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Hidden Gems of Joo Chiat - Esse

Hidden Gems of Joo Chiat

Esse’s showroom is located in Joo Chiat, a charming neighbourhood located in East Coast. Joo Chiat is a melting pot of culture, a heady blend of old and new. Family businesses and quaint shophouses sit alongside cool cafés, and there are lots of gems waiting to be discovered. The neighbourhood’s identity and culture - shaped by its unique colourful two-storey shophouses and terrace houses with ornate facades, intricate motifs and ceramic tiles, drew us to the area, and we are always discovering something nostalgic and new.

We often receive a number of questions about what to eat and do around the area after studio appointments by our community. So, we thought of compiling a list of places to visit, to shine a light on the local businesses in our ‘hood, paying tribute to the people and businesses that make Joo Chiat so special.


Long Phung Vietnamese Restaurant

Image Credit: Miss Tam Chiak
If you’re looking for the best pho in Singapore, look no further! Long Phung Vietnamese Restaurant offers a wide selection of authentic vietnamese dishes. We recommend starting from the Rare Beef Pho - Pho Tai and working your way through the menu.

159 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427436

Opening Hours:
Monday to Sunday, 12.00pm-11.00pm

Guan Hoe Soon Restaurant

Image Credit: Timeout Singapore

You haven’t tried peranakan food until you’ve had Guan Hoe Soon, Singapore’s oldest Peranakan restaurant. It so happens to be the late Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew’s and our favourite Peranakan Restaurant. They offer an assortment of nonya staples but be sure to save room for dessert!

38 Joo Chiat Place, Singapore 427762

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday 10.00am - 3.00 pm, 6.00pm - 9.30pm
Saturday to Sunday 10.00am - 3.00pm, 5.30pm - 9.30pm

The 1925 Brewing Co.

Image Credit: The 1925 Brewing Co.

Wanting to preserve their Singaporean Teochew heritage and culture, 1925 Brewing Co. started out as a micro brewery and restaurant. They have since evolved into serving elevated Teochew cuisine like their Traditional Teochew Fish Porridge (highly recommended by one of our customers) paired with their locally brewed craft beers.

261 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427515

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 12.00pm - 10.30pm

Birds of Paradise Gelato Boutique

Image Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up or sweet treat post dinner, Birds of Paradise serves botanical and locally inspired flavours such as Strawberry Basil, White Chrysanthemum, Pandan and many more. We strongly recommend skipping the cups and going straight for their freshly made thyme infused cone.

63 East Coast Rd, #01-05, Singapore 428776

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 12.00pm - 10.00pm

Homeground Coffee Roasters

Image Credit: The Ranting Panda

Get your caffeine fix here at Homeground Coffee Roasters. Their medium-bodied house blend, Vanta, boasts tasting notes of red apple, caramel, milk chocolate, roasted almonds and pecans. Thoughtfully curated to be a comforting cup of coffee you can enjoy daily.

475 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427682

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday, 8.00am - 5.00pm
Saturday to Sunday, 9.00am - 6.00pm

Sinpopo Brand

Image Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Located in the heart of Peranakan cuisine and culture, Katong, Sinpopo combines nostalgic flavours with a modern twist. Just look at their handcrafted Pandan Kaya cake, a nod to Kueh Salat. Enjoy a slice of lucious pandan kaya spread over blue-pea flower tinged rice cake and layered with fresh coconut cream after your meal.

458 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427671

Opening Hours:
Monday to Sunday, 12.00pm - 10.00pm

Haig Road Putu Piring

Image Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Featured on Netflix’s Street Food: Asia Series, Haig Road Putu Piring started out from a stall at Geylang Serai Market. Gula melaka, also known as palm sugar, is enveloped by grated coconut and then steamed on a piece of pandan leaf. They have since expanded to 5 outlets islandwide but we think that you should try it from the original store. 

#01-07 Haig Road Hawker Centre
14 Haig Rd, Singapore 430014

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 11.00am - 9.30pm

Mr and Mrs Moghan Super Crispy Prata

Image Credit: Eat and Travel with Us

Prata for breakfast spells the weekend for us. Mr and Mrs Moghan’s prata is as crispy as its namesake suggests. Having these with sambal chili made from canned sardines sets it apart from other prata shops. 

300 Joo Chiat Road
Tin Yeung Restaurant
Singapore 427551

Opening Hours: 
Monday - Sunday, 6.30am - 1pm
(Closed on Wednesdays, and at 11.30am on Tuesdays)

MICRO red | house

Image Credit: MICRO red | house

We are no stranger to sourdough bread after its exploding popularity during lockdown. MICRO red | house serves their slice of sourdough with a generous amount of silky smooth ricotta cheese and medley of vegetables for a refreshing bite. Also known as their House Ricotta Tartine, it aims to please!

63 East Coast Road, #01-06 Red House, Singapore, 428776

Opening Hours:
Wednesday to Friday, 8:30am - 04:00pm
Saturday and Sunday, 8.30am - 5.00pm

Cuigini Trattoria Pizzeria

Image Credit: Cugini Trattoria Pizzeria

You’ll be transported to Italy with their array of traditional, authentic Italian dishes, enjoyed in their trattoria setting with Sardinian and Sicilian touches. Pizzas are wood-fired. Pastas are hand made fresh. Get your Italian fix here!

37 Joo Chiat Place, Singapore 427761

Opening Hours:
Tuesday, 6.00pm - 10.30pm
Wednesday to Sunday, 12.00pm - 3.00pm, 6.00pm - 10.30pm

The Communal Place

Image Credit: The Communal Place

Created to be a destination where friends and family can bond over good food and drinks, The Communal Place serves contemporary western fusion food. Their Foie Gras and Masago Pasta are the perfect match of east and west!

465 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427677

Opening Hours:
Monday to Sunday, 11.00am - 10.00pm

Petit Pain

Image Credit: Miss Tam Chiak

Touted as the crispiest croissants ever, Petit Pain also offers a variety of baked goods like Pain Au Chocolat, Apple Danish and Honey Toast that are equally delicious. Made from scratch in small batches to assure quality, baked goods run out really quickly. We recommend ordering in advance to avoid disappointment. 

315 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427566

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Friday, 11.00am - 5.00pm
Saturday and Sunday, 10.00am - 4.00pm

Okada Coffee and Sweets

Image Credit: dairycream

Enjoy quality japanese food at Okada Coffee and Sweets. Ingredients are specially flown in from Kumamoto for the most authentic Japanese gastronomic experience. Drop by for their desserts and coffee (like the Okada Roll), and don’t forget to stay from their mains. They offer a hearty selection of curries and dons.

153 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427431

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Friday, Sunday, 10.00am - 5.00pm
Saturday, 10.00am - 9.00pm

Thunder Tea Rice

Image Credit: camemberu

Lei Cha, or Thunder Tea Rice, traces its roots back to the Han Dynasty. A traditional Hakka dish, Thunder Tea Rice is a hearty, guilt-free meal. A herbal blend of basil, mugwort, mint and coriander leaves along with roasted nuts, seeds and grains are pounded into a paste to make its signature bright green soup that tastes more delicious than it looks.

328 Joo Chiat Rd, #01- 04, Singapore 427585

Opening Hours:
Monday to Sunday, 10.00am - 9.30pm

Kway Guan Huat (Original Joo Chiat Popiah)

Image Credit: Miss Tam Chiak

Popiah is a type of fresh spring roll that is filled with shredded vegetables, shrimp, eggs and more. Watch the popiah chef skillfully toss a ball of dough making the popiah skin the traditional way, while waiting for your order. With more than 80 years of experience under their belt, Kway Guan Huat is a must-try for any popiah lover.

95 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427389

Opening Hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 11.00am - 2.00pm and 6.00pm - 9.30pm


Image Credit: Med@59jct

Beat the travel bug by going on a private culinary journey around the Mediterranean Sea at Med@59jct. Each seating boasts an exclusive curated menu that is reinvented weekly. Savour dishes like Babaganoush and Osso Buco in the same seating at a quaint shophouse that offers tranquility in a relaxed old world atmosphere. 

59 Joo Chiat Terrace Singapore 427221

Opening Hours:
By appointment only 


Common Man Coffee Roasters

Image Credit: Ordinary Patrons

Serving an all-day brunch style menu and great coffee, it is no wonder why CMCR had to open a third outlet. Try their highly recommended Eggs Benedict that takes on a braised ox cheeks twist instead of the usual bacon. We can’t imagine a better way of spending our weekend, people watching along Joo Chiat Road and sipping on coffee.

185 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427456 

Opening Hours:

Daily, 7.30am to 5.30pm


Tigerlily Patisserie

Image Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Flirting with the idea of marrying European culinary techniques with familiar Asian flavours has resulted in a botanical themed cafe with a perpetual queue. Pistachio-lovers must try their Pistachio Marimo, an unassuming play with textures of pistachios in every form imaginable. For those who prefer savoury items, they also carry a small menu of brunch items. 

350 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427598

Opening Hours:
Tuesdays to Sundays, 9am to 5pm
Closed on Mondays

Super Farmers

Image Credit: The Smart Local

Super Farmers offers Urban Farming Kits that allow you to grow vegetables in the comfort of your own home, encouraging self-sufficiency by creating our own food source. Choose from Kang Kong, Chinese Kale and Chye Sim or get a bundle of 3 for more variety. Super Farmers also hold plant-based workshops in the themes of Urban Farming, Art, Cooking and Wellness in their beautiful workshop space and gardens.

406 Joo Chiat Place #01-23 
The Yards, Singapore 428084

The Cheese Shop

Image Credit: The Cheese Shop

Boasting an award-winning selection of cheese from the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain and Holland, perfect place to pick up your favourite cheese to build a charcuterie board for your next party. Choose from mature slices, well-aged options, chili-flavoured varieties and more. 

267 Joo Chiat Rd #01-01 
Singapore 427521

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday, 11.00am - 7.00pm
Saturday to Sunday, 11.00am - 8.00pm

Cat Socrates

Image Credit: Cat Socrates

Contrary to their name, Cat Socrates carries a variety of locally inspired lifestyle knick knacks for just about anyone that are too cute to resist. 

448 Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427661

Opening Hours:
Monday, 11.00am – 6.00pm
Tuesday to Friday, 11.00am - 8.00pm
Saturday, 11.00am - 8.30pm
Sunday, 11.00am - 7.00pm


Image Credit: Retrocrates

Retrocrate is heaven for vinyl lovers. They sell new, second hand and out-of-print vinyl records that span across all music genres like pop, rock, jazz and more. They dedicated their second-floor to jazz, aptly naming it “The Jazz Loft” where customers can get comfortable and immerse themselves in the music in a cosy atmosphere.

448a Joo Chiat Rd, Singapore 427661

Opening Hours:
Closed on Monday
Tuesday to Friday, 12.00pm - 6.00pm
Saturday, 11.00am - 6.00pm
Sunday, 12.00pm - 5.00pm

Carpmael Park Playground

Image Credit: Timeout Magazine

Known as a Wallholla Vertical Playground, the Carpmael Playground is one-eight of a series of vertical playgrounds around Singapore. Suitable for kids aged five to 12, let your little ones climb, hang, swing, slide, run, jump and hide freely.

166 Ceylon Road, Singapore 429728

Willing Hearts Volunteer Kitchen

Image Credit: dvids

Willing Hearts believes that when it comes to volunteering all you need is a warm smile, two helping hands, an open and willing heart and asking “How can I be of help today?”. Open 365 days a year, sign up for any time slot and help to cook, prepare and pack food for their beneficiaries. 

11 Jalan Ubi Block 6, #01-51 Kembangan
Chai Chee Community Hub
Singapore 409074

Opening Hours:
Daily, 5.30am - 3.30pm

3Arts Pottery

Image Credit: 3Arts Pottery

3Arts Pottery offers a variety of classes from Wheel Throwing, Handbuilding or Mindful Pottery that you can choose from. Create your very own unique crockery and get it glazed or sign up for their glazing class.

394 Joo Chiat Place, Singapore 428078

Opening Hours:
Closed on Monday
Tuesday, 7.00am - 10.00pm
Wednesday and Friday, 9.30am - 4.00pm
Thursday, 3.00pm - 10.00pm
Saturday and Sunday, 9.30am - 7.00pm

Oasis Skin Provision Shop

Image Credit: Oasis Skin

Kind to the environment and your skin, Oasis Skin is a local beauty brand that conscientiously handcrafts their products with only high quality ingredients sourced from the best natural environments. On top of its signature skincare products there is also a DIY section where you can pick and choose ingredients from the in-house bulk store. 

With the refillery system, customers are encouraged to bring their own bottles to fill up with the products of their choice, and drop off recycled boxes and materials that will be recycled. 

280 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427534

Opening Hours:
Wednesday to Friday, 1.00pm - 6.00pm
Saturday to Sunday, 11.00am - 7.00pm

Hat of Cain

Image Credit: Hat of Cain

Panama hats are traditional summer hats handwoven from the toquilla palm found in Ecuador. Designed for protection from the sun, it is the perfect accessory for sunny Singapore. Ethically sourced from the finest quality, choose from a wide selection of hats for holidays, everyday use or special occasions and even get it personalised with other fun accessories.

12 Joo Chiat Terrace, Singapore 427183

Opening Hours:
Closed on Sunday and Monday
Tuesday to Friday 11.00am - 6.00pm
Saturday 11.00am - 5.00pm

Potta Plantta

Image Credit: Potta Plantta

Your one stop shop for quirky planters, plants and plant care. Potta Plantta believes in fair trade sustainable practices that benefits the local economy by supporting artisans from South East Asia. Plants sold at Potta Plantta are potted with a special blend of potting mixture and suitable for indoor conditions, perfect for your office or home!

55 Lor L Telok Kurau, #01-57, Singapore 425500

Opening Hours:
Closed on Monday and Tuesday
Wednesday to Friday, 12.30pm - 8.00pm
Saturday and Sunday, 11.00am - 7.00pm

Yoga Movement East Coast

Image Credit: Yoga Movement

Yoga practitioners rejoice - Yoga Movement has a studio right here in the east - swing by to sweat it out or drop in for a relaxing, meditative session. 

237 East Coast Rd, Singapore 428930

Opening Hours:
Monday to Friday, 7.00am - 12.00pm, 3.00pm - 10.00pm
Saturday and Sunday, 8.30am - 7.30pm

Ginkakuji Onishi

Image Credit: 8days Magazine

Ginkakuji offers high-quality Japanese beef at affordable prices. Premium tenderloin steaks, sirloin steaks, A3 and A5 Wagyu. The beef cuts sold day to day vary only because only the best beef is selected from the Japanese farms to be shipped to Singapore. Consult their friendly butcher for advice on cuts and methods of cooking.

122 Tembeling Rd, Singapore 423621

Opening Hours:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday to Sunday, 10.00am - 6.00pm
Closed on Wednesday

Colourful Shophouses

Image Credit: Ivan Tan

Making the list of the ‘Most Instagrammable Spots’ in Singapore, the Peranakan Shophouses are the hallmark of Joo Chiat. Take a stroll down this street to admire the unique ceramic tiles and ornate facades of these shophouses on Koon Seng. Switch out white backgrounds for pastel coloured Peranakan shophouses for your next OOTD.

287 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427540

Figment Live - Still House

Image Credit: Figment Live

Looking to switch up your scenery? Look no further. Figment offers you a boutique take on co-living in Singapore that is inspired by local art, design, and architecture. The team at Figment handpicks residential shophouses in vibrant neighbourhoods and offer wonderfully furnished co-living spaces for fuss-free and flexible rental. 

Stay at one of the colourful houses located on Koon Seng Road aptly named Still House. Behind the charming shophouse facade is a restful and simple interior that is both eclectic and modern.

Visit Figment Live to make a booking.

With so much to see, eat and do, why not make an appointment to visit Esse’s showroom and take a gander around this charming neighbourhood?

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