Goodbye To Bukit Timah Saddle Club @ The Grandstand: 72-Year-Old Riding Club Now Near Kranji MRT

Bukit Timah Saddle Club

While most of us have never pulled an “I want a pony” on our parents, you’ve got to admit that as a kid, the thought of riding a horse like mediaeval royalty has crossed your mind. Perhaps you’ve had the opportunity to ride a horse at the Singapore Zoo; the equestrians among us may have even been regulars at the Bukit Timah Saddle Club.

Also known as BTSC, the 72 year-old riding school has recently bid goodbye to its stables, tracks, and tack rooms at its home near The Grandstand in February 2023. In its place will be part of Singapore’s 8th MRT line, the Cross Island Line. 

Worried about the horses? Neigh, don’t be. They’re on their way to a new home. But you’re now curious about the historic venue, so here’s an inkling:

Built in 1951 for retired race horses

Racecourse at Bukit Timah.

Image credit: Bukit Timah Saddle Club

Horse racing – you don’t have to be a regular at the Singapore Pools to know what it’s all about. Here’s a fun fact: the sport has been around in Singapore from as early as 1842. It’s been around longer than most other sports. Basketball, floorball,  badminton – you name it.

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Bukit Timah Saddle Club

Over the decades, horse racing gained popularity and 2 racecourses were built at present-day Farrer Park and Bukit Timah. Bear with the history, it all comes together in a second.

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Eventually, there came the need to find a home for the retired racehorses – a nursing home for stallions, if you will – and that’s when Bukit Timah Saddle Club came into the picture in 1951. It was built near the Bukit Timah racecourse so the horses could be moved over easily. 

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Mind you, these “geriatric” horses could still do quite a lot of things, including show jumping and dressage – a type of horse riding performance. As the club evolved, it also became a popular place for equestrians in Singapore to build their careers in horse grooming and teaching horse riding.

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By the end of it all, the club had 78 horses including 40 trained horses and ponies, 100 stables, 3 large riding arenas, and a tack shop –  just to name a few. The green enclave was also well-loved by casual and regular riders for its relaxing ambience away from the hubbub.

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Riders weren’t the only ones visiting. You may have heard of the popular Rider’s Cafe which opened in 2007. The cosy colonial-style cafe was known for serving a mean chocolate cake that customers could enjoy while overlooking the horse stables. Unfortunately, the cafe will not be moving to Turf Club, and has since closed for good.

New location in Kranji, trail & pony rides available soon

No worries, while Bukit Timah Saddle Club’s original home is now gone, the club has found a new space in Kranji. Just 7 minutes by foot away from Kranji MRT, it’s also a lot more accessible for those without a car.

You don’t have to be a member to visit. While they do have full horse riding courses available, the public can also swing by to try out their 45-minute public riding programmes. Pony rides and trail rides will also be available here soon. A heads up for lovebirds – you can also do a wedding photoshoot here with some of the horses for next-level photos to impress your banquet guests. 

Find out more about Bukit Timah Saddle Club


Address: 1 Turf Club Avenue, Stable 113 & Stable 116, Singapore 738078.
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 7am-11am & 3.30pm-7pm (Closed on Mondays)
Contact: 6466 2264

Cover image adapted from: @german_travel_family, Bukit Timah Saddle Club, @rollingbearneedscoffee

Kezia Tan

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