Experience Penang: Wedding/romance
Your fairytale wedding is nigh but whoever said it was all fun and games? In a nutshell, the big day is going to involve flawlessly orchestrating the behaviours, conversations, drinking habits and habits of a large group of in-laws, out-laws, friends, strangers and coworkers while simultaneously having a meaningful and intimate exchange with your beloved in front of an audience.
When it comes to the ideal wedding venue, however, Penang, will make it easy for you because it has everything a bride could want… in spades. Say ‘I do’ inside the sultry confines of the lush 8-acre jungle of the Tropical Spice Garden (Lone Crag Villa, Lot 595 Mukim 2, Jalan Teluk Bahang. +604 881 1797/www.tropicalspicegarden.com) where you and your partner can exchange rings amongst the flora, fauna and water features. Themes are the watchword here, so may we suggest a Peranakan theme, replete with period decoration? An intimate and luxurious ceremony can also be held at the sea-fronting Lone Pine Hotel (97 Baru Ferringhi. +604 886 8686/ www.lonepinehotel.com) shaded by the casuarina trees along the beach or within the colonial aesthetics of its rooms and facilities. This would be an ideal place for a honeymoon (it is the only luxury boutique hotel on the island).
Penang’s beautiful outdoors are at your full disposal here so we suggest making full use of it. We like the idea of having an outdoor wedding in the well-manicured and private environs of the Shangri-La’s Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa (Batu Ferringhi Beach. +604 888 8888/www.shangri-la.com). This particular outdoor wedding package also provides you a wedding planner for all your possible wants and to deal with all of the chaos of the day, so you won’t have to. The Parkroyal Penang Resort (Batu Ferringhi Beach. +604 881 1133/www.parkroyal hotels.com) also take their inspiration from Mother Nature and base the premise of their weddings on the changing seasons of the year. We’re fond of the idea of a winter wedding with its use of shimmery white setting; a Summertime wedding also wouldn’t go amiss if you’re the type of girl who adores vibrant colours as a backdrop. The Hard Rock Hotel Penang (Batu Ferringhi Beach. +604 881 1711/penang,hardrockhotels.net) offers a special wedding package as well, encompassing a complimentary one night’s stay in a Celebruty Suite and usage of their private, manicured gardens.
For those couples that desire something more elaborate, heritage weddings are booming around the island, what with all the period buildings and architecture at hand. The Cheong Fatt Tze Mansion (14 Lebuh Leith. +604 262 0006/www.cheongfatttzemansion.com) needs no introduction to those familiar with Penang’s heritage history and has been used as a wedding backdrop for many, many couples. If you have money to spare, rent out the entire Chinese mansion for your family and friends – kitchens, bedrooms, halls, courtyards and all – for a wedding weekend. Syazlynia Rahim