Yusof Ishak was the only S’pore president to live in The Istana
Most other presidents resided in the east of Singapore in their own homes.
The Istana is the official residence of the president of Singapore.
However, none of our presidents have ever lived in it, except Yusof Ishak.
The Istana is 150 years old
The current Istana that we see today was constructed in October 1869.
In 2019, it is 150 years old.
It was called Governor’s House previously.
It was the official residence of 21 colonial governors during Singapore’s time under British rule.
However, since Benjamin Sheares took office in 1971, no other president has lived in the Istana.
The Istana was and is used as the office of sitting presidents.
It is largely a place to welcome and host dinners for foreign dignitaries, such as former Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping and then U.S. President George Bush in 1992.
So, where did our presidents live if they didn’t reside in the Istana?
Yusof was the only one among our past presidents who resided in the Istana.
For trivia’s sake, he also had a home in Opera Estate — a landed property locale in Bedok.
Sheares and his family lived on Holt Road.
While Sheares held the highest office in Singapore, he always returned home daily for lunch and dinner.
Despite our best efforts, we could not find out the location of Devan Nair’s private home.
Wee Kim Wee
Wee famously said that he would not be able to sleep in a place as huge as the Istana.
So, he instead chose to remain living in his Siglap Plain home.
Ong Teng Cheong
Singapore’s first popularly elected president stayed in a bungalow designed by famed architect Frank Brewer in Dalvey Estate.
His architect firm Ong and Ong did the restoration work on the house.
S R Nathan
Nathan lived in a house along Ceylon Road.
He was a frequent visitor of East Coast Park, which led to this one time where he agreed to photobomb a couple’s wedding photo shoot, much to their delight.
We are not too sure where exactly Tan’s home is, but it seems like he has at least two residences.
Singapore’s eighth president initially announced that she will continue to live in her five-room HDB flat in Yishun Avenue 4.
It was later reported she moved to Bournemouth Road.