Penang is abuzz, especially in the heritage and cultures scene with the newly opened Hotel Penaga. The beautifully restored boutique hotel is conveniently located in the heart of Georgetown, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Situated along Hutton Lane intersecting Clarke Street and Transfer Road, the hotel is within walking distance to many eating outlets and attractive historical places.

Hotel Penaga - Penang Heritage Boutique Hotel  by

The hotel is converted from a collection of fifteen pre-war shop houses, which once contributed to the bustling economy of the town. International architect Hijjas Kasturi and his wife Angela Hijjas have given a new lease of life to the place, after spending multi-million ringgit on refurbishment and makeover. They have kept it with a glimpse of the past, with its façade built to resemble old shop houses. It is indeed their labor of love!

For anyone who has visited Hotel Penaga, they would totally agree that the hotel provide a home away from home! The boutique hotel offers 45 charming rooms with modern facility of a city hotel.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

The hotel has a small library, restaurant, bar, lounge, hair salon, spa, pool coupled with a serene garden. Penaga Spa will have you feeling refreshed, rejuvenated and revitalized with its exclusive treatment in its three double treatment rooms. The water  heating system is eco-friendly as it is heated by solar panels, and the rainwater is harvested for sanitation. All the rooms are cooled by inverter air-conditioning and ceiling fan.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by


Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Penaga Spa with three double treatment rooms

The wall beside the entrance to the spa is adorned with a striking mozaic piece. The artwork was done with hand-cut stone, strips of glass and salvaged Chinese porcelain under the collaboration of American George Fishman and Australians Helen Bodycomb, Dominic Johns and Glenn Romanis. It depicts the founder of Penang firing the cannon filled with coins into the tree during the clearing of land.

Hotel Penaga - Mozaic artwork by

The hotel has its own restaurant, The Cinnamon. This verandah styled all- day dining restaurant located on the ground floor serves buffet breakfast and Western cuisines with Asian influence. Running the length of this restaurant is the inviting lap pool.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

A refreshing dip in the lap pool

A step away from the restaurant is The Tanglung Bar, with an extensive selection of wine. It is a relaxing place to unwind with a drink or a cocktail.

Tanglung Bar in Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

There are many choices of rooms in Hotel Penaga, and guests can choose the deluxe rooms, traditional terrace house or suites. The rooms are located in three blocks – Clarke Terraces, Transfer Suites and Hutton Rooms. All the rooms come with large bedrooms and living room, equipped with double bed, Jacuzzi bath, walk-in shower, and many other amenities including complimentary internet access, television, mini-bar and tea and coffee making facilities.

Each room is individually decorated, furnished with restored furniture, including antique Chinese cabinets, benches and chairs. The walls are art-filled with selected pieces of Rimbun Dahan’s collection of contemporary paintings. Indeed impressive, with plenty of character! The place is brightened up with old Indo and Indian lightings, using old fashion brass switches made in Australia.


The five units in Clarke Terraces along Lebuh Clarke have a living room, two bedrooms and an internal staircase. The interior is furnished with antiques, stunning art works, classic modern pieces and sculptures together with woodcarvings from China.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Living room

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

It presents beautiful interiors and a private back yard with a small plot of green including a Jacuzzi spa bath.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Guest can access the courtyard through the back gate

A few of the units still maintain the original colorful Peranakan tiles gracing the lower façade while others were replaced with decorative tiles imported from China. Even some of the chimneys are original pieces! The interior flooring and the five-foot way is laid with encaustic floor tiles, imported from Jogjakarta.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Facade with decorative tiles

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Several original chimneys can be seen in Clarke Terraces


Transfer Suites contain eight suites and each of them comes with a sitting room. However, there are only four suites with two balconies. The large ones overlook Hutton Lane and smaller ones at the back view the courtyard surroundings. Guests need to do some climbing as these suites are only accessible by stairs.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

A large bedroom beside the bathroom with a Jacuzzi bath and separate shower

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Balcony overlooking the courtyard

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by


On the other hand, Hutton Rooms are deluxe rooms and are accessible with a lift. The three spacious corner suites with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a sitting room are ideal for families.

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

Airy room with high ceiling

Hotel Penaga - Heritage Boutique Hotel Penang by

This hotel with character and style in a heritage site is a must visit destination for travelers! Its location makes it very convenient to walk around the town and enjoy the charm of the local lifestyle. Click here for the Map Location. For more information on the hotel rates, do drop an email to

Hotel Penaga

Hotel Penaga
Corner of Jalan Hutton & Lebuh Clarke
10050 Penang

Tel : 04 2611891

Website :

GPS Coordinates :  5.42038,  100.330687

A huge thank you to Richard for the arrangement, and general manager Hugh Cameron for having me in Hotel Penaga.

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This entry was posted on Monday, March 7th, 2011 at 1:11 pm and is filed under Boutique Hotel, George Town, Heritage, Hotel - Review, Hotels, Invited Review, Penang. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

18 comments so far


Such an old classy hotel. I wonder whether the traffic noise is taken care of. Weekends you definitely won’t be able to sleep once the sun is up.

CK Lam Reply:

Most of the bedrooms on the busier Transfer Road and Hutton Lane faces inwards to the courtyard. As for Clarke Terraces, it is pretty quiet facing Clarke Street.

March 7th, 2011 at 2:08 pm
Lee Choo

CK,your photos so nice,cant wait to visit the place:)

CK Lam Reply:

Thanks LC! Do share the photos of your visit too :)

March 7th, 2011 at 5:51 pm

Truly gorgeous! With all these changes for the better happening in Penang, it’s terribly hard to resist the idea of moving back for good! Will make it happen!

CK Lam Reply:

It will be great to have you back in Penang :)

March 7th, 2011 at 6:19 pm

I would propose this to my wedding photography customers. Perfect for photography and lodging.

CK Lam Reply:

Great idea…do share it with all your customers and readers too!

March 7th, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Love the mosaic on the wall… the entrances to the hotel, spa… the alleys… the bedrooms… it’s simply beautiful! :)

CK Lam Reply:

Will gladly show you around the hotel when you drop by…

March 7th, 2011 at 11:09 pm

nice nice, pricing should be super high

CK Lam Reply:

There are several choices of accommodation, do check with them.

March 8th, 2011 at 10:08 am

been wanting to visit… should have visited them y/day… :(
anyway, thanks for sharing!

March 8th, 2011 at 12:37 pm

I know where I’m staying for my next trip to the Pearl of the Orient! Thanks for the writeup. The hotel looks gorgeous! :D

CK Lam Reply:

You are most welcome!

March 8th, 2011 at 6:31 pm

CK.. it was a great place and thanks for the wonderful review! Feel like staying there when I’m back hometown :)

CK Lam Reply:

Thanks Ken. Do make a point to drop by the hotel. I am pretty sure you will like it :)

March 10th, 2011 at 5:26 pm

Hello, Ms. Lam. You’ve given an outstanding review and stunning views of the hotel. I had the privilege to collaborate with the talented crew you cite in creating the mosaic. Hosted by Hijjas Kasturi and his gracious family and staff, we stayed in the hotel for a month during the hectic construction phase. Now it’s wonderful to see the exquisite finish to which the suites and public spaces have been taken. Those interested can read more about the story of the mosaic on my blog. Thanks for the flood of memories and the enticement to pay another visit! We put in long work hours every day, but of course all enjoyed the wealth of extraordinary dining experiences that surrounded us. My wife also writes about food, so she was thrilled by her (too brief) visit toward the end of the project. She interviewed chef Yeoh Kah Hock and enjoyed so many new taste combos. As did I! Congratulations on your NST connection, and if you’re ever in Miami…!

CK Lam Reply:

Thank you for dropping by George! It is great hearing much of your visit in Penang.
And if I do get the chance to visit Miami, I will definitely visit you and your wife :)

March 12th, 2011 at 3:33 am

i feel like spending a night there ler.. a new recommended hotel to my outstation friends already . .

March 17th, 2011 at 12:15 pm

Yes, I passed by this a few times last weekend. And they have a special buffet dinner offer if I’m not mistaken.
Looks great, wondering how much is the room rate there?
Would love to stay in a place like this, beats the same old hotel anyday.

CK Lam Reply:

Do check out the many different rates in their website :)

March 20th, 2011 at 11:59 pm

Hi CK, beautiful pictures! Did you try the food at the Cinnamon?

I’ve just started my food blog. Do come have a visit. Any constructive advices are most welcomed.

CK Lam Reply:

Yes, I had lunch at The Cinnamon. The article will be published in my website soon :)

March 27th, 2011 at 10:34 pm
Tan Hock Hin

My wife and I have not visited number of years. Would certainly like to stay at Hotel Penaga on our next visit. Argll Road is a central and good location to stay for few days. Hope car parking is not difficult.

April 6th, 2011 at 8:51 am

Hi CK, good job writing so well with photos accompanying. i can relate to what you wrote because i was born and lived my 1st 25yrs of my life in 147 Hutton Lane, from 1952 to 1977. Those days we walked or cycled everywhere, and i know those street corners well enough to say that those houses have been transformed! i remember they were only 2 storey houses; now they are 4!
Your photo from the Transfer Road Suite balcony is a fresh view of the Transfer Road/Hutton Lane junction. I recognise the sundry shop, Guan Huat, and the coffee shop on the opposite corner straight away.
Fantastic job by Hijjas Kasturi and Angela (who would know me by face, since we are members of MNS Selangor Branch, and we were invited to hold a few annual branch dinners in their Kuang home). I’ll call Angela to congratulate her and her husband for such a great effort.
Please keep up the good job of promoting PG since i’m a Penangite till death. i’ll forward your blog URL to my friends, many who still live in PG.

April 6th, 2011 at 11:36 pm

My wife and I are staying tonight. Your review and other around the web piqued our interest, and now we are so happy to have found this place. What a beautiful hotel with fantastic staff. I’ll post here about the noise at night. Daytime noise is quieter than I’d expect with a mid-city spot, but there is a lot of building going on (and it’s Saturday). The sound of hammering and power tools sound like productivity & progress, not the nonsense of a few people honking their horns all day :-)
Had a nice afternoon meal at the restaurant (sat outside) and the food was very good … we purposely chose Asian-styled dishes (satay and fried rice). It would have been nicer to have more Malaysian & Penang cuisine on the menu.

May 21st, 2011 at 4:14 pm

And now I’m back to Hotel Penaga after a week at a conference in Batu Ferringhi. Last week we stayed in a “Hutton” room with a balcony, facing the garden. It was surprisingly quiet at night. Now we are in another “Hutton” room on the street side (Lebuh Clarke, not the busier Jalandhar Hutton). The daytime noise is quite loud here, I hope it gets quieter at night … But it is Friday, so I’m not holding my breath!

May 27th, 2011 at 8:06 pm
CK Koh

Hey, nice reviews of the hotel. Im planning to have a stay this month end. I will ve travelling there by car. Would like to know if the hotel provide any carpark facilities? Where should we park our car? Along the road? Thanks!

May 4th, 2013 at 10:08 am

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  1. The Cinnamon at Hotel Penaga | What2See : Best of Penang Food!    Apr 18 2011 / 12pm:

    [...] Cinnamon at the elegantly restored Hotel Penaga, located at the Corner of Jalan Hutton & Lebuh Clarke is an all-day dining restaurant. The [...]

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