Masjid Alkaff in Pheng Geck Avenue off Upper Serangoon Road is one the two mosques of the same name in Singapore, the other being Masjid Alkaff (Kampung Melayu), which is located in Bedok Reservoir Road. Both the mosques were built by the Alkaff family, the wealthy Arab traders who came to Singapore from Indonesia in the mid-nineteenth century. Alkaff Mosque in Upper Serangoon Road is an old-generation mosque, which was built in 1920 by Syed Abdul Rahman Alkaff, a nephew of Shaikh bin Abdul Rahman Alkaff , who was the first of the Alkaff family members to arrive in Singapore. The mosque has undergone renovations several times, most recently in 1998 when its prayer hall was extended to accommodate 2,500 worshippers. It serves the religious needs of the Muslim residents of Potong Pasir in particular and other surrounding areas in general. Besides five-time daily and Friday prayers, the mosque also has a part-time madrasah, both for boys and girls. The Alkaffs were Arab traders from Yemen, who did business in spices, sugar and coffee between India and Indonesia. They came to Singapore from Indonesia in 1850s to join the spice trade here. They started their business in Singapore as karung guni, dealing in scrap metal and clothes, etc, according to Mr Alwee bin Mohammad bin Ahmed bin Abdul Rahman Alkaff, a grandson of one of Shaikh bin Abdul Rahman Alkaff’s three brothers. Later the family was also involved in property business, which is still carried out by the latest generation of the family. Syed Abdul Rahman also built the Alkaff Mansion, which is located in Telok Blangah Green, in the 1920s. It was built primarily to serve as a retreat for the Alkaff family and to entertain their clients and guests. Named Mount Washington, the Alkaffs used it to host functions for businessmen, celebrities and dignitaries. The old Moorish-style Arcade Building in Raffles Place was also built by Syed Abdul Rahman in 1888. The Alkaffs also had other holiday bungalows in Pasir Panjang and Pender Road. Mr Alwee said Syed Shaikh Alkaff developed in what is now Sennett Estate off MacPherson Road the Japanese-style Alkaff Lake Gardens with a restaurant,tea kiosks and an artificial lake with boating facilities. The Alkaffs bred and trained their horses in the area. They also had a bicycle and motorcycle racing track there. Mr Alwee’s father, Mr Mohammed bin Ahmed Alkaff , who died in 1971 at the age of 70, was one of the pioneers of Madrasah Al-Khairiah in Still Road, which was built around 1930. Mr Mohammed, who studied in Singapore, had also contributed financially to the construction of the madrasah, Mr Alwee said.