Loke Mansion (GPS: 5.43582, 100.3123), also called Loke Villa, is a handsome heritage villa in Gurney Drive, Penang. Loke Mansion was built by Alan Loke, the son of tycoon Loke Yew, in the Arts & Crafts architecture style around 1924-25. The northern seafront where it was located, which is today Gurney Drive, was then called North Beach. This is one of the properties associated with Loke Yew, the richest man in British Malaya at the turn of the 20th century, that I have documented, the others being Loke Hall and Loke Mansion in Kuala Lumpur.
For many years, Loke Mansion was occupied by Alan's brother Loke Wan Yat, who raised his family in its grand surrounding. After the family left Penang, Loke Mansion was left uninhabited, safe for its loyal caretaker who continued to maintain the building in as well a condition as could be expected. However, natural wear-and-tear manifested in the form of leaky roofs, broken gutters, and other general dilapidation. A restoration was carried out in 2003.
Loke Mansion is built on a plan like a butterfly, with two outstretched wings. Despite it looking big from the outside, it is actually quite small and cosy inside. The central foyer is where one of the two sets of staircase going upstairs is located. The living room and dining room are on the east wing, with a pantry and doorway to the kitchen quarters. The west wing is presently a storage area holding. Upstairs are a few bedrooms and bathrooms.
Loke Mansion (24 August, 2013)
Loke Mansion, Kuala Lumpur
Loke Yew's Mansion in Kuala Lumpur is also called Loke Mansion.
Loke Mansion is open for a rare visit on 18 April and 21 April, 2012. Entry is by donation of RM50 per person. Refreshment will be provided. Those wishing to visit should register your booking with the Penang Heritage Trust at 04 264 2631 before the date. Only a limited number of visitors are accepted.
Loke Mansion, main gate to Gurney Drive (4 June 2006)
Kelawei Lane entrance to Loke Mansion (19 June, 2014)
Loke Mansion, seaward view (9 Oct 2009)
Loke Mansion, couch in the living room (9 Oct 2009)
Loke Mansion, grandfather's clock, dining room (9 Oct 2009)
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