This viral pop-up market needs no introduction — Artbox Singapore is back, bigger and cooler than ever. The pop-up festival is being held at Singapore Expo for the first time, so we’ll finally be able to enjoy the festivities in a fully air-conditioned space (no more sweating buckets)!
The official theme this year is Vision, and I must say the psychedelic decor is such a vibe. Think fairy lights, bold neon signs and huge inflatable art installations — plus, you’ll find light shows projected on the signature Artbox containers every hour. Photo-ops are plenty, so be sure to snap a few IG-worthy photos!
Looking to shop till you drop? You’ll be delighted to know that the event space has about 300 stalls, with a good mix of both Singaporean and Thai vendors. While the retail prices are definitely a little higher than what you can find in Thailand, they’re still pretty affordable (considering Singapore’s standard festival prices) — you can even get the cutest tops from just S$10!
Apart from clothes, you’ll also find handmade crafts, custom jewellery, jagua tattoos and so much more. Considering that most of these are smaller local stores that tend to fly under the radar, this is the perfect time to #supportlocal. Plus, a number of these vendors are even offering discounts exclusive to Artbox visitors, so you should defo shop to your heart’s content.
Fellow crystal girlies, you’re going to love this. Head over to Fortune Town, where you can find stalls boasting a large variety of crystals — whether you’re looking to attract love, money, or anything else, there’s bound to be something for you. If you really want to leave nothing to chance, there are even tarot readings and fortune telling!
If you’re getting peckish from all the exploration and shopping, it’s time to pay the extensive F&B section a visit. Whether you’re craving something sweet or savoury (or a mix of both), there are tons of options available. Familiar names include The Feather Blade (part of The Proper Concepts Collective), Tung Jai Yang (Michelin Bib Gourmand char siew), Grumpy Bear, Ramen Shiba, BigBigFries, popular online bakery Kobashi and so much more.
Known for their artisanal sourdough bakes, Kobashi sells focaccia and unique sourdough donuts with flavours like Double Chocolate Cognac (S$6.50), Mao Shan Wang Charcoal (S$7), and Pistachio Dolce (S$6).
Okay, we all know man tou and chilli crab go well together, but what about man tou ice cream sandwiches? Man Tou Da Han offers up just that — a combination of sweet and savoury that goes surprisingly well together. We tried the handcrafted Miso Sexy (no, you!) flavour (S$7) that came with seaweed strips atop a generous scoop of ice cream, and it was the perfect balance of milkiness with a hint of miso.
You can also find almost too-cute-to-eat onigiris from The Proper Concepts Collective — choose from flavours like prawn, crab and wagyu. Instead of the typical onigiri where you have fillings packed into white rice, their rendition actually features all the ingredients mixed into the rice so that every bite is filled with flavour. While this worked for the prawn version (S$6), I would have preferred the wagyu onigiri (S$8) to feature more — well, wagyu.
Pay a visit to the New Deli Bakery booth for some freshly-baked pastries like their Houjicha Filled Croissant (S$9), Triple Chocolate Spiral (S$7.50) and Vanilla Kouign Amann (S$6). The baker behind these oh-so-crispy pastries actually used to work at Tiong Bahru Bakery — need I say more?
There are also plenty of stalls serving up a smorgasbord of halal and Muslim-friendly options like delectable paninis, mac and cheese, butterbeer (non-alcoholic) from Bo-Geh and even the popular MahMud’s Tandoor’s tandoori burgers. There’s defo something for everyone!
Of course, you’ll need some drinks to accompany all that good food. Coffee enthusiasts may be familiar with Tanamera Coffee, which features Indonesian speciality brews — choose from a large range of cold brews, drip bags, and even Dolce Gusto-compatible pods.
If you’re looking for alcoholic options, you’ll be spoilt for choice as well. There’s Chang beer, Destalo Wine and even cocktail-infused slushies like Sour Plum Vodka and Chrysanthemum Lychee Gin (both S$12) from Clumzy Plumzy — I guess every hour is happy hour at Artbox Singapore!
Wondering what else there is to do? Apart from retro arcade classics and complimentary VR games (subject to availability), you can visit the SG Spark Squad booth to experience the chill-out container and get a bird’s eye view of the event space.
If you’d like to do all of the above for free, you’ll need to pair up with a stranger of the opposite gender. Plus, you’ll also get to choose one activity each from Fortune Town to participate in for free.
For all you adrenaline junkies out there, this one’s for you. Sign up for the Beam of Pain Challenge at the SGAG stage, which is a 15-metre beam walk that’s lined with acupuncture mats! If you successfully cross the beam and ring the bell with the fastest timing across all six days, you’ll win a whopping S$888 — but it’s not as easy as it sounds. The pain from walking across the acupuncture spikes will really test your mental strength (trust us, we know), let alone trying to complete the challenge quickly!
Look out for the other two competitions, National Shake Leg and Paper Toss Championships. There’s no better time or place to challenge your friends and stand a chance to walk away with S$888 (and bragging rights).
Of course, what’s a festival without some live music? You can look forward to an exciting line-up of popular local artistes like Tay Kewei, Krysta Joy and Sam Driscoll at the Artbox mainstage — take your pick from the ample seating available, grab a drink, and just relax!
Artbox Singapore will be held at EXPO Hall 6 from 24 to 26 February and 3 to 5 March 2023, from 12pm to 10pm. Ticket prices start from S$6 (inclusive of a S$1 booking fee), but you can also opt to get a 6-day pass with priority entry for S$33! While you can get your tickets at the door, we highly recommend buying them online beforehand here to avoid disappointment.
The event will only be around for two weekends, so be sure to make plans for it ASAP!
Artbox Singapore 2023
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📍Singapore Expo Hall 6, 1 Expo Dr, Singapore 486150
🕒 12pm–10pm (last entry at 9pm)
🗓️ 24 to 26 Feb, 3 to 5 Mar 2023
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