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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi

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PENANG HERITAGE TRAIL: PART V (FINALE)

If there's one place in Penang that can literally make you fall on your knees upon seeing it, then it must be Cannon Square's exquisite Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi 龙山堂邱公司.


Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi, George Town, Penang


Completed in the year 1906 at the height of the Khoo clan's eminence in early Penang society, the Khoo Kongsi is widely hailed as Southeast Asia's grandest and most elaborate Straits Chinese clanhouse. Nearly everything was shipped from China: construction materials, master craftsmen, artisans, and sculptors. One of the trishaw drivers there even told us Indians were involved in the construction of the Khoo Kongsi. Being my top favourite of all the sights and sounds along the heritage trail, I'm dedicating this whole entry to this fantabulous place.


Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi, George Town, Penang


Interestingly, the present building is actually a scaled-down version of the original clanhouse. The previous one was razed by fire (allegedly struck by lightning) on Chinese New Year's Eve, and legend has it that its ostentatious extravagance and resemblance to Beijing's Forbidden City imperial palace complex had provoked the wrath of the Chinese gods.


Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi, George Town, Penang


I can't really find words to describe the splendour of the clanhouse. Not even pictures! In order to understand what I'm trying to convey, you must make a trip here and feel the aura yourself. The magnificence of the Khoo Kongsi is unparalleled of any heritage buildings I've seen thus far. The only thing I can say is that I was truly overwhelmed by its opulent showcase of classical Chinese architecture. Made me feel like singing Take My Breath Away...


Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi, George Town, Penang


If you happen to miss the previous parts of my PENANG HERITAGE TRAIL travel series, do check these out...

PART I. : Francis Light's footsteps: Penang's colonial legacy
PART II : An island's love affair with Great Britain
PART III: Abodes where angels dwell
PART IV: Pearls of the Nanyang Dragons

52 comments:

day-dreamer said...

Sad to say I still haven't had the chance to visit this place. =/

rainbow angeles said...

i chup first

kyh said...

day-dreamer: 5 chups!

Wah... Finally I see you saying something new, LOL!

Come to Penang lah... The Khoo Kongsi is Penang's best historic gem! ;)

rainbow angeles: 3 chups!

Okie dokie!

rainbow angeles said...

i passed by a mosque earlier this evening.. it was along jalan hang tuah.. it looked majestic.. and i thot of u ;-) i mean, i thot of u and your architectural inclination and interest towards buildings la :P

kyh said...

*hak sei ngor*

Wah... Liddat every time you pass by a beautiful building, you ma think of me lor? :P

Jemima said...

I chup 3rd. :p

Jemima said...

So what's next??? :p

Doreen said...

Wah~~~so many gold.....

ehonchan.com said...

this time i have no time to read thru the entire article but briefly skimmed through. lol!

Chen said...

i visited Khoo Kongsi prior to renovation several years back.. might be 7 or 8 years ago? :)

How much is the entrance ticket?
Is it RM 10 or more expensive already?

Chen said...

How come Angeles thought of u when passing by a mosque? u r not muslim woh :P
HEhehee..

kyh said...

Jemima: 1 chup!

What's next? o.O This part is the finale of the series leh...

Doreen: Yeah... Very bling! ;)

ehonchan.com: This entry is a lot shorter than the previous ones leh... In fact, I think the pictures are more than words!

Chen: RM1 for students. :P

She was just feelng sampat that morning! Kekeke...

mistipurple said...

if you come to singapore, telok ayer street has some temples like that. the old shophouses also look like that there, but alot of them are being renovated. so they are losing it's originality, though under conservation rights, still not the same. anyway cannot expect the dilapidated houses not to be touched up. wait fall on people worse. :p

kyh said...

Can you be my tour guide in Singapore? *winks*

mistipurple said...

#KYH: hehe. i think one of my blog buddy will be a better guide, if she has the time. ;P
i am hopeless in this heat. :(

Chen said...

RM 1 for student?
so CHEAP?
I need to get a student card liao
hahhahha :D

kyh said...

mistipurple: I think I know who you mean. ;)

Chen: Being a student has lots of benefits, money wise! :D

oceanskies79 said...

Thanks for this post. I visited this temple a few years ago when I was visiting Penang.

kyh said...

You're welcome. Isn't that place just breathtakingly magnificent? ;)

Zhu said...

Once again, beautiful pictures!

In love the temple pictures, they are so colorful and rich...

Hope you indulge us with more traveling soon!

khengsiong said...

Hmm... I am one who prefer minimalist design, and find the ornaments of the clan house overwhelming...

Chen said...

including.. can get discount too when eating steamboat buffet.. LOL

kyh said...

Zhu: Thanks! :)

And oh, I'm afraid you'll need to wait longer for another travel series! Too bad I'm gonna return to my university soon for the new semester... :(

khengsiong: I prefer somewhere in between, but this clanhouse just blew me away!

Chen: It's been such a long time since I last had steamboat or buffet meals!

GMG said...

Hi Kyh! Great to see the wonderful pics, as well as to read the interesting text. This will help if and when I manage to get to Penang!
Thanks for your comment on Blogtrotter, still strolling in the streets of Santiago de Compostela, and now racing the famous Paris-Dakar…
Have a nice week!

eastcoastlife said...

This is so grand and spectacular. I will bookmark this and visit it when I'm in Penang.

kyh said...

GMG: Quick, plan a trip to Penang! :D

eastcoastlife: Definitely! :)

Shantanu said...

The pictures do show how exquisite this place is. Such opulence and splendor! Thanks for sharing.

kyh said...

You're welcome. :)

claudie said...

One day I'll visit this place , sure! Thanks for sharing this marvelous site with us. I'm always impresse by the rich chinese art!

kyh said...

Thanks... I'm glad that you enjoy Chinese art and culture! ;)

GMG said...

Hi Kyh! No comments allowed on the dating post? ;))
Thanks for your comment on Blogtrotter, now on its last post on Santiago de Compostela! Wish you a wonderful weekend!

kyh said...

Oops... That's a paid post. Sorry! *sheepish smile*

I'll visit your place in a minute! ;)

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