Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Heard of Cheong Fatt Tze?

There is a common history behind these two buildings, even though one is in Qingdao, China and the other, Penang, Malaysia.

I was doing a study on Chinese wines. Changyu being the No 1 winemaker in China was naturally my first 'port' of call. There is a Changyu wine museum in Qingdao itself and along the Qingdao-Yantai highway, one can also visit its flagship vineyard and winery. Below is a picture of the latter, architecturally of which is very pseudo-French. The founder, of course, was Changyu.

In France? No!
But who was this Changyu? Someone told me that Changyu had spent a substantial part of his life in Penang, which led me to a visit to the Blue Mansion near Lebuh Farquhar in Penang. The Blue Mansion is also known as Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion. Apparently, Changyu was Cheong Fatt Tze. Amazing!

The Blue Mansion in Penang

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