The temple dedicated to the Chinese Buddhist God of Fortune stands today on the Mohammed Sultan Road and it is among the most beautiful Buddhist temples of Singapore. Built by the South Chinese Hokkien people, this Singapore Buddhist temple has been once relocated to its actual address today.
The Hong San See Temple in Singapore has been built quite a long ago, in 1836 already, which means shortly after Singapore has become a British colony town. The name of the temple means “Temple on Phoenix Hill “The temple is dedicated to Guang Ze Tun Wang who is the God of Fortune in the Chinese Buddhist mythology. The main visitors of this temple are Chinese, mainly from the Southern regions but not necessarily only Hokkien people. The style of Hong San See temple is traditional Southern Chinese Temple style which means the axial planning the several courtyard sometimes interconnecting with gardens and meditation places and it means the typical walls too. As you enter the Hong San See Temple, you will be surely amazed by the beautiful art of Chinese painters and sculptors who could realise all the incredibly beautiful decorations, which can be seen and marvelled both in the entrance the hall and the praying Hall. The designer of the temple was an already famous architect called Lim Doh. The temple because of its detailed decorations has been renovated and refreshed several times. The first restoration was executed already in 1868. The old temple was located in the Tanjong Pagar district till the beginning of 1900s when the idea of moving has been slowly converted into action.
Today the area of the Hong San See temple is much bigger than it used to be on its old site. The moving was a very hard process, together with the restoration and moving of the whole complex, which went on from 1908 to 1913. The temple lies on an always 3500 square metre area.
Not only is the Hong San See Tempe a declared national monument, which honour it has received in 1978 but also, in 2010 it has received the very special UNESCO Award of Excellence: Asia-Pacific Heritage Award for Cultural Heritage, for all the highest quality complex beauty it delivers for its visitors. Apart from being ultimately, Buddhist the temple gives chance for the people to show respect to the religion the temple also shows respect for the other gods of the Chinese Buddhist mythology.
Hong Man See temple is as much important part of the city. The most outstanding features of the temple its entrance gate with the facade and with the beautiful interiors, which also represent the rich heritage of the Hokkien Lam Ann clan’s heritage just like the four magnificent granite columns with the beautifully carved dragons in pearl which you can see on the roof ‘ridges is really breathtaking. The main entrance’s beautifully carved and painted wood is timber featuring beautiful dragons and phoenixes painted in traditional Southern Chinese style and it’s not only catchy but has a very rich artistic importance as well.
It is more than worth visiting this temple while you are in Singapore, as one of the main Chinese Buddhist attractions and holy places of the city. Singapore’s rich Chinese heritage is indeed represented in here in possibly the richest form.