Singapore Holiday – 2012

April 6, 2012 at 5:09 pm

We drove to Singapore during the recent March school holidays (March 10th ~ 13th) , as a reward for all Zara’s hardwork during her 1st term exams.

Upon a friend’s recommendation, I bought a Marriott Vacation Club Holiday Package Voucher. A 3D/2N stay in Ritz Carlton Millenia for a very good price, and we extended another night at YMCA International House.

The room in Ritz Carlton is oh my, super duper nice. It’s been a while since we’d stayed in such a nice hotel as a family. The girls absolutely love it! We told them this is a five star hotel, and we can’t normally afford to stay in such a hotel.

The girls upon arrival, went to check out if there’s Carton Network on the TV.
Ritz Carlton
(Before we arrived, Zara was telling me this, “Since it’s a high class hotel, maybe they won’t have Cartoon Network. They will only show all the modelling shows, arts on their TV.”)

The view, from the room and bathroom….beautiful; and what I love most is the bathroom with the big bathtub!
Ritz Carlton

So what’s the catch in getting to stay in such a nice hotel for a really good price?
We have to go and listen to a 90min Marriott Vacation Club sales talk.
It’s ok. They sent a van to pick us up.
The Marriott Vacation Club office has a playroom with toys and TV for the kids to hang out, there’s even a nanny to help keep an eye on the children!
They have a small buffet of snack and drinks for us to fill our stomachs while we’re there. And best of all, there’s no hard selling.
We were absolutely tempted to purchase the membership, but hack, I can use the money to pay for the kids private school education, why spend it on a lifetime of vacation? (Gee, now to mention it again, life time vacation seems more attractive.)
And I’d prepped the girls, for us to get to stay in THIS nice hotel, we have to listen to an uncle talk, so they didn’t complain or disturb us the whole time we were there.

Besides going out to listen to this sales talk, and to do some shopping, we made plans before hand to spend most our time in the hotel during our stay in the Ritz Carlton. So we ate nearby (Marina Square / Millenia Walk are connected to the hotel), spent lots of time at the pool and in the room (and in the bath tub).

Zara in the pool

It’s good timing as well. Zaria just started swimming, and she’s so happy to show off.
Zaria in the pool

Her : Did I swim well?
Me : Yes you did.
Her : A little bit well? Or very very well? (she likes to ‘quantify’ the things she do well these days)
Me : Very very well!
Zaria very happy

What I did wrong was to stay in Ritz Carlton first than moved to YMCA. The girls have a taste of style/spaciousness then they have to downgrade to YMCA. The little one especially was complaining, “Why (do) we have to move hotel? I want to stay in the other hotel forever!”

The room in YMCA is comfortable and clean, and for Zara, she said, this is enough. She especially likes the buffet breakfast, a simple spread, but still a buffet; and there’s this thing about kids and buffet, the freedom to pick whatever they want to eat I guess.

Having spent a lot of money during the last Singapore holidays on entrance fees, rides, shows etc, this round I told myself we’ll only go for things free! So, we spent an evening at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. (We wanted to bring the girls to the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden, but sshish, it was closed on Monday, the day we were there!)

Girls at the Swan Pond

Nonetheless, the girls still have a swell time, climbing tree!

The little one has no fear, she just went ahead of her sister, where as Zara was following slowly.
Girls climbing tree(check out the couple taking their wedding shots).

This tree that they were climbing, is a 150 years old Tembusu tree. Favourite spot for wedding photos, and it’s also the tree that’s at the back of the Singapore $5 note.
Zaria up on the tree

Want to know how high they’d climbed?
Girls up on the Tembusu tree

They had so much fun on the tree, they wanted to go there again on our last day, but alas, it was raining.

Singapore is so expensive now to have a holiday there, don’t think we’ll be back so soon, but next round, I think the girls will ask us to bring them back to the Botanic Gardens for more tree climbing.

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