The people’s president: Exploring potential residences for Singapore’s President Tharman Shanmugaratnam

Singapore welcomed its ninth President, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, with open arms on the 1st of September.

Just like most of his predecessors, President Tharman has announced that he will not be moving into the Istana after his inauguration. Instead, a spokesperson from his media team said he will be using the Istana exclusively as his office. 

This got us thinking — if President Tharman were to move out of his current house, where would he choose to live? 

Join us as we embark on an exploration of potential residences befitting the people’s president!

President Tharman’s remarkable journey

Before we dive into the possibilities, let’s take a moment to appreciate the remarkable journey of President Tharman. 

With a political career spanning 22 years, he has held key positions such as Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry, Minister for Education, Minister for Finance, Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for Social Policies, and Senior Minister. His landslide victory in the presidential election, winning 70.40% of the votes, showcases the immense respect and trust the people of Singapore have in him. 

His campaign slogan, “Respect for all,” and the pineapple symbol of good fortune (ong lai in Hokkien) embody his kind, compassionate, and humble personality.

That said, let’s look at some delightful options for the President’s new residence.

different skin tone hands on a table - President Tharman

1. Somewhere community-centric

President Tharman’s commitment to staying actively involved with Singaporeans is well-known. His long-standing role as the Member of Parliament for Taman Jurong since 2001 and anchor minister of the Jurong Group Representation Constituency (GRC) attests to his strong connection with the community. 

Many Taman Jurong residents have heartwarming stories of how President Tharman has helped them, sometimes without being asked. He has even been a regular customer at the Taman Jurong food centre for the past seven years. 

Perhaps, in the midst of upcoming changes in his life as Singapore’s ninth President, a sense of familiarity and a close-knit community could provide him with comfort.

Living in a community-centric environment not only aligns with President Tharman’s values but also offers numerous benefits. Such a residence would allow him to interact with everyday Singaporeans, staying attuned to their needs and concerns. It’s an opportunity for him to foster a strong bond with the people he serves.

Neighbourhood Suggestion: Taman Jurong

Read also: Does a VIP neighbour really affect property values?


House with fancy interior - President Tharman

2. Somewhere regal 

If President Tharman is in the market for a residence that befits his presidential status, then perhaps he should consider a home with regal grandeur. 

A majestic residence would not only showcase his distinguished role but also offer an ambience of prestige. Think about it – a grand entrance, ornate chandeliers, and art pieces that reflect Singapore’s rich cultural heritage. It would undoubtedly be a fitting abode for our new president.

The benefits of a regal residence extend beyond aesthetics. 

It provides an ideal setting for hosting dignitaries, diplomats, and foreign leaders, reinforcing Singapore’s position on the global stage. Additionally, it offers a sense of tradition and formality that complements the duties of the presidency.

Neighbourhood Suggestion: Tanglin

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Condo surrounded by plants - President Tharman

3. Somewhere close to nature

The demands of the presidency can be taxing, and everyone needs a sanctuary to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life. For President Tharman, a home nestled amidst nature could be the perfect retreat. 

Imagine a condo with lush green surroundings, serene gardens, soothing spas, and refreshing pools. These amenities could provide him with the relaxation and tranquillity he deserves.

Living close to nature has proven benefits for mental and physical well-being. President Tharman could enjoy morning walks amidst the chirping of birds, unwind in a private garden, or take a dip in a pool surrounded by greenery. Such surroundings would offer a therapeutic escape from the stresses of the presidency.

In addition to personal rejuvenation, a residence in a nature-centric environment aligns with Singapore’s commitment to sustainability and green living. It sets an example for eco-friendly living and underscores the importance of preserving the island’s natural beauty.

Neighbourhood Suggestion: Bukit Timah


5 Pender Road black and white house Singapore

This two-storey black and white house at 5 Pender Road comes with three bedrooms. Source: SLA

4. Somewhere with historical significance

In a city where space is at a premium, there’s a unique housing option with strong historical roots: black and white houses. 

These colonial-era houses have a storied history, dating back to the 19th century. They were once home to European colonial and expatriate families, government officials, high court judges, and plantation owners during the 1920s and 30s. Despite enduring the Japanese Occupation from 1942 to 1945, these houses remain an enduring symbol of our country’s history. 

In fact, ministers K. Shanmugam and Vivian Balakrishnan have rented two black and white bungalows along Ridout Road, adding to their allure. 

Living in a black and white house would not only offer President Tharman a unique historical experience but also a connection to our colonial past. It’s a chance to reside in a piece of living history, where the walls whisper stories of a bygone era.

Neighbourhood Suggestion: Ridout Road


home protection device - President Tharman

5. Somewhere to balance safety and accessibility

While it’s essential for President Tharman to remain accessible to the public, security considerations are paramount. Striking a balance between safety and accessibility is crucial. 

Security considerations for the President’s residence extend beyond gated entrances and surveillance cameras. A team of dedicated security personnel, state-of-the-art access control systems, and secure perimeters are essential to safeguard his well-being. This ensures that President Tharman can carry out his duties without compromising his safety.

At the same time, the residence should facilitate engagement with the public. Open houses, community gatherings, and public events can be organised to maintain a strong connection with Singaporeans. Ensuring ease of access for visitors while upholding security standards is a delicate but necessary balance.

This delicate balance ensures that President Tharman can fulfil his commitment to being actively involved with Singaporeans.

Neighbourhood Suggestion: Ardmore Park


Wrapping up

In this whimsical journey of imagining potential residences for President Tharman, we celebrate his unique qualities as a leader and his dedication to the people of Singapore. From community-centric, regal, close to nature, and historically significant homes, we have no doubt that President Tharman’s choice will reflect his vision for a presidency that is both accessible and respectful. 

Either way, majulah, President Tharman – we look forward to witnessing your impact on our beloved nation.  

Disclaimer: This article is intended for entertainment purposes only. We congratulate President Tharman on his election win and look forward to witnessing his continued contributions to Singapore and its people.

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