Physical Address

304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124

Former Officers Mess and Quarters

location
1 The Knolls, Sentosa (S)098297
[Get Directions](http://maps.google.com/maps?q=1.249790,103.824416&z=18)

From the late 19th century to the 1960s, accommodations for officers of the British military stood on this site, including four colonial bungalows that are today merged into a hotel development. Blocks 48 and 49 served as a mess and quarters for officers up to the rank of captain, while the manor-like blocks 50 and 51 were reserved for more senior officers.

The officer accommodations were surrounded by tennis and racquet courts, cookhouses and servants’ quarters. While non-officers relied on shared valets, dhobis (laundry workers) and waiters to polish their equipment, wash their uniforms and serve them at meals, more senior officers often employed their own amahs and other domestic workers.

Officers also hosted parties during Christmas and New Year with wining, dining, dancing, and band performances. An urban legend had it that before the Fall of Singapore on 15 February 1942, the regimental silver and other silverware of the Officers’ Mess were hurriedly buried in the front lawn of the building. This story inspired later inhabitants of the island to search unsuccessfully for the silverware.

Accorded conservation status by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) in 2000, the buildings were restored and adapted for commercial use. For its sensitive restoration of heritage elements, including the airy verandahs and ornate facades, the development received the URA Architectural Heritage Award in 2009.

From the late 19th century to the 1960s, accommodations for officers of the British military stood on this site, including four colonial bungalows that are today merged into a hotel development. Blocks 48 and 49 served as a mess and quarters for officers up to the rank of captain, while the manor-like blocks 50 and 51 were reserved for more senior officers.

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