Singapore is well known for its food, and there are simply too many options out there (as well as copy-and-paste indie cafes). Apart from the spectacular fare of local food, there are also new concepts popping up, ideas to push boundaries and reinvent the familiar. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed from the wide range of choices, especially for a traveller.
Spoilt for choices and don’t know where to go? From having dinner on a floating restaurant to dining on a moving bus, we bring you some of the most unique dining concepts in Singapore to help you out.
Dine in the Garden of Eden
Based on a story of two lovers who braved many dangers and ran away to escape their enemies, Blisshouse is built after the beautiful Garden of Eden, where the lovers eventually sought safety in. The entire restaurant has an ethereal atmosphere, with sections carpeted with faux grass and draped from floor to ceiling in white roses.
Blisshouse is also fitted with indoor pavilions, a vine-draped carriage and props for you to snap that perfect Instagram shot with. If you love the idea of dining al-fresco in a garden but hate the idea of being subjected to Singapore’s heat, Blisshouse is the place for you. Food is not just an afterthought here, and the restaurant serves up a variety of yummy Western fare.
Dine in complete darkness
Nox is a dining experience where you are seated in a pitch black room and put food in your mouth in complete darkness. You might not walk out with any Instagram-worthy photos of Nox or your food – but photos are secondary here when you “lose” your sense of sight.
The servers at Nox are individuals who are blind or visually impaired, specially trained to offer guidance to sighted guests. It is humbling to have the roles reversed and the blind become your eyes. It is also said that your other senses become hyper aware when you cannot see, and it is an interesting experience to rely on just your taste buds to identify what you are eating. Offering much more than just dining, Nox serves up a unique mind-altering sensory experience.
Dine on a floating ship
Previously housing an A&W, the Riverboat was built in 1991 as a replica for the Mississippi steamboats of the 1800’s. Today, Santa Fe Tex-Mex Grill operates off the main deck of Stewords Riverboat at Marina South Pier, where you can dine in a cosy Southern-inspired setting complete with wooden tables, booth seats and old-school Country music.
The restaurant also has a good selection of wines from all over the world to enhance your dining experience, and they hold regular wine tasting events. Feel free to join in after dinner! We must say though, that this is probably not an ideal place for you if you are prone to seasickness and motion sickness.
Dine on a moving bus
The Singapore Gourmet Bus allows patrons to dine on-the-go in a double decker bus without facing the the local penalty of a S$500 fine. Complete with full table settings, plush seats, a kitchen and a bar, the dining service offers both lunch and dinner services. As you feast on their scrumptious meals, the bus will take you on a city tour passing by famous attractions such as Marina Bay Sands, National Gallery and the Singapore Flyer.
At the moment the Gourmet Bus only offers fixed menus. As they are unable to cater to any dietary preferences or make adjustments to the food items, this dining service might not be suitable for you if you have any food allergies. For a detailed description of what is served at their lunch and dinner service, you can refer to their webpage here.
Dine with all your senses
At Project Plait, transcend time and tradition with a modern Singaporean meal interwoven with dance. Expect to have all your senses occupied as you are immersed into this interactive dining experience. Audience participation is essential to make this an immersive experience, and there are usually dance sets to accompany each course of the meal, each with its own story to tell.
Project Plait organises events with different themes each time, so check in on their webpage for updates on the next event.
Dine and paint under one roof
Unleash your inner artist at Cups N Canvas, where food and art come together to provide you with a therapeutic place, away from the hustle and bustle of Singapore. This artsy cafe serves up great coffee with yummy mains and is located on Selegie Road, a stone’s throw away from Laselle College.
Cups N Canvas also doubles up as a art school and budding Van Goghs can come to take art lessons and give painting a shot. If you just want to come for the coffee, you might want to avoid the hours where they hold their sessions as lesser tables might be available.
Dine and fulfill your inner magical desires
Wizards and witches wannabes, maybe you’ve spent many years waiting in vain for a wax sealed letter from a certain magical institution. It’s time to take things into your own hands. Hop on to your broomstick and make a trip to Platform 1094 in Boon Keng!
The wizardry-themed cafe will fulfill your deepest magical desires with its chandelier lights, long wooden tables and a variety of props. Feel free to take as many pictures as you like! Instead of the copy-and-paste cafes that are all over Singapore, Platform 1094 is one that will transport you out of our world and into a fantasy realm.
Dine on a riverboat
You will definitely notice the two tongkangs when you stroll along Clarke Quay – small wooden boats used in the early 19th century to transport goods – sitting on the Singapore River. The last two tongkangs in Singapore, today they are no longer used to carry goods but serve brand new purposes as a restaurant and bar.
At Tongkang Riverboat Dining, patrons can feast on a wide selection of delectable dishes on the Restaurant Boat while taking in the picturesque view of the water and surrounding shophouses. Think seafood platters, wagyu beef and kurobuta pork. After dinner, hop over to the Bar Boat for some drinks to complete the night and take in Singapore’s night view.
Dine with a nomadic restaurant
By “nomadic”, we mean that it doesn’t even have a permanent location, concept or menu. And So Forth is probably the most intriguing dining experience you’ll ever have. You will only know where you’re going on the day itself by following strategic clues to uncover your dining location, and there are no clues about what you will be served.
The dinner includes a one-of-a-kind, interactive theatre experience, and we cannot say more because diners are bound to secrecy after the feast. Its next event from this August to October is titled “The Imaginarium of Disco David”. Details are vague, but expect to take a trip down a series of fantastical rooms, visual orgasms and boogie with Disco David.