For over a century, the Beaulieu House at Sembawang Park has overlooked the Straits of Johore while watching the landscape around it progress over time. Built initially in the 1910s by J.B. David as a holiday home, it was acquired along with its surrounding land in 1923 by the colonial Government for the construction of the Sembawang Naval Base, all the way up till 1968 when it was handed over back to the Singapore Government for numerous developments.
The Beaulieu House is undoubtedly charming in the serene setting of the park; its distinctive neo-classical style is shaped by intricate Victorian-style cast iron work on its patios, while the interior features a high ceiling, patterned floor tiles, and classic wooden furniture that has welcomed diners to its restaurant premise since 1981.
Although it has received conservation status since April 2005, the origins of the building name interestingly remain unclear, but with three main possibilities.
The first and most popular misconception being that it was named after an Admiral Beaulieu who resided there in the post- World War II period. The second sees inspiration from the historic Beaulieu (pronounced “Bewley”) River dockyards in Hampshire, England that is widely regarded as the birthplace of British naval power.
Yet my opinion sides with the third, but probably least probable option that it was inspired by the French words of Beau meaning “beautiful” and lieu meaning “place” as it undoubtedly lends a unique charm to an already historically beautiful space.
The Beaulieu House is located at 117 Beaulieu Road and overlooks the jetty at Sembawang Park.