HISTORY

This handsome 3 storey building that is China Tiger today stands as one of the oldest town houses in Penang.

Once a private residence to Chinese merchants dating back to 1846, it was rebuilt in an Art-Deco style in the late 1940’s to early 50’s, and fell to shambles in the 1980's when it became home to hundreds of Swiftlet birds in an illegal urban bird nest farm, causing major structural damage to the building’s interior. 

Owners Rebecca and David Wilkinson purchased the neglected building in 2006 and began a lengthy process of restoration and redevelopment, finally outfitting the place as you see it today with a mixture of old and new furniture, found objects, and artwork by Rebecca herself alongside pieces from the couple’s private collection. 

China Street’s history goes back as one of the first streets in Georgetown, having been founded in 1798 within a few years of Francis Light’s arrival. Home to Penang’s earliest Hokkien and Cantonese settlers, you’ll find some of the oldest Chinese town and shop houses on this road, as well as the oldest Chinese temple in Penang at the head, dedicated to ‘Kuan Yin’ - the Goddess of Mercy. 

Today, China Tiger sits in a very central location within George Town’s UNESCO Heritage Zone. On the edge of Little India around the corner from the main banking district, there’s plenty of great food, markets, and culture here all year round. 

We encourage you to explore our city on foot, trishaw, taxi, or any of the free public buses in the core zone, and we hope you’ll enjoy coming home to China Tiger!