit + learn how to fix our oxygen tanks and all the other accessories. The oxygen tank on our back was mother crazy heavy I swear. We had to learn how to breath properly underwater, how to find for our regulator in the water if we accidentally removed it from our mouth and not panic. The KEY is to stay calm underwater because once you panic, you will be out of breath easily and then you'll drown. HAHA. We also learned how to clear our mask underwater, how to remove it and put it back on underwater, how to control our buoyancy underwater. There's just so much to remember and it was really good that we got to practice it once in the swimming pool before the real deal.


That's us at the secondary school prepping ourselves!

Suit up..


& ready to put our masks + regulators on.

So we departed from Singapore in those big buses from the diving school and drove into Malaysia. The entire bus journey was about.. 4-5 hours if I'm not wrong. Shit, I can't remember. But there was a pitstop for us to have our dinner/supper before we continued to the ferry "terminal" where we boarded our yacht!


By the time we got on to the yacht and showered, it was already about 2am?
And we had to get up bright and early at 6-7am the next day for our dive.


That's our breakfast.
So full even before my first dive.
Bulging tummy *gasps*


We had our meals on the top deck.


& this was our tea break after our first dive.
Yes, we eat and then we dive, and once we are out of water, we eat again and then we dive again.
LOL.


A group picture with everyone!


After finishing our 2nd dive, we decided to jump into the open sea & snorkel.
That's me with Dave & Pham.


The 3 boys - SX, Pham and Dave. 


Suntanning on the mid-deck.
Something I'll never ever do. 


I miss this lifestyle so much!!


We be holding hands like otters in the sea.
That's Esther with me!


Solo shot.


& then it was time for our final dive of the day.
All ready to leap into the sea.


Can you spot me?


Esther & I.
How glamorous do we look?


& here's SX and I underwater.
For beginners, we could only go to the depth of 18m.


We saw turtles!


Tons of sea urchin.
Omg, I was trying my best to not get pricked by them thorns.
Then I began to wonder, there are so many of them.. why is it that japanese restaurants are selling it at such a high price?


Nemo.


Nemossss.


I really miss this peaceful + carefree lifestyle.


LOL.


With my city plaza buddies, Megan and Esther.




Sunset taken when we were are the shore..
We went to tioman island and got some drinks and snacks from the convenience stores there.


Our yacht coming back to pick us up!!


& when the clock struck midnight, it was my birthday!!!
I HAD NO IDEA HOW THEY MANAGED TO GET A CAKE ON BOARD!

Super sweet of everyone.
They actually told the diving school to ask the boatman to get a cake beforehand.
*touched* wipes tear from corner of eye. LOL.




& here's all of us on the bus heading back to Singapore on the 3rd day.

So in total, for beginners to get the open water license, you'll have to complete 5 dives in the sea.
What I did was, 3 dives on day two and 2 dives on day three!

It was pretty tiring like non-stop diving.
You'll be super exhausting every night but it was FUNNNNN!

You know, Megan and I were deciding to back out of diving if we sucked during the pool lessons because we were both afraid of drowning. Like, I've always had this fear of being unable to breathe underwater and I think that drowning is really a horrible way to die. I mean, getting burned to death is a horrible way too but I've read news where even super pro divers drown and my parents were kinda nagging about my safety when I told them I was going for diving. My dad always says I was supposed to be a boy instead of a girl. Even when I was little and he brought me to the swimming pool, my brother would be scared to enter the water and slowly dip his foot in while I will just run and jump into the pool even though I couldn't swim and my dad had to catch me. LOL. 

Okay, sorry for digressing over there. 

But my point was, I'm glad I did not back out on diving. I'm glad I pushed myself and went for it. It truly is an experience that I hold so dear to me and I can't wait to dive again in end of October where all of us (the beginners) will be taking our advanced divers license.. WOOHOO!! I'm able to go deeper next time! 


Here's SX, Esther & Pham in Maldives.
We went for 2 dives while we were in Maldives because.. HOW CAN WE NOT?


Happy like a fish underwater.


With SX who was having a little difficulty because he put on too much weights on his weightbelt. 
He damn blur cock one lah.
You see, when we were in Tioman, we put on 6 pounds of weight on our weightbelt.
& when we were at Maldives, the weights were in KG and not Pounds.
He this smarty pants went and put 6KG on his weightbelt and he kept sinking and having trouble floating or swimming. He said he was like running underwater, super exhausting for him.

I don't know to laugh or get mad at him -___-


All of us underwater!
Left to right, Esther, Pham. Me and SX.


The prettiest view I saw underwater.
A huge school of dory fishes!!


We didn't get enough of the sea and went on to snorkel after our dive.
Maldives is amazing.
I WANNA GO BACK AGAIN!!

The above picture was us going down to the water via the stairs from my bathroom.


Snorkeling is fun too but it diving is a whole other experience. 

So.. this concludes my diving entry.

I know people will sure ask me these few questions:

HOW MUCH DID YOU PAY?
Ans: $600+ which includes everything. From accommodation, food, bus ride to and fro Singapore, renting of gears.

DO YOU NEED TO KNOW HOW TO SWIM?
Ans: You don't have to be the best swimmer, in fact 1 of my friends can't swim. You just need to know how to tread water and you can inflate the life vest on you anytime.

WHICH DIVING SCHOOL DID YOU GO TO?
Ans: The one I went to is called BluReefs Scuba Diving or something. Located at North Canal Road. Our dive master were Ashar and Sing.

WHAT SUNBLOCK DID YOU USE?
Ans: I was taking oral sunblock pills from Heliocare and applying sunblock from SUNPLAY (the red bottle one that has 130++ SPF after each dive.

Okay, I can't think of anymore questions..

That's all guys.

:)

I'll be back with more blog posts that aren't advertorials. I PROMISE I'LL TRY!!!

XOXO.