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Raffles Place, Singapore Overview

Raffles Place is a commercial space located at the south of Singapore River. Known as the heart of Singapore’s Financial District, Raffles Place is occupied with skyscrapers like the UOB Plaza which is known to hold exhibitions, Change Alley where travellers can get their currency changed, and the Lau Pa Sat from where one can buy art and craft items and enjoy some cultural performances.

Raffles Place was Singapore’s earliest commercial buildings in 1820 known as Commercial Square. It was renamed as Raffles Place in 1858. Featured as one of the tallest buildings of Singapore and being of high real estate value, it had been declared a historical site by the National Heritage Board in September 1997. Some of the most prominent establishments at Raffles Place includes the very famous mall One Raffles Place, the UOB Plaza, Republic Plaza and the OCBC Centre. Singapore's signature icon, the Merlion, the finely crafted Durian-shaped art centre Esplanade Theatre and the Fullerton Hotel-Singapore are all located at the Raffles Place. Being the financial hub of the country, Raffles Place also has Singapore's stock exchange located in its vicinity. Important institutions like the Parliament House, the Supreme Court and the City Hall, are all situated towards the north of the river nearby. 

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Notable Buildings at Raffles Place

UOB Plaza: United Overseas Bank Plaza or UOB Plaza is one of the three tallest towers in Singapore. Completed in 1995, it is a complex with twin-tower skyscrapers and houses the United Overseas Bank’s main branch. It was designed by Kenzo Tange in the shape of a box which also resembles the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building.

One Raffles Place: This includes a shopping mall along with Tower One and Tower Two. It is managed by Overseas Union Bank Centre (OUB Centre) and is designed for people to provide them with a living and working in Singapore’s business district along with excellent and dining options.

Republic Plaza: It is one of the few buildings in the Lion City which has earthquake proof features despite Singapore being far away from earthquake zones. Currently, Republic Plaza houses the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group which is Japan’s largest bank, the Honorary Consulate of Mali and Saint Vincent, and the Grenadines.

Republic Plaza at Raffles Place Singapore
Republic Plaza (Source)

Singapore Land Tower: The tower is situated at 50 Raffles Place, which is adjacent to Raffles Place MRT Station. It is a 620 ft skyscraper which homes the Embassy of Germany, Ukraine, and Colombia.

OCBC Centre: This 52-storey building serves as the headquarters of OCBC Bank. The building was completed in 1976 and consists of two extensions, the OCBC Centre South and OCBC Centre East. The edifice is a perfect example of Brutalist architecture and symbolizes strength and permanence.

Raffles Place Singapore
Evening view of UOB Plaza, OUB Centre and OCBC Centre near the Singapore River (Source)

How to Reach Raffles Place

MRT: The Raffles Place has an MRT Terminal right beneath it which is just a minute away from getting there. Exit A will take one right to Raffles Place.

Bus: Bus stop-B03019 lies at a distance of 3 minutes. Buses 531, 541, 546, 547, 652, 656, 663, 665, 700, 850E, 951E and 971E, halts at the bus stop.

Raffles Place Singapore
Raffles Place MRT Station (Source)

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