Our Istana Through the Years is a collection of memories that reflect on the growth and progress of Singapore over the years since our Independence.
To read the chapters, click on the titles.
You may purchase hard copies of ‘Our Istana – Through the Years’ at S$50/- by submitting your orders via email to the President’s Challenge Secretariat at firstname.lastname@example.org. Proceeds will go to the President’s Challenge Silver Volunteer Fund in recognition of our pioneer generation’s contributions to nation-building. Copies of a limited edition of the book in box cover, with President Tan’s signature, are available for donations of $10,000 each.
"The Istana" coffee table book, written by Dr K K Seet, was published in 2000. It traces the history of the Istana back to its earlier incarnation as the Government House, the first of which was built on Forbidden Hill in 1823. The book documents the events held at the Istana and narrates anecdotes involving its illustrious occupants, from the governors of Singapore to the Yang di-Pertuan Negara and the Presidents of the Republic of Singapore. It also offers a glimpse of the Istana, after its major refurbishment from 1996 to 1998.
"The Istana" coffee table book can be found at selected public libraries in Singapore.
Gardens of the Istana
"Gardens of the Istana" embarks on a horticultural tour of the Istana estate, revealing its botanical treasures while providing glimpses of life and times of the occupants and affairs of the gardens, spanning the years since 1869. Published in 2003, the book also documents the horticultural legacy that lies deeply embedded in the Garden City programme of our times and the benefits accrued for citizens and visitors to enjoy.
The book, enlivened with anecdotes, humour and box stories of botanical, historical or social interest, was commissioned by President S R Nathan to pay tribute to greening policies past and present, and to celebrate the beauty of nature within the Istana domain and in the garden city of Singapore.
"Gardens of the Istana" is available for loan at selected public libraries in Singapore.
Birds seen at the Istana
Written and edited by Mr James Gan Wan Meng and Ms Aileen Lau, this book was published in 2005. It catalogues in detail 67 bird species sighted in different parts of the Istana domain, and provides an insight on the feeding habits of these birds. Richly illustrated by watercolours, crayons and photographs, the book also offers glimpses of the Istana and its grounds.
"Birds seen at the Istana" is available for loan at selected public libraries in Singapore.
Trees of the Istana
Commissioned by President S R Nathan, Trees of the Istana provides a glimpse into the legacy of landscaping and tree-planting in the Istana domain. The book showcases over 70 tree species in the Istana grounds, through text and illustrations - in the form of photographs, botanical drawings and watercolours.
A copy of Trees of the Istana can be found at the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library.