Hotel Penaga is a charming boutique hotel in the heart of George Town, in Penang. The hotel was originally a three-storey art deco house that had fallen into disrepair because it had been vacant for years. In 2008, Hijjas, renowned Japanese architect and his wife Anjela, an environmentalist bought the building and began converting it into the type of hotel that they wanted to stay in while exploring the delights of GeorgeTown.
Such was their passion that the ground floor tiles had to be specially made in the traditional style prevalent in the 1930s. The original upper floors made of timber strengthened only with timber recovered from demolished colonial buildings. The roof replaced with ‘Indian’ tiles used on the older Penang buildings and the decorative tiles on the facade and granite slabs in the garden were brought from China. Today is a luxury boutique hotel in Penang.
Stay There are 45 rooms and suites. These are classified as Hutton Rooms, Clark Terraces, Transfer Suites and Penaga Suites. Each of these rooms are lovingly and individually decorated with Chinese and Asian antique furniture mixed in with modern Japanese design which really adds to the quirky ambience of Hotel Penaga. As well as classic character, these rooms feature a ceiling fan or air-conditioning, wifi, kettle, microwave, sink, fridge and a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaves coffee maker. The large bathroom includes a Jacuzzi spa bath, separate shower and beautiful locally made toiletries crafted with ingredients from the region.
Dine The Cinnamon is the main restaurant and serves a range of culinary options ranging from Continental, European and Asian. It has earned praise for its rich heritage-inspired decor as it has for its cuisine. The Tanglung Bar got its name from the glass lanterns brought from Guangzho, “Tanglung” meaning “Lantern” in Chinese and is a perfect place to enjoy your drink while you observe the passing traffic of GeorgeTown pass by.
Relax The Penaga Spa was inspired by the early residents who once lived within these terrace houses in the 1920s. The traditional Penang folk had many traditional secrets of health treatments. Through years of research, various benefits of the Penaga Tree have been discovered, which contribute to the holistic approach of well-being in Penaga Spa. The spa features three private treatment rooms where you can relax. Additionally The Spa opens into the garden so that guests can relax before and after while overlooking an oasis of private green.
The pool is long enough for a workout or just a cooling dip, and it has a spa corner for extra muscle relaxation. Built above ground and opened up with a glass wall, which shines like a jewel in the garden at night.
Explore Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, George Town, was cited as a remarkable example of historic colonial towns on the Straits of Malacca. Today, you can sample the local cuisine, explore the UNESCO World Heritage Sites and the world famous Penang Butterfly Farm which are all in easy walking distance of Hotel Penaga. In addition, you can visit Fort Cornwallis, City Hall, Kapitan Keling Mosque, Cathedral Of The Assumption and St. George's Church.
Environment The hotel is a result of dedicated passion of Hijjas Kasturi, a Japanese architect and his wife Angela working with WWF Malaysia who bought a set of properties and converted them into the hotel. Being an environmentalist, they were keen to ensure every aspect of it is sustainable. It was Hijjas’ job to ensure that this concept was taken throughout from the original reconstruction – from using recycled materials to the collection of water and solar heating. This care for the environment has gained the property a Gold rating from the Green Building Index.
Malaysia Airlines operates to major International airports worldwide and connects from KL and from Singapore to Langkawi, Penang and Medan. The budget carrier Air Asia connects from KL to all major Malaysian and Indonesian airports, including Langkawi and Penang, plus major southeast Asian airports. From the UK, you can fly Malaysia Airlines from London Heathrow and Air Asia from London Stanstead.
Public transport in Malaysia is reliable and inexpensive, particularly in Peninsular Malaysia. Budget flights are a great option for hopping around the region, especially given that no ferries connect Peninsular and east Malaysia. Sabah and Sarawak have their own travel peculiarities – in Sarawak, for instance, you’re reliant on boats, and occasionally planes, for some long-distance travel.