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    Clamping down on illicit goings-on at massage parlours, the police raided five dubious establishments in Lavender Street and Jalan Besar and arrested two women.

    In a statement today (June 8), the police said it will take action on the five outlets after officers swooped down on their premises in operations yesterday and today.

    Massage beds, shower cubicles and other paraphernalia were seized. Two women aged 29 and 46 were detained, among the 18 women checked.

    Commander of Central Police Division, Assistant Commissioner of Police Arthur Law, said: "The police take a serious view against massage establishments that operate without a valid licence or contravene the provisions under the Massage Establishments Act."

    chenj@sph.com.sg

     

    Thursday, June 8, 2017 - 16:30
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    Thursday, June 8, 2017 - 18:05

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    FITNESS fanatics turn their passion into a profession in BT Weekend which spotlights individuals who have given up their day jobs to exercise for a living.

    Also, find out how difficult it is for Singapore chefs to cook sustainably and check out the light parade in Vivid Sydney.

    Higher pay, higher visibility, higher chances for promotion - what's not to love about management trainee programmes? This week's Brunch feature finds out.

    If you are constantly bogged down with meetings, group chats, brainstorming and team huddles, you might have collaboration burnout. Cubicle Files tackles the issue this week, and finds out what employees can do about it.

    Serious photographers, get your game on with the ultra-fast Sony A9 full-frame DSLR in this week's Gearhead column.

    To subscribe, visit btsub.sg/weekend

    Friday, June 9, 2017 - 09:00
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    Bravo to our homegirl Yeo Jia Min for becoming the world No. 1 badminton junior!

    On Thursday (June 8), the 18-year-old was crowned first in the U19 (Under-19s) category by the Badminton World Federation (BWF), dethroning Malaysia's Goh Jin Wei.

    Photo: Screengrab from BWF

    According to Today, Yeo is the first Singaporean to have made the top spot in BWF's junior rankings which started in 2011.

    Just last year, the womens' singles player had won the Yonex Sunrise Vietnam Grand Prix which saw her ascend to world No. 2 junior.

    Earlier this year, she emerged champion in the Yonex Dutch Junior International as well.

    Despite that, she dropped seven spots on the overall women's singles ranking from 55th to 62nd last month.

    But that didn't discourage her from training harder, and her title as the top junior has certainly proven her capabilities.

    “I feel encouraged," she said in the Today report.  "I take it step by step and it’s something to continue to push me [to do better]."

    "I don’t aim [to do well specifically] for rankings, but it’s part of the process."

    Yeo will be making her way to three competitions next, as we cheer her on at the Crown Group Competition from June 20-25, Yonex Open Taiwan from June 27-July 2 and Asia Junior Championships from July 22-30.

    Hopefully these tournaments will prepare her well as she represents Singapore in the SEA Games come August.

    ongymm@sph.com.sg

    Friday, June 9, 2017 - 11:18
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    School may be out for most students and undergraduates in Singapore right now, and it might seem counter-productive to spend your vacation days back on campus. However, it might actually be the best time to explore them in all its picturesque spots, now that the grounds are free of stressed-out students and teachers. InstaScram takes you on a tour of two universities in Singapore

    The National University of Singapore (NUS) was formed in 1980 with the merger of two universities, the University of Singapore and Nanyang University, which makes NUS the oldest university in Singapore. The main Kent Ridge campus at NUS is an enormous one. To be exact, it encompasses an area of 150 hectares, which is larger than 200 football fields. Some of the spots are surprisingly still covered in dense forest. To explore the entirety of its campus would take more than a day's trek - even on a scooter - so InstaScram shortlists the top three must-see places.

    The University Cultural Centre, by The NUS Centre for the Arts, is a remarkable attraction to begin your journey. Apart from being the go-to venue for theatre, music and art events, it also houses the NUS Museum, which has over 7,000 artifacts from all over Southeast Asia.

    Photo: Instascram

    Right next door, there's another stunning architectural marvel. The Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum is a relatively new addition to the already photogenic campus. It opened its doors in April 2015 to much fanfare. The museum boasts a diverse range of natural history specimens, some at least 139 years old. Visitors can tour the two galleries indoors, showcasing heritage specimens over a century old, or venture outside to check out the flora and fauna in the open-air gardens. But of course, the undeniable attraction of the museum has to be the three fossil skeletons of the Diplodocid Sauropods, which lived 150 million years ago.

    Photo: Instascram

    Our final stop is the bustling and dynamic University Town, or UTown. Barely 6 years since it first opened, it has since flourished to not only house residential colleges and University Scholars Programme, but also, it is a good representation of campus life. With its 24-hour Starbucks outlet, numerous eateries, and its great expanse of space, it is common to find students taking a mid-class breather or playing a game of Frisbee.

    From the oldest college in Singapore to the newest. The Singapore University of Technology and Design opened in May 2015 and straddles the Changi-Simei area. With a spotlight on the specialised areas of architecture, sustainable design and engineering product development - to name a few - it aims to integrate technology, design and business into a cohesive curriculum.

    Photo: Instascram

    Even its campus mirrors its cross-disciplinary pedagogy. Its architecture is a unique mix of Eastern and Western influences, with its clean, angular lines and curved linkages, juxtaposed against a number of antique Chinese structures.

    There are a few fun facts about the SUTD campus. Firstly, it is an environmentally-friendly building, applying natural lighting techniques and ample greenery.

    Secondly, the collection of Chinese buildings, including a large pavilion, was donated to the campus by Hong Kong film personality, Jackie Chan. The buildings were from his own personal collection and are from the Qing and Ming Dynasty, which dates back to approximately 370 years ago. They were restored on site by a team of 24 Suzhou craftsmen. The presence of these ancient buildings allow students to appreciate the art of sustainable architecture, both old and new.

    Photo: Instascram

    Students - both prospective and current - will find that getting here on public transport will be much easier with the opening of the Upper Changi Station on the Downtown Line 3 in October 2017. The beauty that is to be explored amongst the schools of Singapore is by no means an exhaustive list, and we're sure that with the school holidays, there will be a bit of time to put aside those books and see our schools in a new light.

    on SPH Brightcove

    Follow @instascram_sg on Instagram for more of the best photogenic places in Singapore, and Facebook for more updates!

    Friday, June 9, 2017 - 13:50
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    https://studio.brightcove.com/products/videocloud/media/videos/5465258890001

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    To serve tourists travelling by sea from Singapore to Indonesia, Majestic Fast Ferry Pte Ltd launched on Thursday a new ferry called Majestic Dream that plies the Singapore-Batam and Singapore-Tanjungpinang routes.

    "This is part of our services to ease access to tourists. It just so happens that we're the only operator to partner with the Indonesian government in terms of increasing the number of foreign tourists coming to the country," said Majestic Fast Ferry's Batam promotion head, Victor.

    Majestic Dream was designed by Australian naval architect and engineering firm Incat Crowther and built by Indonesian company PT. Cahaya Samudra Shipyard on Batam. In 2016, Majestic Fast Ferry launched three new ferries called Majestic 7, Majestic 8 and Majestic 9.

    Read also: Singapore ties with Germany for most powerful passport in the world

    The 33-meter ferry features 317 seats and two VIP rooms, each consisting of four seats.

    Victor says ferry tickets can be purchased at several agents, as well as Alfamart and Indomaret convenience store chains across Indonesia.

    "[The roundtrip] from Batam Centre to HarbourFront Centre in Singapore only costs Rp 320,000 (SS$33). The same price is applied for the route from Batam Centre to Singapore's Tanah Merah, whilst the price for the Sekupang-HarbourFront Centre route is Rp 280,000," added Victor.

    Friday, June 9, 2017 - 16:19
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    Singapore welcomes Chinese companies to submit bids on the Singapore-Kuala Lumpur High Speed Rail, Singaporean Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan has said.

    In a written interview with China Daily, he said Singapore "recognises China's experience and expertise". The international request for bids, to be conducted in a fair and transparent manner, will be jointly put out by Singapore and Malaysia later this year, he said.

    The minister, in an official visit to China from Sunday to Monday, noted that the project aims to improve connectivity among the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

    Regarding the Belt and Road Initiative, Balakrishnan called Singapore an "early and strong supporter" and said China and Singapore can work together to add value to the initiative.

    The two countries can further consider the joint provision of training for officials from the "Belt and Road" countries, and encourage think tanks to conduct joint research on topics related to the "Belt and Road", he said.

    Singapore has been China's largest foreign investor as well as China's top trading partner within ASEAN.

    "Singapore will continue to support Chinese companies as more venture abroad," he said.

    Speaking of bilateral ties, he said Singapore and China share a "close and longstanding friendship", and this partnership "also reflects the long term strength of our bilateral ties and the bright prospects for the future".

    While the two countries have their respective national interests, there are no fundamental strategic disagreements, he said.

    "We both need regional peace and stability. We both depend on free and open trade," he added.

    On China-ASEAN ties, Balakrishnan said ASEAN's strategic partnership with China is "strong, substantive and multifaceted", and both sides need to boost two-way tourist visits and promote people-to-people exchanges.

    "We will continue to actively advance ASEAN-China relations in the remaining year of our ASEAN-China coordinatorship, part of which will coincide with Singapore's Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2018," he said.

    "We look forward to working closely with our ASEAN colleagues and with China to bring the ASEAN-China Strategic Partnership to greater heights," he added.

    On the South China Sea issue, the minister said the South China Sea situation "has been calm and there have been no major disruptions in the past year", and the complicated issue "must be resolved by the claimant states themselves".

    Singapore is glad to be able to contribute effectively to the good progress made on the full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, signed by China and ASEAN members in 2002, and the consultations on the Code of Conduct thus far, he said.

    "I welcome the progress made by our officials in finalizing the framework for the COC in Guiyang last month," he said.

    Monday, June 12, 2017 - 10:05
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