Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Istana - Home to Rain Trees and LKY

Snaking queues for security checks at the Main Gate

This is our first visit to The Istana - the official residence and office of the President of Singapore, also the working office of the Prime Minister of Singapore. Singaporeans will forever remember our aching hearts when a gun carriage conveyed Mr Lee Kuan Yew's body from the Istana to Parliament House on Wed, March 25. That was the last time he is leaving the office he had worked all his life for this little red dot.

So when chances come for members of the public to register for SAF50@Istana, organised by the Singapore Armed Forces, i jumped on it. I want to see the ground the great man walked.

Singapore Crest on the Main Gate

Benches fabricated from timber planks recycled from the former National Stadium, as part of URA’s project to commemorate the national icon. For more information, visit

Visitors for the day took part in interactive games and activities, including flight simulators. Kids have fun with bouncy castles, face painting and have their photo taken with little SAF uniforms! While i enjoyed browsing through SAF artifacts on display and exhibits highlighting the SAF's contributions and capabilities, including stories of how past servicemen and women built the forces. Performances by the SAF Band and the Music and Drama Company kept us spirited.

Now i just wish children can be gentle to the badly scraped benches, designed and fabricated from timber planks recycled from our former National Stadium.

The Swan Pond - largest among the 4 ponds in the Istana grounds. So called because of the swans which inhabited it 
in the 1970s, it lies at two levels with an island in the midst of the main body.

Rain Trees lining both sides of Edinburgh Road shade the half-kilometre walk from the Main Gate to the Centre Gate.

The Istana Main Building

(Purple-Colored) Misai Kucing, Cat's Whiskers, 猫须草 at the Istana Front Lawn

Singapore's National Flower - Vanda Miss Joaquim at the Villa

Lastly, let me share this tribute song for Mr LKY... named '1965', the year of Singapore's independence. He had left us for four months now, but the feeling is still raw. Thank you, Mr Lee our nation's dad.

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