The Peranakans, also known as the Babas and Nyonyas, was a prominent community of acculturated Chinese unique to this part of the world, especially in the Straits Settlements (Penang, Malacca and Singapore) hence its other name, the Straits Chinese. Adopting selected ways of the local Malays and later, the colonial British, the Peranakans had created a unique lifestyle and customs which had not only left behind a rich legacy of antiques but its cultural influences like cuisine and language are still evident in Penang today | Pinang Peranakan Mansion
At the Pinang Peranakan Mansion, the typical home of a rich Baba of a century ago is recreated to offer a glimpse of their opulent lifestyle and of their many customs and traditions. With over 1,000 pieces of antiques and collectibles of the era on display, this Baba-Nyonya museum is also housed in one of Penang’s heritage mansion of eclectic design and architecture.
The mansion belongs to Chung Keng Quee (Kapitan) from China who made his fortunes over here. Although he was an immigrant from China, he was greatly influence by the Straits Chinese (called the “Peranakan”) culture. He commissioned his stately mansion to be built incorporating the strong Peranakan architectural design. It was lavishly furbished with elegant ceramic floor tiles from England, beautiful iron casted art work from Scotland for the balconies and railings and elegant carved-wood panels and screen for the doors and walls from China.
For more information on the Cherki card game, visit Peranakan Life
The upper floor showcase the family living hall, bedrooms, traditional bridal room with typical Nyonya matrimonial bed and sewing room. Here is where all the antiques are displayed including artistic brooches (“keronsang”), hair pins (“cuck sanggal”), metal belts, bracelets and other women accessories. Other interesting artefacts displayed are the huge vintage standing camera, an antique barber chair, Nyonya long blouses, embroideries and beaded shoes. | Penang State Tourism
Pinang Peranakan Mansion is truly built with a strong affluent of the Straits Chinese culture and symbolises the colourful legacy of the few rich Peranakan families in the past. It is now fully refurbished and restored to its former glory and is a showcase of the bygone days of this community lifestyle and their many customs and traditions. The beautiful mansion was one of the locations for the filming of the Little Nyonya, a 34 episode drama series by Singapore MediaCrop TV Channel 8. | Penang State Tourism