Bukit Merah

Bukit Merah Name Is Rooted Into Disturbing Local Legend

Bukit Merah has a Malay legend that's regarded as very bloody. Singapore was inundated with fishing villages, and the fishermen were often attacked by swordfish when they got out on the water. The situation was continually going on, until one day, a young boy living on top of a hill recommended a sultan plenty a row of banana tree trunks to protect the fisherman from the swordfish.

According to the legend, the swordfish would become stuck in the barrier. The boy's idea was effective, and the swordfish stopped attacking the villagers. However, given the boy's wisdom, the sultan felt threatened and ordered men to kill him. His blood flowed down the hill when they did, giving it a red dye (and eventually the region its name). 

Bukit Merah, home to roughly 146,000 HDB residents, comprises five estates – Mount Faber, Redhill, Tanjong Pagar, Telok Blangah and Tiong Bahru. Before Bukit Merah was established, it was the place where numerous gambier and pepper plantations could be seen. Today, it's a residential community, broken down into five estates, with a plethora of recreational and commercial amenities. 

Bukit Merah, which means red hill in Malay, got its name after excavation of the area revealed red soil on Lengkok Bahru/Henderson's hilly areas. The area consists of pre-war and post-war estates, built by the previous Singapore Improvement Trust. However, the Housing and Development Board (HDB), which was set up in 1960, started to construct public housing to contend with the housing shortage. In 1961, HDB was tapped to establish more flats, helping residents displaced by the Bukit Ho Swee fire. HDB's home office was in Bukit Merah Central, before moving to Toa Payoh in 2003. 

 

Bukit Merah Housing, Educational, Religious and Medical Establishments 

There is a plethora of interest in the HDB flats in the estate, with its four or five-room options. Bukit Merah homes are considered the most lavish of all flats in Singapore, and the area is undergoing even more development to support HDB flats. The residential units offer plenty of space and create a comfortable atmosphere. 

With families in the area, it means education is essential. Bukit Merah does have several primary and secondary schools and universities that children and young adults can attend. Two of these schools are primary – Blangah Rise Primary School and Gan Eng Seng Primary School. Three schools are secondary – Bukit Merah Secondary School, Gan Eng Seng Secondary School and Henderson Secondary School. The higher education schools are – EASB Institute of Management, James Cook University and SGP International Management Academy.

For those looking for places of worship, the area offers three – Chin Leng Keng Chinese Temple, Church of God and Masjid Jamiyah Al-Rabitah. 

When residents need a doctor – be it for a serious medical condition or a checkup – they have the Singapore General Hospital with specialty places like Singapore Gamma Knife Center and Singapore National Eye Center. 

Bukit Merah is also the home of the Dorcas Home Care Service, a place for the elderly to receive the help they need to continue living in the community (and at home). They offer home help services such as medical escorts, housekeeping and laundry and personal hygiene. The service will also work with the elderly's family members to care for their loved ones. Thus, Bukit Merah is regarded as an elderly-friendly community. 

 

Activities, Entertainment and Places To See

Bukit Merah estate has plenty of transportation options that allow residents and visitors to get from place to place easily. You can travel by MRT, bus, private taxis and hired cars to get to the numerous shopping centers, eateries, parks, cinemas and other places of enjoyment and sites quickly.

  • Places to Shop – Anchorpoint, Bukit Merah Central and VivoCity
  • Places to Eat – Brinda's, IKEA Restaurant and Café, Komala's and Red Hill Food Center 
    • At the Bakery Chef, you can satisfy your sweet tooth with the plethora of desserts and pastries such as Red Velvet Cake, Matcha Toast and soft-serve ice cream.
    • Butterscotch is another dessert and cake restaurant that offers the Ondeh Ondeh Waffles and eggs benedict. 
    • If you want hand-crafted gelato, the Dandelion is the place to go. It's got a variety of flavors that include some locally-inspired, like the egg yolk cereal ice cream. 
  • Community Centers – Bukit Merah Community Center, Henderson Community Center and Leng Kee Community Center
  • Places Of Entertainment – Bukit Merah Community Library, Labrador Nature Park, Mount Faber Park and Touch Community Theater

Tiong Bahru estate, a subzone of Bukit Merah, has become one of the most popular spots to hang out with its numerous restaurants and cafés. 

 

HDB Resale Flats Prices in Bukit Merah

 Bukit Merah HDB Resale Flat Prices

 Flat type

 Average Price

 1-room

 $170,000

 2-room

 $240,000

 3-room

 $369,000

 4-room

 $657,000

 5-room

 $777,000

 Executive

 N/A

 Multi-Generation

 N/A

 

Source: HDB resale price index portal, average transaction prices, June 2019 to June 2020

Bukit Merah is considered one of the most expensive neighbourhoods for homebuyers, with 4-room HDB resale flat prices as high as homes in exclusive estates like Bukit Timah and nearing the prices of homes in the Central Area. 

What justifies these high prices is that Bukit Merah is a mature estate in an ideal location, right along the edge of the city centre. Residents enjoy the convenience of 6 MRT stations, plus renowned medical facilities nearby (SGH). Bukit Merah encompasses the Tiong Bahru and Telok Blangah/Keppel areas too, which means residents have trendy cafes to enjoy, links to Sentosa and incredible views of the country’s glorious southern coast. 

People who enjoy the great outdoors will appreciate all the hiking trails, a connection to the magnificent Singapore River, walks along the coast, the Rail Corridor and much more. Art and history enthusiasts can enjoy the creativity of Gillman Barracks, the impressive heritage and architecture of Tanjong Pagar Railway Station, and national monuments like the pre-war flats located at Tiong Bahru and other. 

Have any question or are looking to buy an HDB resale flat in Bukit Merah?