You’ll want to be seen here! Here’s where to eat, drink, shop, and chill out at this bustling enclave in the Duxton neighbourhood.
Telok Ayer, we’ll be fond of you forever but if there’s a neighbourhood to give our fave one a serious run for its money, it’s the leafy and lush Duxton Hill. From the many, many great eateries here representing all sorts of cuisine from Mexican to French, to the independent stores that will keep you occupied if you’re in for a spot of shopping, this neighbourhood not too far from the city is one to explore.
Serving up innovative Chinese cuisine that will satisfy modern palates and also please the traditionalist, Xin Divine’s star dishes include Szechuan-style tortellini in chilli oil, Poulet de Bresse with foie gras (their rendition of ‘drunken chicken’), seabass served with Szechuan-style eggplant and topped with deep-fried enoki, and the minimalist but beautiful dessert that is an osmanthus sphere with chilled winter melon and rock sugar soup.
Xin Divine, 10 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089594
Duxton is a busy ‘hood when night falls, but if you’re looking for a quieter spot away from the post-work madness in the area, this intimate Italian fine dining spot sitting atop Duxton Hill will offer a welcome respite. It’s a pretty space, with seats spread across the rustic main dining room, the roofed courtyard and an alfresco terrace that’s perfect for balmy nights. Treat yourself with a majestic Black Angus tenderloin Rossini-style with an escalope of foie gras and black truffle sauce or some oven-roasted crispy suckling pig served with a millefeuille of potato and goat’s cheese, broad beans frittata and suckling pig jus.
Alba 1836, #01-01, 28 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089610
Kampong Bugis might have lost a Kilo, but Duxton Rd gained one! The new – old kid on the block – Kilo Kitchen has taken over the intersection of Duxton Rd and Duxton Hill – it’s impossible to miss with its beautiful alfresco space. Executive chef Manel Valero dishes out modern comfort food with Latin and Asian influences that’ll make you come back for seconds time and again.
Kilo Kitchen, 97 Duxton Road, Singapore 089541
French cuisine runs the gamut of classy to cosy, and this restaurant is no doubt the latter. The cosy restaurant houses just seven tables where diners can watch Chef Paul in action, as he personally prepares his contemporary French dishes. Rhubarb offers a six-course menu that features mains like wagyu onglet, snails and bone marrow, capped off with novel desserts like gingerbread with fromage blanc sorbet, mandarin oranges and chocolate.
Rhubarb Le Restaurant, 3 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089589
With its pastel-coloured garden bar and buzzy vibes, this Mexican taqueria is our go-to place for a tequila party. You can’t leave without ordering yourself a couple of tacos and elotes, a Mexican street-style grilled corn rubbed with mayo, chili, and cotija cheese. Don’t forget a mezcal cocktail to complete the night!
Lucha Loco, 15 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089598
Latteria Mozzarella Bar
The guys behind famed Italian restaurant, Il Lido, have a soft spot for cheese – particularly of the mozzarella variety – and this bar is proof. It boasts a variety of fresh mozzarella cheese in varying shapes and sizes, all flown in directly from Italy’s artisanal producers. But cheese isn’t the only attraction here; the outdoor area, with the fairy lights and tranquil setting, beckons romantic dates and intimate gatherings.
Latteria Mozzarella Bar, 40 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089618
Pince & Pints
Lobster is the only thing on the menu at Pince & Pints – grilled, steamed or with chilli – and the tour de force is undoubtedly the lobster roll. Packed with generous servings of the good stuff with a side of mesclun salad, fries, and garlic aioli sauce, this bad boy is packed with flavour and certainly won’t disappoint. Wash down all that seafood with a refreshing pint of craft beer.
Pince & Pints, 32 Duxton Road, Singapore 089496
L’Entrecôte The Steak & Fries Bistro
Only serving one main dish, L’Entrecôte The Steak & Fries Bistro does a stellar steak and fries meal that comes with a mouth-watering secret butter sauce. Oh, and did we mention the fries are free-flow? Score!
L’Entrecôte – The Steak & Fries Bistro, 36 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089614
Inaho’s Kitchen Bar
Arguably Duxton’s best-kept secret, this hole-in-the-wall Japanese izakaya is hidden on the second floor of a shophouse, with only a nondescript sign outside the door on the first level indicating its location. Inside, you’ll find in-the-know Japanese salarymen lining the long, wooden bar and tucking into their banshaku sets, which comes with a mug of Sapporo beer and other inventive dishes. Make sure you get some sake on the side as well.
Inaho’s Kitchen Bar, 60 Duxton Road, Singapore 089524
Etna Italian Ristorante
Fun fact: Etna is the name of Italy’s most iconic volcano on the east coast of Sicily, and is also short for Every Table Needs Attention. The rustic yet elegant restaurant knows how to please the masses – with well-seasoned Sicilian and Mediterranean plates, including some diverse antipasti, a perfectly grilled Atlantic cod fish fillet, handmade ricotta cheese and spinach ravioli, fresh pizzas, and classic Italian desserts, at affordable prices. Italian vinos are must-tries on the drinks menu, but there are also Aussie and French labels, as well as whiskys and aperitifs to go with your meal.
Etna Italian Ristorante, 49/50 Duxton Road, Singapore 089513
Xiao Ya Tou
Here’s a modern Asian restaurant that turns local cuisine on its head. Highlights include the crispy, wrapped otak rolls filled with spicy fish paste, and the XYT ayam percik, where grilled spring chicken is cooked with coconut cream and lime. And as it turns out, if you bring your own eggs (no, really), you even get $1 off their signature XYT char kway teow!
Xiao Ya Tou, 6 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089592
Got a sushi-shaped soft spot for Japanese food? There’s plenty of options to choose from at Duxton Hill including Rizu, one of our Hot New Tables from 2018. Treat yo’self to a lovely meal and drinks at this intimate 30 seater restaurant. Designed in a dark grey on deep blue palette with dim lighting, dark wood tables and jazz music, Rizu serves up delectable mod-Japanese food. And these guys are big on ikedukuri (that takes seafood from tank to table), so you can expect Boston lobster, geoduck and abalone.
In a mood for some French fine dining? Michelin Star Chef Jeremy Gillon has partnered with Anant Tyagi to turn this two storey shophouse into an intimate 25-seater dining space with a lounge and bar upstairs.
Restaurant JAG, 76 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089535
Fung Kee Hotdogs
Never thought we’d see these words strung together but care for a Scandinavian-Asian hotdog? Wash it down with Fung Kee Hotdogs’ famous Negronis or champagne.
Fung Kee Hotdogs, 68 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089527
Group Therapy Coffee
Good for comfort food, Group Therapy is located on the second floor of a restored shophouse and is identifiable only by a teeny signboard and a flight of wooden stairs. Tuck into the delish Belgian waffles and chilli crab pies, while lounging on sofas and reading from the extensive collection of books.
Group Therapy Coffee, #02-01, 49 Duxton Road, Singapore 089513
Its exquisite fruit-focused Japanese- and French-inspired cakes, tarts, and pies are purely made without baking powder, artificial rising and softening agents, stabilisers, and preservatives. The softness and moisture of the baked goods, according to the team at Flor, come from the natural aeration of eggs as they are whipped to their full peak. Sell-out creations are the Strawberry Souffle and Mango Pie, so be there early if you want a bite.
Flor Pâtisserie, #01-01, 2 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089588
This cafe slash boutique is all about guilt-free desserts. Well, what else can you expect from two guys, a Swiss and a Singaporean, who are self-confessed fitness freaks and absolutely love baking. They use luo han guo that naturally lends sweetness to their bakes. Pair it with coffee, low carb beer, vino or dairy-free soft serve. Need vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free treats? They make those too. And also retail a curated selection of cushions, scarves and such.
Duxton 41, 41 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089505
Praelum Wine Bistro
Well-crafted French-Asian bites, a 600-strong wine collection and a quaint, down-to-earth vibe make this snug spot popular with nibblers and sippers. Wines by the glass are dispensed from the bistro’s card-operated Enomatic vending machines, available at three different amounts – taster, half and full – for 16 European labels of New World whites, reds, rosés and dessert wines. Bottles, on the other hand, are stored in the carefully curated walk-in cellar that holds fine wines such as the 82’ Lafite Rothschild, 82’ Latour, 82’ Petrus, 70’ CVNE Rioja and 93’ and 99’ Screaming Eagle. Impressive…
Praelum Wine Bistro, 4 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089590
Grab a bite to start or end your (very late) night at the Kilo Merienda. From Ang Mo Bak Chor Mee to Camp Kilo Charcoal Club Pulled Pork Tacos to Baskets of Fries, a rotating menu means you’ll be spoiled for choice.
Kilo Lounge, 21 Tanjong Pagar Road, #01-02/04, Singapore 088444
Craft beer enthusiasts will love this bar. With 10 beers on tap and some fun promos, SG Taps has one of the coolest selection of draft beers in Singapore. You can also choose to sip on bottled beers from Japan, Hong Kong, India, Vietnam and Singapore. They’ve got bar bites too that infuse Japanese elements with local dishes like a certain Amami style chicken rice and a ramen laksa.
SG Taps, 13 Duxton Hill #01-01
RPM by D.Bespoke
Daiki Kanetaka who gave us D.Bespoke on Bukit Pasoh Rd has a new sister bar x listening room in Duxton. RPM by D.Bespoke is a vinyl-only bar that strongly focuses on shochu, a Japanese distilled spirit. Apart from enjoying shochu cocktails, you’re also treated to jazz, soul, funk and rock music played on a vinyl sound system.
RPM by D.Bespoke, 16 Duxton Road, Singapore 089482
You got it – it is inspired by the iconic Tom Cruise movie from the early 80s. At the all-black cocktail bar, Mr. Cruise makes an appearance… in the menu. All their bespoke cocktails are named after his most famous blockbusters but they’ve also got the regulars – beers, wine, champagne and spirits.
Risky Business Bar, 37 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089615
Crazy about Cava, huh? Cobbled stoned Duxton hill is home to Bar.celona that serves up bubbly with Spanish tapas. It’s easy to spot – look for the colourful elephant sculpture or the white balloon with ‘Cava’ in bold. FYI they do a mean Ladies’ Night on Wednesday, giving a free bottle of Cava if you come in a group of four – just one of their many promos.
Bar.celona, 21 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089604
Yes, besides wining and dining, there is shopping you can do at Duxton Hill as well. The multi-label store Monument Lifestyle was started by husband and wife team, Dustin Ramos and Iris Sangalang and was inspired by their love for coffee, the beach, quality goods and the Californian lifestyle.
Monument Lifestyle, 75 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089534
Six Senses Duxton
Sustainably restored under the designer Anouska Hempel (acclaimed for her Hempel and Blake’s hotels in London), Six Senses Duxton has 49 guest rooms and suites: we’ve had a peek, and can vouch that no two are exactly the same. Guests are in for an eccentric, elegant surprise when they enter the hotel, which includes large golden fans and strong hues of black, gold and yellow, layered with Oriental screens and calligraphy wallpaper from Anouska’s personal collection. Staying for a bit? Check out the antiquarian library-themed lobby bar serving up the hotel’s signature house cocktail of hot whiskey, brandy and absinthe, crowned with a yellow chrysanthemum.
Six Senses, 83 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089540
Hot desking on your mind? It’s easy to see why The Co. is one of the more popular co-working spaces in Singapore. Its Duxton space has beautiful interiors, drenched in natural light and plenty of plants. Besides, it’s a hop, skip and jump away from some of the best cafes, restaurants and bars this side of town.
The Co., 99 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089543
Amidst all the bustling restaurants and bars is a quiet gallery dedicated to fine Japanese craftsmanship. Drop by Huls for a stunning curation of crockery, boxes and other lifestyle objects that walk the line between art and functionality.
Huls Gallery Singapore, 24 Duxton Hill, Singapore 08960
Vinyl lovers, take note. Retrophonic has moved from Chinatown to a larger, two storey space in Duxton Road. Head over to pick up everything from latest radio hits, obscure indie rock, ’70s pop songs and vintage Chinese records. Plus, this boutique also has amazing turntables, amplifiers and speakers on offer. And we hear, they intend on turning one of the floors into a cool listening room by mid-2019. Keep your eyes peeled…
Retrophonic Records, 53A Duxton Road, Singapore 089517
Sultans of Shave
Gents, up your grooming game at Sultans of Shave that’s conveniently located, especially if you work around Tanjong Pagar. It’s got it all – haircuts, shaves, trims, express facials and more.
Sultans of Shave, 15 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089481
Littered with Books
This quaint indie shop is one of our favourite bookstores in the city. They’ve got fantastic service, competitive prices, a well-edited selection of reads, and readily bring in books when requested.
Littered with Books, 20 Duxton Road, Singapore 089486
How about a full-body workout with choreographs authentic boxing moves to an energetic playlist? You know the one that the Kardashians, Usher, Hailey Baldwin and Nicole Scherzinger rave about! Yup, CruCycle has landed in Singapore and now calls Duxton Road home.
CruCycle, 68 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089527
Right next to CruCycle is where you can stock up on stylish activewear and yoga-focused outfits by Canadian label Lululemon. They’ve got a delightful range of running shorts, leggings, activewear bras, singlets, sports bags, and sweatbands. We want it all.
Lululemon Athletica, #79, Duxton Rd, Singapore 089538
Venture a little further in this hood and you’ll probably stumble upon the architectural wonder, The [email protected] A stone’s throw away from the CBD, this award-winning 50-storey residential development features the world’s two longest sky gardens (500 metres each). While the first sky garden located on the 26th floor is reserved only for residents’ use, visitors can make their way up to 50th floor – which is open to the public – to enjoy a picturesque bird’s eye view of the quaint neighbourhood.
[email protected], 1 Cantonment Rd, Singapore 080001
The next time you’re around Duxton Hill, keep an eye out for the neighbourhood cat who’s more photogenic than most humans we’ve met. You’ll probably find it living its best life (see pic) or strolling around like it owns the place.