Wisma Yeap Chor Ee (GPS: 5.41513, 100.3424) is an elegant historic building at China Street Ghaut, Penang. Built in 1922, it once belonged to its namesake, a rags-to-riches China-born tycoon who owned all the properties on the south side of China Street Ghaut. The whitewashed building has a built up area of 3,939.27 square meters. It is three storeys tall and its exterior façade is rusticated, in keeping with the look and feel of other period buildings in the area.
24 February, 2016 The Penang Science Cluster, now housed within Wisma Yeap Chor Ee, is collaborating with the Penang State Library and Cytron Technologies to carry out a School Holiday Program of robotics workshop and robot games for the March 2016 mid-term school holidays, from 12 March to 19 March 2016. For more details, visit the info page www.rero.io/news/19
10 October, 2015: The restored Wisma Yeap Chor Ee opens as CAT, which can stand for Creative Animation Triggers or Creative Analytics Technology (acatpenang.com). The building will also house the Penang Science Cluster on the ground floor. As CAT, the building will have an exhibition area, workshop and training area, a café and indoor and outdoor garages.
4 July, 2014: The Star reports that Wisma Yeap Chor Ee, which is again undergoing restoration, will house the Penang Science Cafe when restoration is completed. The project is financed by the Penang Development Corporation, PDC, at a cost of RM5 million. The science cafe will be operated by Penang Science Cluster. According to the report, the building is now owned by Wawasan Open University.
More about the Yeap Chor Ee Building
Wisma Yeap Chor Ee, or Yeap Chor Ee Building, has been a witness to the heydays of the Penang Port, when Weld Quay was a hive of activity, as bumboats bring goods from ships to awaiting lorries (and earlier, bullock carts). The building used to house merchantile offices related to the harbour, but over the years, has had to struggle in reinventing itself. For a while it housed the Rainbow Art Gallery, one of the few galleries showcasing artworks in Penang.
Side view of Wisma Yeap Chor Ee, George Town (28 May, 2005)
Wisma Yeap Chor Ee was used as a set for the 2008 movie Lust, Caution which stars Tony Leung and was directed by Ang Lee. After the movie was completed, the building underwent restoration. It belongs to the Yeap Chor Ee Endowment Trust. It is one of the buildings leased to the Wawasan Open University, the others being Homestead and 7 China Street Ghaut. The university in turn leased it to Tourism Malaysia. According to a 2007 report, there were plans to turn it into a boutique hotel. However, at time of writing (June 2011) the plans have not materialized.
Wisma Yeap Chor Ee before restoration (29 January, 2005)
Wisma Yeap Chor Ee is located at the junction of China Street Ghaut and Weld Quay. From the Weld Quay Ferry & Bus Terminal, it is within a short walking distance.
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