Beauty & Shopping, Contests, Lifestyle

26 Things To Put On Your May Watchlist

Your favourite monthly round-up of things to eat, try, and buy is back!

A is for Asia Fashion Summit 2014

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The region’s premier fashion and business conference is back! Into its fifth year, Asia Fashion Summit (AFS) 2014 provides expert insights on topics that are important to fashion industry professionals and retailers in Asia. Themed Asia’s Business Perspective this year, AFS 2014 participants can look forward to an interactive exchange on the dynamic Asian fashion business landscape by top names in the fashion world.

Please visitwww.asiafashionsummit.com for registration details.

B is for Biotherm Life Plankton Essence

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A cosmetic water that promises to transform the skin in 8 days, Biotherm’s new Life Plankton Essence has the highest concentration of the brand’s iconic ingredient, Life Plankton, in every bottle. At 5%, Life Plankton has been shown to soothe symptoms of atopic dermatitis. In 8 days, you will see and feel skin that is … wait for it … UP TO 3 YEARS YOUNGER! Read our review here!

Biotherm Life Plankton Essence, $78, is available at all Biotherm counters islandwide such as TANGS Orchard.

C is for Cooking Classes with My Little Spanish Place

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Love Spanish food? Then don’t miss this chance to learn from the masters! Chefs Maria Sevillano and Edward Esmero of My Little Spanish Place will be conducting a cooking class at ToTT on 25 May, 2014, 2pm. This hour-long class will teach you how to make meatballs and Spanish mussels in spicy sauce. For more information, go to http://content.tottstore.com/classes

MATERIAL WORLD HAS 8 PAIRS OF TICKETS, WORTH OVER $600, TO THIS COOKING CLASS TO GIVE AWAY. 

To win a pair, simply follow these steps:

1. In the Comments section, answer this question: “Which restaurant are the chefs from?”

2. Share this post and tag the friend you’ll be bringing. Tag “Material World” too.

3. Email your details (name, NRIC, age and email address) to general@materialworld.com.sg by 15 May 2014.  

This contest is only open to fans of Material World, so please like our page here.

D is for Dolce

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Dolce & Gabbana’s perfumes tend to be complex, heady affairs, which is why it’s surprising that they’ve pared it down so much for Dolce, their latest fragrance. It is a fresh, feminine mix of white flowers that leaves a trail of light woods and earthy tones. The dry-down is musky, with hints of sandalwood. As it is not too overpowering, it’s a great scent of everyday use.

Dolce & Gabbana Dolce retails from $99 and is available at all major department stores and perfumeries.

E is for Epilator

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Hair removal can be messy and painful, but not if you use Panasonic’s 6-in-1 Wet/Dry Epilator. It comes with two hair removal discs to pull your hair out quickly from the root, leaving you with smooth, caressable skin. Bonus: it comes with an LED light to illuminates your skin so it’s easierto spot stray hairs.

Panasonic 6-in-1 Wet/Dry Epilator ES-ED90 retails for $169 and is available at Best Denki, selected Courts and Harvey Norman outlets, Isetan Scotts, OG, Takashimaya DS., Tangs Orchard and other authorised Panasonic dealers

F is for Foodpanda

If you’ve yet to try this nifty food delivery service, Mother’s Day is a great time to get started! Available online at www.foodpanda.sg or via their mobile app, take your pick from restaurants like Napolizz, Yum Cha, and Indian Curry House and enjoy piping hot gourmet nosh in the comfort of your own home.

G is for Givenchy Prisme Libre

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One Prisme Libre is sold every 2 seconds worldwide! This bestselling loose powder has a new texture where pigments are more lightweight, thanks to an atomisation technology, which allows it to glide evenly onto skin for an ultra-natural effect with a luminous yet matte finish. Also, check out the new Poudre Premiere, a loose powder like Prisme Libre but in a universal shade that will give any skin tone a radiant finish.

Both Prisme Libre and Poudre Premiere retail at $86 each and are available at Givenchy counters at Robinsons Orchard, Isetan Scotts and Sephora ION.

H is for Hair Loss

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Hair loss in women is more common than you think, and can be attributed to factors such as hormonal disorders, an overly strict diet, stress, and a lot more. If you’re suffering from hair loss, you need a specialised haircare regime to deal with the problem. In addition to using a shampoo for hair loss, try the Apivita Propoline Hair Loss Treatment For Women. It has lupin proteins, vitamins and laurel to encourage hair growth and strengthen your hair, as well as antioxidants to guard your hair follicles against premature ageing.

Apivita Propoline Hair Loss Treatment For Women is available at all Apivita stores.

I is for Indocafe

Your mum has always been there for you, through thick and thin. Show her how much you appreciate her love and support by treating her to a Mother’s Day meal at Indocafe. Some of the dishes she’ll enjoy on this special set menu include the addictive Keluak Money Bag, a deep-fried dumpling stuffed with minced pork and buah keluak, as well as the Otak Pangang, which is cod blended with prawn, and chargrilled to smoky perfection.

The Indocafe Mother’s Day Set Menu is priced from $328 (for four). Indocafe is at 35 Scotts Road. Tel: 6733 2656.  

J is for Jabra’s Rox Wireless

If you feel out of sorts when you don’t have your music player and earphones with you while you’re out and about, these in-ear stereo wireless earphones are just what you’re looking for. The winner of Red Dot: Product Design 2014 award for excellence, Jabra Rox Wireless is modelled after the professional in-ear monitors used by musicians when they perform on stage. It features Dolby Digital Plus sound enhancement, bringing full-spectrum sound and maximum bass performance for your listening pleasure. For more information and its complete features, click here.

Jabra Rox Wireless retails at $168 and is available at Apple premium resellers, Epicentre, Gadget World, Infinite, iStudio, Nubox, Tech@Vogue, selected Challenger stores and other authorised Jabra resellers.

K is for King of Fruit

Durian fans, rejoice! Goodwood Park Hotel’s annual Durian Fiesta 2014 returns, and this year’s highlights include a decadent Durian Gula Melaka Roll, as well as delicate pastries such as Mini Durian Charlotte – a “sandwich” made with Boudoir biscuits. From May 31 to July 13, you can also enjoy a sumptuous durian buffet for lunch and dinner. Yummy!

The Durian Fiesta promotion is available daily from now till July 13, 2014 at Goodwood Park Hotel.

L is for Little Voice

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Fans of musicals, you wouldn’t want to miss Pangdemonium’s latest production, “The Rise & Fall of Little Voice”. It follows the tumultuous journey of a shy girl named LV (Mina Kaye) – short for Little Voice. After her father passed away when she was little, her mother Mari (Denise Tan) loses herself to alcohol and becomes detached. With no one to turn to, LV seeks comfort in listening to her dad’s old records, doing pitch-perfect impersonations of divas like Edith Piaf and Judy Garland. When Mari starts seeing sleazy “talent scout” Ray Ray (Adrian Pang), LV’s life takes a dramatic turn. Read our interview with Denise Tan here.

The Rise & Fall of Little Voice opens May 2 and runs through May 18, at Drama Centre Theatre. Tickets, from $30, are available at Sistic.

M is for Mummy Dearest

Don’t forget to shower your mum with extra tender loving care this Mother’s Day! If you’re a mum, check out our Material Moms section specially dedicated to you. Containing articles written by our pool of mummy contributors, this section is chockfull of useful parenting tips and information for you and your precious ones. Happy Mother’s Day! 🙂

N is for Nail Stickers

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Decorate your nails with these Mika for Shu nail stickers! A collaboration between Japanese photographer/film director Mika Ninagawa and Shu Uemura, this limited edition series also includes the brand’s legendary cleansing oils, UV under base, a pressed powder compact, eye shadow duos, two shades of tint-in gelato and false eyelashes.

Available at all Shu Uemura counters islandwide such as TANGS Orchard and Robinsons Orchard.

O is for Omakase Sets at Sushi Kou

Sushi Kou - Special Kaisen Don Set

If you work around the Tanjong Pagar area, you need to check out this year-old Japanese restaurant located at Orchid Hotel. These value-for-money set meals are available for $50, $80, and $100 (minimum order of two sets), and are available for lunch and dinner. During our media tasting, the sashimi we sampled was some of the freshest and most flavourful we’ve ever had outside of Japan. At Sushi Kou, the fish are flown in twice a week from a few trusted suppliers in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Hokkaido. With Omakase sets, you never really know what’s on the menu but with Tokyo-native Chef-Owner Koda Naokatsu at the helm, you’ll know your belly is in for a good time.

Sushi Kou is located at 1 Tras Link, #01-16 Orchid Hotel, Tel: 6444 8433

P is for Pop-up Restaurant

STORIES is a first-of-its-kind dining concept that celebrates iconic events and history of Singapore. This pop-up restaurant takes diners on a journey of food prepared by leading Singapore-based chefs who complement your meal with interesting historical and cultural anecdotes about our little island. For more information, click here.

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R is for Remarkably Soft Hair

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For a hair-changing experience, be sure to check out Shiseido Professional’s new THC Salon Solution Treatment. After years of extensive research, Shiseido Professional has found that coarse, damaged hair is the result of the buildup of calcium ion – which can be found in tap water. With this breakthrough discovery, they designed a five-step treatment to remove the accumulated calcium ions and prevent reabsorption, leaving you with a head of healthy, shiny locks. Founder Lili was invited to experience the treatment: “The results are truly amazing. After each step, I could feel the difference in my hair texture. The best thing is, my hair remained soft and bouncy for several weeks after the treatment! I kid you not! It is hairapeutic, indeed.”

The THC Salon Solution Treatment is an in-salon treatment. For salon listings, please call 6739 8639.

S is for Spot Eraser

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Wish you could do something to the dark spots on your skin? Try the new Sulwhasoo Snowise EX Whitening Spot Serum! The result of ginseng cosmetics research since 1966, this spot serum not only targets visible dark spots but also improves the condition of the skin surrounding them and prevents the formation and spreading of dark spots.

Sulwhasoo Snowise EX Whitening Spot Serum retails at $208 (35ml) and is available at Tangs Orchard, Tangs VivoCity, Takashimaya Department Store and Robinsons Orchard.

T is for ToTT Mother’s Day Sale

You’ve got till May 13 to grab some awesome deals from ToTT! With great deals both online and instore, this is the perfect time to buy something for Mum. With up to 50% discount off selected items, even those not into cooking will be tempted. Visit ToTT’s online store at www.tottstore.com or drop by the store at 896 Dunearn Road.

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V is for Vitamins For Your Skin

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We are willing to bet our last dollar that you’ll fall in love with this oil-free night cream from Origins! Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins is bursting with skin-fortifying antioxidants that renew and rejuvenate your skin while you’re asleep. For those who’ve always have to toss and turn before they fall asleep, this cream has been shown to immediately reduce feelings of tension and aid users in getting a more restful, tranquil night’s sleep. You’ll love its deliciously relaxing scent too!

Origins High-Potency Night-A-Mins, $55, is now available at all Origins counters islandwide.

W is for Westgate

Who says the East is the only happening part of Singapore? Westgate, which is located in the drastically transformed Jurong East, now boasts brands such as Kate Spade Saturday, Nara Thai Cuisine, and Tim Ho Wan.

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Y is for Yuzucha Beer

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Local beer brewer Archipelago Brewery has launched their seasonal limited edition brew, Yuzucha Beer. Collaborating with Gryphon Tea Company, this tea-infused beer is a refreshing blend of low hop flavours and sweet citrusy Yuzu notes. Vanessa tried this on a hot day and is pleased to report it’s indeed a refreshing thirst-quencher!

Z is for Zaniest Selfie Challenge, Ever

Our selfie-loving culture has taken a new level of crazy. Manchester United’s Rio Ferdinand and Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero will battling it out on the streets of Singapore in a selfie challenge using the new Samsung Galaxy S5 LTE. Yeah, for real. As part of SingTel Game On!, the two rivals will have to complete certain Singaporean activities – eat durians, perhaps? – then capture selfies and share them on Twitter. Have some ideas on the type of activities they can do? Tweet your suggestions and include the hashtag #SGGameOn. You’ll stand a chance to win passes to an exclusive dinner with the footballers!

SingTel Game On!, organised by SingTel and Samsung, will be taking place on May 15 & 16. Visit www.singtel.com/gameon for more information.

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Food News, Lifestyle

Food Review: HAM-Made Brunch at My Little Spanish Place – Vanessa Tai

You don’t have to travel to Spain to enjoy delicious, authentic Spanish cuisine. Tucked away along Bukit Timah Road is a small but thriving Spanish restaurant that dishes out the most mouthwatering Spanish dishes. We try their seasonal brunch menu. 

Having lived in the west for most of our lives, Deborah and I were perplexed as to why we’ve never dined at My Little Spanish Place before. Nonetheless, we were chuffed to try out their new ham-inspired brunch menu. This cosy home-style restaurant has been humming along for three years now, and in celebration of its third anniversary, the chefs are proud to launch “Singapore’s most complete Jamón bar”.

Jamón refers to Spanish dry-cured ham, and is known for its distinctive, nuanced flavours. Jamón Iberico is probably the most famous type of these hams, and are produced from pigs raised on an indulgent diet of barley, maize, herbs, and acorns. The hams are cured for between 24 to 36 months, creating a beautifully smooth and creamy texture. My Little Spanish Place’s Jamón bar is styled like a typical gourmet charcuterie you’ll find in Spain, with legs of Jamón on display and the ham carved upon order. 

Chef Maria Sevillano says, “We want to introduce this unique Spanish tradition of enjoying freshly carved Jamón instead of buying them in packs off the shelves. The flavours, as well as the experience, are very different”.

Torrada de Esparragos, $20

Torrada de Esparragos, $20

We indeed tasted the difference when we sat down for our HAM-made brunch one Saturday afternoon. The first dish we tried was the Torrada de Esparragos (grilled asparagus with Jamón and fried eggs served atop toasted country bread). The breads you get at My Little Spanish Place have been imported from Barcelona, as they are fluffier and lighter than regular breads, and are a good accompaniment to robust sauces and meats. We loved how fresh everything tasted, especially the Jamón. It has a slightly sweet, nutty flavour with buttery undertones, and is melt-in-your-mouth amazing.

Coca de Cebolla con Pimientos Y Anchos, $24

Coca de Cebolla con Pimientos Y Anchos, $24

Our next dish was the Coca de Cebolla con Pimientos Y Anchoas, which is a construction of caramelised onions, rocket leaves, anchovies, and Manchego cheese atop traditional Catamalan flatbread toast. Deborah and I took one bite of the toast, and our eyes simultaneously widened. It was mind-bogglingly delicious! All the ingredients are carefully thought out to complement each other – the saltiness of the anchovies are especially well-tempered by the sweetness of the caramelised onions. You can be assured that you won’t be getting any ol’ anchovies here. The anchovies served at My Little Spanish Place are filetted by hand before being marinated in a blend of olive oil and mashed anchovies’ heads. The result is a rich briny flavour that enhances the flavours of the other ingredients.

Finally, we tried the Bocadillo Cerdo Desmenuzado, a dish of Spanish braised pulled pork, sliced tomatoes and cucumber served atop toasted baguette. The pulled pork was incredibly tender and juicy. Fair warning: be prepared for things to get a little messy! By the time Deborah and I were done with our meal, our lips were streaked with meat juices but we were oh-so-satisfied. For desserts, take your pick from an assortment of homemade traditional desserts such as the Tarta de Chocolate, which comes with three layers of rich chocolate, or the Churros Con Chocolate, which is made with a brand new imported churros machine.

The chefs at My Little Spanish Place change the brunch menu every three months, so be sure not to miss this sublime HAM-made brunch!

My Little Spanish Place is located at 619 Bukit Timah Road, Tel: 6463 2810. The brunch menu is available on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays from 9.30am to 3.30pm. 

Material World was invited for a tasting at My Little Spanish Place and was not paid for this review. All opinions are the author’s own.

About The Author: Vanessa Tai is a founder of Material World who has previously worked on magazines Simply Her and Cosmopolitan Singapore. Now a freelance writer and a full-time contributor to this website, the 26-year-old dreams of attending every single major music festival before she turns 30. Follow her on Twitter @VannTaiTweets.

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