As a working palace, the Istana is tradition firmly rooted in the present. It has links with Singapore’s colonial past, being first a nutmeg plantation owned by a British businessman, then office to the colonial government and later becoming the seat of Singapore’s first President after independence. Today, it houses the offices of the highest office holders in Singapore – the President and the Prime Minister. It is also a place where ordinary Singaporeans celebrate extraordinary achievements. The grounds of the Istana reflect Singapore’s vision of its future as a city in a garden, flowing from its old rain trees, orchids, spice shrubs and formal gardens. From its perch on a slight hill, the Istana looks upon the heart of Orchard Road, in many ways acting as the country’s heartbeat. This book presents the definitive work on the Istana – its history, its building, its grounds, and the people that are part of it. With authoritative, accessible text and stunning photography to guide you along the way, let us welcome you to the Istana.
Hong Xinyi is an experienced and versatile journalist who has written several books specializing on both architecture & design and iconic Singaporean institutions.