The new Tropical Montane Orchidetum at Singapore Botanic Gardens showcases the most diversity of orchids found in tropical montane forests, in a single location in Singapore. It comprises three display houses – The Sembcorp Cool House, Tan Hoon Siang Mist House, Yuen Peng McNeice Bromeliad Collection, as well as the surrounding outdoor display areas that showcase lowland forest and stream habitats, and a Secret Ravine that emulates habitats that can be found in deep, narrow valleys of tropical mountains. The Sembcorp Cool House in particular, features the largest collection of high elevation montane orchids in Asia.
Designed in a way that allows visitors to see the orchid species and varieties set amid naturalistic landscapes resembling the habitats where they are typically found, the Orchidetum also plays an important role in the ex-situ conservation of these increasingly endangered orchids, as researchers will now be able to study at close range, rare orchids that would otherwise only be found naturally at higher elevations in other countries.
Visitors will be able to enjoy a seamless experience akin to that of one ascending a tropical montane forest as they make their way through the Orchidetum. Each of the display houses within the Orchidetum has been expanded beyond their original size, increasing by almost threefold the combined display area.
The Botanical Art Gallery is housed within Singapore Botanic Gardens' second refurbished conserved building, Gallop House No. 7 (Inverturret), which was built in 1906. The gallery highlights the vital role that art plays in the scientific documentation of plants in Singapore and the region, as well as how art can inspire renewed appreciation of the natural world around us. This will be Singapore’s first permanent display of botanical art, where visitors will be able to see a selection of the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ collection that includes more than 2,000 botanical paintings, as well as hundreds of sketches, line drawings and photographs. The display will also showcase various art forms, from original watercolours and ink drawings to prints and printing blocks.
Some of the iconic artwork on display includes the oldest dated painting in the Gardens’ collection completed in 1890, of Phaius tankervilleae, an orchid which grows in freshwater swamp forests, as well as an illustration of Durio singaporensis, which is commonly known as the Singapore Durian.
Visitors will also be able to try their hand at the various techniques involved in botanical illustration, such as sketching, mixing colours, and composing scenes. The activity room also offers sweeping views of the forested areas surrounding the house.
The Botanical Art Gallery will also feature changing exhibitions that complement the Gardens’ permanent artwork collection. The first show, ‘Plants in Print’, will showcase a collection of rare books that records the development of early colonial botany in South and Southeast Asia. Local artists such as Shubigi Rao and Weixin Chong have also been commissioned to offer creative responses to these books and produce a series of contemporary artworks.
Gallop House No. 5 (Atbara) is Singapore’s oldest surviving colonial era or black-and-white bungalow. Built in 1898, it now houses the Forest Discovery Centre @ OCBC Arboretum, which showcases Singapore’s forest ecosystems, and highlights the importance of conserving them. Through a series of interpretive and interactive displays, visitors can enjoy a bird's eye view of Singapore’s diverse forests, and learn about the Gardens’ historical role in conserving them. Highlights include a photographic installation of forest trees, family-friendly displays and videos featuring three distinctive forest habitats found in Singapore, and their unique flora and fauna.
The Forest Discovery Centre @ OCBC Arboretum will also host the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Tropical Forest Ecology Research programme. This programme reprises a historical role for the Singapore Botanic Gardens, which dates back to the late 1800s. One of the Gardens’ early superintendents, Nathaniel Cantley, was tasked to survey the forests in the Straits Settlement in 1882. His report led to the demarcation of the first forest reserves in Singapore in 1884, in order to prevent the ecology and climate from further deteriorating.
Complementing the Forest Discovery Centre is the OCBC Arboretum, which is a first-of-its-kind high-tech arboretum in Southeast Asia. Opened in October 2019, the arboretum plays an important role in the Gardens’ conservation work, housing and displaying the Gardens’ growing collection of rare dipterocarps.
The newest playgarden in Singapore, COMO Adventure Grove is inspired by the distinctive parts of trees found within the Singapore Botanic Gardens, and is a modern interpretation on the timeless experience of climbing and playing on trees.
At COMO Adventure Grove, children can swing, slide and climb on structures resembling the aerial roots of the Weeping Fig (Ficus benjamina), scramble over the warty surface of a giant Cempedak (Artocarpus integer) or roll and hop around the pod and seeds of a Saga tree (Adenanthera pavonina). These adaptive components will help introduce children to nature through play.
The COMO Adventure Grove is set within nature, so children can connect with nature through play and exploration. It will enable children to choose how and what to play with, thus developing a sense of adventure and discovery, and increasing their independence.
The Gallop Extension is an 8-hectare addition to the Singapore Botanic Gardens. It is located next to the Learning Forest and can be accessed via Tyersall Avenue.
Framed by landscapes composed of native plants and forests, the Gallop Extension contributes to the Gardens’ rich heritage and its role in research, conservation, education and recreation. As a natural extension of the Gardens’ nature area, which covers the Rain Forest and the Learning Forest, the Gallop Extension enables visitors to learn about forest ecology and the significance of conservation.
The Mingxin Foundation Rambler’s Ridge and OCBC Arboretum at the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Gallop Extension are now open!
The Mingxin Foundation Rambler’s Ridge is a re-creation of a variety of hill-slope and cliff-edge habitats found in the region, accessed via a barrier-free path. For those looking for an adventure, the ridge-top hiking trail will provide a challenging alternative route to get to the highest point in the Singapore Botanic Gardens.
The OCBC Arboretum serves as a site for conservation and research of dipterocarps, a family of trees which form the backbone of the region’s tropical rainforests. More than 200 dipterocarp species are represented here.
The National Parks Board (NParks) and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) have announced that enhancement works for the former Bukit Timah Railway Station and its surroundings as a community node will begin early next year. At a community event at the station, Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong also shared that the Friends of Rail Corridor will be leading the community in activating the reopened stretches of the Rail Corridor along its southern half, and announced plans for a new linear park that is partly elevated above the Bukit Timah Canal – the Bukit Timah-Rochor Green Corridor. The new linear park will add to and complement Singapore’s network of recreational connections, which includes the Rail Corridor, Round Island Route and Coast-to-Coast Trail, and altogether, the connections will provide the public with more recreational options, and more opportunities to explore the outdoors and connect with nature in our City in a Garden.
Over the last two years, works to enhance Rail Corridor (Central), the 4 km stretch of the Rail Corridor between the Hillview area and the conserved Bukit Timah Railway Station, have been ongoing and guided by three key themes: Heritage and Culture, Biodiversity and Greenery, and Recreation. The works include improvements to trails, restoration works for the truss bridges, construction of a new pedestrian underpass at Hindhede, and habitat enhancements. In early 2020, enhancement of the former railway station and its surroundings as a community node will begin.
The conserved Bukit Timah Railway Station is a distinctive landmark of Rail Corridor (Central) and the community node will feature a strong sense of history, distinctive landscaping and ample public spaces. Works to restore the Railway Station building and the former Railway Station Staff Quarters will be carried out sensitively and in line with conservation guidelines. The buildings will showcase their original railway features, while being repurposed for the public’s use and enjoyment. At the same time, the 8 Mile Platform will be constructed near the Rail Mall to provide amenities such as a shelter and toilet. It will act as a rest stop and an access point to the Rail Corridor.
To provide even more recreational options for visitors, NParks will be developing the Bukit Timah-Rochor Green Corridor. The Bukit Timah-Rochor Green Corridor is envisioned as a journey through a riverine forest and will include a linear sky park elevated above the canal. It will connect to the Rail Corridor near the Bukit Timah Railway Station community node. Visitors, including users of the Coast-to-Coast Trail, can look forward to a unique walking and cycling experience set amidst lush greenery. The first phase of the project comprises 1.4 km and stretches from the Rail Corridor to Elm Avenue. Construction is expected to start in 2021, dovetailing with PUB’s canal improvement works. In the future, the corridor may be extended to Kallang Riverside Park, totalling 11 km.
The National Parks Board (NParks) has opened the approximately 1 hectare Ethnobotany Garden at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. This new themed garden is the first in Singapore where visitors can learn about plants used by indigenous cultures of Southeast Asia; and it features a centre for ethnobotany which complements the outdoor landscape with an interpretive exhibition of artefacts and interactive elements.
The Ethnobotany Garden is in the Gardens’ Bukit Timah Core and located at an area historically known as the Economic Garden. This section of the Gardens was previously a space for experimentation with plants that had potential commercial applications, many of which were first derived from traditional uses.
Development of the Ethnobotany Garden is aligned with the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ UNESCO World Heritage status, supporting its Outstanding Universal Value by showcasing its unrivalled collections of economic, medicinal and ethnobotanical plants – the largest such collection in Southeast Asia. This new garden enhances the Gardens’ role as an educational provider, which is in line with UNESCO’s mission.
Food For Tots is the newest concept of the Food For Thought group - a self-service kids café that aims to encourage a love for Good Food in children. Situated in Asia’s first garden dedicated to children, Food For Tots draws influences from Jacob Ballas Children’s Gardens’ mission to cultivate an appreciation for the natural environment.
Inspired by its location amidst a lush landscape of flora and fauna, their eco-conscious café features an upcycled colander light installation and a potted herb wall – all in alignment with the Gardens’ mission to instil a love of nature in visitors.
Food for Tots' intimate space also boasts an interactive play area and weekly programmes for the little ones, so let the children come and play while you indulge in our all-day brunch items for all the delicious reasons.
Located at Singapore Botanic Gardens' Tanglin Gate, Fusion Spoon is a casual self-service dining place for families and friends.
Visitors can enjoy a wide selection of affordable food and beverages from various cuisine choices such as Western, Asian and Japanese. There is also a waffle and Korean bingsu ice kiosk at Fusion Spoon, for those looking for a little treat after a day out at Singapore’s first UNESCO site!
The main indoor dining area with its warm earthy interiors and green wall brings nature into the restaurant, while the outdoor dining area brings diners closer to nature through an al fresco dining experience.
An indoor as well as an outdoor play area for kids are available plus a 'Harvest Corner', all providing little ones with fun-filled activities while parents dine.
The Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden has doubled in size with a new two-hectare extension that includes new attractions and programmes geared towards youngsters up to 14 years old.
This will allow families with older children to immerse in nature as they explore the different eco-systems simulated in this new extension. It aims to expose children to and help them understand the ecology of plants through nature play and experiential learning. Prior to the extension, the Garden catered to children up to 12 years old.
The Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden is the first garden in Asia dedicated to children. Its theme of ‘Life on Earth Depends on Plants’ aims to educate and instil a love for nature in children. The Garden is a complete nature-learning environment, where children can delve deeper into the ecology of plants and our environment through discovery and experiential learning.
The Garden offers children a space for exploration, adventure and play, with a farm, an orchard, and a forest with its own stream and ponds. Young adventure seekers can explore the suspension bridge and nature play areas; budding naturalists can walk along the stream and climb into the tree-houses; and all urban gardeners can observe how plants grow and pick up some gardening tips! Be an ‘Adventurer’, ‘Gardener’ or ‘Naturalist’ for a day at the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden by following these carefully curated trails.
The National Parks Board (NParks) announced plans for the development of an approximately 1 hectare Ethnobotany Garden at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. This new themed garden which should be completed by late this year, will allow visitors to learn about plants used by indigenous cultures of Southeast Asia, including Singapore. The Ethnobotany Garden, the first of its kind in Singapore, will enhance visitor experience by providing insights into the various uses of plants in the region, and strengthen the Gardens’ position as a world-class botanic garden.
Development of the Ethnobotany Garden will complement the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ UNESCO World Heritage status, supporting its Outstanding Universal Value by showcasing its unrivalled collections of economic, medicinal and ethnobotanical plants, the largest such collection in Southeast Asia. This new garden feature will also enhance the Gardens’ role as an educational provider, which is in line with UNESCO’s mission.
The Ethnobotany Garden will be set up in the Bukit Timah Core and located at an area historically known as the Economic Garden (See map in Media Factsheet). This section of the Gardens was traditionally used for experimenting with plants with potential commercial uses, many of which were first derived from traditional uses.
Nestled within the prestigious Bukit Timah residential precinct, The Siena is within an area of lush greenery, upmarket residential developments, quaint shophouses, great dining options and numerous good local and international schools as well as expatriate clubs.
Just a stone’s throw away, residents can embrace 74 hectares of lush exotic greenery due to its close proximity to Singapore Botanic Gardens. The Gardens offer a great respite from the hustle and bustle of the city and an urban oasis of tranquility.
Nature lovers have much to cheer as the ‘Green Belt of Singapore’ offers nature parks, reserves and reservoirs worth exploring. Residents can walk along the nature trail or enjoy a hike at the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, soak in the scenery or take a leisure walk along the Village Trail that leads to MacRitchie Reservoir.
Foreign clubs in the area include the British Club, the Swiss Club, the Singapore Island Country Club, the Bukit Timah Saddle Club and the Raffles Town Club. Come mid-2016, Bukit Timah will be served by Downtown MRT line, connecting residents to the Central Business District and Marina Bay area.
Tel: +65 61001880 , 61002880 or Email: Enquiries@the-siena.com.sg