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Clove Hall

Penang, Malaysia

Activities

  • Sightseeing: a Unesco World Heritage Site, Penang has some of the best of everything, from proud colonial villas to Chinese and Hindu temples, all brought together in a handy compact location - be sure to visit the indigo-blue Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion which encapsulates the cultural diversity of Georgetown. But its great contribution to vernacular architecture is the shophouse, so the shophouse museum (Penang World Heritage Inc. at the end of Armenian Street), with its timelines and scale models, makes an indispensable starting point. It’s free and usually deserted, which just goes to show. The hotel provides a map of the sights

  • Further afield, have a look at Penang Hill, a colonial Hill Station straight out of Somerset Maugham, with a nice café for afternoon tea with scones and cream, and oddly pokey, suburban bungalows from the 1920s. The funicular rail is closed, so you have to take a four-wheel drive from the Botanic Gardens

  • The best way to get around is to rent a scooter (from any shop on Chulia Street) as taxis can be difficult to spot after dark on these roads. Bring your international driver’s license: Malaysia is an orderly country. Or book the hotel's SUV for the day or evening

  • Or take a guided tour arranged by Clove Hall, to go antiques shopping, explore the local markets, or discover heritage enclaves and artisan workshops; if your visit coincides with a local festival such as Nine Emperor God, Hungry Ghost Festival, or Thaipusam they'll show you the sights. Their concierge services extend to arranging trips to the beach (Batu Ferringhi is the most popular), boat trips, scuba diving and snorkelling, horse riding and cooking classes

  • Back at the hotel, lie by the pool; relax with an in-room massage, manicure/pedicure or facial; take a private yoga lesson (book in advance); get some clothes made up by a local dressmaker (ask for details)

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Boat trips
  • Cooking classes
  • Food and wine
  • Historical sites
  • Horse riding
  • Museums/galleries
  • Nightlife
  • Plantlife/flora
  • Scuba diving
  • Shopping/markets
  • Snorkelling
  • Swimming
Save to favouritesPrintMailClove HallA gentlemenís club in the 50s, this colonial mansion and outbuildings in a residential part of Georgetown were left to the termites for decades before being reclaimed and restored to, if anything more, than their former glory. Impeccable workmanship and care went into the conversion, and Jo and Jim Lim are now the proud owners of its 6 [r:MY007:suites], cream walls, chocolate-brown rafters, great stone pillars, antique tile floors, open archways and lazily spinning ceiling fans. A tranquil swimming pool, fringed with ginger bushes, offers refreshment after a hard dayís sightseeing. Birds twitter in the tropical foliage as you rest on your flagstone veranda or recline on your silk-covered Chinese daybed before striking out again into UNESCO-listed Penang, full of heritage and history and one of Asiaís foodie heavens. Furniture comes from India, China and Sri Lanka, including some colonial antiques, all assembled in the best possible taste. And if the operation is just a fraction short of the extra attention to your creature comforts that makes a truly great hotel, the abundance of things to do outside will mean you hardly notice it.

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