Istana, meaning 'Palace' in Malay, is the office and official residence of the President of Singapore. It is also the working office of the Prime Minister of Singapore. It is open to the public on five selected statutory holidays, on the Chinese New Year, Deepavali, Hari Raya Puasa, Labour Day and on the National Day. The Istana grounds are also the venue for state functions and ceremonial occasions like swearings-in, investitures and presentation of the credentials by heads of foreign missions. There is a very eventful changing of guards on the first Sunday of every month which is also a popular public entertainment.
The Istana Open House days have various entertainment sections, some of which include games like face painting and balloon sculpturing. It also has educational activities like the 'Display of Reptiles by the Wildlife Reserves of Singapore', 'Guided Tour by National Heritage Board' and 'Nature Guided Walks'. Local schools and youth groups showcase their music and dance skills through various performances. The Istana Open House days also sell merchandise, snacks and drinks.
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