VIDEO: Chulia Heritage Hotel in Penang

Seeking comfort without paying a fortune, we decided to check in and stay at the Chulia Hertiage Hotel located in the heart of historic George Town on Penang Island, Malaysia.

It’s incredible how much our preferences and expectations have changed in such a short period of time. Only several months ago, we were staying in George Town, and our accommodations were far more humble. During that time, our guesthouse was nothing more than a tiny room with an old mattress, wobbly chair/desk and a fan that barely worked. The wifi in the room had a poor signal and considering how hot and humid it was outside, we literally felt like we were in a sauna with hot air sponblowing all around us. At the time, we were concerned with sticking to a strict budget and not spending extra for creature comforts.

Our standards have since increased significantly. When we first started out backpacking around SE Asia, I wrote an article where I discussed the challenges of being a digital nomad for the first time. In hindsight, I realize many of the issues we faced – of trying to balance work and play -stemmed from our environment.

During our carefree days of backpacking, when we were content staying in pokey rooms while trying to maximize our savings, it was fine to give up certain comforts in order to extended our journey given our dwindling bank accounts; however, now that we’re earning money online and trying to run a business on the road we need a certain level of comfort that allows us to utilize our time optimally.

For example, long gone are the days we’d prefer to stay in dorms, party hostels or budget guest houses that don’t offer air conditioning, clean showers, a quiet environment and reliable wifi.

Luckily, this time around we were able to find a great value budget Boutique Hotel that fits our new flashbacking ways. The Chulia Heritage hotel is located in an atmospheric part of George Town yet is nestled away from the hustle and bustle of noisy – and ever chaotic – Lebua Chulia (Chulia Street). As a former mansion in decay, this lovely refurbished guest house is like stepping back in time. With photos adorning the walls of its crumbling old charms, one can visually experience what it was like in the past while stepping on its creaky floor.

The rooms are nicely finished in pure white with a generous sized queen bed, drawer, night stand, modern television and air conditioning unit. The wifi – for the most part – works rather well. The bathrooms are shared (quite typical in Malaysia) but unlike other guest houses I’ve stayed at, these were impeccably clean.

Coming in at 80 Ringgit, we thought the price we paid versus the value we received was excellent. We thought it would be interesting sharing our experiences staying at this hotel with plenty of history, quirks and modern day charms.

Staying at the Chulia Heritage Hotel in George Town - Penang, Malaysia

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Nick (theboywander) July 7, 2013 at 4:03 am

Looks so relaxing, I find I occasionally have to lash out on a nice hotel room with a bit of privacy just to keep my sanity.


Samuel Jeffery July 16, 2013 at 12:22 pm

Thanks Nick!

It was definitely relaxing. The last time we stayed in George Town our room didn’t even have AC and we suffered because of it.


Freya July 15, 2013 at 10:29 am

I totally agree with you. I like to have some comfort – and mainly clean bathroom – as well when staying somewhere.
Looks like a lovely place, great find and definitely on my list for when I go to Penang Island.


Samuel Jeffery July 16, 2013 at 12:28 pm

That’s great Freya! We really enjoyed our stay. I honestly can’t believe how much I was willing to rough it in my earlier backpacking day 😉


Michele July 21, 2013 at 7:51 am

We stayed there when it first opened and it was very white :-)

The room we had was at the front and was all windows open to the foyer meaning we couldn’t have any light into the room that said we found it pretty good value for money.

We also really enjoyed the little restaurant next door Stardust? for breakfast very good food and good value.


Mary @ Green Global Travel August 8, 2014 at 5:52 am

Important to be comfortable enough when you travel, so you can enjoy the trip without worrying about the little things! The hotel you stayed at looks great! Thanks for sharing your review!


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