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Istana, Singapore

(4.2/5 based on 60+ reviews on the web)
The Istana is the official residence and office of the President of Singapore. Meaning "palace" in Malay, it is where the President receives and entertains state guests. The Istana is also the working office of the Prime Minister of Singapore.The 106-acre (0.4-km²) estate was once part of the extensive nutmeg plantation of Mount Sophia. In 1867, the British colonial government acquired the land and built a mansion to be the official home of the British governor. This continued until 1959 when Singapore was granted self-government, and the governor was replaced by the Yang di-Pertuan Negara, who was in turn replaced by the President.HistoryBritish colonial daysThe Istana was built between 1867 and 1869 on the instructions of Sir Harry Saint George Ord, Singapore's first colonial governor. It was formerly known as "Government House". The architect was Major John Frederick Adolphus McNair. Within the same compound is Sri Temasek, one of several senior colonial officers' residences in the Istana previously assigned to the Colonial Secretary.Sir Harry's desire for a stately governor's residence arose from his dissatisfaction with the leased housing on Grange Hill and Leonie Hill that Governors had to make do with. An earlier governor's residence on Bukit Larangan (now Fort Canning), a flimsy timber structure, had been torn down to make way for the fort and was never replaced.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • This is a beautiful old colonial building and it is very rare to be able to go inside the grounds let alone the ground floor of the building, so if you get a chance go there on a day when it is open, ...  more »
  • I went there during chines new years. We went at the opening time (8:30am), almost no queue. But I would not advise to go if there is a queue. Not much to see, the park is random and plenty of better ...  more »
  • On the way towards the Orchard from Debby got there. I had put it and then have a security guard at the entrance to the security check.
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Google
  • A historical architecture where you can only go when it's open day! Learnt Singapore history during the visit. Must go for those who love Singapore :)
  • Worth a visit. Long walk to the main building. Bring hats and apply sun screen
  • A must go when it is open to the public. Go for the Istana guided tour and the Istana Nature guides tour too, and see beautiful lawns and flowers cultivated at the Istana.
  • Official Residence of the President of the Republic of Singapore. Open to visitors a few times in a year. The Istana greens is a good place for a family picnic.
  • No one can stand close to the building without being chased off by police officers.