Named after a prominent businessman and community leader, Tan Keong Saik, the road has seen major gentrification from a residential area to a red-light district to the current vibrant culinary haven that it is now.Prior to its official naming in 1926, the road was an unnamed residential street where wholesalers of charcoal and groceries stood side-by side with coffee shops and incense retailers. It was also known as the hiding place for the businessmen and their mistresses.
By the turn of the century, Keong Saik Road evolved into a red-light district, housing brothels in the three-storey shophouses. You may still see hints of its vivacious past as you walk towards the foot of the road. After Singapore’s independence and rapid urbanisation by the country, by early 1990s, the area was given the conservation status. Keong Saik Road today is juxtaposition of old and new as original residents such as old school coffeeshops, sundry stores and a Chinese temple sit harmoniously with lifestyle cafes, high-end restaurants and even co-working spaces – a mecca for the discerning traveller.
Built in the year 1929, the building has seen the different eras unfold before her eyes. If walls could speak, their mouth will overflow with rich, colourful stories, unearthing its notorious past. A pioneer in the boutique hotel scene in Singapore, Hotel 1929 has changed the fabric of the neighbourhood and set a yardstick since its opening in 2003, having won the URA (Urban Redevelopment Authority) Architectural Heritage Award that same year.
Source: Singapore Infopedia