It’s three days before the grand opening of the cosy and Insta-worthy new Cafe Bakeaholic on Springside Green. It’s nestled in a quiet mixed-use commercial-residential development, The Brooks ll, deep in Upper Thomson, near Yishun. 23-year-old Charmaine Hui bustles between the dining area and kitchen, rushing to put the finishing touches to her spacious two-unit cafe — all while her father, veteran Hong Kong actor Benz Hui, 70, calmly looks on from the sidelines. 

Just five months ago, Charmaine started her home-based bakery, Bakeaholic (which covered), as a way to turn her passion for baking into a full-time business after the COVID-19 pandemic cancelled her grad school plans and she was stuck in the family’s Singapore home (she splits her time between Hong Kong and SG). At the time, Benz — known for his iconic roles in films like Running Out of Time and Line Walker — had been separated from the family since January, with only daily video calls to keep them connected, and no certainty on when they would next see each other again. 

Now, the Singaporean PR is back in town, after flying back from Hong Kong with Charmaine and his Singaporean wife, Angeli at the start of December — just in time to help his daughter set up her cafe, which is a walk away from their family’s terrace house. “The three of us have been at the cafe pretty much every day since we’ve landed back in Singapore [and finished quarantine],” says Charmaine, who’s prepping for a soft opening on 21 December.

If you’re a hopeful TVB fan, you might just spot Benz sipping a latte at Cafe Bakeaholic once it opens.

All photos cannot be reproduced without permission from