top of page

Travel Guide in Singapore: Bras Basah & Bugis


Bras Basah Bugis
Photo Credit: Design International

Love shopping? Interested in viewing more art or learning about heritage? The Bras Basah & Bugis precinct fits the bill!


Known as Singapore’s arts and heritage district as well as a shopper’s paradise, this northeast precinct is full of museums, cultural landmarks, and shopping areas that both locals and tourists alike would visit.


With both old and new buildings with differing architecture styles, Bras Basah and Bugis is one of Singapore’s oldest districts. In the past, Bras Basah was a diverse location with different ethnicities co-existing and Bugis being a district for trading and night entertainment.


Read on to find out more about the history, the different landmarks and the recommended picks for your gourmet and shopping needs!


History


Bras Basah


Initially labelled as “Brass Bassa Road,” the road is one of Singapore’s first paved roads and was constructed through convict labour. In the early 1820s, the road had different variations to its name: Church Street (between Beach Road and North Bridge Road), Selegy Street (from North Bridge Road towards DhobyGhaut and Selegie Road) and College Street (because Singapore’s first educational institution was located along it).


Bugis


Bugis is a Malay sub-group that hails from the southwestern peninsula of Celebes (currently known as Sulawesi) and are known for their seafaring & warring skills. These Bugis merchants first settled in Singapore around 1819 when a Bugis prince was executed for alleged treason, leading to his brother and 500 other followers fleeing to Singapore. The area that was identified by Sir Stamford Raffles as Bugis Village was a settlement area for these merchants.


Redevelopment


From the 1960s, the government demolished the prevalent and neglected/old shophouses and relocated the residents to improved housings while building offices, hotels, and malls in the area. However, by the late 1980s, the precinct had gotten visibly quiet and less vibrant compared to its bustling past.


In 1989, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) of Singapore started a 20-year long redevelopment project, transforming the precinct into the shopping, arts, and heritage district we know today.


Present


To preserve the cultural identity and beauty of the buildings, many of these Bras Basah & Bugis buildings were conserved and some even reopened as museums or other public facilities.


Today, the Bras Basah and Bugis remains unique compared to the other nearby precincts as they still retain the past architectural and cultural heritage while including the arts and lifestyle aspects.


Explore the heritage, arts and culture


Home to museums, national monuments, and hubs for the cultural & design scene, listed below are some of the related places.


Cathedral of the Good Shepherd

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd
Photo Credit: The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Singapore

Built in 1847, the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd is the oldest Roman Catholic church in Singapore and is the seat of the Archbishop of Singapore.


It was designated as a National Monument in 1973.


History

Established in 1832 by a Roman Catholic missionary organization, the Société des Missions étrangères de Paris, the first service was held in 1833 after the wooden chapel was completed.


However, since the church was deemed to be too small after a few years, the church was reconstructed in 1843 and later opened in 1847 by Father Jean-Marie Beurel (founder of Saint Joseph’s Institute and the Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus).


In 1821, Saint Laurent Imbert, also known as The Good Shepherd, was the first Roman Catholic missionary to visit Singapore. To save his congregation of fellow Catholics, who were being persecuted in Korea for a period of time, he wrote a note to ask his fellow priests to surrender to the authorities. He was then beheaded in 1839 after being betrayed and arrested by the authorities. The dedicated church houses relics of Saint Laurent Imbert.


During World War II, the Cathedral was used as an emergency hospital.


Current

The current Cathedral is a restored version, with air-conditioning, an added house prayer rooms, meeting rooms, a heritage centre, and a crypt. As the original building was crumbling and needed repair due to the uneven soil settlement, the doors of the Cathedral were closed in 2013 and the restoration works ended in 2016, with the doors reopening in the same year.


Mass is held every Saturday (6pm), Sunday (8:30pm) and Mon – Fri (1.15pm). More details can be found here.

Address: 4 Queen Street, Singapore 188533

Opening Hours: Mon – Fri, 9am – 6pm



Maghain Aboth Synagogue

Maghain Aboth Synagogue
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Built in 1878, the Maghain Aboth Synagogue is Southeast Asia’s oldest surviving synagogue and one of the two synagogues in Singapore. Since the colonial period, the Maghain Aboth Synagogue has witnessed the significant contributions from the small close-knit Jewish community.


It was designated as a national monument in 1998.


History

The Jewish community’s first synagogue was constructed in 1841, where Synagogue Street is today. However, this synagogue shophouse was sold then demolished after World War II as a larger one was needed to accommodate the growing population of local Jews.


In 1870, the agreement for the construction of a new synagogue at a piece of land owned by the Raffles Institution at Bras Basah fell through as the necessary funds could not be raised in time. The current synagogue was built on a piece of land (at Waterloo Street) that the government granted upon one of the trustees’ request in 1873 to build a new synagogue and sell the old one.


Across the years, extensions and restorations were done to the building, as well as the addition of the Jacob Ballas Centre (built in 2007). It was also an important meeting place for the Jews during the Japanese Occupation as they could gather for an exchange of news and to help collect funds for the needy.


Current

Serving as a venue for Jewish religious festivals and community life, it is open throughout the year and daily services are held 3 times a day. It has also been apart of several events such as the Singapore Biennale and the Singapore HeritageFest.


Visits are available only by appointment. A tour of the Maghain Aboth can be booked through email. The Minyan times can be found here.

Address: 24/26 Waterloo St, Singapore 187968



Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple

Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple
Photo Credit: SilverKris Travel

A popular site of worship and one of the most visited temples, it is especially known for having flocks of devotees visit during the Chinese New Year and rushing to plant the first incense sticks at midnight for a good year ahead.


Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple is a Chinese temple that is dedicated to Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy, and other deities such as Hua Tuo, the Deity of Medication/Chinese Medicine and Bodhidharma, the chief and first of the six Buddhists Patriarch.


Its status as a historic landmark was granted by the National Heritage Board in 2001.


History

Also known as Si Ma Lu Kuan Yin Temple (四马路观音堂), this temple was established in 1884 and had an additional part of its structure made in 1895.


It served as a place for refuge during World War II for the sick, wounded, and homeless as it was a place that avoided the destruction, only sustaining minimal damage unlike the other buildings in the same area. Because of this miracle, devotees believed that the main deity of the temple, Guanyin, blessed and protected the temple.


Demolished in the late 1970s, it was later rebuilt in 1982 and was double its original size, as can be seen in present day, with its renovations completed after a year.


Up till the late 1990s, the street still had cars passing through it and had beggars gathering by the entrance, making it difficult to visit the temple. In 1992, the URA pedestrianized the roads from Sri Krishnan Temple onwards, reducing the original Waterloo Street length.


Current

Part of a network of historically significant religious buildings (also includes the Church of Saints Peter and Paul, Sri Krishnan Temple, and the Maghain Aboth Synagogue) in the Waterloo Street area, the temple continues to help the people.


The temple offers help to the needy and sick, their partners, donating to a greater cause and even giving scholarships to students that requires financial support.


Things to Note:


  • Photography is not allowed in the prayer hall and appropriate dressing is required.

  • Joss sticks should not be brought into the prayer hall and should be placed in the big urn outside after seeking blessings.

Address: 178 Waterloo St, Bugis, Singapore 187964 Opening Hours: Daily, 7am – 6:30pm


National Museum of Singapore

National Museum of Singapore
Photo Credit: Conde Nest Traveler

Widely recognised as a prominent landmark in Singapore, the National Museum of Singapore is the nation’s oldest museum and is dedicated to telling visitors the history of Singapore, its arts and culture. Featuring architecture mostly in the Neo-Palladian style and Neo-Classical features contrasted by the modern additions of glass and metal, the symmetrical and iconic exterior makes it an amazing location for taking photos.


It was designated as a national monument in 1992.


History

In 1823, there were plans to establish a museum however, no actions were taken to implement the plans throughout the following 2 decades. In 1849, after the donation of two gold coins by the temenggung (third highest official for nobility in the old Johor empire) of Johor, a small museum was set up within the Library of the Singapore Institution (currently known as Raffles Institution). However, after the initial excitement, no further attention was paid to it.


After several relocations over the decades, the museum moved to its current location that we know now, at Stamford Road in 1887 after three years of construction. The museum's original goals included serving as a primary repository for zoological specimens and recording the natural history of Singapore and the region. The museum faced numerous problems in its beginning years, such as mould growth on the zoological specimens, termite invasions and dust-covered exhibits.


In 1960, Raffles Museum split off from the library and was renamed to National Museum. The focus on Singapore’s history, arts and culture only came after Singapore gained its independence. The existing zoological specimens were then transferred to the zoology department of the University of Singapore (currently known as National University of Singapore) in 1972. It was then renamed again from the National Museum to Singapore History Museum and this change lasted from 1993 to 2006, before being officially known as the National Museum of Singapore.


Current

Throughout the year, the museum hosts a variety of events, from art installations to performances. In the museum, at Level 1, a restaurant, café, and museum retail store can also be found.


To find out what exhibitions are currently being held, you can check it out here!

Note: Admission to all galleries is free for Singapore Citizens and PRs (permanent residents) as well as children 6 years and below (any nationality).

Tip for tourists/foreign visitors: To reduce the waiting time, tickets can be pre-purchased here.

Address: 93 Stamford Road, Singapore 178897

Opening Hours: Daily, 10am – 7pm

Last Admission: 6:15pm (Glass Rotunda), 6:30pm (All other galleries)


National Design Centre

National Design Centre
Photo Credit: DesignSingapore Council

Serving as the hub for all design-related things, it welcomes designers, businesses, students, and the general public to meet, exchange ideas and attend the exhibitions and/or programmes that are focused on design.


Home to the DesignSingapore Council, the national agency for design, the centre has 2 galleries and 3 design labs.

Before being a home for everything design, this 120-year-old building was previously the premises to the St. Anthony’s Convent (1879 – 1994), Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (1995 – 2004) and Chinese Opera Institute (1995 – 2009).


Today, 3 pre-war art deco blocks and 1 post-war modern block which have been marked for conservation by the URA are part of the National Design Centre’s development.

Guided tours are also available but limited to group bookings that are made in advance and confirmed through their email.

Some of the current and upcoming events includes:

  • Unseen Singapore – Our Past, Present and Future (8 Apr – 31 Oct, 10am – 7pm)

  • N*thing is Possible by Potato Head, OMA & Friends (16 Sept – 25 Dec: Daily, 9am – 9pm)

  • ‘P*DA Tours – Design that Cares’ by Monster Day Tours (TBA, 9:30am – 1:30pm)

    • Monster Day Tours has also previously hosted another P*DA Tour! You can see some photos here or check out our website!

More events organised by the DesignSingapore Council can be seen here!

Address: 111 Middle Rd, Singapore 188969

Opening Hours: Daily, 9am – 9pm


Objectifs

Objectifs
Photo Credit: Flickr

Standing out amongst the neutral-coloured buildings in the area, this canary-yellow chapel building is known as a spot for taking photos, popularised by influencers. Established in 2003, Objectifs has 2 buildings, the yellow chapel (visual arts centre) and the white & red shophouse (retail, office, and administration).


A hub dedicated to film and photography, many of these enthusiasts would be able to learn and hone their skills with the programmes that Objectifs has lined up for them. Throughout the year, exhibitions, screenings, talks, workshops, residencies, and mentorships are offered, with the goal of fostering a community and providing a supportive platform.


It was designated as a historic site in 2000.


History

The 19th century church building that Objectifs currently occupies was known to many as the Middle Road Church, featuring rare gothic architecture with 130 years of history behind it.


Built between 1870 and 1875, the building was first known as the Christian Institute, which was a worship place for young men. Afterwards, in 1890, both the Methodist Girls’ School and a group of Straits Chinese used the building. After being formally established as the Malay Church in 1894, it became Singapore’s first Straits Chinese Methodist Church. This church then moved to Kampong Kapur in 1929. The building then went on to house the Chinese restaurant, May Blossom Restaurant during the Japanese Occupation, and a car workshop during the 1980s.


The chapel is now occupied by Objectifs, which was set up by 2 Singaporean former investment bankers, Emmeline Yong, and Dawn Teo. They started


Objectifs to provide a space the community to gather, promoting Singapore photographers and filmmakers. Emmeline and Dawn sought advice from many people in the photography and film industry, with Tay Kay, an award-winning photographer aiding them through his network, encouraging more people to work with the newly established centre.


With its beginnings at an old two-storey shophouse in Liang Seah Street, they moved to a larger location, at Arab Street before settling at Middle Road in 2015.


Current

In 2014, Objectifs became a non-profit organisation after qualifying for the National Arts Council grant of $150,000 per year (up till 2019) and rent subsidies.


Offering programmes that allows for budding photographers and filmmakers to learn from as well as places for professionals to use (exhibitions, film-screening etc), the centre provides a space that caters to both the current community and the amateurs. They also provide opportunities for these people through competitions, campaigns, and festivals as they help government agencies and private clients manage photography and film consultancy projects.


Do look out for a new initiative that Objectifs started, the Objectifs Film Library!


Aiming to be an educational and research resource for film lovers. The library is focused on short films that are made in Southeast Asia, with the nominal fee for rental. At Objectifs’ premises, a wider selection is available but a slot must be booked here 2 days in advance and you should receive a confirmation email from the staff. You would get free viewing for the first hour, and an additional $10 charged every subsequent hour or portion thereof.

Address: 155 Middle Road, Singapore 188977

Opening Hours: Tue – Sat, 12pm – 7pm, Sun, 12pm – 4pm

(Closed on Mon and Public Holidays)


Central Fire Station

Central Fire Station
Photo Credit: Singapore Civil Defence Force Twitter

Known for its iconic red and white brick building, the Central Fire Station (aka Hill Street Fire Station), is Singapore’s oldest surviving fire station. Built in 1908 and completed a year later, this old station remains active and houses the Civil Defence Heritage Gallery.


It was designated as a national monument in 1998.


History

Before the Singapore Fire Brigade was first established in 1888, Singapore did not have any proper fire brigade to deal with the frequent fire outbreaks. The Cross Street Fire station was the brigade’s main station, and its early firefighting squads were made up of soldiers, convicts and volunteers that were poorly trained with lacking equipment.


However, things changed when a professional firefighter, Montague W. Pett succeeded as the Superintendent of the Singapore Fire Brigade. Pett came from England and improved the brigade, modernising and strengthening it with the changes he implemented.


The modernisation of the brigade led to the construction of the Central Fire Station as Pett believed that a modern and well-equipped fire station was required for the safety of the town, obtaining funds from the government, and overseeing the construction himself. The station was completed in 1909, replacing all the smaller stations in the area and had the horse-drawn engines replaced with fully motorised fire trucks while providing accommodation for its firefighters, boosting the efficiency.


In 1939, the Auxiliary Fire Service was formed to strengthen the firefighting force and deal with any war-related emergencies. During World War II, in an attempt to conceal the building, the station’s distinctive red and white brick wall was painted over with camouflage green. However, the station still sustained multiple direct hits from the falling bombs.


Current

Remaining as an active station, firefighters from the Central Fire Station were involved in various national emergencies and rescue operations that occurred after the war and after gaining independence. Currently it serves the Central Business District and Chinatown area.


In 2001, the Civil Defence Heritage Gallery opened its doors to the public. The gallery provided visitors with an insight to its history, the evolution of our Civil Defence Force and its capabilities from the late 1800s till present day. Dated artefacts, miniature models of the different fire stations in the past and actual steam fire engines can also be seen here.


Guided tours are available at selected fire stations (includes Central Fire Station) every Saturday morning, from 9am – 9:50am or 10am – 10:50am (no pets are allowed). Walk-ins are allowed but groups with 10 or more people would have to make a pre-booking here. To request for a guided tour apart from the previously mentioned day and time, you would need to book for it here.

Address: 62 Hill Street, Singapore 179367

Opening Hours: Tue – Sun, 10am – 4pm (Closed on Mon)


Fulfill your shopping needs


Aside from heritage, arts, and culture, the Bras Basah & Bugis precinct is also home to several malls, boutiques, and bustling street markets.


Bugis Junction

Bugis Junction
Photo Credit: Christopher O'Grady

First of the three destinations that forms Bugis Town, Bugis Junction was opened in 1995 and is home to Singapore’s first and only air-conditioned sky-lit shopping streets that features the rebuilt and weatherproofed version of the old cream-coloured three-storey shophouses on Malabar, Malay and Hylam streets.


Formerly known as Parco Bugis Junction, it also consisted of the Inter-Continental Hotel, an office tower, and Seiyu Department Store (A Japanese brand that was later bought over by Beijing Hualian Group in 2005 and renamed to BHG).


Combining both the old and new into one mall, it was home to 120 specialty shops & restaurants and a cineplex by United Artists (later taken over by Shaw Theatres in 2001). In 2005, Parco Holdings sold the mall to CapitaLand, which led to major revamps.


History of the Indoor Streets

Malabar Street was named after the immigrants that came from the Malabar Coast of India and used to be the location for Sun Tian Temple, a Hokkien Buddhist temple, before it moved to Albert Street in 1986.


Malay Street used to be famous for its illegal and immoral activities, but the area was purged of such activities in the early 1930s. It was also known as “jit pun koi,” which translates to “Japanese street” as there were many Japanese living there.


Hylam Street was named after the Hainanese immigrants from China, they occupied the nearby area that spanned from Bencoolen Street to Beach Road. Before World War II, many Japanese also stayed here.


Current

A modern fashion destination mall that offers a variety of dining options as well as entertainment, Bugis Junction is one of the more vibrant malls in Singapore and has up to 5 floors. A mix of international, regional, and local brands such as Adidas, Charles & Keith, L’zzie, Muji, Ajisen Ramen, Starbucks, Chocolate Origin can be found here.


Mid-range and high street brands are mostly located on the first floor while the low-priced regional brands can be found on the 2nd and 3rd floor.


Getting to the mall is easy as it has direct connectivity to the Bugis MRT station which is located at its basement level and has many bus services stopping by the place.

  • Buses: 2, 7, 12, 32, 33, 52, 61, 63, 80, 130, 133, 145, 175, 197, 851, 960, 980

Address: 200 Victoria Street, Singapore 188201 Opening Hours: Daily, 10am – 10pm


Bugis+

Bugis+
Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Second of the three destinations that forms Bugis Town, Bugis+ is a vibrant mall that provides for a contemporary alternative to Bugis Junction. Entertainment, F&B, and fashion options are available, making it a hotspot for youths to visit.


The mall’s decorative curvilinear exterior shows a “crystal mesh,” with billboards lighting up and scattering across its flatter sides, playing with the light and illumination theme.


Stores such as Haidilao Hot Pot, Puma, Sephora, photomania, UNIQLO (largest outlet), YISHION and We are the Furballs (Singapore’s first dog petting café) can be found at Bugis+.


The mall is directly connected by an overhead link bridge to Bugis Junction, making it easy to access the Bugis MRT station and cross over for more shopping and dining options!


History

Formerly known as ILUMA, it was opened in 2009 with much excitement and attention from the public. However, a couple of months later, despite being located beside the busy Bugis Street, the tenants complained about the lack of business. The management then tried their best to liven up the place but still faced low patronage and led to many tenants leaving. Iluma was then acquired by CapitaLand in 2011, which led to it being renovated and later renamed as Bugis+.


Getting here is easy due to its prime location and the link bridge to Bugis Junction.

  • Train: Bugis MRT station (East-West line and Downtown line)

  • Buses: 2, 12, 32, 51, 63, 80, 124, 142, 145, 166, 174, 174E, 197, 61, 851, 960, 980, NR7

Address: 201 Victoria St, Singapore 188067 Opening Hours: Daily, 10am – 10pm


Bugis Street Market

Bugis Street
Photo Credit: EZWebblog.com

Last of the three destinations that form Bugis Town, Bugis Street is one of Singapore’s largest street-shopping locations, home to more than 600 shops. Popular among both the locals and tourists, Bugis Street is one of the more affordable places to shop in Singapore.


History

Prior to World War II, Bugis had a large number of Japanese brothels concentrated here. Bugis Street also used to be a hotspot for nightly activities, especially among the transvestites and transsexuals in the 1950s, with tourists, celebrities, soldiers, and seamen visiting.


However, this all changed when the area went through a re-development in the 1980s, halting such nightly activities.


Current

With plenty of shops in this three-storey maze-like complex, be it fashion, tech gadgets, souvenirs, nail, or lash salons, it is recommended that you browse through all the stores once first before returning to a make your purchase. If you are hungry, there are also plenty of food options, from the typical street food, nasi lemak to crepes!

Located just across the street from Bugis Junction and Bugis+, it is just a short walk away from the MRT station.

  • Train: Bugis MRT station (East-West line and Downtown line)

  • Take Exit C and walk to the destination that’s 3 minutes away


Address: 3 New Bugis Street, Singapore 188867

Opening Hours: Daily, 11am – 10pm


Bras Basah Complex

Bras Basah Complex
Photo Credit: TODAY

A communal retail space that is famous for its bookstores, it was established in the 1980s and was known as the Culture Hub of the district and the Book City of Singapore.


Consisting of two 21-storey flats, a 4- & 5-storey office and a shopping podium, the complex was part of an early downtown public housing plan by the Housing and Development Board back in the 70s and 80s, with its void deck on the 5th floor instead.

In the 80s and 90s, the atrium of the complex used to hold book fairs, exhibits, art galleries, musical festivals as well as Xinyao recitals. In the early days of the complex, tenants were legally required to sell books however as time passes, this rule was no longer imposed and more art & craft shops opened within the proximity of the local art schools.

Recommended Shops to Visit:


When I Was Four

  • Selling simple, nostalgic lifestyle products, this quirky store offers you products that gives the Singaporean flavour, making it more relatable for locals while making great souvenirs for tourists. From notebooks to cushions, reminisce about the times with these everyday products!

  • Opening Hours: Mon – Fri: 12pm – 7pm, Sat: 12:30pm – 6:30pm (Closed on Sun and Public Holidays)

Ink Ink Premium Art Collectibles

  • Specialising in art pieces inspired from comics, manga, games and cartoons, officially licensed pop-culture merchandise by top artists is available at the store. Prints of famous characters/series such as Harley Quinn, Spiderman, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Street Fighter and Gojo Satoru and more can be found.

  • They have also participated in multiple events such as Anime Festival Asia (AFA), Game Start and Doujin Market.

  • Opening Hours: Mon – Sat, 12pm – 7:30pm

Book Point

  • Singapore’s biggest pre-owned, rare, out of print books and new bookstore, they distribute books wholesale and retails.

  • With over 30 categories of books, they carry books that all ages can enjoy or use, from storybooks to references.

  • Opening Hours: Mon – Thurs & Sat: 10am – 7pm, Fri: 2:30pm – 7pm, Sun: 11am – 6pm

Swee Lee

  • Asia’s largest music retailer

  • The showroom at Bras Basah Complex is the oldest and biggest store in Singapore after moving from Plaza Singapore 20 years ago. With a full range of music products be it the instruments or additional accessories, it is also the only store to have a band orchestra department.

  • Opening Hours: Mon – Sat: 10;30am – 7:30pm, Sun & Public Holidays: 12:30pm – 6:30pm

Zisha Art Gallery

  • Specialising in authentic early and old Zisha teapots from Yixing China, Zisha Art Gallery offers a selection of traditional clay teapots and other products that can be viewed here.

  • Opening Hours: Mon: 1pm – 7pm, Wed – Sun: 1pm – 7pm

Address: 231 Bain Street, Singapore 180231


Enjoy a scrumptious meal or relax with desserts


Look no further for these are our recommendations on where to enjoy the different cuisines available at the Bras Basah & Bugis precinct!


Local

Eleven Finger (Eu Kee) Scissors Curry Rice

Eleven Finger Scissors Curry Rice
Photo Credit: Eatbook

Serving traditional Hainanese curry rice, there are always long queues for this particular curry, and they sell out pretty quickly. With a generous amount of the gravy, the curry-drenched rice soaks up the flavour, making it taste even better.


Coupled with a fried egg, the curry enhances the taste, and the egg has crisp edges, a slightly savoury and chewy texture as well as its flavourful semi-oozy yolk. The toppings (such as pork chop and cabbage) that go along with the curry rice, do not disappoint too!


Overall, this would be an affordable and scrumptious meal!


Address: 269B Queen St, #01-235, Singapore 180269

Opening Hours:

Mon – Thurs: 11am – 6:30pm

Fri: 11am – 2pm

Sat – Sun: 11am – 6:30pm


Japanese

Tanuki Raw

Tanuki Raw
Photo Credit: Klook

Serving a fusion of modern Japanese cuisine and American street food, Tanuki Raw is one of the well-known dining options in Bugis.


Famous for their donburi (rice bowls), the truffle yakiniku don is a must-try dish with Angus short rib doused with truffle soya sauce and topped with an onsen egg.


After a hard day’s work, happy hour is available from 5pm – 8pm from Mon – Fri, and all-day during the weekends!

Address: 111 Middle Road, #01-05, National Design Centre, Singapore 188969

Opening Hours: Daily, 11am – 9pm


Japanese Curry Express

Eurasian Community House
Photo Credit: Seth Lui

A family-run restaurant hidden away at Fortune Centre with a coffeeshop-like setting, amazing Japanese food can be found here.


Our recommendations would be the Ebi Mango Maki and the Salmon Sashimi! The Ebi Mango Maki is a combination of fried prawns at the core of the sushi, topped with mango dressed in tobiko (fish roe) and mayo. Though this combination may be strange, it actually works really well! Contrary to the typical sashimi slice, the Salmon Sashimi they serve is actually thick, giving you a meaty piece with soy sauce poured on it.


For a place named after curry, you can expect to get a good plate of Japanese Curry Rice under $10 too!

Address: 190 Middle Road, Fortune Centre #03-04, Singapore, Singapore

Opening Hours: Mon – Sat: 11:30am – 2pm, 5:30pm – 8pm (Closed on Sun)


Korean

Hangawi Korean Food

Carpmael Park Wallholla Playground
Photo Credit: Foursquare

Another family-run eatery at Fortune Centre, the family that owns this store are actually Koreans! It is the spot to go for authentic Korean food and to make it better, these dishes are affordable even for an average Singaporean.


Their specialty would be the tteokguk, which is a sliced rice cake soup served with egg, carrots, spring onion, and shredded seaweed. With every main dish that you order, you will also get a free serving of banchan, which are Korean side dishes that consist of kimchi and spicy anchovies. Though they do not offer beverages on their menu; they do have free-flowing miyeokguk (seaweed soup)!

Address: 190 Middle Rd, Fortune Centre, #02-18, Singapore 188979

Opening Hours: Daily, 10:30am – 4:30pm, 5:30pm – 8pm


Italian

Garibaldi

Garibaldi
Photo Credit: Garibaldi

One of Singapore’s most popular and respected Italian restaurant landmark, Garibaldi offers Italian fine-dining with ingredients imported directly from Italy. They are also a One Michelin Star holder that serves classic dishes with their own spin on it. One of the recommended dishes would be the Cold Angel Hair with Snow Crab, Bafun Sea Urchin & Siberian Caviar.

Address: 36 Purvis Street #01-02 Singapore 188613 Opening Hours: Daily, 12pm – 2pm (last order: 1:45pm), 6pm – 10pm (last order: 9:45pm)


Seafood

WaWa Lala Bee Hoon

WaWa Lala Bee Hoon
Photo Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Lala which refers to Venus Clams, are usually eaten as a side dish but this store decides to make it its star ingredient for the dishes they serve!


Founded by a group of friends that loved seafood and zi char dishes, it is the first Lala specialty store in Singapore. The outlet at Bugis’ Fortune Centre is their second one which opened after their first store at Upper Serangoon Road was well-received. The clams are sorted out through a rigorous manual process and have a seawater tank to keep these clams alive and fresh before cooking and serving them to you.


Their signature items include the Power Drunken Lala Bee Hoon, Fresh Lala in Home-made Garlic Butter Sauce, and Power Sambal Lala with Tasty Rice!

Address: 190 Middle Rd, Fortune Centre, #01-11/12, Singapore 188979

Opening Hours: Tue – Sun, 11:30am – 9:30pm


Vegetarian

Tracy Juice Culture

Tracy Juice Culture
Photo Credit: Time Out

A vegetarian stall that serves a variety of fruit juices and healthy vegetarian meals, it is especially known for its noodle dishes, Tracy’s Special Udon and Fruit Juice Curry Udon.


Tracy’s Special Udon is basically a mushroom-based udon that comes with mock meat and broccoli, making it a hearty meal that you can enjoy! The Fruit Juice Curry Udon is an option that requires you to be more daring. The broth is made of blended curry and fruits, giving it a tangy yet spicy taste while being topped with dragon fruit, tau pok (fried beancurd), and tofu.


They also offer the limited special Thunder Tea Rice that is only available on the 1st and 15th of the lunar month!

Address: 190 Middle Rd, #01-34 Fortune Centre, Singapore 188979

Opening Hours: Daily, 10:30am – 6:15pm


Herbivore

Herbivore
Photo Credit: Nstory Insider

Though the food may look like the typical Japanese cuisine that contains meat, Herbivore serves pure vegetarian cuisine in the Japanese and Western style. It is also vegan-friendly as they do not use egg, garlic, or onion for their foods! Though the restaurant may look dark from afar, upon closer look, you will find it to be open!


Offering a wide variety from sashimi to ramen, dishes can also be made vegan upon request (if they are not already vegan). The dishes tend to be on the pricier side and a reservation is recommended as it gets crowded often.

Address: 190 Middle Rd, #01-13/14 Fortune Centre, Singapore 188979

Opening Hours: Daily, 11:30am – 3pm (last order: 2:30pm), 5pm – 9:30pm (last order: 8:45pm)


Cafes

Clap Cafe

Clap Cafe
Photo Credit: Daniel Food Diary

Known for its Pumpkin Spice Latte and Maple Pecan Tart, Clap Cafe is a rather new cafe. Opened by two friends sharing the same passion for coffee and baking, Frank and Annie opened the cafe just a day before the start of Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) last year.


With a minimal yet industrialist interior, the spacious cafe is designed for group gatherings or provides a productive working space for its patrons. With a double volume space (higher ceiling), a floral arrangement made by the team is displayed there. All drinks are developed in-house and hand-crafted while the Maple Pecan Tart and Basque Cheesecake are made in-house!

Address: Blk 261 Waterloo Street #01-28, Singapore 180261

Opening Hours: Daily, 8:30am - 8:00pm


Conclusion


With all our recommendations on the places to visit or food to try as well as its history, the Bras Basah & Bugis precinct is indeed an arts and heritage district that can also fulfil both your shopping needs and cravings!


If you would like to learn more about the history and explore other parts of Singapore, do check out our free walking tours or our other blogs to help you decide where you should visit next!

413 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


ABOUT US

Award-winning Tour operator in Singapore. We focus on local authentic experiences, hidden gems and exploring off-the-beaten paths in Singapore.

TOURS

GET TO US

CONNECT

  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon
  • White TripAdvisor Icon
TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2018_Monster Day Tours
Tripadvisor Travelers Choice 2023 Best of Best_Green_edited_edited.png
TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence 2019_Monster Day Tours

A PROUD MEMBER OF

©2024 BY WOOPA TRAVELS PTE LTD

Travel Agent License No. 02699

bottom of page