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“Pleasant tour, but there are many better mansions”

Cheong Fatt Tze - The Blue Mansion
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Cheong Fatt Tze George Town Penang: The Blue...
Ranked #25 of 148 things to do in George Town
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This is the official "attraction" listing for the Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion on TripAdvisor. There is also a listing for the hotel - please search for the same name under "Hotels" on Tripadvisor. Come Home to Historic Splendour 'ONE OF 10 GREATEST MANSIONS IN THE WORLD' LONELY PLANET 2011 A Grand Mansion conceived and constructed by a Grand Man; an eminent edifice which History calls Home; a peerless representation of the Paradigm Chinese Courtyard House – the Cheong Fatt Tze “Blue” Mansion has been perfectly poised for over a century on firm foundations of architectural, cultural and historic superlatives. Essentially an ‘heirloom with rooms’, today, the Mansion readily bequeaths its charms to visitors who are able to indulge in Exclusive Heritage Homestays; **Guided Tours; and Tailored Functions on its premises. Reputedly the favourite home of the “Last Mandarin and First Capitalist of China”, the Mansion is undoubtedly the favourite home of George Town.
Reviewed 16 October 2017

We recently visited Cheong Fatt Tze, it was a pleasant tour, but the architecture and museum pieces were not as good as other mansions we visited in Penang. This may be doing Cheong Fatt Tze a disservice as it is also a hotel and day visitors cannot enter residents areas.

1  Thank Robert W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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203 - 207 of 2,132 reviews

Reviewed 13 October 2017 via mobile

The tour guide we had was a bubbly lady, she shared a beautiful history of the mansion and the occupants. Part of the mansion is a restaurant and the other is a boutique hotel which was off limits to visitors. It was raining and we were early, the guard refused us entry. I was with 3 seniors and they were getting drenched. He only allowed us in after I said we would dine there. I was really pissed off but since my family came all the way from the U.K., decided to go ahead with the tour. Had really expensive coffees at the restaurant and like I said, there isn't much to see but the guide was entertaining. It's a shame because a beautifully preserved building like this one could do more.

Thank rajeedemon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 October 2017

Really enjoyed our tour of the Blue Mansion. The building was well preserved and had a fascinating history, brilliantly told by our bubbly tour guide.

Thank Daniel V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 October 2017

In my subjective view, the Blue Mansion – Cheong Fatt Tze – stands alongside the Penarakan Museum as the two premier ‘must-do’ heritage attractions in George Town. Both are situated in historical buildings and are tangible testaments to the rich history and culture of the Straits Chinese in Penang.

However note that there are differences between the two establishments. The Peranakan Museum is, as the name suggests, a museum; ie a depository of Peranakan artefacts. On the other hand, the Blue Mansion is predominantly a building of heritage and architectural significance, with a tremendously rich history relating to one of Penang’s most historical and influential identities – Cheong Fatt Tze. While there are artefacts on display, the focus of the attraction is the heritage building and its history.

Additionally, the mansion operates as a boutique hotel and fusion restaurant. One of our aims is to return one day to experience staying as a guest. We met some in-house guests and their comments, on accommodation experience, were extremely positive.

The Blue Mansion’s website lauds that the building is ‘a quintessential legacy of Penang’ and, having experienced it, it is well-deserving of that claim. It is an architectural delight that has won numerous international and local awards, and has been featured in movies, travel documentaries and publications.

The heritage project was the vision and passion of local architect Laurence Loh along with his family and friends. To say I am exceedingly impressed with their herculean effort is to make an understatement. The Lohs should be congratulated for preserving a key component of Penang’s – and to a wider extent, Straits Chinese’s - history.

On our recent tour, we were privileged have as tour guide, the vivacious Lin Lee Loh-Lim, who is the author of the book “The Blue Mansion: The Story of Mandarin Splendour Reborn”. It was a tour that we would have enjoyed given the enthralling building and interesting history, but she elevated our enjoyment by her lively and animated nature. It was superb. Lin Lee was kind enough to autograph a copy of the book (available in their shop) and it now resides in a position of pride alongside my other architectural books.

Tour times: 11am, 2pm & 3:30pm
Duration: 45 minutes
Cost: RM17 (adults). RM8.50 (child under 12)

There is something I wish they would consider and that is, allowing tour visitors to experience the building’s inner (but public) spaces for a few minutes after the guided tour – just 10 to 15 minutes perhaps. This will allow visitors to absorb and appreciate the building properly, which is not always possible when visitors are concentrating on the historical narrative during a guided tour.

A visit to Penang will be lacking somewhat without a tour of Cheong Fatt Tze - The Blue Mansion. Highly recommended.

Thanks for reading this review and my gratitude should you rate it as helpful. Life is short... go travelling and enjoy life today!

3  Thank sand2skis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 8 October 2017 via mobile

It's not worth the money, it's just a lecture about the history of the house where you are supposed to listen to the tour guide's bad English and you only get to see a couple of rooms, the small lobby and one courtyard. I don't know if the tour included more of the mansion before but now it's a complete ripoff. At the start of the "tour" people are just kept standing in the lobby for 20(!) minutes listening to the boring stories with nothing much to see or take photos of. Then the group goes to the courtyard and again people are supposed to wait there 15 minutes listening to the guide. It was extremely boring and totally different to Pinang Peranakan Mansion which I can really recommend. In this Blue Mansion "tour" I got bored in 5 minutes and started to wander around upstairs where the other group was but there was almost nothing to see!
Don't waste your money on this.

4  Thank Kimberly T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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