Toko Merah, located at Jakarta Old Town, translates to "Red Shop." The former residence of Governer-General Gustaaf Willem now attracts many tourists for its gorgeous vintage setting. Couples from Indonesia even come to Toko Merah for pre-wedding photoshoots as the red walls of the building serve as splendid backgrounds. Nowadays, the building serves as a venue for conferences, meetings, and exhibitions. Having said that, its historical significance and architecture also draw a considerable number of people each year just to explore the building and its surroundings.
Toko Merah is recognized as a landmark that dates back to the Dutch Colonization. Located in the Old Town of Jakarta, it is one of the oldest buildings in Jakarta and is owned by an assembly of state-owned enterprise for trade. Toko Merah once hosted some famous personalities like Willian Bligh and has been featured in a movie ‘Mutiny on the Bounty’.
In the late-17th century till around 1808, the building was transformed into a hotel. Around the mid-19th century, Toko Merah was owned by a Chinese Captain who used it as a residence. In the early-20th century, the building was converted into a Bank and later served as the office of a Dutch-owned company. After 1957, it was owned by state-owned enterprises and restored to function as a venue for official and commercial use.
Toko Merah occupies an area of 2.5 square metres of land and is a classic example of the Baroque style of architecture. It consists of two buildings with one common roof. It has an expansive open area on the ground floor which serves as a gallery for exhibitions or as a venue for celebratory events.
The top floors have spacious rooms which are often used for official conferences and meetings. The buildings have tall windows and a blend of Chinese and European décor. The complex also has some carriage houses and stables which were built when the site was expanded to be transformed into a hotel.
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