Penang Peranakan Mansion

For an example of Penang’s rich Peranakan heritage, there’s no better place than the Penang Peranakan Mansion to experience the rich culture and history of the Peranakan people!

Currently serving as a museum, visitors can learn more about Peranakan culture in this affluent household of a bygone era.

With no limit to how long you can explore, this impressive light green mansion is hard to miss in George Town’s UNESCO World Heritage Site!

Table Of Contents:

Penang Peranakan Mansion History

Originally used as Kapitan Cina Chung Keng Kwee’s Residence/Office on Church Street:

The Penang Peranakan Mansion is a Chinese courtyard-style mansion built during the 19th century.

Front Entranace To Penang Peranakan Museum
Front Entranace To Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

Chung Keng Kwee had the mansion built at the height of his influence, and it was finally completed in 1895.

Once named Hai Kee Chan (or Sea Remembrance Hall), its initial exterior had a white coat, unlike the current coat of mint green!

Main Courtyard Of Penang Peranakan Museum
Main Courtyard Of Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

The 2-story mansion adopts a Straits Eclectic style, a popular choice among the wealthy Peranakan back in those days.

It has further influence from other styles, with Chinese, English, and Scottish materials and design!

Intricated Details On A Door At Penang Peranakan Museum
Intricated Details On A Door At Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

As his name suggests though, Chung Keng Kwee himself was not of Peranakan (or Baba) descent:

As a Chinese immigrant, he found success in the Hai San society, rising through the ranks to become the Kapitan Cina (Chinese captain) of the local Chinese in Penang.

Note: The Hai San society were heavily involved in mining at the neighboring state, Perak

Current Ownership

After Chung’s passing in 1901, the mansion was left to his descendents. Who abandoned it after losing their riches in WWII.

Beautifully Carved Chairs At Penang Peranakan Mansion
Beautifully Carved Chairs At Penang Peranakan Mansion – photo credits to 3full_stop (Instagram)

Much later in the 20th century, Peter Soon, a Peranakan architect, bought and restored the mansion to its former glory.

It’s also where he keeps his astounding collection of over 1,000 Peranakan artifacts, which is probably how the name Penang Peranakan Mansion came to be!

Baba Nyonya Gold On Display At Penang Peranakan Museum
Baba Nyonya Gold On Display At Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

The mansion is now a public museum and key attraction in Penang, and has since been featured in hit shows including Crazy Rich Asians and The Amazing Race too!

Antiquities On Display At Penang Peranakan Museum
Antiquities On Display At Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

Penang Peranakan Mansion Opening Hours

Consider visiting other outdoor attractions nearby like Little India and Fort Cornwallis first.

Then as the heat intensifies, make your way to the cool, sheltered mansion, or simply go early to beat the crowds!

Location: 29, Church St, Georgetown, 10200 George Town, Penang

Contact: +604-264 2929

Opening Hours: Daily from 9:30am to 5pm

Pinang Peranakan Mansion Ticket & Entrance Fee

To buy the tickets, just walk in and the friendly staff will assist you!

Ticket Prices:

  • Adults: RM 20)
  • Children (under 6 years old): Free
Dining Hall In Penang Peranakan Museum
Dining Hall In Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

Note: Ticket prices listed in this post are subject to change without notice by the Penang Peranakan Museum.

Enjoy big-group and school-group rates by giving them a call first to make an advance booking!

Travel Privilege Card holders (up to 2 adults and 2 children) can get a 20% discount! The card works for many other attractions in Penang too!

Bedroom Set Up In Penang Peranakan Museum
Bedroom Set Up In Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

Pinang Peranakan Mansion Guided Tour

Learn the story of the mansion and the life of Peranakans from knowledgeable and friendly tour guides!

Remember to book the tours in advance before you visit!

Elaborate Antique Chinese Furniture In Penang Peranakan Museum
Elaborate Antique Chinese Furniture In Penang Peranakan Museum – Photo by Travelswithsun

Only groups of 5 or more are eligible for the complimentary conducted tours.

  • Daily tours run at 11:30am and 3:30pm daily
  • Each tour lasts approximately 45 minutes
  • RM20 entrance fee includes a free guided tour
  • The humorous guides speak both English and Mandarin
Tip: Do keep the entry sticker as you can re-enter multiple times on the same day with it!

Attractions Near To Penang Peranakan Mansion

If you have time to spare, look out for these attractions that are within walking distance from Penang Peranakan Mansion!

1. Occupy Beach Street (No Car Day)

Walk along major streets near Beach Street (Lebuh Pantai) on Sunday morning! As these streets will be blocked off for 6 hours to allow pedestrians to safely partake in various activities.

Giant Boardgame At Occupy Beach Street In Penang
Giant Boardgame At Occupy Beach Street In Penang – photo credits to ewchuah (Instagram)

There are food and market stalls, sports (like Zumba), children’s games, bicycle rentals and car boot sales!

You can also watch talented performers carry out stunts or sing!

Location: 10200, 8-16, Beach St, Georgetown, 10200 George Town, Penang

Opening Hours: Sunday from 7am to 1pm

Distance From The Mansion: 2-minutes’ walk

2. Penang Museum

Two other museums are a short walk from Penang Peranakan Museum:

Penang 3D Trick Art Museum (3-minutes’ walk)

This unique art museum is the first of its kind in Malaysia with over 40 paintings (2D and 3D) and sculptures!

Giant Centipede Mural At The Penang 3D Trick Art Museum
Giant Centipede Mural At The Penang 3D Trick Art Museum – photo credits to mpesal (Instagram)

There are 2 major themes in the museum, Penang inheritance and modern classic.

You can also interact with the artworks, just follow the instructions provided!

Location: 10, Lebuh Penang, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang

Opening Hours: Sunday from 9am to 6pm

Wonder Food Museum (4-minutes’ walk)

Feast your eyes on more than 100 local street foods and delicacies on display. Pretty convenient if you want to familiarize yourself with the various local foods on offer in Penang!

From miniature hawker stalls to gigantic food models of cendol, laska, and char kuey teow, it’s certainly brings an unusual perspective of Malaysian food culture to the table (pun intended).

Giant Laksa At The Wonderfood Museum
Giant Laksa At The Wonderfood Museum – photo credits to jimmysutjiptogenerali (Instagram)

There’s also an Education Zone for visitors to learn how their daily food choices impact the environment!

Location: 49, Lebuh Pantai, George Town, 10200 George Town, Pulau Pinang

Opening Hours: Sunday from 9am to 6pm

3. Goddess Of Mercy Temple Penang

Built by Hokkien and Cantonese settlers in the early 19th century, the Goddess of Mercy Temple is Penang’s oldest Taoist temple and is still a well-visited place of worship.

Goddess Of Mercy Temple (Kuan Yin Temple)
Goddess Of Mercy Temple (Kuan Yin Temple) – photo credits to food_ian0903 (Instagram)

From intricate architectural features like the dragon entwined pillars and exquisite roof details, it’s a fine display of 19th Century Chinese craftsmanship!

Location: 30, Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling, George Town, 10200 George Town, Penang Island

Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 6pm

Contact: +604-261 4137

Distance From The Mansion: 4-minutes’ walk

4. Sri Mahamariamman Temple At Penang Little India

Here we have another 19th century gem in Little India Penang! Sri Mahamariamman Temple is the oldest Hindu temple in Penang!

Its numerous sculptures up front makes it easy to spot!

Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Penang
Sri Mahamariamman Temple, Penang – photo credits to i_am_yumi.h (Instagram)

During festive seasons, thousands of devotees will flock to the temple to offer prayers.

Note: Remember to remove your shoes before entering the temple!

Location: Lebuh Queen, George Town, 10450 George Town, Penang Island

Opening Hours: Daily from 8am to 12pm, and again from  5pm to 9:05pm

Contact: +604-263 8916

Distance From The Mansion: 5-minutes’ walk

5. Fort Cornwallis

Visitors can marvel at the many restored old cannons and flagstaff on site of Malaysia’s oldest and largest fort!

Fort Cornwallis is also home to the second oldest lighthouse in Malaysia, just in the northeast corner of the fort.

Canon In The Direction Of The Flagstaff At The Fort Cornwallis
Canon In The Direction Of The Flagstaff At The Fort Cornwallis – photo credits to uwais_xiii (Instagram)

The star-shaped British bastion was originally built to defend against pirates, Kedah and French forces during the outbreak of Napoleonic Wars.

Note: Currently under renovation. Entrance fees apply to enter the property!

Location: Jalan Tun Syed Sheh Barakbah, George Town, 10200 George Town, Penang Island

Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 10pm

Contact: +604-263 9855

Distance From The Mansion: 5-minutes’ walk

Entrance Fee:

Malaysian: RM10 (Adult), RM5 (Child)

Non-Malaysian: RM20 (Adult), RM10 (Child)

6. Clan Jetties Of Penang

Otherwise known as floating villages, there are 6 jetties altogether, each named after the 6 Chinese Clans that emigrated from China during the 19th century.

Among them, Chew Jetty is the most tourist-friendly one, with a bustling atmosphere and plenty of stalls open for business.

Chew Jetty Penang (姓周桥)
Chew Jetty Penang (姓周桥) – photo credits to 07071124ried (Instagram)

So dedicate a morning or afternoon to stroll along the clan jetties and observe how the residents carry out their daily routine!

Location: Pengkalan Weld, George Town, 10300 George Town, Penang Island

Opening Hours: Daily from 9am to 9pm

Contact: +6019-593 5333

Distance From The Mansion: 9-minutes’ walk

Read more:

Include Penang Peranakan Mansion In Tour

If you would like to take a tension-free trip around Penang as you spend quality time with your loved ones:

RayTheTour can most certainly help you with that!

Penang Tour - RayTheTour & Travelswithsun

Benefits of our service:

  • We can curate custom itineraries
  • Local tour guides who can recommend the best places to go!
  • English-speaking and Mandarin-speaking tour guides
  • Transportation in Penang fully covered
  • Pick up and drop off at preferred hotel or accommodation
  • WiFi onboard
  • We can accommodate tours in Penang, Ipoh, Cameron Highlands, and Taiping

Further reading:

Conclusion

The Penang Peranakan Museum is a real-life history classroom where you can delve deeper into the lives of prosperous Penang Peranakans of the 19th century.

The many highlights in the mansion mean that you can easily spend 2 hours to half a day exploring.

Moreover, with reasonable pricing for the entrance fee and guide tours, it’s certainly a tourist location that you can’t afford to miss!

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