the Festival of Lights
While Deepavali is popularly known
as the “festival of lights”, the most
signiﬁcant spiritual meaning is “the
awareness of the inner light”. Central
to Hindu philosophy is the assertion
of the Atman - that there is something
beyond the physical body and mind
which is pure, inﬁnite, and eternal.
Deepavali day rituals start
with Hindus getting up early to
take a ritual oil bath to remove
impurities, after which new
clothes in bright colours are worn,
to welcome the new year.
Elaborate ﬂoor-paintings called
Kolam are used to decorate
the entrance of all homes or
ofﬁces, by using coloured rice
grains or powdered rice as
materials for the art piece.
Mango leaves are used to decorate
the main doors of houses as it is
believed that it will attract positive
energy and chase away evil spirits.
is an important Hindu festival which ushers in the New Year.
It is a reﬂection of the Hindu belief that the lighting
of small oil-ﬁlled clay lamps (referred to as Diyas)
signiﬁes the triumph of good over evil.
Allow us this opportunity to tell the tale of Ramayana
– a Sanskrit epic that contains the teachings of
ancient Hindu sages. In that teaching, Deepavali
is a celebration and reminder of how Lord
Rama (the incarnation of Vishnu the supreme
god) vanquished Ravana (demon king).
During which, the entire city of Ayodhya (the
ancient city of India) was illuminated by the
lighting of earthen lamps all over the city.
Singapore is a multicultural society that celebrates
racial harmony, and the heart of the Hindu community
lies in none other than Little India – located along Serangoon Road.
If you can spare just 30 minutes, walk down Serangoon Road in the
evening to soak in the bustle, and be enthralled in the streets full of glittering
coloured lights. If you have 2 hours, the temples in the area such as the
Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple and the Sri Vadapathira Kaliamman Temple, are
adorned with spectacular displays of lights, multicoloured garlands and arches.
Whether you’ll make it in time to catch the Deepavali festivities or not, fret not. The ever
bustling heart of Little India will be sure to open eyes, into the culture and insights of our
Hindu communities. Make Little India a destination on your week’s plans today!
To mark the occasion, Albert Court Village Hotel will be giving out complimentary
Indian bangles to celebrate and infuse the Deepavali spirit!
Gulab Jamun Tasting
In the spirit of Deepavali festivities, taste the delicious
Indian dessert Gulab Jamun. This sweet dish made
from milk powder (also referred to as Mawa) is deep
fried till it is a round, golden brown crisp. Served in
delectable sugar syrup, its perfect for anyone with a
Always wanted to get a tattoo but dreaded its
permanence? Welcome to the world of henna
painting, where you can enjoy temporal body
art. The dye originates from a ﬂowering plant of
the same name, and in historical times, the art of
henna was viewed as a bestowed blessing. It was
also applied for luck, joy and beauty.
Indian Cuisine Delight
Always wanted to try to ﬂip an Indian Roti Prata?
Now’s your chance at this live demonstration
– watch and learn while getting the hands-
on experience of doing so! That’s not all, as
participants will also get to taste Indian food
favourites such as Chicken Tikka, Tosai and
Cooking Class Series -
Join us in learning about this traditional savoury
South Indian doughnut and pave your way to being
a master chef, as Vadai is a major part in variations
within Indian cuisine and festivals! At this class, you
will learn how lentils are churned into a paste which
in turn is deep fried into delicious, golden brown
Vadais. Bon Appetit!
Nyonya Kueh Tasting
Gain an insight into the Peranakan culture of late
centuries, when ladies were referred
to as Nyonya and gentlemen as Baba. They were
predominantly Chinese that lived along the Straits
of Malacca, and hence much of the Nyonya
cuisine was inﬂuenced by Malay cuisine and
campus. Today, Nyonya Kuehs are much craved-
for sweet snacks which are usually made from
Cooking Class Series -
Chicken Cordon Bleu
A must-have in every chef’s recipe book, this
French classic is a chef’s staple that is sure to hit
home with its savoury bite.
Sunday, 21 November, 2.00pm
This is one activity your kids would love to be at!
Bobo Cha Cha
Coconut lovers will be instantly addicted to this local
dessert, which is guaranteed to tantalize your
Bean Curd Tasting
This Chinese dessert, also known as Tau Huay, is a
silky smooth beancurd custard in syrup. It is usually
eaten warmed up, and makes a satisfying snack at
any time of the day!
Chef William’s Carrot Cake Recipe
For the beneﬁt of those who did not manage to attend the demonstration, here is
the recipe. Do note that next time, you should try to be present because you need to
taste it to believe it!
1. Heat up a ﬂat frying pan with a thin layer
of vegetable oil.
2. Pan-fry the carrot cake with a ladle full of
pork lard oil until a light, crispy, golden
brown layer forms around it.
3. Dabble a teaspoon of ﬁsh sauce into the
pan, together with some preserved radish,
chopped garlic and a little bit of pepper.
4. As the fragrance of the ﬁsh sauce
emerges, gently and patiently add ladles
of egg layer by layer.
5. Fry-in the spring onion and sprinkle a
thin layer of pork lard oil to enhance the
crispiness of the carrot cake.
6. Allow the carrot cake to set and ﬂip until
there is a light golden brown texture.
7. Dig in!
BY EXECUTIVE CHEF WILLIAM SOH
There is no better person to teach the craft of traditional carrot cake cooking
other than our very own Executive Chef William Soh. Coming from a family of
chefs famous for their hawker-style carrot cake, the affable chef is enthusiastic in
imparting his knowledge and expertise.
Carrot Cake, or Chai Tao Kway as it is known locally, originates from the
Teochew cuisine in Chaoshan, China. It is not to be confused with the western
dessert cake of the same name, but rather, is a savoury dish that is primarily made
of rice ﬂour.
As the crowd gathered for the demo at Changi Village Hotel on 23rd October,
Chef William warmed up the crowd with informative banter and expressed that
he does not withhold any culinary secrets, as he ﬁrmly believes in sharing the joy
of cooking (and eating!).
One of the attendees Mr. Tan, actively asked for pointers and readily absorbed
Chef William’s nuggets of wisdom. His wife Mrs. Tan later revealed to us that he
was an avid cook himself, thus the attention to detail!
By the end of the cooking demonstration, the savoury aroma of Chef William’s
Carrot Cake generated a collective “Wow!” and plates of it were snatched up as
quickly as they left the pan. It was delicious! Crispy on the outside, yet soft on the
inside… no wonder some attendees went for seconds!
Don’t forget to drop by for your icy dessert ﬁx
before venturing outdoors. Jelly-like Sago pearls
and Honeydew are combined in a sweet fragrant
concoction that is sure to cool you down.
Singapore River Cruise
Hop on to the 30 minute Singapore River Cruise for
a cohesive insight into our history and heritage! Revel
in the evening lights and enjoy the modernity of the
Singapore landscape in the unique bum boats that
preserve the river heritage of Old Singapore and
are only found on the Singapore River Cruise. Please
contact your resident managers for sign-up details.
Stay Village. And Discover.
Albert Court Village Hotel • Changi Village Hotel • Landmark Village Hotel
Central Square Village Residences • Riverside Village Residences • Hougang Village Residences • West Coast Village Residences
General Manager, Serviced Residences
What is Village to you?
It’s a personalized integrated experience, where
emphasis is not just singled out to within the Village
premises, but where the respective vicinities strongly
come into play by showcasing Singapore’s
So if Village is about its vicinity, has the
brand been working with the community?
Yes, some outreach efforts include inviting commercial
activities in the neighbourhood to become business
partners, so as to share their experiences with our
guests. For example, when a ﬂoral arrangement
activity was held as part of the Village group of
activities, ﬂorists in the immediate vicinity were
approached and hired.
What’s in store for 2011?
We will continue to cultivate this unique network with
its strong sense of community. It is crucial that every
individual in it plays a pivotal part in forming this
experience. Besides operating as a service provider
and a unique brand – the Village experience is about
providing an unforgettable and positive experience.
Seow Yen Nee
Resident Manager, Central Square Village Residences
What is the Village Experience to you?
With Village there is this spirit of camaraderie. When
my staff shared their home-made rice dumplings at
a Village Signature Event during the Rice Dumpling
Festival (also called Duan Wu Jie), guests who
experienced it were exceptionally intrigued.
The conversations extended throughout the month
– discussing the best places to buy them, tips on
ingredients and methods of preparations, etc.
This form of rapport is representative of the
Village brand – which is to emphasize an experience
where guests are able to relive a home away
Front Ofﬁce Manager, Albert Court Village Hotel
What is the Village Experience to you?
It is about sharing the interesting sights, sounds and
tastes of the Albert Court neighbourhood with our
guests. For example, for the local cuisine-related
Village Signature Activities held at Albert Court, we
are sure to make purchases from the nearby Tekka
Market. These include Kachang Puteh, Nonya Kueh,
etc. I feel that the respective vicinities strongly come
into play to showcase Singapore’s local ﬂavour.
How are your other front ofﬁce colleagues
It must be a different experience – compared to
working for other chain hotels. Certainly, everyone is
involved in providing the Village experience. They are
all invited to conduct the local food tasting sessions
themselves, on a rotational basis. This way, everyone
gets a go at demonstrating and sharing something
local that is close to their heart.
What’s your most memorable Village
Once, we shared a local desert – Tau Huay, an
affordable yet tasty beancurd delicacy. I believe that
it was the team’s sincerity in sharing our local culture
and heritage. The treats were snatched up in no time!
“Everyone seems to
agree – that there is no
other group that offers
an experience quite
like Village Hotels and
Village Hotels & Residences