For anyone with an interest in banking, the Mandiri Museum or the Bank Mandiri Museum is the place to visit. Located in a part of Jakarta that was known as Batavia during the Dutch period, the museum is housed in an imposing heritage building constructed in 1929 during the Dutch period and hosts a collection of items related to banking.
The museum, which was the offices of a Dutch trading company and then a bank, was the so called ancestor of the current Dutch owned ABN AMRO Bank. Visitors will be taken back in time as they go in through the main entrance guarded by statues of Dutch soldiers on either side. The interior of the building is still the way it was when it was relinquished to Indonesian authorities and looks as if business is still being conducted there. The ground floor of the building is where the main bank activities were conducted and the period atmosphere is maintained with furniture, sign boards and equipment such as teller machines from the period and even a few mannequins seated at desks that lend authenticity to the exhibit. This is where a major part of the exhibits comprising of deposit slips, typewriters, check books, stock and bond certificates, old telephones and telephone directories, ATM machines, ATM cards, some Dutch coins, lion headed stamping machines among others are found. Everything is well maintained so much so that it seems like stepping back in time. In the middle of the room are ledgers that recorded the financial transactions in commodities and plantation produce. In a side room is a special counter where descendents of Chinese customers transacted business. The first floor has the director’s rooms, a photo gallery of bank officials, a library and meeting rooms all still beautifully maintained with mannequins at desks and in security guard and firefighters uniforms. Here there is an old elevator that still works and several beautiful pieces of decorative lighting and stained glass windows. A trip to the basement where the vaults were is an interesting experience. To enter visitors need to go through a thick steel security door behind which are safety deposit boxes, money trolleys and money boxes. Also in the basement is a collection of antique bicycles, a miniature clock tower and movies of old Batavia shown to the accompaniment of Batawi music.
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