The owners have been creative about funding the restoration. As well as running the hotel and a couple of fine dining restaurants, they hire out rooms in the building for events such as weddings. And if those rickshaws out the front don't look the part, it's because they were imported from Viet Nam as part of the film shoot for Indochine. Some of the furniture in the public spaces also came with that film.
But they are very photogenic.
I did the tour, which costs a few dollars. Our guide told us a little about Mr Cheong and his eight wives. By the 1970's there were some 37 families living in the building. The current owners passed the building daily going to school, and it came up for sale they year they returned to Penang after both studying conservation architecture in London.
|Breakfast is served in the courtyard for hotel guests|
|Blue for Chinese is associated with funerals, so not a common colour for houses|
|The 5 terrace houses over the road housed servants in Cheong's days|
|I'll have this room thanks|