Monday, February 18, 2008

Former Civil Service College Chalet

In 2006, SLA offered up for tender the site of the former civil service college chalet. Located conveniently right in "downtown" Ubin, it is mere minutes walk away from the main jetty. However, it has been abandoned since 2001 when the area was supposed to be reclaimed. However, since the deferment of reclamation along the east coast of Pulau Ubin, the chalet has been neglected.

According to the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) press release in 2006:

"The property has a site area of about 6,505 square metres and gross floor area of about 783 square metres, equivalent to about three tennis courts. It comprises three blocks of single-storey buildings with a camp, a pump house, three shelters and some ancillary facilities. Capitalizing on the rustic charm of the island, the approved uses adapted some of the former recreational uses, including that of a Bed & Breakfast, or a chalet or resort for short term lodging. It can also be used as a campsite or for group and corporate retreats for the conduct of team building, leadership or motivational activities. This is to cater to the traveller and tourist who are looking for a unique experience in rustic Singapore, away from the hustle and bustle of city life."
Last Saturday (16 Feb 2008), a visit to the site saw that the chalets have been recently cleaned and renovated. Having never been there, I was surprised at its pristine state. However, we soon realized that there was an ongoing party at the chalet to view the air show across the straits at Changi.


We were then kindly informed by the new caretaker that the chalet is now owned by a Yes Group who intend to rent it out long-term to companies. The company appears to have been awarded the tender for more than 3 months as the caretaker seems to indicate that they have completed renovations over the past months. There will be 2 additional chalets which will be set aside for short term rental. Corporate retreats, bonding sessions and other adventure type events can also be hosted there. Since we rather surprised them by taking advantage of the low tide coastal access, we were informed that the area is now private property. Alas, we have a feeling that the site will be yet another out of bounds area. The caretaker informed us that public rental are not in the plans.

Andy Dinesh, a past visitor at the chalet informed us that there used to be a dormitory behind the main chalets. However, a brief exploration of the area and questioning the caretaker informed us that it has now been totally erased from the landscape. What remained is a lamp that reminds us of Narnia.

Perhaps what is most charismatic about the chalet is the jetty / pier / bridge that extends out to see, connecting 2 huts sitting on trademark ubin granite boulders to the beach. That too appears to have been refurbished. There are also balinese-thai looking pavilions and lots of bbq pits.

While we were told to look for their head company, "Yes group", I was hard-pressed to find contact information online for this company. Could it be the "YES F & B Group Pte Ltd" that I've found on yellowpages? I tipped off recently that there was news of the successful bid of the CSC chalet but again, I was unable to find anything in the archives. Does anybody know more about this?

For more photos, see my flickr set.

More related reads
News about SLA tender of Civil Service College Chalet
WildSingapore's write up on Civil Service College Chalet
SLA Press Release on CSC Chalet tender


Term Paper said...

A great constructive article will help to understand the issue...thanks for sharing..!

Anonymous said...

was surfing about Ubin Lodge and fumbled upon your blog. the managing agent is Yess Group,

Term Papers said...

This is a fantastic, It is glad to see this blog, nice informative blog, Thanks for share this article.

College Research Paper said...

I appreciate the work of all people who share information with others.

Honolulu Tourism said...

Making you more charming! Your post is good. I like your depiction. Thanks very much for the sharing it.