Fast Facts about CHIJMES:
- Chijmes Singapore was first established in 1854.
- Based on the Father Nicholas Barre’s order of the Holy Infant Jesus.
- Gazetted as a national monument on October 26, 1990.
- Converted into a trendy restaurant complex in 1996.
- Situated on a four-acre site in the heart of the Civic and Cultural District.
- Totals 5 buildings, including 2 that are historic (the Chapel and Caldwell House).
- Won a UNESCO Merit Award for Cultural Heritage Conservation in 2002.
Like bells ringing in a great cathedral, CHIJMES is pronounced chimes. The name of this gracious landmark is basically an acronym that stands for Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus. No longer the home of nuns and priests, CHIJMES Singapore is a national heritage site for Singapore that offers fine dining and entertainment.
Visitors can shop at an array of specialty stores among which include Best Money Changer, Chijmes Banquet Hall, Elite Flora, Empress Myanmar Jewelery & Crafts, iGallery, Irene’s Creation, Mai Thai Gallery, Mignon, Olathe, and last but not least, The Spa-Lon Beauty & Skin Treatment Center.
After so many shops, you’ll relish making the decision of where to eat and drink.
In regards to Food & Beverage establishments at CHIJMES Singapore, there are plenty! Check the second floor of the CHIJMES monastery building restaurant complex for the first SUN restaurant in Singapore. If sleep doesn’t come easy, then stop by for a few drinks at Insomnia for some live and recorded music.
Dance the night away at the Ace of Clubs, Le Baroque, or Upper Club. Eat at Yanqing’s Shanghai Kitchen or play some pool at Bobby’s Taproom Grill & Ribs while sipping wine. You could also taste a modern interpretation of Italian cuisine at Capella. Visit the Gyu-Kaku for a different kind of Japanese BBQ flavor, try Authentic Mediterranean food from Esmirada, or take a whiff of the aroma of nineteen different pizzas cooked in a wood-fired oven at Pizzeria Giardino. You could also watch meat waiters carve your next dish in the Brazilian churrascaria style at Carnivore or you could see a professional chef at Tatsu Teppanyaki prepare your meal in the traditional Japanese culinary art of teppanyaki.
Find out what the word “gastrobar” means at Harry’s or relax at La Cave Winebar & Restaurant. Do you love sangria? Then you could also visit La Viva Spanish Bar & Tapas. If you’re a meat lover, then Hog’s Breath Cafe is for you. Whatever you choose, you’ll surely be delighted! From Asian platters at Table 108 to your favorite sushi and 120 kinds of sake, you will certainly find the best fit for your leisure among the large courtyards and covered walkways of CHIJMES.
Do you want to know a bit of history before visiting?
The chapel, now a multipurpose hall for weddings, musicals, recitals, and theatrical performances, was once considered one of the most elaborate places of worship ever created in Singapore. Father Charles Benedict Nain was perhaps the main reason for why CHIJMES was first built. In 1852, he was an architect for the construction of the chapel at the Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus and was the great author behind all the fine architectural details. But when it comes to written work, seven volumes of diaries, entitled Annales de Singapour, are the only records of the time that still exist today.
The convent scribes meticulously reported daily activities in handwritten French over a period of a hundred years, from 1851 to 1971. This included changes, such as when the convent began to host the Saint Nicholas Girls’ School in 1949. Life through their eyes was very busy: from daily chores, maintaining buildings and grounds, to organizing mass and grading papers, the convent nuns were hard pressed to raise funds for their activities. On November 3, 1983, the last religious service was held. The chapel was then deconsecrated and the convent was closed. It took more than five years to complete the construction and conservation work so that it could become a S$100 million food & beverage and retail plaza in 1996.
Aesthetically, visitors continue to be enchanted by the way CHIJMES Singapore preserves it’s historic beauty; CHIJMES continues to house many of the original building materials, including the beautiful 19th-century stained-glass windows and the marble plaques listing the names of many benefactors.
CHIJMES Singapore Address
30 Victoria Street,
CHIJMES directions & map
Click on the directions link on the map for directions to CHIJMES Singapore.