Friday, January 13, 2012

Our Accommodation in Singapore

I get to Imperial this morning, and Alejandro says to me, "I hear you've started a blog about Singapore."

Wow. Word really travels fast! Then he asks, "So what are you going to do in Singapore?"

"My blog," I say.

He chuckles. "Maybe you could make some more Kelly's Cookies."

"I would, but there's no stove or oven in our apartment in Singapore."

It's true! Dear readers, have you ever heard of such a stupidity? No stove or oven in an apartment! I only managed to uncover this hidden information by digging through the FAQs under "Services and Utilities - Is Cooking Allowed?" on the Scholars Residence website.

Maybe I should explain that the Professor at NTU, Nanyang Technological University who invited Julius to work out there has kindly arranged housing for us, which makes our lives soo much easier. I've heard horror stories about finding accommodation in Singapore. There's apparently quite a bit of discrimination against non Singaporeans, and housing is even more expensive than in London. For example, I found an ad for an apartment which said "sorry Indian".

The apartment we've already got lined up in Singapore is in the Jurong area, and is only 7km or 15 minutes driving distance from where Julius will be working. It's also relatively cheap at S$1750/month including utilities. We get a master bedroom with ensuite bathroom, but we have to share the apartment with 2 other people we've never met.

I must say that I'm not looking forward to sharing an apartment with other people, as I feel like I've "been there, done that." As Julius and I have had our own awesome 1 bed flat in Soho for the past year, it's going to be hard going back to sharing. The added bonus of not having cooking facilities makes this prospect even more exciting. At least we'll have an excuse to eat out every day, which I've heard from numerous sources is common practice in Singapore.

So dear readers, you can expect lots of forthcoming food photography from Singapore and other far flung territories in the months to come! I just hope my stomach can handle it...


  1. Yah! You took my advice about the blog and what a natural you are. Plus now I get to hear all about your adventure while I am here in London, lonely without you!

  2. Thanks Becky! I'll miss you too!!!!

  3. Hi
    I am from India and I am going to attend School of Design and Environment from August 2013 at NUS. I am considering staying at Scholar's Residence. Please tell me , how are you liking it?
    The website does not have a direct link to make bookings so what is the procedure make bookings.
    Thanx in advance
    new Delhi

    1. Hi Priyam,

      Thanks for your comment. There are pros and cons to Scholars Residence. The pros are: You can book the room in advance before travelling to Singapore by emailing them or calling them on the phone. Tel: (65) 6264 6117; E-mail: The flats are minimally furnished and close to Lakeside MRT station. There is also a nice view of the lake and downtown Singapore.

      The cons are: There's no stove or oven so you cannot cook anything but toast or plug in a rice cooker/steamer. The rooms are overpriced. The location isn't convenient to get downtown because Lakeside is about 40 minutes away by MRT, but it isn't too long of a journey to get to NUS, although I think you need to take the MRT and then get a bus. The street below Scholars Residence is also quite noisy in the morning with traffic, and when it was windy the wind would whistle through the apartment, which I found annoying as it was quite loud! There aren't many shops nearby, nor a good hawker center nearby (you have to take the MRT or bus to Boon Lay).

      If I were you, I would try to find an apartment in the Holland Village area, which is a bit more lively and more conveniently located to NUS, as well as closer to the center of town. There is more risk involved in this however, because I'm not sure how difficult it will be to find something before you arrive. You may have to stay in a hotel for a few days whilst looking for a place, which could be expensive. I have also heard that it may be difficult for Indians to find accommodation as some people do not want to rent to Indians, but if you're a single female it should be easier than if you're a male.

      Good luck, Priyam, and let me know how things works out!


  4. hello :)
    I'm Korean. I am going to go to NTU as an exchange student next month and I stay 4 month. However, though it left less than 1 month, I couldn't get the dormitory hall. It's a very depressing news.
    The reason why I expected to get along with lots of exchange students with roomate and their programs in the dorm.
    Anyway, so now I have to find my accomodation.
    In NTU homepage, there were 3 places recommened and Scholars Residence is one of them.
    Is it far from NTU(not convinient to go out including school such as shopping, eating places.)
    how was the facility of the residence and is there any option about the roomate in residence?
    morever what if I should come to be back late?
    and so on ....
    Considering an university student's life, could you tell me any advice? ? please.
    And Thank you.

    1. Hi Daun Jung. Sorry for not getting back to you sooner! I hope I'm not too late.

      Let me respond to your questions as best I can... You cannot choose your roommates at Scholars Residence unless you have a friend you want to move with. You can, however, go home late without a problem because you'll have your own key to the apartment and your room. However, to get to NTU it is not the most convenient, because you have to take the MRT (metro) to Boon Lay and then take a bus, but it wasn't that bad because it only took 30 minutes to get there. Scholar's Residence is at Lakeside MRT, which is more convenient for getting downtown than if you lived closer to NTU, so you have to ask yourself the question "Do I want to be as close as possible to NTU, or do I want to be closer to downtown?" I think if you're a student and you will be spending most of your time at NTU, it will be better for you to be as close to campus as possible where you can make more student friends and have a shorter daily commute to campus! If you can't find anything closer to NTU than Scholar's Residence, I think it's a good choice, at least initially. Good luck!!!

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