My Weekend


Horticulturist and garden designer Alan Tan (above) created Orchid Extravaganza, a display containing about 12,000 orchid plants, as part of this year's Singapore Garden Festival. The festival runs till Sunday, while the extravaganza ends on Aug 28. Get tickets at

The bachelor, 46, a former creative director at NParks,set up his own landscape design consultancy, Living Decor, in January last year.

Do you have a regular weekend?

I work six days a week, but when I have projects I have to work on Sundays.

When you have a weekend free, what do you do?

I have prata and coffee, then spend time at home to catch up with the week's worth of news and television shows that I missed. I like home renovation shows such as Fixer Upper and Kitchen Cousins and thriller dramas such as CSI and Criminal Minds. I also take care of my plants.

What do you do to relax?

I usually run 8 to 10km at Punggol Waterway. I used to run marathons because I don't have to think of anything when I run, so it relaxes me. I also listen to music such as jazz and bossa nova.

Describe your perfect weekend.

I would spend some time at a beach resort overseas. I'll have a nice breakfast, read a book, listen to music, enjoy the beach and swim in the clear waters. The waters at Singapore beaches are not that nice. I studied at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, so I was pampered by the clear waters and white beaches there.

If you could hang out with anybody, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

Henry, a friend who has died. I volunteered for Action for Aids Singapore and met him in 2003. I visited him every week and we became friends. We celebrated his 30th birthday together. He died during the Sars outbreak and I couldn't say goodbye because only family members were allowed to visit. I'd like to say goodbye and get closure.

If you could go anywhere for the weekend, where would it be?

The North Pole. I'd love to run a marathon, see the animals in their natural habitat and observe the flora and fauna there.

Brina Tan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 29, 2016, with the headline 'My Weekend'. Print Edition | Subscribe