Ever wanted to dive into Singapore’s original hipster ‘hood? Here's how to absolutely smash it with the kids...
Haji Lane you say? For families? Not just for hipsters and beautiful young thangs? Yup: we’re tellin’ ya straight up that this cooler-than-ice pocket of town is the place to hang out no matter what your age or trend-factor. So if you are looking for a new family-friendly ‘hood to mingle in, then we’ve found top-notch spots from mum and daughter pedi sessions to a cafe full of cats, kid-friendly dining options to some seriously awesome vintage fashion picks around Haji Lane, Arab Street and Kampong Glam…
Meomi Cat Cafe
Coffee and cats all in one hit: this purr-fect little cafe will have the whole family feline happy where kiddos age six and up are welcome to come hang out with the mogs while you grab a slice of cake and a coffee.
Meomi Cat Cafe, 668 North Bridge Road, Singapore 188801; www.facebook.com/meomicatcafe
If the kids are looking for a sugar rush, then you’ll love this sneakily healthy option: Al’Frank cookies are flourless and made with quality oatmeal that’s freshly ground by hand. The children will never know they’re being fed a guilt-free treat and these cookies are delish (we’ve tried them on your behalf: you’re welcome).
Al’Frank Cookies, 12 Haji Lane, Singapore 189205; www.alfrankcookies.com
The Singapura Club
Stop off for lunch at the hippest joint on Haji Lane and chow down on fried chicken, Hainanese chicken rice balls and lamb in a bun: all washed down with a Milo-based cocktail (not suitable for kiddos!) We say leave the small humans at home and head here for date night if you can.
The Singapura Club, 26 Haji Lane, Singapore 189219: www.facebook.com/thesingapuraclub
Eat Play Love
You can’t go wrong with a crafter-noon of fun and food at Eat Play Love: Expect delicious Thai and Western food with a side-order of craft activities for the kiddos.
Eat Play Love, 28 Aliwal Street #01-07 Singapore 199918; www.eatplaylove.com.sg
The world-wide selfie obsession doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon, and we’re loving the ultimate narcissistic cuppa coffee: the selfie coffee. Use the props and snap a wefie with the kids which will then be drop-boxed straight onto your foam coffee cup. Bonus points for the doodle tables where the kids can scribble while you enjoy your caffeine fix and light-bite lunch.
Selfie Coffee, 11 Haji Lane, Singapore 189204; www.facebook.com/selfiecoffeesg
Alaturka Mediterranean and Turkish Restaurant
If it’s a taste of the Middle East or Mediterranean you’re craving, then we’ve long been fans of the delicious kebabs, mezze and platters at Alaturka. Plus it has high chairs!
Alaturka, 15 Bussorah St, Singapore 199436; www.alaturka.com.sg
For a sweet treat, grab a slice of pie from Windowsill Pies to keep you going long into the afternoon. With flavours including Smores, pecan and pumpkin and morello cherry, deciding what to plump for could be the toughest decision of your day. Our advice? Try them all! Dine in or take out.
Windowsill Pies, 17 Haji Lane, www.windowsillpies.sg
This Halal-certified sub sandwich bar flung open its doors recently with a great menu packed with international and local flavours. Chilli rendang sub, anyone?
Street Submarine, 34 Haji Lane, Singapore 189227; www.instagram.com/streetsubmarine
A SPOT OF POST-LUNCH SHOPPING
Life By Design
Harry Potter fans will love the chance to check out Life by Design, where aside from tarot cards and healing crystals, you’ll find actual spell books!
Life By Design, 43 Haji Lane, Singapore 189236; www.designyourlifecm.com/home
Luca & Vic
If you are looking for some lovely unique toys a step away from your usual go-to sets of LEGO, then Luca & Vic is perfect for both the young, and the young-at-heart. We’re talking little crafty finds and wind up toys, metallic pedal cars and Elmo plushies: This place has it all.
Luca & Vic, 29 Haji Lane, Singapore 189222; www.luca-vic.com
Hi Grace 66
Kids can help you choose quirky, vintage inspired home decor and gorgeous threads in this Insta-swoonworthy boutique fashion and homeware shop.
Hi Grace 66, 66 Haji Lane, Singapore, 189259; www.facebook.com/higracesg
For everything from leather bags to vintage TV sets, retro cameras to funky fashion, colourful Spoil market has it all. This place is a veritable treasure trove for anyone who loves browsing through knick knacks and collectibles.
Spoilmarket, 74 Haji Lane, Singapore; www.facebook.com/Spoilmarket
Turkish Mosaic Lamp
If you’re looking to jazz up your decor, or add a splash of colour to your kiddo’s bedroom, you’ll definitely find something fabulous when it comes to lamps and lighting at Turkish Mosaic Lamp. Pretty!
99 Percent Hair Studio
We have it on good authority (from the hipster Honeycombers in the office) that 99 Percent Hair Studio is where we should be heading along Haji for a good hair day.
99 Percent Hair Studio, 40 Haji Lane, Singapore 189233; www.99percenthairstudio.com.sg/
The Nail Social
Not only does the The Nail Social offer super spiffy manis and pedis with a relaxing vibe, but it’s committed to giving back to charities including Beyond Social Services. Kids will love the iPads with Netflix attached to every chair!
The Nail Social, 42A Haji Lane, Singapore 189235; www.thenailsocial.co
Leave dad in the cat cafe with the kids while you sneak off for a quick and affordable facial or body massage at J. Studios. You deserve it, mum.
J. Studios, 31 Haji Lane, Singapore 189224; www.jstudios.com.sg
Treat your small dudes to a pampering sesh at seriously cool Liem Barbers. With its top notch reviews, its own products, awesome cuts and attention to detail, this is definitely a hairdressers the kids will love as much as you will the results. No pudding basin cuts in sight.
Liem Barbers, 48 #02-01 Haji Lane, Singapore; www.facebook.com/Liem-Barber-Shop-In-Singapore
KEEP THE KIDDOS BUSY
The Malay Heritage Centre
Learning made fun is the name of the game over at the Malay Heritage Centre where the whole family will love finding out about Malay culture here in Singapore. Expect different interactive and hands-on exhibitions throughout the year.
Malay Heritage Centre, 85 Sultan Gate Singapore 198501; www.malayheritage.org.sg/en
We’ve been collecting some of the gorgeous creations from the Elephant Parade for some time now, so were super happy to find out it has set up a permanent shop in Haji Lane. This social enterprise runs the world’s largest art exhibition of decorated elephant statues, often designed by celebs as well as artists. Not only is this store packed with beautiful ‘phants of all shapes and sizes (durian shaped elephant, anyone?), but there is also a craft corner for kiddos – and adults – to paint (and bring home) their very own masterpiece. Priced at $49, this is the perfect reward for dragging them into one shop too many, and the staff are immeasurably helpful too. This is officially our new favourite hang out.
Elephant Parade, 30 Haji Lane, www.elephantparade.com
Lead Image: Tracy Tristram
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