For decades, Singapore’s very own Chinatown has charmed locals and foreigners alike with its timeless and diverse offerings.
Traditional spots? Check. Pastry shops? Check. Trendy places? Check. As they like to say nowadays, you want it, you get it.
But here’s the thing. While the above has been a known fact to many, many Singaporeans, it isn’t precisely global news, strictly speaking.
Or at least until now.
Singapore’s Chinatown Got Into List of the World’s Coolest Neighbourhoods
Singapore’s Chinatown is officially going worldwide.
On 17 October 2023, Time Out came up with a list of the top 40 coolest neighbourhoods in the world.
And guess what? Chinatown got a spot.
Squaring up against the likes of Zhongshan and Dotonbori, the classic neighbourhood managed to stand its ground and score a very respectable 14th.
3rd in Asia, by the way.
Described by Time Out as a place that “encapsulates the multifacetedness of Singapore”, Chinatown scored points for its diverse range of places and hotspots, stretching from temples to vintage stores to chic nightlife places.
Several reputable places also got namedropped in the paragraph, with Japanese bakery Paaru, Amoy Street Food Centre, Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, and boozy wonderland White Shades all garnering some free advertisement in the process.
Chinatown is just one spot behind Los Angeles’ Arts District and one ahead of New York City’s Fort Greene.
Only Hong Kong’s Sheung Wan and Tokyo’s Tomigaya are ahead of Chinatown in the Asian region, having been placed 5th and 10th on the list, respectively.
As for the top spot, it was swept by Colombia’s Laureles.
You can check out the complete list here.
Though impressive, Chinatown is not the first local town to earn such an accolade.
In the 2022 edition, for instance, Little India did us all proud with its 19th-place finish.
And in yesteryears, the likes of Katong, Bugis and Tanjong Pagar have all brought our little country to the global stage.
According to the Singaporean subsection of Time Out, over 12,000 people were polled for their opinions before the list was narrowed down with the intervention of knowledgeable editors.
Various factors were considered, including aspects such as diversity, the food scene and the quality of street life.
Apart from Chinatown’s triumph, it should be noted that Singapore has scored big in other areas in 2023 as well.
Two local hotels, for instance, got into the top 50 hotels of 2023: Raffles Singapore and Capella Singapore.
Singaporean establishment Summer Pavilion at The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore has also achieved a top 20 finish in the Best of the Best Restaurants 2023.
It was a top 20 contender under the Fine Dining category.
And in a recent report by Resonance Consultancy, Singapore was unveiled as the fifth-best city in the world in 2023.
Earlier this year, it also scored 25th on a list of happiest countries in the world.
Curiously, the last one was the hardest to believe.