We were invited to the launch of the brand new family-friendly spot in East Coast Park known as Parkland Green. National Parks’ latest efforts to rejuvenate the green spaces in our City in a Garden has certainly hit the mark with families. It comprises of 8 dining establishments, 2 sports shops and a laser tag arena. A large open lawn between the sea and the restaurants allow for outdoor activities like kite-flying, ball games and picnics to be enjoyed. Here is a run-down of some of the dining and retail shops we visited.
1. Atmosphere Bistro
We started off our food trail at Atmosphere Bistro, a seaside dining concept catering to families in the day and transforming into a sports bar at night. For the month of December, they offer Kids Pizza making workshops every Tuesday from 5.30pm to 7pm. Tel: 64409705
|BBQ Pork Ribs, Mini Burgers, Flaming Pizza
The kids were served Iced Chocolate and were amused by the very cute latte art.
|3D latte art
Their chocolate lava cake was very yummy, and the kids attacked it with relish, not knowing we were in for a whole afternoon of other delectable delights.
|Charcoal grilled cola marinated chicken wings
3. Patro’s Sports Bar & Restaurant
We moved along to Patro’s Sports Bar & Restaurant, which serves Mexican & North Indian cuisine. I found the standard of the food to be really good, but was a little doubtful that my kids would like it. Turns out they said it was delicious! From now until 21 December 2014, kids enjoy one-for-one main course from the kids’ menu.
4. Bakery Bar ST. MARC
I was quite stuffed by now, but there were still a few more stops to go. Next up was Bakery & Bar St. Marc, and here at their Parkland Green outlet, they serve All-day dining with Japanese fusion cuisine. The kids managed to run around between the stops and had space in their tummies to chomp down these chocolate croissants. I tried a bite, and must say that they do taste quite good! I will be back next time for a proper tea and have a whole Chococro to myself.
The lovely wait staff came around with plates of their signature Spaghetti Carbonara, but we had to pass on it. I saw some of the other kids clean up their plate, so it must have been good. Currently, they are having discounts on any 2 waffle cone desserts on weekdays from 11am to 5pm, valid till 29 December 2014. (Closed on Mondays. Tel: 63421786)
I can just imagine this place on the weekends, with kids happily playing in the open green fields while the parents relax at the cafes with good food and drinks. My idea of a perfect day. Now I wish I lived back in the East.
Next, we were ushered to Pick me up Cafe, an artisan cafe offering healthy home-made yogurt gelato and an all-day breakfast menu. We were served their signature Smoked Salmon on Miso Waffles and The Manuka Waffles (Chef Waffles).
|Pick me up Cafe
This needs no introduction, and was a favourite with the older kids. I tried to keep my children away from caffeine for as long as I could but once they entered the P6/Sec1 age, the ‘cool’ thing to drink seems to be Starbucks coffee. Naturally they were delighted when the friendly staff came out with trays of drinks.
|Toffee Nut Latte, Christmas Tree Danish
They have both indoor and outdoor seating, and I would say this is their best outlet to chill at, being right by the seaside.
Last on our food trail was Killiney Kopitiam, which boasts an interesting concept. This is the first time Cheers is collaborating with Killiney Kopitiam to offer affordable food coupled with a convenience store to serve their customers better. Expect to find the usual popular local dishes here such as Mee Siam, Laksa, Mee Rebus and Curry Chicken. The cafe opens until 10pm, while Cheers is open 24 hours on weekends. From now till 1 Jan 2015, they are offering discounts on their toast sets.
|Killiney Kopitiam and Cheers
And finally, we were done with the food stops and moved on to what the kids had been waiting for.
8. Tag Team
This is Singapore’s largest indoor laser tag arena, and the first and only multi-arena and multi-weapon laser tag facility. Just the thing to help us digest all that food.
I normally don’t join them in such physical activities (yes, yes, I have to stop being lazy) but it looked pretty harmless and 1 arena lasts for 15 minutes. That, I can manage. We broke up into 2 teams (I joined the other team as they were short of 1 player) and my kids had a field day shooting the mummies down. Yup, our team lost. Well, the 3 year old gave up her gun halfway as it was too heavy for her, and the 2 other mummies with toddlers in tow were no match for my very energetic kids swarming around us. Ok, I’m starting to sound like a spoilsport.
It was surprisingly good fun and I was tired after the short 15 minutes of running around in wedges (Btw, they are not particular about footwear. You can even go barefoot if you wish). The kids went on to the next arena (which was air-conditioned) while I waited outside. Kids from as young as 4 are allowed to play, but they would have to be motivated enough to carry the slightly heavy gun for 15 minutes. If your kid can carry a thick dictionary and run around the house, I’m sure he’ll do fine. All my kids enjoyed themselves thoroughly, even the older girls. For the month of December, they are offering family packages with a discount on 5 ‘mission’ tickets.
To avoid disappointment in case they are closed for private events, do call them beforehand. Tel: 63482696
|Practising his aim
9. Hvper Sport
This huge sports shop specialises in skating products, and they carry a wide array of scooters, skateboards and inline skates. They also have lots of beach toys, and other sporting accessories. With our $50 voucher, #3 got a good quality water bottle, a hammock and a ball for Kate.
They stock a mind-boggling array of bicycles, balance bikes, scooters and safety gear, for children and adults. They carry the local brand Valo with bikes starting from $115, as well as the French brand Cronus with bikes starting from $185. What sets them apart is that they encourage their customers to try out their products before buying. All the bloggers’ kids were happily riding round and round their shop!
They also provide bicycle repair services (even for bikes not bought from them) and they have an outdoor bicycle tyre pumping facility which is available 24/7. For the month of December, they are offering 20% off all bicycles storewide. I spotted this really cool looking pink bicycle going at $105. Pretty reasonable considering the bicycles we bought from the HDB shops cost us about $90 each. Would have bought this if Kate was older!
To be honest, the last time we went to East Coast Park for a day out with the kids was probably 4 or 5 years ago. I don’t like crowds and prefer to take them cycling at less populated parks. With the new Parkland Green amenities facing the sea and the great food options, we will definitely be back very soon!
920 East Coast Parkway
Disclaimer: We were sponsored this Food and Fun trail by NParks and the participating establishments. All opinions are my own.