5 Most Instagrammable Cafes in Singapore
From Hathaway in Dempsey to Raffles Hotel's Singapore Coffee, feast your eyes on the sexy interiors of these new kids on the block
Been around the cafe circuit and looking for something new to add a little spark to your Instagram page? A new generation of cafes is muscling out the old boys for the title of most Insta-appealing. Plus, the food’s no slouch either: aromatic cuppas in swanky surrounds, swish desserts, fusion bites, lush botanicals, and picturesque little dining tableaus. Perfect for a tête-à-tête–and photos, of course.
Swathed in a becoming coat of plum and kitted out with bang-on-trend wood and rattan fittings, forgive us for thinking this sophisticated spot popped right out of a page in Tatler Homes. Large windows bring in views of the wooded Dempsey neighbourhood and veil the frenzy of city life. For the nicest snaps, grab the best seat in the house: a cosy corner table enveloped by a snug wooden bench and ball lamps.
Owner Ivan Ting serves up modern Asian bistronomy inspired by his grandmother's Peranakan cooking. On offer from 9am to 4pm are fusion brunch dishes like Straits of Dempsey (butter chicken, naan, sausages, potato pancakes) and Pengat Pisang French Toast (caramelised bananas stewed in coconut milk, apom berkuah ice cream, brioche). Breads are courtesy of sister cafe Bread Yard. The standard menu runs from 11.30am to 9pm. Can’t stay long? Grab a kueh salat to go from the terrazzo cashier counter.
This upscale joint in Raffles Hotel is run by Group MMM, which also owns F&B concepts Violet Oon Singapore and Janice Wong Singapore. Swan into the elegantly appointed bar or plop down on European-made chairs under Punkawallah rattan fans from the hotel’s original Long Bar. On busy days, competition is fierce for the Insta-ready table beside the sole logo-emblazoned mirrored wall.
Posing with a cuppa in hand is a must: quotidian kopi, kopi C and kopi O get a luxe upgrade with locally-roasted, Asia-sourced Arabica and Robusta beans. Or go straight for the signature Kopi Shake, which is blended with evaporated and condensed milk and served in a cocktail glass, then topped with cocoa powder. Sugary accompaniments include the matcha kaya roll, Kopi Toffee Sundae, and Melted Chocolate (chocolate cake, vanilla ice cream, espresso shot). Mains, including Raffles Lobster Roll, come courtesy of the hotel kitchen.
Nail a nature-themed #ootd without melting makeup or frayed tempers: Canopy’s second, newer outlet—the first is at Bishan—banishes the tropical humidity with a cheery, verdant space mercifully cooled by air conditioning both inside and out. Geometric lamps, teak furnishings, ferns and air plants dripping from bamboo slats up the Balinese aesthetic. Bonus points for charming al-fresco seating and a judicious wooden canopy for sun-drenched flatlays. Pets welcome.
The nosh here is upscale Western: think cold capellini in truffle-butter sauce with scallops and ikura, eggs benedict, and dry-aged beef burgers. If you’re feeling indulgent, skip the standard coffee and tea offerings and summon a glass of prosecco or moscato. The space opens out to Hortpark’s lawn, perfect for energetic kids to romp about.
The latest from the folks behind Merci Marcel, the table to book in this Telok Ayer shophouse is the six-seater under the skylight, framed on one end by a monochrome, rainforest-motif wallpaper from French heritage brand Isidore Leroy. It’s not just the walls that ooze chic: lounge on chairs from French designer Benjamin Mahler, or against handcrafted terracotta wall tiles from Italian maker Cotto Etrusco.
The gluten-free buckwheat flour galettes here are good enough to make any Parisian miss home. They have no names, only numbers: 09 gets you a distinctly French combo of organic Bayonne ham, pancetta, baby potatoes, Reblochon cheese, and onions pickled in white wine; 11 involves a local rendition of satay chicken, ginger and peanuts. Fancier versions exist for the wheat flour crepes, but we recommend the classic: brown sugar and Maison Beillevaire butter. Pair it with a scoop of botanical gelato from local gelato brand Birds of Paradise, a bottle of imported Fils de Pomme organic rose cider, or a cocktail from a collab with spirits distributor Proof & Company.
Siglap gains yet another trendy cafe with the all-pink La Fez Cafe & Bakery; the feminine shade is a nod to the rose city, Marrakesh. Moroccan references flow throughout the space, most prominently in stunning Moorish arch doors and Arabic crockery, including rust-hued earthenware, gilded teapots and tea trays shipped in from the souks, plus the odd indoor palm or two. Balancing it out are modern gold accents and a millennial pink wash on the walls.
Tuck into Middle Eastern brunch staples like shakshuka and turkish poached eggs on flatbread; for mains, try the Makarresh Dip Platter (flatbread, hummus, baba ghanoush, zaalouk, muhammara) and the usual suspects of lamb tagine, couscous salad, tabbouleh, and lentil soup. On Sundays, maghreb baghrir, or traditional Semolina flour pancakes, are available till 11am. Since you’re here, mint tea is a must, as well as the Nous Nous Coffee, a half-milk, half-espresso Moroccan staple. Also keep an eye out for the Pomegranate Rose Mille Feuille—we hear it sells out fast.