We chat to Ryan, Robin and Atlas Finch about living in Ang Mo Kio, a fairly central and established neighbourhood in Singapore. It’s has great access to public transport and it’s close to the Australian International School. What’s the inside scoop?
From: United States
Occupation: Construction Manager (Ryan) and Domestic Project Manager (Robin)
What’s the name of the street where you live? Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8.
If it’s in another language, what does it mean? “Ang Mo” means Caucasian and “Kio” means bridge. It’s apparently named after a military bridge built by a foreigner in the area many years ago.
Exact words you tell a taxi driver to get home? “Ang Mo Kio Avenue 8 – the condo next to the bus interchange.”
Closest MRT station? Ang Mo Kio MRT Station along the North South Line.
How long have you lived here? Over three years.
Why here? When we first moved here, our son was not yet born, so it was perfect staying in the middle of the island; 20 minutes to downtown and 20 minutes to work in Woodlands. Also, AMK has every amenity we need within steps of our condo and the MRT is just across the street. Now that our son is a toddler, the area is perfect for him to explore and there are some fantastic parks near us.
When you walk out of your place, the first thing you see is: Ang Mo Kio MRT station.
The closest store to your front door is: AMK Durian Man at Block 711 (#01- 3501E) – it’s one of our most visited stores!
Your street would make the perfect backdrop for a remake of: A carnival movie. There are so many activities constantly going on here; carnival rides in front of AMK Hub, food stands, ice cream carts, buskers and many stores. It’s an extremely lively community!
Your neighbours are great, but you wouldn’t mind a little less: Hammer drilling. Sound travels fast and loudly every time neighbours are making improvements in their homes.
The unofficial uniform of your street is: A taekwondo dobok – many children take lessons at one of the local schools here.
When you’re in need of a dose of culture, you: Have drinks at the Atlas Bar at Parkview Square.
If you’re missing home, you: Make hamburgers and hotdogs on one of the barbecue pits at the condo.
A mandatory stop for out-of-town guests is: Tip Top Curry Puff!
A common myth about your neighbourhood is: Most folks think AMK is so far away from downtown, but we can get to Orchard on the MRT within 20 minutes or Boat Quay in 30 minutes. And our cost of living is significantly less than more popular expatriate areas.
A massive late-night rager on your street is likely to be: A long night of drinks at S-11, a food court at block 11 along Ang Mo Kio Ave 8. It’s a super popular spot for everyone.
Your hands-down favourite neighbourhood joints are: Canopy Garden Dining at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, AMK Durian Man at Block 71, and True Fitness at Djitsun Mall.
You won’t find better local food than at: Any of the surrounding hawker stalls – chicken rice, pork noodles, satay, curry puffs and more!
The strangest thing you’ve ever seen on your street is: Recently, the entire neighbourhood was being painted in loads of pastel pinks and blues. The oddest thing is the giant painted octopus at the community centre stage.
We love a good bargain. The best deals in your neighbourhood are: Cash Converters. It’s a great place to look for used household items.
One thing you’d never change is: How close we are to the MRT station and AMK Hub, and our fabulous view of the CBD skyline.
But one thing you wouldn’t mind seeing go is: The long lines at our grocery store!
The city gives you $5 million to soup up your street. You use it to: Build a dedicated pathway for food delivery scooters and bicycles. The sidewalks get crowded.
Condo fact file
Name: Centro Residences
Age: About five years
Size: 329 units
Facilities: Pool, kiddie pool, gym, children’s play area, tennis and basketball court, and barbecue pit. It’s kid-friendly, though a larger playground and a few swings would be nice!
For more helpful tips, head to our Living in Singapore section.
What’s new in town
International Schools in Singapore
What to watch recommended
This article first appeared in the June 2019 edition of Expat Living. You can purchase a copy or subscribe so you never miss an issue!