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Airports: love them or hate them, they are a necessary part of expat life. If, like me, you have an unfounded fear of missing a flight, then you’re destined to spend an inordinate time at the airport looking to be entertained. And so many airports fall short of this goal. The shops are dull, the food offerings are depressing and there is little else to do apart from jostle for position near to a power point so that I can spend time on my device without it running out of battery. But Changi Airport is different.

It surprises me that, with airports being the first experience of a country, some are so unwelcoming. There are certain countries that seem to actively look for ways to make you feel that you shouldn’t be there! The queues are unbearably long and are followed by intrusive cross-questioning as to why you should be allowed into the country. I answer the questions as politely as I can, all the time while running an internal monologue about how I’d rather be home if I didn’t have to work/see family/visit friends/pass through.

Occasionally, my answers or my attitude haven’t been good enough and I’ve been banished to a “secondary” customs room where phones are banned, officials seemed loath to do their job, and I know that my connecting flight will be leaving without me.

And then there’s the blissful Changi Airport. From the moment I arrive in Singapore, I feel a zen calm descend. Everything seems effortless, especially Arrivals where I sail through automated gates using my thumbprint and find myself getting indignant if my bags haven’t arrived within five minutes of the carousel whirring into action. I also love Departures, not just for the shopping, but for the gardens, beauty rooms and entertainment. I really didn’t think my Changi experience could be topped. Until Terminal 4 opened.

This brand new addition to the airport is a glimpse into the future. From the automated check-in machines dotted around like robots to the funky kinetic artwork inspired by the orchid petal dangling from the ceiling, it is spacious, high-tech and fun. Within ten minutes of checking in, I’d been taught how to make a mojito cocktail, sampled Singaporean craft beer and discussed whiskies with knowledgeable staff. Feeling slightly tipsy, I meandered into the main body of the terminal to be amazed at the stunning shop displays – in particular, the TWG store; it looks like an artwork itself with over a thousand tea canisters stacked seven metres high.

But nothing tops the Heritage Zone, a row of colourful Baroque and Rococo shophouse replicas at the far end of the departure hall. Covering the entire back wall from floor to ceiling, the ground level shops offer local foods and souvenirs; and every half hour the upper floors are lit up with a mini digital theatre show depicting a touching Peranakan love story, so real that I initially thought it was a live show. I watched it from one of the achingly cool chairs dotted around the terminal and felt in airport heaven.

Tell us a tale & win $200

Here’s your chance to get published – and make some money at the same time. We’re looking for 500-word written contributions on any funny, poignant, practical or even controversial topic that touches on expat life in Singapore. Simply email your stories in a Word document to contribute@expatliving.sg and we’ll consider them for inclusion in an upcoming issue.

For more helpful tips head to our living in Singapore section.

20 quirky facts about Singapore

How to prevent and deal with creepy crawlies in your home

Expats share top tips on moving to Singapore

This article first appeared in the February 2018 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy or subscribe so you never miss an issue!

The post Is Changi really the world’s best airport? appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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Whether you have a high-school teen interested in business studies or you’re keen to advance your career with an MBA, there are relevant degree courses on offer at the ESSEC Business School. Here, we check out four popular ones – plus, we provide details of an open house day where you can learn more and have your application fee waived.

About ESSEC Business School

Founded in 1907, this global management school holds accreditation from international organisations such as EQUIS, AACSB and AMBA. The school offers a wide range of management training programmes. With campuses in France, Morocco and Singapore, the school boasts 162 full-time professors, 20 of whom are emeritus professors in France and Singapore and are known for the influence of their research.

#1 Global BBA Happy graduates from the Global BBA

This full-time four-year programme sees 88% of students finding a job within four months of graduating and 4% starting their own companies. It’s also the number one business school in France for its four-year bachelor degree (Le Point 2017, Challenges 2018 and L’Etudiant 2018).

Requirements:

The course is aimed at fresh high school graduates (younger than 25) who wish to pursue an international career. Candidates should have good academic records.

What to expect:

Students will master managerial tools and theories through classes, seminars, work experience, international exposure and getting involved in the student community. Years 1 and 2 are dedicated to foundations in management. All students will take part in a three-month operational internship and a one-month social and humanitarian internship.

Year 2 students can apply for the prestigious IBEA (International Business Education Alliance) Track which is a joint programme between ESSEC and three universities (University of Mannheim, Fundacao Getulio Vargas and University of South Carolina). In Year 3 and 4, students focus on core and elective advanced courses and seminars. They will also choose between an international exchange programme of either six months or one year, or take on a two-year apprenticeship (work/study programme).

“ESSEC builds you an interesting profile that allows you to stand out from the crowd.” – Andreas Stott, Class of 2016

#2 Global MBA
Global MBA students at the Asia Pacific campus in Singapore

The one-year full-time programme is designed for professionals who are looking to fast-track their career, start their own business or enhance their existing skills.

Requirements:

Students require at least three years of post-university working experience, a competitive Graduate Management Admission Test score and an advanced level of English (minimum of 800 for TOEIC, 7 for IELTS or 100 for TOEFL).

What to expect:

The programme offers six majors: Strategy & Management, Digital Business, Enterprise Innovation, Finance, Hospitality Management and International Luxury Brand Management. Students will gain a foundation in core business concepts and specialise in one area. There’ll also be personal and professional development activities such as mentoring, networking, preparation of CV, interviews, placements and more.

“Studying my MBA in Digital Business at ESSEC has helped me understand the ever-changing dynamics of technology across various industries as well as shaped me into a global citizen, understanding business operations across Asian and European markets.” – Jonathan Bernal, Digital Business Major, ESSEC GMBA Student 2017/2018

#3 Master of Finance Master of Finance seminar class in progress

Lasting 15 months, this full-time programme is ranked third worldwide among the best master’s degrees in finance (Financial Times, 2017). 100% of students found a job within six months of graduation. Graduates mainly work in sectors such as banking, consulting and asset management.

Requirements:

The course caters to candidates holding (or currently pursuing) a master’s or four-year bachelor’s degree in engineering, science, mathematics, business or economics. Three-year bachelor’s degree-holders can apply, but will need to complete an additional first year (six courses and six-month internship). Applicants should have a strong academic profile, leadership potential and a strong motivation to join the programme.

What to expect:

With a yearly intake in September, the programme includes academic courses, a one-week international study trip and an internship (four to six months) or academic dissertation. Selected students can do an exchange between the France and Singapore campuses. The Singapore campus offers two specialisation tracks: Corporate Finance and Financial Markets. The first nine months consist of three foundation courses, eleven core courses, three electives and training for summer internship applications.

“Ranked number one in Asia, ESSEC’s Master of Finance degree offers me a career-focused curriculum and wide industry exposure that lets me have a strong start in the financial industry.” – Reynold Tan, graduate of National University of Singapore and current student of ESSEC’s Master of Finance

#4 Advanced Master Strategy & Management of International Business (SMIB) SMIB students at work

Lasting 12 to 15 months, this full-time master’s programme is ranked fourth worldwide among the best management master’s degrees by QS in 2018. Accredited by the Conférence des Grandes Écoles, it aims to develop students’ strengths in a way that helps them springboard into a professional career. One hundred percent of students are employed within six months of graduation and work in areas such as consulting, business development and finance.

Requirements:

The degree is for candidates holding (or currently pursuing) a master’s degree or bachelor’s degree from any discipline, with or without professional experience. They should have a good academic record and the desire to establish a career in consulting, global management and global project management.

What to expect:

Students will begin with core courses and seminars and then take specialised courses. They can do an international exchange if they’re keen. The programme includes a one-week study trip to places such as Geneva, San Francisco and Shanghai. During the trip, students will meet companies and professionals. There will also be a professional project and dissertation to complete in the last two terms.

“Choosing ESSEC is an optimal strategy to develop and manage your career in the future.” – Jieun Heo, graduate of the University of Queensland and current student of ESSEC’s Advanced Master Strategy & Management of International Business

Find out more:

Learn more about what the school has to offer at an open house day this March. Attend information sessions, master classes and talks by experts while enjoying music and performances and having fun in a photobooth. Also, meet the faculty, career services and admissions teams. Have the opportunity to chat with students and alumni to hear how ESSEC has shaped their global ambitions and careers. Register now to receive updates and a full application fee waiver for the 2018 intake.

When: 10 March, 10am to 5pm

Where: 5 Nepal Park

Sign up: Register for free now.

Read more:

Building a business

Tips on investing for expats

High school trips

The post Kickstart your career with these business degrees appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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As you probably know, it’s now the Year of the earth Dog and we thought we’d look at some ways to work with this energy. Artist Fiona Hollis, in collaboration with Lucy Richardson, has created some cool artwork that will work with your Chinese Zodiac sign and the sign of the year.

The Chinese Zodiac has 12 animal signs and if you’re not sure which one you are check the dates at the end of this article. Remember, Chinese new year begins in February, so if you have a January birthday, you will be the zodiac for the year before. Some say, the further through the year you are, the stronger the qualities of the animal that represents your sign.

Each sign has ‘allies’ and ‘special friends’ who are particularly powerful pillars of support. It is thought that by carrying amulets or having images of them in certain parts of your home/ office, your positive flow of energy (chi) will be empowered.

Feng Shui Art

If you are a rabbit, horse, tiger or a dog – it would be powerful to have a dog feng shui print.

2018 is the Year of the Dog

If you are a rooster, ox, dragon or snake – it would be powerful to have a rooster feng shui print.

Rooster art

Feng shui is an ancient Chinese art/science, that seeks to create a positive chi by spatial arrangement & orientation in your environment. (Placement of furniture/ decor/ colour schemes).

Translated feng means “wind” and shui means water. In Chinese culture, wind and water are associated with good health, thus good feng shui came to mean good fortune. Conversely, bad feng shui means bad luck or misfortune.

For more information on fengshui and if you would like some personal advice, Fiona recommends Lucy Richardson @FengShuiFocus who has a practice in Singapore.

‘Year of the Dog 2018’ print has just been printed as a limited edition of 40. This year she will complete the Chinese zodiac, so follow me on FB to see when your zodiac animal is released.

New Year dates

1940   – Feb. 08   Dragon

1941   – Jan. 27   Snake

1942   – Feb. 15   Horse

1943   – Feb. 05   Goat/Ram

1944   – Jan. 25   Monkey

1945   – Feb. 13   Rooster

1946   – Feb. 02   Dog

1947   – Jan. 22   Pig

1948   – Feb. 10   Rat

1949   – Jan. 29   Ox

1950   – Feb. 17   Tiger

1951   – Feb. 06   Rabbit

1952   – Jan. 27   Dragon

1953   – Feb. 14   Snake

1954   – Feb. 03   Horse

1955   – Jan. 24   Goat/Ram

1956   – Feb. 12   Monkey

1957   – Jan. 31   Rooster

1958   – Feb. 18   Dog

1959   – Feb. 08  Pig

1960   – Jan. 28   Rat

1961   – Feb. 15   Ox

1962   – Feb. 05   Tiger

1963   – Jan. 25   Rabbit

1964   – Feb. 13   Dragon

1965   – Feb. 02   Snake

1966   – Jan. 21   Horse

1967   – Feb. 09   Goat/Ram

1968   – Jan. 30   Monkey

1969   – Feb. 17   Rooster

1970   – Feb. 06 Dog

1971   – Jan. 27   Pig

1972   – Feb. 15 Rat

1973   – Feb. 03   Ox

1974   – Jan. 23   Tiger

1975   – Feb. 11   Rabbit

1976   – Jan. 31   Dragon

1977   – Feb. 18   Snake

1978   – Feb. 07   Horse

1979   – Jan. 28   Goat/Ram

1980   – Feb. 16   Monkey

1981   – Feb. 05   Rooster

1982   – Jan. 25   Dog

1983   – Feb. 13   Pig

1984   – Feb. 02   Rat

1985   – Feb. 20   Ox

1986   – Feb. 09   Tiger

1987   – Jan. 29   Rabbit

1988   – Feb. 17   Dragon

1989 – Feb. 06   Snake

1990   – Jan. 27   Horse

1991   – Feb. 15   Goat/Ram

1992   – Feb. 04   Monkey

1993   – Jan. 23   Rooster

1994   – Feb. 10   Dog

1995   – Jan. 31   Pig

1996   – Feb. 19   Rat

1997   – Feb. 07   Ox

1998   – Jan. 28   Tiger

1999   – Feb. 16   Rabbit

2000   – Feb. 05   Dragon

2001   – Jan. 24   Snake

2002   – Feb. 12   Horse

2003   – Feb. 01   Goat/Ram

2004 – Jan. 22   Monkey

2005 – Feb. 9   Rooster

2006   – Jan. 29   Dog

2007   – Feb. 18   Pig

2008   – Feb. 7   Rat

2009   – Jan. 26   Ox

2010   – Feb. 14   Tiger

2011   – Feb. 3   Rabbit

2012   – Jan. 23   Dragon

2013   – Feb. 10   Snake

2014   – Jan. 31   Horse

2015   – Feb. 19   Goat/Ram

2016 – Feb. 8   Monkey

2017 – Jan. 28   Rooster

2018 – Feb. 16   Dog

2019 – Feb. 5   Pig

2020 – Jan. 25   Rat

2021 – Feb. 12   Ox

2022 – Feb. 1   Tiger

2023 – Jan. 22   Rabbit

The post Chinese zodiac: how to make the most of the Year of the Dog appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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From a delayed flight that ruins all your ongoing connections to doing yourself an injury on the skiing slopes, travel can be a risky business. That’s why it’s so important to be covered. With so many types of travel insurance on the market, though, it can be tough figuring out what you need. Plans can cover everything from emergency medical care and repatriation to non-medical travel issues such as lost luggage or rental car coverage. They vary in terms of benefits, too, so always read the fine print! Here, the team at Pacific Prime Singapore gives us a comprehensive look at what’s available and what we should look out for.

Stay covered wherever you are! #1 Medical Travel insurance

If you’re going to be outside of your home country, make sure that your health insurance policy can cover all your needs while abroad.

What’s included?

It offers benefits for emergency medical care while out of the country.

Why get it?

If a medical emergency arises while you’re overseas, you’ll want to have access to the best available medical care – preferably at a facility that speaks your language.

Things to note:
  • Travel insurance plans normally only provide emergency medical care benefits.
  • Ensure you have proof of health insurance as some overseas medical facilities may not treat you without evidence that you’re able to pay.
  • Travel insurance policies can generally cover you for up to a year, but no longer. However, you can obtain a new policy while you’re out of the country, depending on the insurer.
Heading on a road trip? #2 Rental car insurance

While some travel insurance plans may provide liability coverage for injuries to others, they likely will not cover the cost of damage to your vehicle or the property of others. This is where rental car insurance comes in.

What’s included?

Almost all territories require drivers to have third-party liability coverage to legally rent or a drive a vehicle. This is the minimum level of car insurance, excluding damage to the vehicle. Get coverage for your car with comprehensive vehicle rental insurance.

Why get it?

If you damage the property of others and don’t have rental car insurance, you’ll need to pay out of your own pocket.

Things to note:
  • Obtain rental car coverage through the rental company or the credit card company used to pay for the rental.
  • Buying standalone car rental insurance policies from an insurance company is not normally an option.
  • Some rental agents may try to upsell you into coverage that you don’t require. Be aware of what you need and what you’re paying for.
Get some compensation for your delayed or cancelled flights #3 Non-medical travel insurance

You can cover other aspects of your travels as well, these include transportation and your personal belongings.

What’s included?

This type of insurance offers coverage such as for delayed or cancelled flights, loss of accommodation, lost, stolen or damaged property, and other issues that disrupt or ruin your trip. 

Why get it?

If situations beyond your control cause you to be unable to stay in your hotel, take your flight or lose the money you already spent on them, insurance can help you get reimbursement.

Things to note:
  • Bad weather is a leading cause of travel delays. If it doesn’t lead to cancelled transportation, but only delays, you may still be eligible for a cash payout.
  • You’ll likely be impressed with the benefits of non-medical travel insurance for your personal property. For example, if you accidentally drop your mobile phone and crack the screen while travelling, you may be eligible for reimbursement of some kind, or even a new phone!
  • All these benefits also come with a normal travel insurance plan.
Ensure you’ve access to the medical care you need #4 Emergency evacuation and repatriation

There are many reasons why you might have to leave the country you’re travelling in for medical treatment. Emergency evacuation and repatriation benefits will get you to the closest medical facility that can treat your condition properly.

What’s included?

These benefits will cover the cost of transporting you to the best available choice for your healthcare, whether it be by ambulance, airplane, helicopter or some other means. 

Why get it?

Many great travel destinations suffer from political unrest or lack quality medical care. You’ll want the peace of mind knowing that you can reach a credible healthcare provider if required. Even in developed countries, the nearest health facility may not have the medical technology necessary. These benefits can be valuable in such situations

Things to note:
  • Once repatriated, the medical benefits provided by the travel insurance will end.
  • Benefits can also include coverage for the transport of a friend or family member to accompany the patient. 
Be prepared for the unexpected #5 Accidental death and dismemberment

This is obviously a situation you don’t want to find yourself in while travelling! Should it happen though, accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) coverage will be a great help to your family.

What’s included?

AD&D coverage provide money for the recovery of the policyholder’s body, and can also provide disbursement in the event of lost limbs or other major disablement such as loss of sight, hearing, ability to speak or paralysis.

Why get it?

No one wants to burden their loved ones, especially in death. AD&D coverage can pay for the repatriation of the body, funeral costs or costs incurred in becoming disabled.

Things to note:
  • This coverage distributes a lump sum payment, so it’s different from medical insurance that reimburses based on costs incurred.
  • It’s a one-time payment that will not pay out continuously if the policyholder becomes disabled in some way later on.
Recuperate knowing that your medical bills are covered #6 International health insurance

International health insurance (IHI) is a purely medical form of insurance that can be purchased by people who are living abroad for an extended period. The main difference between travel insurance and international health insurance is that IHI allows the policyholder to get outpatient treatment, so it can be used in non-emergency situations. 

What’s included?

Such insurance can includes coverage for nearly any medical issue you can think of. Both inpatient and outpatient insurance are commonly included, but it can also offer maternity insurance, dental insurance, vision coverage and more.

Why get it?

You’ll be able to receive medical care from any hospital or doctor worldwide.

Things to note:
  • You may not receive cover for your pre-existing conditions.
  • People that engage in medical tourism should secure IHI, as it can provide coverage for treatment in another country, unlike local health insurance plans.
  • It’s ideal if you travel frequently, whether for work or pleasure. Having a IHI plan provides coverage at home and abroad.

Written in collaboration with:

Pacific Prime Singapore
18 Cross Street, China Square Central, #09-02A
6346 3781 | pacificprime.sg

Read on for more about maternity, vision and dental insurance.

The post What type of travel insurance should I get? appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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Safety, storage and a style that your child is happy with are three key factors when it comes to choosing kids’ furniture. Here’s our roundup of the coolest collections in-store.

Beds and cribs Desks Home decor Directory

E&A Interiors #04-24 The Herencia 46 Kim Yam Road 6702 4850 | eandainteriors.com

Ethnicraft Online (various locations) #05-01 Singapore Handicrafts Building 72 Eunos Ave 7 9272 1545 | ethnicraft-online.com.sg

FLEXA (various locations) #01-33/34/35 United Square 101 Thomson Road 6354 1310 | flexaworld.com

Gallery 278 278 River Valley Road 6737 2322 | gallery278.com

House of AnLi #03-17 Tanglin Mall 163 Tanglin Road 6235 3851 | houseofanli.com

Kids Haven 166 Joo Chiat Road 6816 6860 | kidshaven.sg

Kuhl Home #08-01 Century Warehouse 100E Pasir Panjang Road 6878 0180 | kuhlhome.com

Maxtrix Level 2 166 Joo Chiat Road 9178 0225 | maxtrixkids.com.sg

Want more home inspiration? See our home decor section!

Reader reviews: “Where I found the perfect dining table”

Embrace the blues with these cool pieces

Where to buy a sofa in Singapore

This article first appeared in the February 2018 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy or subscribe so you never miss an issue!

The post Seriously cool kids’ furniture appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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Who says Singapore has no fashion sense? We took our camera to the streets to snap ladies who exude individuality and an awesome personal style. This month Style Hunter features Bronwynn Ford, manager of Africology. Bronwynn tells us about her personal style, her favourite places to shop and more!

Clutch bag by Just Two Questions Her story…

I’m from South Africa (Parkhurst, Johannesburg) and I have been living in Singapore for three years. We just moved to Sentosa a year ago and we love the community here!

Her style is…

Easy and breezy. I like to dress in flowing outfits in quirky prints or colours that suit our island lifestyle. I recently started a skincare and lifestyle product business called Africology, so for work I tend to dress more formally in silks. I feel good wearing silk while around such exquisite smells and textures. I tend to be in yoga gear the rest of the time!

Her favourite shops…

For workout wear I always choose Lululemon. I come back for the quality, styles and silhouettes. I have a collection of their skorts which I wear for sports, walking or even grocery shopping!

For casual daywear, I pop in to Shopping at Tiffany’s or Willow and Huxley. For evening, I choose indie designers like MAH Collection or Simply Silk. I quite like Tommy Bahama too, but it’s hard to get in Singapore.

I use good skincare to keep my complexion at its best. People often remark that at 52 my skin looks great, and I put it down to having a consistent beauty routine. We often spend a fortune on an outfit or shoes that last one or two seasons, but I think we should be spending on our skin, which we need to take care of for a lifetime.

Dress by MAH Collection, shoes by Private Collection (South Africa), clutch bag by Just Two Questions Her top style tip…

Always use organic and non-carcinogenic products on your face and body. Choose fragrances that define you and that people can come to recognise you by. To make your scent last longer, spritz it in front of you and walk through it so it clings to your clothing and hair.

Wear what suits your body and lifestyle. Accessories can make a simple outfit look stunning. I style them so they draw attention to my good points! I’m really enjoying the off-the-shoulder look at the moment as it shows the most flattering aspect of my arms.

Finally, my general policy is that the shorter the skirt is, the lower the heels. With a flowing slit skirt or dress, however, I would wear high strappy heels.

Her wardrobe must-have…

A versatile black mini-skirt with an adjustable length, beautiful underwear scented with essential oils, and the Africology anti-ageing SOS spray.

Something interesting…

I hate letting people down, so sometimes I take on more than I can handle and work myself ragged to get things done.

I also talk absolute nonsense as I’m falling asleep, and my family can have long, senseless conversations with me (to their delight!). When I wake up I have no recollection of what I said. They find it hilarious.

Her guilty pleasures…

I love spending time with my husband – whether it’s just talking, drinking wine, eating good food, cooking together, reading, riding our bicycles, or going for long walks and making plans for the future. Her favourite shopping place overseas… I love Australian designers, so I shop a lot when I go there. When back home in South Africa, I’ll stop by places like Dullstroom in Mpumalanga, and the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, to find quirky items from local designers. You often find real treasures in markets and in places that are a bit off the beaten track. I seldom shop at luxury brand name stores; I’d rather support talented independent designers who make beautiful, limited-edition clothing.

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUSANNAH JAFFER

Want more style inspo? Meet Luisa Vass or Jade Amar

This article first appeared in the February  2018 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy or subscribe so you never miss an issue!

The post Easy, breezy style suits life in Singapore appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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In case you’re stuck in a recipe rut this month, here is a fail-safe favourite of vegetarian recipes to add to your repertoire. This meat-free vegetable and sesame loaf packs a flavour punch, as well as being super healthy. Happy cooking and eating!

“This moist and tasty loaf keeps well for several days. I suggest cutting it into thick slices and lightly toasting them, then enjoying with some good quality butter.”- Dean Brettschneider, Founder and CEO of Baker & Cook, Plank Sourdough Pizza and Brettschneider’s Baking & Cooking School

This recipe makes two loafs 

Vegetable ingredients:

• 1 large carrot (165g), grated
• 2 onions (165g), finely chopped
• 1 zucchini (90g), finely sliced then roughly chopped
• 1 red capsicum (90g), diced
• 10g salt

Dough ingredients:

• 350g wholemeal flour
• 150g bread flour
• 5g instant dry yeast
• Prepared vegetables (see instructions below)
• 100ml water, or as needed depending on amount of moisture drawn out from the vegetables
• 100g white sesame seeds

Instructions for vegetables:

1. Place vegetables in a large bowl. Add salt and toss to mix.

2. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand for one hour to draw out the moisture from the vegetables, which will be added into the dough mix.

Instructions for dough:

1. Place all dough ingredients (except sesame seeds) into a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, combine to form a dough mass. Tip onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 15 to 20 minutes, resting for a minute every few minutes, until dough is smooth and elastic. The dough will be sticky at first, but don’t be tempted to add excessive amounts of flour.

2. Lightly oil a bowl large enough to allow dough to double in bulk. Place dough in bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Leave in a warm place (around 25 degrees Celsius) for one hour.

3. Knock back the dough in the bowl by gently folding it back onto itself; this will deflate the dough slightly. Cover with plastic wrap and leave again for 30 minutes.

4. Tip dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Using a plastic dough scraper, divide the dough into two equal pieces (560g each). Gently mould each piece into a roundish shape, cover with plastic wrap and rest for 15 minutes.

5. On a lightly floured work surface, mould and roll each ball of dough into an oblong shape – the tighter the roll, the better.

6. Lightly roll each log on a clean, wet tea towel, then roll in sesame seeds to coat. Place each log in a 19 x 11cm loaf tin, cover with plastic wrap and leave for an hour.

7. To tell whether the dough is fully proved, lightly press your finger into the side. If the indentation slowly springs back but doesn’t go back to its original shape (and instead leaves a small indentation), the dough is ready to go in the oven.

8. Place loaves on the bottom shelf of the preheated (230 degrees Celsius) oven, add steam by spraying oven walls with warm water from a spray bottle, and close door. Bake for 20 minutes. Note: the bread will have that “spring” if the oven is moist.

9. Lower oven temperature to 200 degrees Celsius and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until bottom of loaves sound hollow when tapped.

10. Remove from oven and leave to cool in tins for five minutes before placing on a wire rack to cool.

This recipe is from Dean’s new cookbook, Baker & Cook: The Stories and Recipes Behind the Successful Artisan Bakery and Food Store.

Want more yummy recipes?:

Tandoori chicken with a healthy spin

Fix yourself a cheeky celebration cocktail

Summer chicken and chili salad

This article first appeared in the February 2018 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy or subscribe so you never miss an issue!

The post Wholemeal vegetable and sesame seed loaf appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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Change up your existing home décor by picking up some new cushions or upholstering your worn out or dated sofa. You’ll be surprised at what a difference it’ll make! We spoke to six furniture stores about their favourite styles and top picks this year.

WTP The Furniture Company

Aside from a lovely cushion collection, WTP Furniture Company also offers bespoke furniture services if you’ve got something special in mind.

Personal Style

“I like geometric prints that can be self-patterned. Sometimes, even if it is stitched on in a different way, it can add a lot of texture and interest.” – Naazli Somjee, owner

Top picks:

For some sparkle, pick up a few soft and velvety quilted cushions with gold applique. Pair them with trendy mustard lumbar cushions with stitched folds and chocolate lumbar cushions with lattice stitches for some added texture and earthy tones. If you wish to customise or upholster a piece, pick quality fabrics in a variety of textures and colours from brands such as Jim Thompson, Clarke & Clarke and Fabricut. You can customise anything from cushions, from chairs and armchairs to bed-end benches and storage ottomans

What’s more:

Besides furniture, you can get your worn-out cushions upholstered or have a fresh set customised (matching your current sofa) to your liking.

3 Kung Chong Road
6235 2760 | wtpstyle.com

House of AnLi Pick up linen from Libeco at House of AnLi

Deck out your home in style with trendy accessories and furniture from House of AnLi.

Personal Style

“I love to see the raw look of flax and linen pillows. Linen has this natural look, showing irregularities in the yarns and the weave, which is beautiful. I like working with solid colours without any prints or designs in them as this creates more harmony.” – Panagiotis Lynas, Co-Founder and CEO of House of AnLi

Top picks:

The store offers customisation of 100% Belgian linen cushions from Libeco. Made from natural flax, the material stays cool in humid Singapore. They’re available in a variety of solid colours, and you choose your desired shape and size. You could also opt for Libeco linen (sold per metre) and have your furniture upholstered. Or get your hands on square pillows with portraits by German photographer Mario Gerth that feature tribes in Ethiopia.

What’s more:

There are always new patterns and colours to explore as fresh fabrics arrive every two to three months.

#03-17 Tanglin Mall, 163 Tanglin Road
6235 3851 |
houseofanli.com

Originals Throw on some fancy cushions from Originals

Browse a wide variety of traditional and contemporary furniture and accessories at Originals.

Personal Style

“A home is where you can rest in comfort and safety. Hence it’s important that it is filled with treasured items that can provide both warmth and comfort, but still be stylish. There are no strict rules – marry Indian pieces with African or Turkish rugs and surround them with a teak daybed and accessories … home heaven!” – Nikki Settle, Sales

Top picks:

Pick up the Haydie Linen Cushion that comes in grey and with frayed edges, or go simple with the Griselle Cushion in dark blue or the Mercy Cushion in black. For some texture, there’s the Black Wave/Cream Cushion; or, if you’re into patterns, go for the Arabe Black Cushion and Damli Cushion that boast geometric prints. Most come in square shapes, with a couple of rectangular options .

What’s more:

No time to head down? Shop online from the comfort of your home!

#02-03 Sime Darby Centre, 896 Dunearn Road
64719918 | originals.com.sg

Crate and Barrel Add some style to your home with cushions from Crate & Barrel

Explore gorgeous home décor accessories, furniture, homeware and more from American furniture store Crate and Barrel.

Personal style:

“Classic would definitely be the style I would love to have in my own home. I appreciate its timeless touch which is more formal and elegantly styled. With silvers and a touch of glamour, it sets the perfect tone for having guests over on the weekends.” – Jill St. John Jeremiah, Merchandising Manager at Crate and Barrel

Top picks:

For something neutral, opt for woven pillows like the Fionn in earth tones and the Avi in a mix of ivory and toasty brown. Go luxurious with the velvety Brenner which has a rich beet tone. The turquoise Linden offers a textured look and is woven with traditional looms. Also, check out the Trevino made of hand-spun blue silk and reverse it for soft cotton velvet.

What’s more:

Achieve your dream look with the help of professional in-store stylists at their upcoming Crate Styling Centre.

ION Orchard, #04-21/22, #03-25 | orchardgateway@emerald
6634 4222 | 6634 8488
crateandbarrel.com.sg

Arete Culture Brighten your outdoor space with cushions from Arete Culture

Do up your home with the help of Arete Culture which offers bespoke interior styling services, home accessories and soft furnishings.

Personal style:

“I would go for timeless, elegant and classic designs for my home. It would be a mix of soft inviting hues for the bedroom and stronger pops of colour for the common areas. I love oversized throw cushions paired with smaller ones and an occasional odd shape. I tend to go for clean lines with geometric prints and a mix of solids to pull them together.” – Caroline Chin-Geyler, Founder of Arete Culture

Top picks:

Mix solid and prints from the in-house Luxe Hotel collection which also carries patterned cushions in various sizes and shapes. Get some playful and bright prints for the kids’ rooms. For your outdoor space, add some colour with coastal and tropical-themed patterned pillows from the Archipelago collection.

What’s more:

With over 350 homes styled, leave it to their interior stylists to create your dream home.

#06-01 Tan Boon Liat Building | #09-08 Lam Soon Building
9640 3829 | 6310 8098
areteculture.com

E&A Interiors Have E&A Interiors help you pull together a stylish living space

Drop by E&A Interiors for quality fabrics, wallpapers and rugs from over 35 international design houses.

Personal style:

“For my own home, I like an eclectic, boho and cozy feel. I love layers of patterns and colour. If you choose them wisely, they create a calming effect. I also love antique and vintage furniture with the odd modern piece thrown in. I wouldn’t like my house to be recognised as a definite style as I like to think of it as uniquely mine!” – Elizabeth Acland, Founder and Director of E&A Interiors

Top picks:

Pick out block printed Blithfield fabrics for cushions or some funky Raoul textiles from LA to upholster your sofa. Or go eclectic with patterned fabrics from the Martin Lawrence Bullard’s collection (Kim Kardashian’s interior designer!). New in store are a mix of geometric print cushions by Arum Fellow, a London-based design studio.

What’s more:

Choose from over 50 brands of fabric, including traditional hand block ones with different designs.

46 Kim Yam Road, #04-24 The Herencia
6702 4850 | eandainteriors.com

Read more:

An eco-friendly cleaning solution

Help for the home

Moving companies

The post Easy ways to update your home décor appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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Thinking about adopting a pet? There are so many animals for adoption that need a good home, so it’s definitely a good thing to consider. Here are some gorgeous cats that are looking for a place to call home!

Eenie, Meenie, Miney and Moe

Eenie, Meenie, Miney (the only female) and Moe are four rescues from a hoarder case. Almost feral when they were rescued, they are about four months old, with a healthy appetite. With the help of their fosterers, they have become much more sociable kittens, and may be adopted separately or in pairs.

Mario Mario

Mario is a two-year-old sterilised boy who is great with people and loves rolling around for strokes. Despite having been abandoned, he is entirely trusting of people and has no aggression towards other cats.

About the Shelter

The Cat Welfare Society (CWS) was established by a handful of friends who decided to help stray cats and kittens. Spurred on after hearing a story about five kittens being burned alive in a box, they were determined to fight against acts of cruelty towards these innocent animals. In 1999, the year that CWS launched, more than 13,000 cats were culled in a bid to control the stray population. That equates to an average of 35 cats killed every single day. Thanks to its tireless campaigning against the inhumane culling of cats, this went down to a record low of 1,000 in 2015. With a vision for all cats to be cared for as pets or treated with kindness as community animals, over the past five years CWS has also focused on pushing through an islandwide stray-cat sterilisation programme. If you would like to find out more about how to support the CWS, be it through adopting, fostering, volunteering or donating, go to catwelfare.org

For more, go to expatliving.sg and check out our noticeboard. To post an ad, email your text and a photograph if available to noticeboard@expatliving.sg. It’s free! Looking for a job? Check our new online listings at expatliving.sg/all_joblistings

Related: Is pet adoption the right choice for your family?

The post Animals up for adoption: purr-fect kitties appeared first on Expat Living Singapore.

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