GSS 2019: Explore Kampong Glam's past
Enjoy tours, food and traditional pastimes in the ethnic enclave
If you're up for a shopping trip down memory lane, this year's Great Singapore Sale (GSS) has got you covered.
There will be a host of experiences looking back on Singapore's way of life in bygone years, invoking memories that may have faded, lingering only in history textbooks.
Experience Kampong Gelam is taking place from July 5 to 14, as part of GSS: Experience Singapore 2019, an effort to integrate shopping with the country's rich multi-cultural history, focusing on one of the island's oldest urban enclaves.
This year, GSS moves beyond its usual sphere of retail outlets and into the space of the beautifully preserved community of Kampong Glam.
The ethnic enclave - the name translates to "village of the cajeput tree" - is located in Rochor.
There is no better way to begin your blast into the past than with the KG Precinct Tour, a multi-faceted, sensorial showcase of the historic neighbourhood, where visitors can live out authentic old-world charm by taking part in curated activities.
You can cruise around in a Vespa side car, discovering old pastimes and a variety of spices, and satisfy hunger pangs with popular traditional snacks like satay and kueh - which visitors can grab from food trucks in the area.
You can also check out KG SOUQ, a showcase of performances by local musicians, artists and theatrical groups.
Expect scintillating acts by emerging performers from the multi-disciplinary Aliwal Arts Centre that supports the artistic development of both contemporary and traditional arts groups in Singapore, such as the musicians of Nadi Singapura and the theatre group Ekamatra. They will be using Kandahar Street as their stage, in the middle of Kampong Glam, flanked by colourful restored shophouses.
Of course, sales are not forgotten - it is GSS season after all.
Visitors are welcome to drop a dollar or more at the KG Home & Lifestyle Bazaar, which will see Baghdad Street transform into a shoppers' paradise for those with an affinity for unique handicrafts, curios and traditional knick-knacks.
Shopping is also given a nostalgic twist, allowing one to reminisce about the good old days.
Forget mass-produced fast fashion and uniform products lining our modern streets, as KG Nostalgia (July 6 to 7) will feature pre-loved clothing items that hark back to old-school styles like bell-bottoms and gingham patterns. You may also find that vintage items such as collectibles and antiques at a steal at the car boot sale at the Baghdad Street open carpark.
Foodies will be able to eat their way through the preserved site, with a farmer's market set up to let the crowds explore local food, including durians.
Meanwhile, fashionistas will unite at ProjekGlamway, held on July 6.
Local designers will have models showing off original works down the runway of a converted Arab Street. If audiences of the fashion show are so inclined, they may even be able to get their hands on some of the fabric in a textile store just round the corner.