Let's Go Shopping: Getting into the spirit of giving with Nathan Hartono

Special feature

Text: Buro. Singapore

Editor-in-chief Norman Tan and musician Nathan Hartono gear up for the season of gifting at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands

You've seen DJ Rozz on a shopping spree and exploring her personal style, but what about indulging in a gift to spoil your loved ones? With Christmas right around the corner — and years spent scrambling at the very last minute — we all know picking out the perfect present is hardly child's play. Enter: A cornucopia of options that run the gamut of luxury clothing to accessories and watches, all conveniently housed in a sprawling space — The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands. 

Fresh off his Sing! China coup and back in Singapore, Nathan Hartono gets into the mood for Christmas by going on the hunt for presents — with the help of Norman Tan who zealously dispenses style advice along the way. After years of replacing his mother's gift with a homecooked meal instead, hit play to find out what the duo will have the Hartono family unwrapping around the Christmas tree this year. 

Nathan Hartono at the Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands
Tell us about buying Christmas gifts for your family. Who is the hardest person to buy a gift for?
My mother. I'm never sure what to get her! In the recent years, I've replaced the individual gift with cooking Christmas dinner. It takes about two to three days prep and a full day in the kitchen, but it's so worth it.

Which was your favourite look that you tried on for yourself and why?
Probably the Dior suit. A good suit always feels amazing. Like second skin — fancy skin. 

What was your favourite or most memorable Christmas gift as a child? Do you still have it?
A Sony PlayStation One. Yes, I still have it. And it still works, amazingly. My brother and I spent many hours fighting over it but it also brought us together.

If you could have anything, what's on your Christmas wishlist this year?
A vacation.

What did you used to give Santa on Christmas Eve? 
I was never under the impression that Santa was a real thing [laughs]. Sorry!

What is your favourite Christmas song of all time? 
The Christmas Song by Nat King Cole. Warms my heart like nothing in this world.

In your opinion, what makes a good Christmas gift? Is it exclusivity or thoughtfulness?
The ideal is the blend of the two. But if strapped for time or cash, thoughtfulness is definitely key. People remember things like that. It doesn't even have to be a gift — it could be planning a party, cooking a meal, or preparing one of those cheesy 'this is your life' videos [laughs].

Need extra help while shopping for friends and family? Engage The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands' Personal Shopping service* for a pre-selection and a second opinion. Available 
for booking at $250 per session (3 hours).

*Receive a $250 voucher with a $1,000 spent at the designated boutiques during the session, plus, a scent profiling by Penhaligon's and afternoon tea at TWG Tea.