Leith Street: Cheong Fatt Tze Blue Mansion
Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion is a historical and cultural rich building located along Leith Street in George Town, Penang. A winner of multiple historical and heritage awards including the “Most Excellent Project” Award at the UNESCO Heritage Awards 2000, the blue mansion is one of the most visited places and a definite tourist destination in Penang. The mansion is said to be one of the two of its kind outside China which also features architecture design of both Chinese and Western influences. The mansion was built by a famous Chinese merchant in 1880s named Cheong Fatt Tze and it has 38 rooms, 5 granite-paved courtyards, 7 staircases with 220 vernacular timber louvre windows.
During his time, Cheong Fatt Tze was also known as the “the Rockefeller of the East” and had helped a lot in building business and diplomatic relationship between the Chinese and Western governments. His legacy and contributions in the were so influential that during his death, top Chinese officials came all the way from China to attend his funeral while both the British and the Dutch authorities ordered flags to be flown at half mast in honour of him.
Featured in a number of movies (such as Crazy Rich Asians), the mansion now also houses a boutique hotel and a restaurant. It is also opens for public guided tour for a few slots of time of the day.