Istana Bukit Serene on the edge of town is the residence of the Sultan of Johor... The Istana or palace was completed in 1933 and its 32-metre tower is a city landmark... The Sultan's private residence is not open to the public but visitors can view the tower and the beautiful garden from the main road... The unique carvings on the walls on this historical building features Art Deco influences...
The palace has a huge sprawling garden which is a common site for many royal gatherings and celebrations... The palace grounds are guarded by His Majesty's personal military, the Johor Military Forces...
The Sultan's Palace, or Istana Bukit Serene (literally Serene Hill Palace) was buitl in 1938 and is a short 10-minute drive from the city center. It boasts a huge 35-meter tower that is visible from all directions, what are considered the most beautiful gardens in JB, and even the Sultan's own private zoo. It's great to be Sultan!
There are a few spots where you can glimpse the rooftops from the road, but it is off-limits to tourists. You'll definitely notice the tall fences with the signs warning that you may be shot if you enter. Take heed, His Majesty's personal military, the Johor Military Forces mean business!
Istana means the palace. The palace is green in colour perched on a hill-top, surrounded by greenery. There are bungalows around the palace and are for rich people. I have not been to the palace and have never heard of an open house for the public to visit the palace.
Driving around the palace ground is the nearest one can get. Taking pictures and loitering around it, outside the fencing will attract attention and get chased away by the security... Perhaps a photo of the palace from far away when I got the chance next time.