This under-the-radar mall is still spilling with beauty salons, budget-friendly food and indie stores.
Alright, so Far East Plaza isn’t exactly the most glamorous shopping mall – especially compared to its glitzy counterparts scattered around Orchard Road. But hear us out. Despite its lacklustre exterior, the underrated mall is filled with treasures like affordable mid-range boutiques, beauty salons for mani-pedis, hair extensions and facials, and even tattoo parlours. For one, we get a sense of nostalgia whenever we stroll past the spot – some of us even got our first piercing here after rummaging through treasures at various blogshops.
But let’s get down to business. We’ve compiled a list of our favourite shops, eateries and beauty salons to pamper ourselves (trust, us there was a lot to select from!). Intrigued? Read on to discover what the fuss is all about in this beloved mall
Kra Pow Thai Restaurant
If you’re on the hunt for authentic and affordable Thai food, look no further than this no-frills eatery. There’s the usual tom yum, pad thai, mango salad and fluffy omelette but you’ll also find specialities like grilled pork collar and drunken noodles – a Thai-inspired hor fun of some sort.
Kra Pow Thai Restaurant, #03-26/27
Puncak Best Noodle
This halal eatery offers endless zi char-style dishes including claypot rice, fried rice, fried noodles, honeydew chicken, curry chicken… and the list goes on. No surprises why it’s perpetually busy during peak hours. If you’re going with friends, you gotta order the crispy fried wanton to share; it comes with a sweet black sauce and mayo dip.
Puncak Best Noodle, #05-93-94
The Community Coffee
If you need to rest your legs from all that shopping, this is your best bet. Coffee junkies may have heard of this quaint little coffee spot, which roasts and brews speciality coffees from Compound Coffee Co. and Cloud Catcher, together with beans from Colombia, Brazil, Honduras and Etopia. The team also works closely with their charity partner, Club Rainbow. Truly a hidden gem!
The Community Coffee, #02-94
This seriously underrated chicken rice stall serves both steamed and roasted chicken with sides like salted vegetable duck soup and bok choy. The next time you go on a chicken rice hunt, be sure to add this to your list!
Hainanese Delicacy, #05-116
Ayam Penyet Ria
A mall mainstay, Ayam Penyet Ria has been serving plates of smashed fried chicken with rice for as long as we can remember. Through the years, the menu has evolved with new additions including empal penyet (beef steak), ikan lele penyet (catfish) and cumi-cumi penyet (baby squid). The spicy sambal is not for the faint-hearted so we suggest cooling down with a cup of homemade ice chendol.
Ayam Penyet Ria, #05-22/23
The Sushi Bar
Probably one of the most affordable sushi restaurants in town, The Sushi Bar doles out sashimi and sushi with prices as low as $4. The extensive menu also features grilled and roasted seafood and meats, donburi bowls and sake.
The Sushi Bar, #04-28
The Curve Cult puts the fun back in fashion with its plus size collection that celebrates beauty in all shapes and forms. Expect fashion-forward pieces such as bodycon dresses, rompers, pencil skirts and maxi dresses – perfect for ladies who flaunt their curves loud and proud.
Curve Cult, #05-126A
Got a messy wardrobe dilemma? Femme’s Capsule is here to end your woes with seriously chic numbers that are also great for Singapore’s humid weather. Styles range from capelet tops, boyfriend high-low shirts and off-shoulder tops to crochet maxi dresses and corduroy skirts. Pair your outfits with woven earrings or elegant pearl ear studs from the small accessory collection.
If there’s one thing to be enchanted by over here, it’s the eye-catching prints and patterns. We love that this boutique doesn’t shy away from colour and quirkiness from its adorable designs and glam-worthy sequins. Whatever your mood, you’ll definitely snag something sweet.
Spellbound Clothing, #03-90
Ana Book Store
Having been around for more than 40 years (over 78 years in Singapore), this second-hand bookstore is truly an institution in Far East Plaza. Delve into a treasure trove of old titles, comic books, classics, young adult fiction and even self-help books. Fair warning: You might leave with more than just one book.
Ana Book Store, #05-01
This gem of a costume store may be modestly shabby and charmingly cramped, but the beauty in it is the surprise factor: Endless racks of quirky ensembles and props line its walls, so if you’ve got a costume party coming up, we strongly suggest popping in. You’ll either leave with a brilliant costume or newfound inspiration for a dazzling DIY ensemble.
Lips Enterprise, #03-08
Bellus de Charme
There are countless nail salons to get ‘em nail beds in check – and then there are all-in-one salons that are one-stop destinations for lash extensions, makeup and styling services, IPL and waxing sessions. Bellus de Charme boasts quite a range of services including halal-certified breathable nail polish for Muslimahs.
Bellus de Charme, #04-105
The Hair Room
Spruce up your mane with poppin’ hues from The Hair Room’s colour treatments that specialise in both Caucasian and Asian tresses. Vibrant colours might dry your hair out but the salon’s keratin treatments will leave you with sleek, shiny and healthy hair.
The Hair Room, #01-35
CCA Korean Hair Salon
Drop your worries at the door and leave your mane to expert Korean stylists at CCA Korean hair salon. Known as one of the top of its kind in Seoul, this place offers a range of Korean perms and hair or scalp treatments. All services come with a free haircut, plus there’s no extra charge for long hair.
CCA Korean HAIR Salon, #02-92
Nail Queen is probably one of the most popular nail salons in the mall. Why, you ask? It’s affordable, quick and super profesh with talented manicurists who’ll pull off any design from your Pinterest board.
Nail Queen, #04-88
And then some…
Tattoo artist Elson is your go-to man for the most creative and intricate tats. There’s no one style that he specialises in, but he has a knack for profound concepts and dark stories if that’s the kind of thing you’d mainline. And you don’t have to worry about hygiene as his studio adheres to a high standard – gloves are thrown away each time you take a break, and everything in contact with your skin is wrapped in disposable plastic.
Think Tattoo, #02-65
Far East Plaza, 14 Scotts Road, Singapore 228213; 10am-10pm (however, things get quiet by 8pm).