Call it the Triple B if you must, but the Bras Basah.Bugis precinct is the place to go for a slice of Singapore’s rich heritage, preserved architecture and palpable energy.
Head here for fine museums, national monuments and other institutions, such as art schools and the Central Public Library.
A colourful past
One of Singapore’s oldest districts, Bras Basah derived its name from the Malay term ‘wet rice’ which were once laid out on the banks of Bras Basah River (known as the Stamford Canal today).
The founder of Singapore, Sir Stamford Raffles, picked the area to be the European part of Singapore Town. To the growing multicultural communities, it was also ideal for schools and places of worship.
The adjacent Bugis Street, named after the seafaring Bugis people from Indonesia who came here to trade with local merchants, has a colourful past. Historically, it was the haunt of sailors, hawkers and military personnel.
Today, you could spend days just soaking in the vibe of this buzzing district. The Bras Basah.Bugis neighbourhood is home to museums such as the National Museum of Singapore and Peranakan Museum, and national monuments like the Armenian Church and Central Fire Station, Singapore’s oldest fire station.
The School of the Arts, Singapore Management University, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and LASALLE College of the Arts are here as well, and visitors may wish to visit the latter to admire its distinctive architecture and soak in the creative vibes.
Get in on the action with the annual Singapore Night Festival in August, with late-night openings and special events.