Penang October 2007 – More Historical Buildings

October 14, 2007 10:52 PM

This last post about my recent travels would not have a narrative but it will have a theme and that is: Penang’s historical buildings. First up is the main temple that is part of the Nine Emperor Gods Festival. It looks very chaotic and colourful.


The following are the two buildings which together forms the Penang City Hall. The white one is to the left of the one with the actual designation of “Town Hall”. As you can quite easily see, they were left over from the colonial days.



While some classic buildings are rescued and reused …



Not all are so lucky. This abandoned Chinese school has been in its current condition for at least the past 10 years. A mentally disturbed person jumped off it a few years back. Maybe the belief of the resultant negative energy is what prevented its restoration.


The following is a shot of an unique aspect of Penang shophouses, and that is the five-foot way corridor where the front door is five-feet away from the road. It was mandated by the British, hence you’d see them everywhere in Penang. This is also common in the other Straits Settlements of Malacca and Singapore.


And to end this week of posts about my trip to Penang, the inevitable food shot. This is “sar hor fun” – stir-fried flat rice noodles in gravy.


Thank you all for staying till the end. I’m so exhausted but it has been very memorable. 🙂

11 thoughts on “Penang October 2007 – More Historical Buildings

  1. Pingback: Mooiness! » Photo blog entries

  2. blur ting

    Penang still has lots of lovely buildings. I haven’t been there for years, but the next time I go, I’ll make sure I look out for all the historical buildings too. Like you, I wasn’t really interested before but somehow developed an interest as I age. I think nostalgia is a natural process of aging….

  3. mooiness Post author

    mf: ah you noticed huh? That area where the school is, is prime area too. Even more reason to wonder why it is not being redeveloped.

    blur ting: yeah I think age has something to do with it. There’s also a part of me that thought that my parents and the generations before them did not have such extensive technology which allowed them to chronicled them as much as we can now, so that is why we should. 🙂

    Rachel: yeah me too! I like how they are long and narrow – the houses feel deep and spacious, and also the high ceilings.

  4. sourrain

    i wanna eat sar hor fun..must have the pickled chilli..


    You know, I am very torn between the restored buildings. most of them (in the downstairs at least) do not seem to want to keep the character that came with such an old building – if you were to go into any of those restaurants located in restored old shoplots, there are no signs of the original features like tiles ect – its usually panelled over to resemble a stuffy office. Which is painful because the shell is so pretty but the inside is so fake.

    I think its great that people are reusing the old buildings (due to reasons earlier explained on KFC post) , but seriously I think Penang needs to have a commitee to ensure that all reusing of old buildings ect. are modernized BUT keeping in line with whatever olden features that remained. Not just an empty shell..

    PS: OOOO Now i know why the school was never restored..I think the location is quite prime as well, not like as if it was stuck in the middle of nowhere.

    PPS: Crap,just read your comment above that mentioned that the school is in a prime location:D.

  5. mooiness Post author

    sourrain: yeah true that about the changed interiors – but modern requirements may not gel with how the houses were designed, as awesome as they were. Guess you have to take the bad with the good. However, I’ve also seen some which have been tarted up but the layout is still the same.

    About the school, yeah … superstition perhaps. I wonder how much the land would be selling. Might be a steal for someone. 😉


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