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Foreign Correspondent: Singapore Style Report From Catalog Magazine's Anton D. Javier

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Name, occupation: Anton D. Javier, writer

Location: I'm originally from Manila, but I've been in Singapore for half a decade now.

On life in Singapore: Like a lot of Asian capitals, Singapore is very fast paced. The central business district is constantly buzzing, buildings are always on the rise, and almost everyone is shopping all the time.

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How he got his start: I studied literature in college and worked at a museum for two years after graduation. I then moved to Singapore to work as a features writer at a custom publishing company, and I'm now a senior writer for Catalog Magazine, a Singapore fashion and lifestyle publication.

When I first started in the publishing industry, I had no idea what I was doing so I pretty much learned everything along the way. I think one of the main highlights of my career so far is being headhunted by Catalog Magazine—it's very flattering to know that people want you on their team because they believe in your abilities.

His personal style: I've appropriated a personal uniform, which makes dressing in the morning really easy. I'm usually in a white or blue oxford (or the occasional Bengal stripe shirt), slim black jeans, and loafers. I finish it off with a Longines Conquest watch or my vintage 1951 Omega and a couple of bracelets on both wrists (a mix of my Tod's leather bracelet to one I bought at a random souvenir stand in Rome).

What he'd save in a fire: I'd quickly grab a blue oxford shirt (from Muji or Uniqlo), my Maison Kitsuné striped shirt, a pair of black jeans, and either my Gucci horsebit loafers or A.P.C. moccasins. I think I'd be fine with those pieces.

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On the current state of menswear in Singapore: Since it's eternally summer in Singapore, a lot of guys dress very casually. Think T-shirts, shorts, and flip-flops. However, the menswear scene is also slowly gravitating towards bespoke tailoring (Kevin Seah is becoming a popular name) and men opt for lightweight and comfortable materials for suits. Custom-made footwear from Ed Et Al (pictured above), ties, and even pocket squares Vanda Fine Clothing are becoming quite popular as well. For great casual pieces like t-shirts, shorts and sneakers, sifr (pictured below) does an amazing job.

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If you only have time to visit a few spots, head directly to Know.It.Nothing, Swagger, and Front Row.

On food and nightlife: Singapore takes its food really seriously. Everyone loves humble hawker fare like the local Chinese, Malaysian, and Indian cuisine that's slightly modified to satisfy the Singaporean palate, but fine dining at celebrity spots and Michelin-starred restaurants is also popular. Jamie Oliver is opening Jamie's Italian soon, while Cat Cora recently opened Ocean Restaurant. My personal favorites include Mario Batali's Pizzeria Mozza and db Bistro Moderne by Daniel Boulud. Some other names to know are Joseph Atherton, who runs the three popular restaurants Pollen, Keong Saik Snacks, and Esquina and Bruno Menard who runs &Made and La Cantine.

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For the past few years, the café culture has also boomed, with artisanal coffees and delicious brunch options on offer. Lately though, Spanish/Mexican/Latin American food is all the rage; about five or six new places have opened in just the past 6 months. You can usually find me at La Barra for great Colombian fare, Mexout for their hearty burritos and margaritas, and Pistola for their Asian-inspired tacos and alcoholic slushies.

The nightlife scene is very different from a few years ago. About five to 10 years ago, people would just go to big clubs. These days, a lot of people prefer to grab a couple of drinks at a rooftop bar, (my favorites are Loof and PS Cafe Ann Siang Hill), order a bespoke cocktail at hole-in-the-wall bars like The Library on Keong Saik Road (you need a password to enter) or Bitters & Love (pictured below), or hang out at Pact, a boutique that doubles as a bar at night, with craft beers and a DJ spinning great tunes.

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—Anton D. Javier writes the menswear blog Alphabeticalife. Follow him on the Details Style Network.

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Also on Details.com:
Foreign Correspondent: Footwear Designer Christian Kimber's Stylish Guide to Melbourne
Rules of Style: Sunglasses Designer Garrett Leight
Drink Like Gatsby: 5 Modern Updates of Jazz Age Cocktails

Photos from Anton D. Javier's Instagram
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