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Hotel 04-2266060 Aurora Court 04-2280727 Bayu Emas Apartments 04-8812641
Bayview Beach Resort, The 04-8812123 Beachcomber Paradise Hotel 04-8928808
Bellevue, Hotel 04-8299600 Berjaya Georgetown Hotel 04-2277111 Bukit Dumbar
Permai Apts 04-6560118 Casuarina Beach Hotel 04-8811711 Cathay Hotel 04-2626271
Chusan Hotel 04-8908255 Copthorne Orchid Penang 04-8903333 Continental, Hotel
04-2636388 Crown Prince Hotel 08-8904111 Eastern & Oriental Hotel 04-2630630
Embassy Hotel 04-3235378 Equatorial Penang, Hotel 04-6438111 Ferringhi Beach
Hotel, The 04-8905999 Garden Inn 04-2363655 Golden City, Hotel 04-2379910 Grand
Continental, Hotel 04-2636688 Holiday Inn Resort Penang 04-8811601 Lone Pine
Hotel 04-8811511 Malaysia, Hotel 04-2633117 Mar Vista Resort 04-8903388
Merchant Court, The 04-2632828 Merit Sri Sayang Resort Apts 04-8811113 Midtowne
Hotel 04-2269999 Ming Court Inn 04-2298588 Mingood, Hotel 04-2299922 Mercure
Grand Jebel Hafeat Novotel Penang 04-8903333 Eastern & Oriental Hotel Paradise
Tanjung Bungah Penang Hotel 04-8908808 Palm Beach Resort 04-8811621 Paramount
Hotel 04-2363649 Park Inn International Penang 04-8908808 Peking Hotel
04-2636191 Penang Mutiara Beach Resort 04-8852828 Penang Parkroyal Resort
04-8811133 Sandy Bay Paradise Hotel 04-8999999 Seri Malaysia Bayan Baru
04-6429452 Shangri-La Hotel 04-2622622 Shangri-La’s Golden Sands Resort
04-8811911 Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort 04-8811811 Sheraton Penang
04-2267888 Sunway Hotel Penang 04-2299988 YMCA International Hostel 04-362211
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Vista Resort Apartments
Polo Guesthouse Apartments (Closed for
Sri Sayang Resort Apartments
The Penang Hill Hotel
Copthorne Orchid Hotel
Gym will be closed from now until further
Eastern & Oriental Penang
Beach Hotel Penang
Plaza Park Royal Penang
Sands Beach Resort
Jerejak Resort & Spa
Penanq City Centre
Penang Beach Resort
Seri Malaysia - Penang
Rasa Sayang Beach Resort
Sunway Hotel Seberang
Tanjung Bungah Hotel
(formerly known as Paradise Tanjung Bungah)
The Northam All Suite Penang
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The island was
referred to as 檳榔嶼 (Bīnláng Xù) in the navigational drawings used byAdmiral Zheng He of Ming-dynasty China in his expeditions to the
South Seas in the 15th century. Early Malays called it Pulau Ka-Satu
or "First Island".
The name "Penang" comes from the modern Malay name Pulau Pinang,
which means island of the betel nut tree (Areca catechu), family
Palmae. In Chinese, Penang is known as 檳城 (pinyin: Bīnchéng /
Bīngchéng). All three names can refer either to the island of Penang,
the state of Penang or sometimes the state capital, George Town.
More specifically, George Town is known as Tanjung in Malay and 喬治市
(Qiáozhì Shì) in Chinese. Penang Island is simply Pulau Pinang (/'pulaʊ
'pinaŋ/) in Malay and 檳榔嶼 (Bīnláng Xù) in Chinese, and Penang state
is Negeri Pulau Pinang in Malay and 檳州 (Bīn Zhōu) in Chinese.
Penang is also popularly known as the "Pearl of the Orient".
The state is geographically and administratively divided into two
Penang Island: an island of 293 square kilometres located in the
Straits of Malacca; and
Seberang Perai (also known as Province Wellesley): a narrow
hinterland of 760 square kilometres on the Malay peninsula across a
narrow channel whose smallest width is 4 km (2.5 miles). It is
bordered byKedah in the north (demarcated bythe Muda River) and
east, and Perak in the south.
Penang Island is irregularly shaped, with a granitic, hilly and
mostly forested interior, the highest point being Western Hill (part
of Penang Hill) at 830 metres above sea level. The coastal plains
are narrow, the most extensive of which is in the northeast which
forms a triangular promontory where George Town, the state capital
is situated. The topography of Province Wellesley is mostly flat.
Butterworth, the main town in Province Wellesley, lies along the
Perai River estuary and faces George Town at a distance of 3 km (2
miles) across the channel to the east.
State of Penang
There are a number of small islets off the coast of Penang, the
biggest of which, Pulau Jerejak, is located in the channel between
Penang Island and the mainland. It was previously a leper and penal
colony, but is now a tourist attraction featuring the Jerejak Resort
and Spa. .
Pulau Jerejak (largest)
Penang enjoys a year-round equatorial climate which is warm and
sunny, along with plentiful rainfall, especially during the
southwest monsoon from April to September. The climate is very much
dictated bythe surrounding sea and the wind system. Penang's
proximity with Sumatra, Indonesia makes it susceptible to dust
particles carried bywind from perennial but transient forest fires,
creating a phenomenon known as the haze.
The Bayan Lepas Regional Meteorological Office is the primary
weather forecast facility for northern Peninsular Malaysia.
The state has the highest population density in Malaysia with
2,031.74 people per square kilometre on the island and 865.99 people
per square kilometre on the mainland. Penang is the only state in
Malaysia where ethnic Chinese are the largest ethnic group. The
ethnic composition in 2006 was:
A colonial-era house with a Straits-Chinese art deco eclectic
architectureEthnic Chinese: 635,500 (42.5%)
Malay: 612,300 (41.0%)
Ethnic Indian: 148,000 (9.9%)
Bumiputra: 5,600 (0.38%)
Non-bumiputra: 91,200 (6.1%)
There were Jewish and Armenian communities in Penang before World
War II, but these dissipated as a result of the Japanese occupation
and the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. A small but
commercially significant community of German merchants also existed
in Penang. Today, Penang has a sizeable expatriate population
especially from Japan and Britain.
The greater metropolitan area of Penang Island, Seberang Prai and
neighbouring towns such as Sungai Petani and Kulim has a population
of over 2 million , around the same as metropolitan Johor Bahru
and second only to the Klang Valley.
A restaurant serving Baba-Nyonya cuisine.The Peranakan, also known
as the Straits Chinese or Baba-Nyonya, are the descendants of the
early Chinese immigrants to Penang as well as to Malacca and
Singapore. They have partially adopted Malay customs and speak a
Chinese-Malay creole. The Peranakan community possesses a distinct
identity in terms of food, costume, rites, crafts and culture. Most
of the Peranakan Chinese are not Muslims but practise ancestor
worship and Chinese religion. During British rule, the Peranakan had
a reputation of being loyal British subjects and many of them
adopted British mannerisms. They prided themselves as being
Anglophone and distinguished themselves from the newly-arrived
Chinaman or sinkheh. The Peranakan, however, are almost extinct
today due to their re-absorption into the mainstream Chinese
community. However, their legacy lives on in their great cuisine,
their intricate nyonya kebaya costume and exquisite handicrafts.
The common languages of Penang, depending on social classes, social
circles, and ethnic backgrounds are English, Penang Hokkien, and
Malay. Mandarin, which is taught in Chinese-medium schools in the
state, is also increasingly spoken.
Penang Hokkien is a variant of Minnan and is widely spoken bya
substantial proportion of the Penang populace who are descendants of
early Chinese settlers. It bears strong resemblance to the language
spoken byChinese living in the Indonesian city of Medan and is
based on the Minnan dialect of Zhangzhou prefecture in Fujian
province, China, but incorporates a large number of loanwords from
Malay and English. Many Penangites who are not ethnically Chinese
are also able to speak in Hokkien. Most Penang Hokkien speakers are
not literate in Hokkien but instead read and write in standard
(Mandarin) Chinese, English and/or Malay.
Malay is spoken locally with north-western dialect features, such as
hang for "you" and depa for "they/them".
English is a working language widely used in business and commerce,
and is also the language of instruction of Science and Mathematics
in schools. English used in an official or formal context is
predominantly British English with some American influences. Spoken
English, as in the rest of Malaysia, is often in the form of
Manglish (Malaysian colloquial English).
Other languages, including Cantonese and Tamil, are also spoken in
the state. Teochew is heard more in Province Wellesley than on
The official religion of Penang is Islam and the head of Islam is
the Yang Dipertuan Agong, but other religions are freely practised.
These are Buddhism, in the Theravada, Mahayana and increasingly also
Vajrayana traditions, Taoism, Chinese folk religion, Hinduism,
Catholicism, Protestantism (the largest denominations of which are
the Methodists, Seventh-day Adventists, Anglican, Presbyterian and
Baptists) and Sikhism- reflecting Penang's diverse ethnic and
Character of Penang
Being one of the earliest, most established urban centres in Malaya,
Penang has often prided herself on her progress while at the same
time relishing her traditional and enduring values, way of life and
mannerism. Old Penang evoked images of the slow-paced lifestyle of
merchants and planters in the Far East, where European culture
intermingled with Eastern customs and colonial buildings stood next
to attap houses and rickshaw pullers and where electric trams met
bullock carts. Chinese influence has always been more evident in
urban areas due to their superior numbers while the Malays, until
recent times, have largely resided in the rural areas.
Twenty-first-century Penang remains a thriving commercial (and now
industrial) centre with a relatively high standard of living.
However, in terms of development it has been overtaken in recent
years bythe Klang Valley, which is the political and economic heart
of modern Malaysia. While the slower rate of development in Penang
has left much of its cultural and architectural heritage intact,
what development there has been has been poorly managed due to
underfunding in infrastructure bythe federal government, corruption
and the breakdown of participatory local government since the late
1960s. Nonetheless, Penangites maintain a strong civic identity
rooted in Penang's former pre-eminence, reinforced bya strong local
cultural and linguistic identity.
Main article: History of Penang
Penang, originally part of the Malay sultanate of Kedah, was given
to the British East India Company in 1786 bythe Sultan of Kedah, in
exchange for military protection from Siamese and Burmese armies who
were threatening Kedah. On 11 August 1786, Captain Francis Light,
known as the founder of Penang, landed in Penang and renamed it
Prince of Wales Island in honour of the heir to the British throne.
Unbeknownst to the Sultan, Light had acted without the approval of
the East India Company when he promised military protection. When
the Company failed to aid Kedah when it was attacked bySiam, the
Sultan tried to retake the island in 1790. The attempt was
unsuccessful, and the Sultan was forced to cede the island to the
Company for an honorarium of 6,000 Spanish dollars per annum. This
was later increased to 10,000 dollars, with Province Wellesley (Seberang
Prai) being added to Penang in 1800. An annual honorarium of 10,000
ringgits continues to this day to be paid each year bythe Malaysian
Federal Government to the state of Kedah.
In 1826, Penang, along with Malacca and Singapore, became part of
the Straits Settlements under the British administration in India,
moving to direct British colonial rule in 1867. In 1946 it became
part of the Malayan Union, before becoming in 1948 a state of the
Federation of Malaya, which gained independence in 1957 and became
Malaysia in 1963.
The island was a free port until 1969. Despite the loss of the
island's free-port status, from the 1970s to the late 1990s the
state built up one of the largest electronics manufacturing bases in
Asia, in the Free Trade Zone around the airport in the south of the
Penang state is today the third-largest economy amongst the states
of Malaysia, after Selangor and Johor. Manufacturing is the most
important component of the Penang economy, contributing 45.9% of the
State's GDP (2000). The southern part of the island is highly
industrialised with high-tech electronics plants (such as Dell,
Intel, AMD, Motorola, Agilent, Hitachi, Osram, Bosch and Seagate)
located within the Bayan Lepas Free Industrial Zone. In January
2005, Penang was formally accorded the Multimedia Super Corridor
Cyber City status, the first outside of Cyberjaya, with the aim of
becoming a high-technology industrial park that conducts
The entrepôt trade has greatly declined, due in part to the loss of
Penang's free-port status, but also due to the active development of
Port Klang near the federal capital Kuala Lumpur. However, there is
a container terminal in Butterworth which continues to service the
Other important sectors of Penang's economy include tourism,
finance, shipping and other services.
The Penang Development Corporation (PDC) is the state development
agency to develop, plan, implement and promote development projects
in the form of socio-economic interests on behalf of the State
Government of Penang. It functions as the investment arm of the
Penang agriculture is mainly made up of the major export crops of
rubber and oil palm and some cocoa, the food commodities comprising
paddy, fruits, coconut, vegetables, livestock which is dominated bypoultry and swine, fisheries and aquaculture, and new emerging
industries such as ornamental fishes and floriculture.
Owing to limited land size and the highly industrialised nature of
Penang's economy, agriculture is given little emphasis. In fact,
agriculture is the only sector to record negative growth in the
state, contributing only 1.3% to the state GDP in 2000. The share of
Penang's paddy area to the national paddy area accounts for only
The HSBC building at 1 Downing Street
The Standard Chartered Bank building at 2 Beach StreetPenang was the
centre of banking of Malaysia at a time when Kuala Lumpur was still
a small outpost. The oldest bank in Malaysia, Standard Chartered
Bank opened its doors in 1875. Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking
Corporation, now known as HSBC traced its history back to the
opening of the first HSBC office in Penang in 1885. The Dutch-based
ABN AMRO Bank opened its first office in Penang in 1888 to cater to
the financial requirements of the early European traders. Most of
the older banks still maintain their local headquarters on Beach
Street, the old commercial centre of George Town.
Today, Penang remains a banking hub with branches of Citibank,
United Overseas Bank, and Bank Negara Malaysia (the Malaysian
central bank) together with local banks like Public Bank, Maybank,
Ambank and Bumiputra-Commerce Bank.
A hawker stall selling rojak, a fruit dish in shrimp and chilli
Hawker food centre at Gurney Drive, one of the best places to
experience Penang's best foods.Main article: Penang cuisine
Penang island is a paradise for food lovers who come from all over
Malaysia and even Singapore to sample the island's unique cuisine,
earning Penang the nickname of the food capital of Malaysia. Penang
was recognised as having the Best Street Food in Asia byTIME
magazine in 2004, citing that nowhere else can such great tasting
food be so cheap. Penang's cuisine reflects the Chinese, Nyonya,
Malay and Indian ethnic mix of Malaysia, but is also strongly
influenced bythe cuisine of Thailand to the north. Its especially
famous "hawker food" is sold and eaten bythe street feature
strongly in noodles and fresh seafood. Great places to savour
Penang's food are Gurney Drive, Pulau Tikus, New Lane, Swatow Lane,
Penang Road and Chulia Street. Local Chinese restaurants serve
excellent fares too. American fast food outlets and coffee joints
are readily found throughout the state. Japanese, Korean, Italian
and Western food are also popular.
Buses and taxis in George TownPenang boasted an efficient public
transport network right up to the 1970s. Electric trams,
trolleybuses and double deckers used to ply the streets of Penang.
The Penang Hill Funicular Railway was an engineering feat of sorts
when it was completed in 1923.
The Penang bus services today are generally unsystematic and do not
have a reputation of reliability. Therefore, the usage of public
transportation is still low, exacerbating the traffic jams in the
city during rush hours. The city council has, however, provided free
shuttle bus services for short intra-city travel to lessen the
congestion, with mixed success. In April 2006, the local authorities
announced a revamp of the public bus service to bring about a more
reliable and efficient network without any visible progress.
There are two main bus terminals for express buses which travel out
of the state. One is located at the ferry terminal in Province
Wellesley, and a newer one at Sungai Nibong on the island.
Taxis in Penang have not conformed to the meter system as exhorted bythe federal authorities, citing unprofitability. A new ruling
implemented on August 1, 2006 makes it compulsory for taxis to use
the meter system. This has caused many taxi drivers to go on strike
or "sick leave".
A quaint mode of transportation, the three-wheeled trishaw, still
operates in certain parts of George Town. However, with the advent
of modern transportation, the trishaw has increasingly become a mere
Rail and monorail
Butterworth is serviced bythe Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) or
Malayan Railway West Coast line which runs from Padang Besar on the
Malaysia-Thailand Border in Perlis to Singapore. Senandung Malam is
the daily night express running from Kuala Lumpur to Haadyai via
Butterworth. Trains are not a popular mode of tranportation due to
their low speed and also because of the availability of buses which
are more convenient, as well as high ownership of cars.
Penang has had a monorail under consideration since 1999. The Penang
Monorail project was finally approved on March 31, 2006 under the
Ninth Malaysia Plan. On August 2, 2006, the federal government has
decided to build the monorail transit system in the city of George
Town. This monorail line will connect Tanjung Tokong in the north
with Bayan Lepas in the south.
Penang International Airport (PEN) is located in Bayan Lepas in the
south of the island, and international flights are available to
London, Hong Kong, Singapore, Medan, Taipei, Bangkok, Bangalore,
Seoul, Riau, Xiamen and Guangzhou. The airport serves as the
northern gateway to Malaysia.
Ferry and seaports
The early days of the Penang Port
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deletion. You can comment on the removal.
A Penang ferry docking at the Butterworth jettyCross-channel ferry
services, provided bythe Penang Ferry Service, connect George Town
and Butterworth, and were the only link between the island and the
mainland until the bridge was built in 1985. High-speed ferries to
the resort island of Langkawi, Kedah in the north as well as to
Medan, Indonesia are also available daily.
The Port of Penang is operated bythe Penang Port Commission. There
are four terminals, one on Penang island (Swettenham Pier) and three
on the mainland, namely North Butterworth Container Terminal (NBCT),
Butterworth Deep Water Wharves (BDWW), and Prai Bulk Cargo Terminal
(PBCT). Malaysia being the 13th largest exporting nation, the Port
of Penang plays a leading role in the nation's shipping industry,
linking Penang to more than 200 ports worldwide. Swettenham Pier
also accommodates cruise ships.
The Guillemard Reservoir, Tanjung Bungah in 1929
This image has an uncertain copyright status and is pending
deletion. You can comment on the removal.Water supply which comes
under the state jurisdiction, is wholly managed bythe state-owned
but autonomous PBA Holdings Bhd whose sole subsidiary is the
Perbadanan Bekalan Air Pulau Pinang Sdn Bhd (PBAPP). This public
limited company provides reliable, round-the-clock drinking water to
100% of the urban areas and 99.5% of the rural areas throughout the
state. Penang was cited bythe World Development Movement as a case
study in successful public water scheme. PBA's water rates are also
one of the lowest in the world . Penang's water supply is
sourced from the Air Itam Dam, Mengkuang Dam, Teluk Bahang Dam,
Bukit Panchor Dam, Berapit Dam, Cherok Tok Kun Dam, Waterfall
Reservoir, Guillemard Reservoir, and also from neighbouring Kedah
Penang was among the first states in Malaya to be electrified in
1905 upon the completion of the first hydroelectric scheme. At
present, electricity for industrial and domestic consumption is
provided bythe national electricity utility company, Tenaga
Nasional Berhad (TNB).
Telekom Malaysia Berhad is the landline telephone service provider
as well as the main Internet service provider in the state. Penang
also has excellent cell phone coverage. Broadband internet is also
Garbage collection and disposal is managed bythe respective local
authorities. The main landfill is the modern Pulau Burung landfill
near Nibong Tebal.
Sewage treatment in Penang is managed bythe national sewerage
company, Indah Water Konsortium. Prior to systematic sewerage piping
and treatment, waste water was haphazardly disposed, mostly in the
sea, causing environmental pollution. It is not uncommon to see
washing water from roadside pushcart stalls simply released into the
open drainage system. Litter floating in drains and canals is not an
Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
Penang is one of the hotbeds of social activism in the country.
Malaysia's and among the world's leading social advocate Anwar Fazal
who together with several individuals also the founded Consumers
Association of Penang (CAP) in 1969 and was first based in his
house. The country's most vocal and active consumer protection
group, CAP strives to protect the interests of consumers and is a
vociferous critic of both the government and private enterprises. It
publishes the Utusan Konsumer, Utusan Pengguna, Utusan Cina, Utusan
Tamil, Majalah Pengguna Kanak-kanak. Anwar Fazal is also known as
the "Father of the Malaysian NGO Movement" and "Ralph Nader of the
The World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action WABA whose objectives
are to protect, promote and support breastfeeding globally and
1. Re-establish and maintain a global breastfeeding culture. 2.
Eliminate all obstacles to breastfeeding. 3. Promote more regional
and national level co-operation. 4. Advocate for breastfeeding in
development, women, environment and human rights programmes. is also
based in Penang.
The Penang Heritage Trust is an NGO whose objective is to promote
the conservation of Penang's heritage, and to foster cultural
education about the history and heritage of Penang. PHT works to
enlist the historic enclave of George Town as a World Heritage Site.
The organisation had played an important role in saving many
heritage buildings in Penang from the encroachment of development.
The Women's Centre for Change Penang (WCC) is a non-profit
organisation which supports women and children in crisis.
Friends of the Penang Botanic Gardens Society is a voluntary
organisation dedicated to supporting the botanic, horticultural,
educational and recreational objectives of the Penang Botanic
Tanjung City MarinaThe state has good sporting facilities which
provide good training grounds for aspiring sportsmen. The two major
stadia are the City Stadium in George Town and the Batu Kawan
Stadium in southern Province Wellesley. The Penang International
Sports Arena (PISA) in Relau has an indoor stadium and an aquatic
Penang has 4 golf courses, namely the 18-hole Bukit Jambul Country
Club (on the island), the 36-hole Bukit Jawi Golf Resort, the
18-hole Penang Golf Resort and the 18-hole Kristal Golf Resort.
The Penang Turf Club, established in 1864, is Malaysia's oldest
horse racing and equestrian centre. The turf club is to be relocated
to a new site now under construction in Province Wellesley.
Eminent sports clubs in Penang include the Penang Club, Chinese
Recreation Club (CRC), Penang Motor Sports Club, Penang Rifle Club,
Penang Polo Club, Penang Swimming Club, Chinese Swimming Club,
Penang Squash Centre and the prestigious Penang Yacht Club in Batu
Ferringhi. A marina, named Tanjung City Marina which can accommodate
up to 140 yachts and boats of various sizes has been built in Weld
Quay to attract seafarers from around the world.
Penang also hosts the annual Starwalk and the Penang Bridge Run and