As the Peranakan Museum of Singapore is wing of Asian Civilisations Museum, it is really one of its kind, housing remains and artefacts of the Peranakan Culture specifically. The Peranakan Museum has three levels and some extra exhibition galleries. It has grown out to be among the Nr.1 must-visit museums of Singapore.
The Peranakan Museum is specialised in housing remains and artefacts of the ancient Peranakan culture, which used to be the mother culture of Singapore and the South East Asian region. The museum is alone standing in the world, as there have been no other museums featuring this culture to this level. Peranakan culture once had been the dominating culture of some parts of South East Asia. The Peranakan Museum has been for long was a separate segment under the Asian Civilisations Museum of Singapore. The museum houses in the big Old Tao Nan School where it had been residing from 2006, when the Asian Civilisation Museum decided to close its Armenian collection and highlight another culture or cultural segment, which they decided to be the Peranakan culture. The rate of yearly visitors is very high and thanks to the latest reconstruction, the extra exhibition space has opened which enabled the museum to exhibit 25% more of its existing collections.
The Peranakan Museum has been constructed beautifully, with some part of it even containing authentic houses as elements taken from the Peranakan Culture just like featuring altogether four shop houses in a row and Peranakan eateries as well. The Peranakan Museum opened again in 2008 after its renovation works has been finished.
One of the centrepieces of the Peranakan collection includes the famous Peranakan Wedding Bed, which was indeed used for giving birth for seven children of the Chiam family. The Museum has altogether six galleries houses on all the three levels of the Peranakan Museum and an additional Special Exhibition Galleries place that can be found on the third level.
In the first Gallery, we can start getting closer to the Peranakan Culture with the “Origins” exhibition where we can see the places of origin of the culture itself, which has roots not only in Malacca, Penang and Malaysia but also in Indonesia. The next exhibition contains a representation of the traditional 12-day long Peranakan wedding with all of its customs, dressing, artefacts and decoration used for the big event. This exhibition includes the representation of a special wedding chamber too. In the sixth Gallery, you can see the Peranakan Nonya, which is the traditional beading used by this old culture. The seventh Gallery teaches us on the ancient religion and beliefs of Peranakan. The eighth Gallery tells us about the careers of famous Peranakan personalities and we can learn more on the politic role of Peranakan nation in the life of Singapore. The ninth Gallery represents the unique and beautiful Nonya art of porcelain; this is really a must-see part of the Peranakan Museum. The visual gallery teaches us how Peranakan people feel about their culture, on the efforts of treasuring their culture and on the effects of modern life to the ancient culture and nation.
The Peranakan Museum is open from 9.30 am to 7 pm every day, with the exception of Monday when it opens at 1 pm. The beautiful Peranakan Museum is really a gemstone of the local culture of Singapore, which is the most worth seeing.