Does the Dad in your life need some inspo on where to take the kids? We’ve talked to some of the coolest Dads in Singapore to get their tips on where to go and what to do with kiddos in tow!
Father of three Sammy Vatrano has one of the most fun Facebook feeds of anyone we know. Every time we turn around he seems to be taking his kids on a different adventure, whether they’re at the monster trucks, hitting the beach on a family holiday, or playing his favourite sport, ice hockey, out at Jcube. Sammy, who now works in operations at Goldman Sachs, was an elite hockey player at university in the U.S., and his younger brother, Frank, plays professionally in the NHL, so it’s little wonder the family makes time to hit the ice, even in sweltering Singapore. We caught up with Sammy and his super cute kids Sawyer, 5, Brooks, 3, and Hayes, 1 to hear about their favourite fun spots in Singapore and beyond.
Tell us something quirky about yourself?
I pack for the whole family anytime we go away on a trip.
What’s your favourite outdoor spot to hang out with your kids?
On the river in Robertson Quay to ride scooters and bikes.
What’s your favourite restaurant to bring your kids to in Singapore?
Hubers; Schmear; and Picnic Food Truck Park.
Do you do any cooking in the house? If so what do you make?
Yes, mainly Italian – anything with sauce.
What part of Singapore do you live in? What do you like about it?
River Valley. We like the array of restaurants/bars, proximity to work, and convenience to walk to several different locations since we don’t have a car
What are the most Dad-friendly places for changing diapers?
Nowhere comes to mind; Dads need to be creative.
Favorite playground in Singapore?
The PalawanPirate Ship on Sentosa.
Best spot for coffee when you’re on early-morning Dad duty?
CommonMan Coffee Roasters.
Any favourite bedtime book recommendations?
My son loves LittleBlue Truck and FlyingHigh. With the girls, it’s AngelinaBallerina and the Olivia series.
Any favorite apps/games to play with your kids?
Puzzles, chutes & ladders, jenga, hide & seek, Osmo iPad games.
What’s your favourite activity to do with your kids when Mom’s not around?
Go for pizza and cupcakes/ice cream.
What are your favourite date night restaurants?
Blue Label Pizza and Bochinche.
Do you have a favourite shop? (Can be anything — clothes, gourmet food, cookery, electronics, etc.)
For food: Hubers. For workout clothes: Lululemon. For wine: WineExchange. And for happy hour: TAP (RQ) .
Where do you like to train/exercise?
Generally run (routes vary) and work out at Virgin Active as well as play ice hockey and golf.
What tips do you have for introducing your favourite sport to your kids? At what age did you put a hockey stick in your kids’ hands?
Having them around the sport either through watching or playing, encouraging them to try and making it fun. Sawyer was first on skates on when she was 4 (prior to the 2016 Bruins/Canadiens winter classic game at Gillette Stadium); Brooks was just shy of his 3rd birthday and continues to skate at JCube with the Singapore Ice Dragons.
What are your favourite holiday destinations with your kids?
MargaretRiver: it’s got beaches, playgrounds, and animals for the kids as well as vineyards for the adults. We also love HoiAn in Vietnam.
Thank you so much to Sammy, his wife Lauren, and their kids for sharing their Saturday with us! And many thanks to Samantha Ong for the great snaps!