Most penguins have their own built-in wetsuits, but not this little guy! This 10-year-old Humboldt penguin lives at the Jurong Bird Park in Singapore, and has been losing his feathers since last year. To keep him warm and protected, he wears customized wetsuits! This isn't the first time we've seen a Humboldt penguin in a wetsuit, but this guy's condition seems to be lasting longer than usual. The suits are also supposed to encourage feather growth and prevent new feathers from falling out, so here's hoping he's on the mend. Click through for more cute photos of our featherless friend.
Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi (seen here) has a reputation for thinking outside of the box with his surprising public installations. This time, Nishi has created a single-room luxury hotel room that he's built around Singapore's national monument, the Merlion. Created for the Singapore Biennale 2011, the Merlion statue has now been transformed into the Merlion Hotel. The hotel is a surprising and fun addition to the 150 works featured by 63 artists from 30 countries at the Biennale. The Merlion will revert to being a tourist landmark on June 6, 2011. Until then, the hotel will be open during the day for public viewing and then booked at night for overnight stays. Furnished with a full-size bed, a bathroom, butler, breakfast at the nearby Fullerton Hotel, and, of course, one of the most unusual and unique headboards ever seen, it's a hotel room like no other. Check out the slideshow for more photos, and definitely let me know what you think about the wallpaper, too!
Frida Giannini took her first trip to Singapore this week to officiate the opening of a revamped Gucci flagship and while there, experienced the honor of having an orchid named after her. (Rihanna and Princess Diana also have special blooms named for them in Singapore.) The Paravanda Frida, a white flower with fuchsia tips, was the inspiration for limited-edition bags only available in Singapore to benefit a local children’s charity. While in China, Giannini also announced plans to launch a children's line for Gucci this June, first in Italy and then in 40 worldwide stores.
Brighten up the middle of your week with an exotic meal inspired by the cuisine of Singapore. This recipe combines everyday ingredients — shrimp, onions, peas, and ham — with Asian elements like rice noodles, fish sauce, and curry powder.
The resulting dish is complex, delicious, and wildly flavorful. Trust me, your family will be fully content while slurping on these noodles, so learn the method and read more
"What would you like to drink?" "Anything." "Well, I have a lot of choices." "Whatever." In Singapore, this conversation probably goes on a lot. Why? Because they have two soft drinks available with the two words teenagers like to say the most (especially "whatever"). Whatever is a carbonated soda — you'll know that much going in — and Anything is some kind of tea. What flavors they'll be is a surprise. They're like the iPod Shuffle feature, only they're soft drinks. (If you're like me, though, I never like anything Shuffle gives me, which makes me wonder sometimes if it's really my iPod or if I'm just a control freak.)
Feeling lonely, Europe? Two European nations are tackling the problem of declining populations very differently. In France, they now have the second highest birth rate in Europe (after Ireland) and some argue that tempting government subsidies may have helped. France offers generous maternity and paternity packages allowing a mother of a third kiddie to take a year off of work, with pay. Not to mention the perks of subsidized first class rail travel, holiday vouchers and financial help with childcare should you wish to turn down free state care facilities. It is estimated that the government supported baby boom has secured France’s population until 2050. To see what's happening in Spain, and even more creative Singapore, read more
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Similar to the growing 'pop-up' trend, guerilla stores are certainly thriving as Commes de Garcon just opened their fourth store in less than a year. Namely, this month saw the erection of a Singapore location. The guerilla store costs little to open (we're talking hundreds of thousands less), will stay in business for exactly one year, and will, as slamxhype predicts, be a huge success. How's that for instant gratification?