There are a lot of things I love about Singapore, and a recent event I attended only added to the list. It seems that bloggers are highly appreciated in this small city-state. They have an annual blog awards where they invite international bloggers to come and cover the ceremony. I had been lucky enough to be one of the four chosen bloggers from the Philippines.
Prior to the event itself, the 16 international bloggers from Hong Kong, Malaysia, and the Philippines were treated to a welcome dinner at one of the sponsoring hotels, Landmark Village of the Far East Hospitality Group. Aside from the meet and greet with fellow bloggers, omy.sg staff, and people from the Far East group, we also had our portraits sketched (too bad I left mine behind at the hotel) and some had henna tattoos inked on their arms.
The food was delicious (except for the mango dessert), posing for the artist was fun, and meeting the other bloggers was a great experience. It was at the welcome dinner when I met my Singaporean host Mag Chow of ModGam.com, an über-bubbly and super-fun person to be around, who in my mind, represented the young of Singapore—so full of enthusiasm and verve for life that you can’t help but just be carried away.
However, it was the SBA2012 awarding day that we all waited for. After the hotel tour, we all went to the Singapore Flyer where the ceremony was held. I was amazed at the range of niches nominated: from the usual travel, fashion, food, beauty, photography, lifestyle, and video blogs to the far out “best what-the-hell blog.” Don’t ask me what it was all about, even I had no idea! Singapore does appreciate the idea of having fun.
Looking at the list of winners, I have to admire their range of nominees and awardees. One winner was an expat, while another was a 6-year-old boy who hammed it up to the crowd together with his 10-year-old brother. The prizes were great! There were electronic items, hotel stays, gift certificates to restaurants and beauty treatment centers, Casio watches, cameras, camcorders, dinner at the Singapore Flyer, and even a free trip to Macau. Check out the list of winners here.
A costume contest was held too, and bloggers came in various get-ups. There was Loki, Batman, Poison Ivy, and a smattering of monsters and goddesses, but the winner came from our delegation, a fellow Philippine blogger, Noks Sosa of SiningFactory.com. He won a free weekend hotel stay in Oasia.
Our day didn’t end with the awarding; we were all given free passes to the Singapore Flyer, and then we watched the fireworks at 1Altitude—it was a tiring, but ultimately a really fun and memorable day.
I do love Singapore and I can only thank my sponsors omy.sg, the Far East Hospitality Group, and Orchard Parade Hotel for giving me another opportunity to get to know their beautiful city.