Friday, April 06, 2018

Tan Swee Hoe mansion in Batu Pahat

The status of Tan Swee Hoe's mansion at 160 Jalan Kluang, Batu Pahat was finally revealed! The mansion that was once owned by Tan Swee Hoe's descendants was sold and the rumors circulating at one point of time was it was going to be demolished. In fact various readers of my blog sent me pictures of the mansion after it was sold where the rooftop of the building and the interiors was completely stripped.
Tan Swee Hoe's mansion (minus the roof)
Well it was finally revealed in various Malaysian papers (Sin Chew Daily, Johor China Press) that it was purchased by His Majesty Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar, the Sultan of Johor. It was reported in the papers that the Sultan of Johor plans to restore the building and turn it into a Heritage Centre featuring the artefacts of the Johor Chinese community as well as as artefacts from China as a strong symbol to reaffirm the long relationship between the Johor Sultanate and China.

About Tan Swee Hoe


Tan Swee Hoe
Tan Swee Hoe came to Singapore as a young boy and worked his way up, eventually becoming one of founders of Ho Hong Bank, and later a director of Overseas Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC)  after it merged with it. He was also for two terms, the president of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Batu Pahat, shareholder of Ho Aik Steamships. Tan Swee Hoe was a member of the Council of State, Johore and received a title S.M.J (Setia Mahkota Johore) from the government of Johore in 1929 for his contributions. He owned several property in Singapore and Batu Pahat. Tan Swee Hoe passed away at the age of 67 year old at 11:00 am on July 29, 1939 at No 759 Grove Road, Singapore and is buried on August 6, 1939 in Bukit Brown, Hill 4, Division C, plot 1684. He is survived by 2 widows ( Madam Lim Lai Hua and Madam Yap Ann Nim), 6 sons (Tan Suan Khiong, Tan Suan Chee, Tan Suan Chew, Tan Suan Chuan, Tan Suan Kok and Tan Suan Poh) and 6 daughters, 4 sons-in-law (Yap Leong Teck, Chiok Eng Khiam, Lim Bock Seng and Phay Chong Whatt), 3 daughters-in-law and 33 grandchildren.For the name of the sons there are spelling variants as further research indicate the the middle name Suan is also spelled as Swan. One of his wife, Madam Lim Lai Hu passed away in January 25, 1941 at 10:10 pm at the age of 46 at 759 Grove Road.

A view of the mansion and its grounds (with roof intact)
160 Jalan Kluang, 83000 Batu Pahat,  Johor
160 Jalan Kluang, 83000 Batu Pahat,  Johor

Beautiful Entrance Columns

Close to his mansion is a major street, and the name of the Street is Jalan Tan Swee Hoe (1.861872, 102.952064) and a Chinese Temple whose patron was Tan Swee Hoe and its renovation was made possible by one of Tan Suan Khiong's son.


Further Reading
Tan Swee Hoe (Bukit Brown), posted on 5 August 2012 
Tan Swee Hoe (Batu Pahat), posted on 19 February 2014

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