The Sri Mariamman Temple is Singapore's oldest Hindu temple. It is an agamic temple, built in the Dravidian style. Located at No. 244 South Bridge Road, in the downtown Chinatown district, the temple serves mainly South Indian Tamil Hindu Singaporeans in the city-state.
Due to its architectural and historical significance, the temple has been gazetted a National Monument and is a major tourist attraction. Sri Mariamman Temple is managed by the Hindu Endowments Board, a statutory board under the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports.
The Sri Mariamman Temple was founded in 1827 by Naraina Pillai, eight years after the British East India Company established a trading settlement in Singapore.
Pillai was a government clerk from Penang who arrived in Singapore with Stamford Raffles on his second visit to the island in May 1819. He went on to set up the island's first construction company. He also entered the textile trade. Pillai rapidly established himself in business and was identified as a leader of the Indian community.
More recent works include the addition of a new elevated viewing gallery - which is especially popular as a spectator gallery during the annual fire walking festival. Another major addition is a three storey annexe building, sited to the rear of the temple. This annexe has a separate entrance onto Pagoda Street, with an elaborate facade featuring traditional sculptural plasterwork. The spacious building has a fully equipped auditorium and facilities for weddings, multimedia presentations, corporate meetings, seminars, and cultural events.