Tampaksiring name derives from two words of Balinese language, namely tampak (which means 'palm') and siring (which means 'sloping'). According to a legend recorded on palm leaves of Usana Bali, the name derives from the footprint of a King named Mayadenawa. This King was clever and powerful, but insolence. He regarded himself god and ordered his people to worship him. As a result of the character of Mayadenawa, Batara Indra was angry and sent his armies to destroy him. However, Mayadenawa ran into a forest. In order that his pursuers lost track, he walked by tilting the soles of his feet. By doing so he hoped that his pursuers did not recognize that the trails he left behind were human trails, the trails of Mayadenawa.
The effort of Mayadenawa failed. Eventually he was captured by his pursuers. However, before that, with the remnants of his miracle he succeeded to create a toxic spring causing many deaths for his pursuers after they drank water from the spring he created. Batara Indra also created another spring as the antidote to the poisoned water. The Water antidote was named Tirta Empul (which means 'holy water'). Forest area passed by the King Mayadenawa walking on his tilted leg was known as Tampaksiring.
According to history, in one of the corners of Tampaksiring Palace area, facing the pool of Tirta Empul at foot of hill, was a resting building owned by the Kingdom of Gianyar. On top of the land Wisma Merdeka is now standing, that is a part of Tampaksiring Palace first built.
Presidential Palace of Tampaksiring stood on the initiative of the first Indonesian President, Sukarno, so it can be said that the Presidential Palace of Tampaksiring is the only palace built during the reign of Indonesia.
Construction of the palace was begun in 1957 until 1960. However, in order to meet activities of Summit (Summit) of ASEAN XIV (ASEAN Summit XIV) held on October 7-8, 2003, the Tampaksiring Palace had a new building along with its facilities added, namely a building for Conference and for reception. In addition, the palace also had Wantilan Hall renovated as a building for arts performances.
The Presidential Palace of Tampaksiring was built in stages. The architect was RM Soedarsono. The first to be built was Wisma Merdeka and Wisma Yudhishthira, namely in 1957. The next development was carried out in 1958, and all the buildings were completed in 1963. Furthermore, for the sake of Summit (Summit) of ASEAN XIV held in Bali in October 7-8, 2003, the Palace had a new building built for Conference along with its facilities and had Hall Wantilan renovated. Now Tampaksiring also provides comfort to the visitors (in the context of tourism) by building its own entrance equipped with Bentar Temple, Koro Agung, and Parking Lot as well as Bengong Hall.
Since designed / planned, construction of the Presidential Palace of Tampaksiring has been functioned as a resort for the President of the Republic of Indonesia and families and for state guests. After the construction of this palace, the first person visiting and spending the night at the palace was the initiator, namely President Sukarno. State Guest stayed at this palace for the first time was the King Bhumibol Adulyadej from Thailand, visiting Indonesia with the queen, Queen Sirikit (in 1957).
According to records, state guests who have visited the Presidential Palace of Tampaksiring, among others, are President Ne Win from Burma (now Myanmar), President Tito from Yugoslavia, President Ho Chi Minh from Vietnam, Prime Minister Nehru from India, Prime Minister Khruchev from Soviet Union, Queen Juliana from the Netherlands, and the Emperor Hirihito from Japan.
(Presidential Palace of RI, 2004, Presidential Secretariat of RI)