A Lego version of Singapore’s 150-year-old Istana will soon be unveiled – here’s how to get your hands on one

Visitors and tourists take pictures at the Istana lawn during the National day Istana Open House in 2018.
The Straits Times

One of Singapore’s most historic and important buildings is getting its own Lego model.

The Istana, which means “palace” in Malay, was built by the British Colonial government to house its governors in 1869. Today, it occupies over 40 hectares on Orchard Road, and is the office of the President of Singapore.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad met with President Halimah Yacob on an official visit to the Istana on November 12, 2018.
The Straits Times

To commemorate its 150th year, President Halimah Yacob will be unveiling a specially-commissioned Lego model of the Istana building during the Labour Day Istana Open House on May 1.

According to the President’s office, the model will “encapsulate the Istana’s Neo-Palladian architecture with its surrounding verandas and Istana grounds”.

The Istana is where world leaders are received. On June 11, 2018, US President Donald Trump was presented with a birthday cake to celebrate his 72nd birthday, which fell on June 14. President Trump was in town for a historical US summit with North Korea, and visited the Istana for a meeting with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Visitors at the Open House who make a donation of at least S$70 to the President’s Challenge will get to bring home their own Lego Istana.

Established by former president SR Nathan in 2000, the President’s Challenge is a fundraising and volunteering effort that benefits a range of charity and community service groups in Singapore.

Previously known in colonial times as the Government House, the Istana got its current name after Singapore achieved self-government in 1959.
The Straits Times

Entry to the Istana grounds on May 1 (from 8:30am to 6pm) is free for Singaporeans and permanent residents. Other visitors are charged an entrance fee of S$2.

Earlier this year, the President also launched a series of medallions and Flashpay cards to commemorate the Istana’s 150th year.

The medallions made by the Singapore mint feature five buildings within the Istana compound.

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