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Heritage Marker SB36 - Club Street
Learn more about Chinatown's rich history by visiting our Heritage Markers. Installed at places of historical significance around Chinatown, each plaque provides a short history of the location in three languages - English, Simplified Chinese and Japanese.

Legend has it that a big gate once stood at the junction of Upper Cross Street and Club Street. Although the existence of the gate is dubious, what it symbolized most certainly was not. Club Street was traditionally the haven for trade guilds and elitist social clubs. The pinnacle of Club Street society was the Chinese Weekly Entertainment Club, which hosted all the grandest events and admitted only English-speaking Straits Chinese. Its social events were glorious. Sir Song Ong Siang, the first Chinese to receive a knighthood, recounts a fifth-anniversary fancy dress ball where guests came as kings, queens and sultans. The trade guilds on Club Street were much humbler organizations, but not less esteemed. They were the only associations in 19th and early 20th century Singapore that were not run on kinship but by profession.

Several Indonesian Malay communal houses, known as pondok, were on Club Street, of which Pondok Peranakan Gelam is the sole survivor. The original Pondok Gelam was on 64 Club Street; today the clubhouse is on Hong Lim Green. It was a self-contained community with its own social system. Married couples dwelled on upper floors, while children and single adults lived on lower levels.
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Club Street
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