7 Places In Singapore That Are Outrageously Colourful Anything Goes

Because taking OOTDs against plain backgrounds is so yesterday.

Whip out your smartphones and DSLRs, and get ready to pose before these vibrant works of art!    

Terrace Houses in Joo Chiat
Koon Seng Road

Go Away_Colourful Places Singapore_terrace houses joo chiat

Each of these colourful double-storey terrace houses has a distinctly Peranakan look and feel – from the elaborate designs on ceramic tiles to the pintu pagar, or traditional swing doors, at the front of the house. After these pre-war houses were built in 1927, Koon Seng Road enjoyed a period of prosperity before the notorious inter-gang fights took place in the area during the 1950s.

Colourful HDB flats at Rochor Centre
1 Rochor Road

Go Away_Colorful Places Singapore_Rochor Centre

Built in 1977, the iconic Rochor Centre consists of four HDB flats – the first three floors of each made up of mostly provision shops. Sadly, even though Rochor Centre was listed as a protected landmark by the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the Land Transport Authority and Singapore Land Authority announced in 2011 that it will be demolished next year to make way for a new expressway (North-South Expressway). Dear readers, it’s now or never to revisit Rochor Centre!

Alkaff Bridge
1 Havelock Road

Alkaff Bridge over Singapore River. Source: Erwin Soo

Alkaff Bridge over Singapore River. Source: Erwin Soo

Here’s a brief history behind the name of the bridge: Built in 1997, the bridge was so named because of its location, which was formerly known as Alkaff Quay. The Alkaffs, an Arabian family who came to Singapore from Yemen in 1852, were one of the wealthiest in Singapore at the time. The shape of this architectural masterpiece was inspired by the tongkang, a boat commonly used in the early days to cart goods. In 2004, the late Filipino artist Pacita Abad beautifully adorned the Alkaff Bridge in 55 colours using over 900 litres of paint! Since then, the bridge has been touted as Singapore’s first Bridge of Art.

Residence of Tan Teng Niah
37 Kerbau Road, Little India

Go Away_Colourful Places Singapore_House of Tan Teng Niah

It seems like this building had gotten into a brawl with gallons of paint … then won in the most spectacular fashion possible. The history of this eight-room villa harks back to 1900 when a prominent Chinese businessman named Tan Teng Niah built it for his wife. Interestingly, before restoration works were performed in the 1980s, the villa was originally painted white!

Building of Piedra Negra (Mexican restaurant)
41 Beach Road

Haji Lane

Mural covering one side of the building. Source: YourSingapore

There is plenty of street art splashed on the walls of buildings in Haji Lane, but this shophouse easily takes the cake for the most awe-inspiring artwork. The amazing murals that cover every inch of the building were created by Singapore-based graffiti artist Didier Jaba Mathieu.

Old Hill Street Police Station
140 Hill Street

Go Away_Colourful Places Singapore_Old Hill Street Police Station

Confused by the name of this historic building? You’re not alone. It was originally known as Hill Street Police Station and Barracks when it officially opened in 1934 but was changed to MITA Building in 1999 then MICA Building in 2004, before it more or less reverted to its original name later in 2012. Comprising 927 windows painted in rainbow colours and considered the largest pre-war government building in the country when it was built, this building was gazetted as a national monument in 1998. Trivia: Old Hill Street Police Station occupied the site of Singapore’s very first prison!

Colourful Spiral Staircases at Bugis
Back alley of Bugis Village, 233 Victoria Street

Spiral staircase at the back alley of Bugis Village. Source: Instagram (@

Spiral staircase at the back alley of Bugis Village. Source: Instagram (@staycationbirds)

Not much has been written about the story behind this stretch of spiral staircases, but it sure is a sight to behold. While the shophouses were likely built during the colonial period, the striking colours adorning each of these unique spiral staircases were the result of restoration works in recent times.

With wanderlust flowing in her veins, Lili has always had grand dreams of travelling the world, escaping to exotic locales and experiencing different cultures. Whenever Life gets too much for her, she reaches straight for her earphones to tune out the world. More than just a temporary distraction, music has a profound way of taking her to places that stir the soul.

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