Monday, March 7, 2016

The Blue Mansion

Winner of a national Architectural Award for Conservation, the Cheong Fatt Tze mansion is now a heritage hotel and would be a lovely place to stay if you are thinking of spending time in Penang.

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

Enthusiastic guide

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
Afterwards I went to a little local restaurant beside the law courts for nasi lemak. Then wandered in the lanes and streets of the Heritage Zone.

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