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Manekineko: K Box, reinvented

Back in the early 2000s, the name K Box, to Singaporeans, was perhaps synonymous with karaoke. It offered decent prices relative to its competitors like Party World KTV, had many outlets islandwide, possessed the latest the largest song collection and also served meals, tidbits and refreshments.

Then, Teo Heng burst into the scene around 2007 with its first outlet at Katong Shopping Centre. It offered a no-frills concept, charging by room size instead of per pax, at far more affordable rates. While it didn’t offer any food or beverages, it allowed you to bring in your own food and (non-alcoholic) drinks,  a trade-off most people are more than happy to accept. Originally situated at less accessible places like Katong and Sembawang, it has since expanded to places such as JCube, Rendezvous Hotel and Suntec City. Today, it’s safe to say that Teo Heng has displaced K Box as the first thing that comes to mind when you say ‘karaoke’.

Meanwhile, K Box went through some tough times. Many of its outlets were shuttered, perhaps due to poor business, and it made the news in 2014 for the wrong reason–hackers managed to access K Box’s database and leaked personal particulars of its 300,000 members.

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Christmas Wonderland at Gardens by the Bay – Mini Photo Essay

Unlike the two previous editions of Christmas Wonderland, this year’s edition charges an entrance fee ranging from $4 to $8. Call it human psychology, but Christmas Wonderland feels a little more appealing with an entrance fee put in place. You would expect a ticketed event to be better organised, with a line-up of activities and food in a carvinal-like atmosphere, rather than what seems to be little more than an over-glorified Christmas display.

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My 1st Jay Chou Concert — Great Start, Lacklustre Finish

Like most other Singaporean Chinese teens in the mid-2000s (or at least those who listened to Mandopop), Jay Chou was a constant in my playlist. Don’t ask me how–but I ended up having every of his albums in my iPod then.

I never got a chance to attend his concerts, though. Maybe I wasn’t that big of a fan, or perhaps his tickets were just too expensive. Meanwhile, I made do by listening to his concert CDs, which I enjoyed very much, because of the way he would try to sing the song in a slightly different way each time.

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Game of Thrones: The Winds of Winter — A Fitting Finale

Spoiler Alert: Winter Is Here.

What a finale. The Winds of Winter was by far, if not the best, one of the best episodes of Game of Thrones ever. Instead of leaving us with a cliffhanger (is Jon Snow dead or alive?), the episode deftly tied up most of the loose ends and for once, provided more answers than questions. … Read more

Batman v Superman: Still a Better Movie Than Deadpool

The first movie I watched in 2016 was Deadpool. Due to work commitments, it had been a while since I last watched a movie, so I was hoping it would be a great one. In the end, I left the theatre feeling the same way I did after watching Green Lantern–completely underwhelmed (Note to self: … Read more

i Light Marina Bay — Carnival of Lights

The 4th edition of i Light Marina Bay (iLBM), held once every two years since 2010 (and slated to be an annual event starting from 2016), is currently underway until 27th March. Billed as Asia’s leading sustainable light art festival, you’ll find some pretty interesting light art pieces as well as a carnival area, featuring … Read more

Amusement Rides — Making a Comeback in Pasar Malams

Roving night markets, more popularly known as pasar malams, are a common sight across Singapore. Whenever I come across one, I would invariably stop by and grab a snack or two. I’d also grab a Ramly burger if I was especially hungry or if I wanted to keep it for supper after a long study session at home.

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Netflix Comes to Singapore. How Good Is It?

After a long wait, Netflix has finally made its way to our shores (and 129 others). From $10.98/month (or $13.98 for HD, which should be the no-brainer option for most), it’s about the cost of an additional entertainment package from StarHub or Singtel. With the option of a one-month free trial, I decided to check … Read more

The Force Awakens — My First Star Wars Experience

When Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope was released, I wasn’t even born yet. In fact, I was so far away from being born that I may have watched it in my past life. I was in primary school when the prequel trilogy first came out, but for some reason it barely registered on my radar. And there goes: I had never watched a Star Wars movie in my life before.

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