Tanglin: Antique Shopping, International Schools, Embassies and Gardens
Once upon a time, the Orchard district was covered in fruit trees and plantations. For someone standing on Orchard Road today, however, the grass must truly be greener on the other side. A walk and a world away from Orchard, Tanglin is a largely residential area that is also the home of Singapore Botanic Gardens. Living in Tanglin lets you return to the green, green, grass of home each day. However, the district is not merely an idyllic wonderland. It also possesses a distinctly authoritative air that is cultivated by the presence of ministries and embassies that lend a sense of gravity to Tanglin.
Like Orchard, 17th century Tanglin comprised plantations, mostly of gambier, nutmeg and pepper. During the colonial period, it was converted into residences for the Europeans and Chinese. Most of Tanglin's first residents were well-read, wealthy and well-known, such as Dr. Thomas Oxley and Cairn, who both have had streets named after them. Tanglin continues this tradition; this is the area for extremely well-to-do Singaporeans and expatriates.
Shopping in Tanglin
Tanglin Shopping Centre
Singapore's oldest shopping centre celebrates its age by selling things that are even older. Here is where you can find art pieces and antiques, especially those from feudal China. These shops bring The Middle Kingdom to Singapore by presenting you with Buddhist statues, Ming vases and rosewood furniture.
Tanglin Mall A hybrid of colonial and tropical architecture, this 4-storeyed building comprises many retail outlets that sell everything from the antique to the modern.
Tudor Court Modeled like a Renaissance chateau, Tudor Court sells high-end antiques and furniture.
Residences and Facilities
There are large numbers of landed property in the Tanglin area. Condominiums include Tanglin Hill Condominium, Tanglin Hill Meadows and Gallop Court. There is a private hospital in Tanglin, Gleneagles Hospital. Tanglin Club, a members-only recreational club, is also located in the area.
Singapore Botanic Gardens Set up by Sir Stamford Raffles, botanist and founder of Singapore, the Singapore Botanic Gardens is located in Tanglin. This garden was opened in 1859, a successor of the first Botanic Gardens in Fort Canning. Today it boasts a collection of thousands of species of plants, its highlight being its Orchid garden. It also has a gazebo, or pavilion, where music was often played in the 1930s. Today, there are still many concerts held in the Botanic Gardens.
Embassies, Ministries and Consulates
Tanglin is where you find the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' (MFA) headquarters. Also located here are the United States' Embassy, the Australian High Commission, the British Council, the British High Commission and the Chinese Embassy.