The Intan

The Intan, Singapore: Hours, Address, The Intan Reviews: 5/5

7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Monday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Tuesday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Wednesday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Thursday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Saturday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Sunday
7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
About
VISITS ARE STRICTLY BY APPOINTMENTS Founded in 2003, The Intan is a Peranakan heritage home-museum. The brainchild of antique collector and owner Alvin Yapp, The Intan (meaning 'rose-cut diamond' in Malay) enlightens its guests about the multi-facetted aspects of Peranakan culture through a kaleidoscope of rare historical artefacts, intriguing personal stories, and authentic dining experiences. Located in the heart of Joo Chiat, a traditional Peranakan enclave and Singapore's first heritage town (2011), The Intan offers personalised tours conducted by Alvin, which culminate with authentic Peranakan tea sessions and dinners inspired by his mother. The Intan also doubles up as a unique event space, having hosted a variety of activities that included jewellery exhibitions, art shows and violin recitals. Voted Best Overall Experience in Singapore's inaugural Museum Roundtable Awards, The Intan has been featured internationally on CNN Travel, Discovery Channel and National Geographic. Singapore Travelholic lists The Intan as the top 5 Peranakan activities to do in Singapore. With a vision to promote Peranakan culture beyond Singapore, The Intan's collection has been showcased in places such as Croatia, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Moscow, London and Barcelona.
Suggested duration
< 1 hour
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travellers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travellers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travellers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.
Top ways to experience The Intan
Popular mentions

5.0
580 reviews
Excellent
474
Very good
92
Average
7
Poor
3
Terrible
4

arjun_stc
Singapore71 contributions
Great Experience
Sep 2021
Lots of artifacts and history packed in a small space, with a knowledgeable and passionate guide. Curiosity is rewarded.

The tour was for an hour, which is short given the sheer amount of exhibits. Best combined with a walking and food tour of the neighbourhood.
Written 19 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Gia Phuong Phan
20 contributions
Great experience for culture enthusiasts
Aug 2021 • Friends
The owner was super friendly and informative. He tells you everything you need to know about the museum and the collections because he collects them all by himself. Also got a cute souvenir from my visit 😍
Written 9 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
We value each and every visitor! Thank you for taking time visit us. Do remmeber to always make a booking before coming so that we can be ready to host you!
Written 12 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Connector29495259829
Singapore, Singapore1 contribution
Unique, Unforgettable, Educational, Beautiful
Sep 2021
We visited the Intan last night. It was our first time at the museum and we chose the quirky programme entitled “Intan Evening of Peranakan Magic". It was a unique and unforgettable experience. The shophouse is very unassuming from the front, blending right in with its neighbours. Once you step inside, however, it's a totally different world. The interior is a feast for the eyes. There are precious and intricate artefacts filling up every corner of the house. Alvin and Ming Da (magician) welcomed as at the door and treated us as honoured guests. Alvin brought us around the house by telling the story of a Peranakan matriarch, while Ming Da demonstrated magic illusions at key points in the tour. It sounds very quirky but it was all in good fun and most importantly the illusions were well integrated into the substance of the tour, while keeping things light and fun. No spoilers, you'll have to see it for yourself. After the tour Alvin showed us to a cosy sitting area and shared a plate of kueh with us which was a really nice touch, although if you're joining a group of people from different households you probably won't get to eat kueh because of covid regulations. We had a chat with the curator/owner/guide himself, and asked him some very probing and even controversial questions which he answered sincerely and knowledgeably. If you can't tell already, it was an amazing and valuable experience.

It is important to address the issue of price, because this seems like a sticking point for many reviewers. Yes, it is not a cheap experience. The Magic experience cost $120 per person, while the dinner experience costs $180/$240. Even the least expensive on-site programme costs something like $50. This is still a lot more than what most Singaporeans are used to paying for a museum ticket. But it would be unfair to compare the Intan experience to a regular museum where you pretty much walk around the gallery by yourself, or join a group with a guide who talks you through the exhibits. The Intan experience, at least the evening programmes with dinner or show, is more like an elegant evening-slash-cultural event at what happens to be a one of a kind, authentic, legitimate museum recognised by the National Heritage Board, and you get to have a conversation with the one guy behind it all. Nowadays there are lots of ticketed private/home events that serve wine and cheese, show you a film or something, and market themselves as an elegant high society evening. Many of them charge a lot more than Alvin Yapp’s Intan but offer a lot less in terms of cultural value, expertise, and beauty. The Intan is amazing because it is one guy’s labour of love, his personal collection is probably priceless by now, and his knowledge and passion for Peranakan culture is inimitable. This is an immersive, all-senses-on-board experience (although why did Alvin not play the piano for us like he did for some other guests? Just joking), so it is not surprising that the Intan is the kind of place that hosts dignitaries and celebrities from Singapore and all around the world. Josh Groban’s signature may be on the piano (which Alvin did not play for us—haha! Just joking again), but I felt equally special as a guest.

The Intan is authentic, home-grown project I’m proud to support. It may not be “cheap”, but it’s worth every cent. Next up, dinner experience!
Written 3 September 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for your lovely review! Paiseh we couldn't play the piano cuz was quite late and being a residential neighborhood, we wanted to be respectful to our neighbours. But don't worry, next time I promise you we will do a song just for you!
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

740Elly48
Melbourne, Australia454 contributions
Small but interesting
Nov 2020
We enjoyed learning about the Peranakan people, their customs and clothing. The guide was informative., this is his home. There are a number of interesting items on display both downstairs and upstairs . A small plate of delicacies is served at the end. However we felt it was expensive for the size. Bookings have to be made to visit
.
Written 23 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
As a private home museum, we are passionate about sharing every aspect of Peranakan culture!
Written 12 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Cheng
Singapore, Singapore2 contributions
A lovely afternoon at the Intan
May 2021
Totally enjoyed myself at The Intan. Learnt about the history of the Peranakan culture and got to see beautiful collections of tingkat, baskets, Kebayas, embroidery, paintings, accessories... beaded shoes etc. The host Baba Alvin is an avid story teller and he plays the piano really well too... if you asked nicely, he might oblige you a lovely song at the end of the tour. 😉❤️
Written 10 May 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yey yey yey! Everything Peranakan at The Intan!
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

sallyho1575
1 contribution
Visited to The Intan on a beautiful Sunday
Apr 2021 • Family
We had a very wonderful experience during our visit to The Intan. We learned much about the Peranakan culture, the artifacts and some stories behind a few artifacts. The host is very friendly and made us felt welcome to his house. We appreciate his time sharing with us Peranakan culture and generosity in letting us view his unique collections.
Written 4 May 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
As each piece is hand collected by the owner and found of The Intan. each piece has it's own story!
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Siuyan
1 contribution
An interesting take on Peranakan material culture
Apr 2021
Before visiting the Intan museum, I have visited NUS Baba House and the Pinang Peranakan museum. I appreciate that the curator has showcased a range of artefacts, which captured the changing Peranakan lifestyle from the pre war to the present. Before entering the house, you will see a huge ancestral tablet and also many statues of Virgin Mary in the inner parts of the house, displaying the trend of religious conversion taking place among the Singaporean Peranakan. In contrast, the other Peranakan museums seemed to freeze the Peranakan culture at the early 20th century. Likewise, the curator also shares his own life experience as a Peranakan, making the cultural experience more relevant and connected to the contemporary period. On top of that, Intan also holds vast collection of Kasut maneks, peranakan jewellery, spittoons and objects used by the Peranakans. You will not regret your choice picking this museum experience.
Written 12 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
It's always interesting to note what catches our visitors' eyes! THere are so many things to catch your attention at The INtan that ONE VISIT is never enough!
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

aili17
1 contribution
Time travel to the past
Apr 2021
It was an informative and enjoyable hour spent at the museum, there are many collectibles that I've never seen before. Mr Alvin explains the different items and the house itself and the story behind them, it was an enjoyable trip with many take aways.
Written 5 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Each visit is hosted by the owner and founder of The Intan museum itself! So you can be sure of accurate and clear answers to all your Peranakan queries!
Written 12 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

egbertkheng
1 contribution
Good experience in The Intan
Mar 2021
A good experience i had while having a tour around The Intan. Owner of home museum explained the culture and history of Peranakan and allow guest to ask questions when in doubt. Recommended tour to join with the Singapore Rediscover voucher during covid period to get a better understanding of Peranakans.
Written 29 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yes we can accept the SIngapoRediscovers Vouchers! And if you have difficulty redeeming it, just come to The INtan and we will help you do it on the spot!
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Neil D
Singapore, Singapore149 contributions
Alvin is a magnificent host
Feb 2021 • Couples
A wonderful way to learn about Singapore’s history & culture. Alvin’s stories are interesting and personal - thanks for sharing Alvin. The tea and sweets are a great way to top off an excellent visit.
Written 5 February 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
you are too kind !
Written 5 September 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 535
Anything missing or inaccurate?
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Frequently Asked Questions about The Intan

The Intan is open:
  • Sun - Sat 7:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Buy tickets in advance on Tripadvisor. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.

We recommend booking The Intan tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 1 The Intan tours on Tripadvisor