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“a dream you can afford” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Eastern & Oriental Hotel

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Eastern & Oriental Hotel
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   10 Farquhar Street, George Town, Penang Island 10200, Malaysia   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 54 Hotels in George Town
Paris
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“a dream you can afford”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2010

excellent hotel, well located, old fashioned and luxurious. We went there as the hotel was recommended by a friend. It was a bit above our budget but this kind of hotel would be 2 or 3 times more expensive in any other place. So let's get crazy and afford a Palace for a couple of night. The swimming pool is fantastic and the service first class. We arrived there at 6am after a harsh night of transit in a bus and did not expect to have a room before 12am minimum...but they managed to find one for us ; this is what you can expect from a first class hotel. And the breakfast.....

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Hayling Island
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2010

We were both very impressed with the E&O hotel and Penang. The hotel offers a great service, the staff are friendly and helpful. The E&O restaurants offer a broad range of menu's and prices, and if you stay for a few days it is worth exploring the different reataurants in the hotel, particularly the buffet which I think was on the Sunday evening. There is plenty to see in the local area and getting around is very easy either by foot or by taxi - sightseeing by taxi for 4 hours costs about 35 UK Pounds - and you can do this directly wit the taxi driver. I enjoyed the best curry I have ever had, eaten from a banana leaf , in a restaurant the taxi driver recomended, and I do not know its name or even its address - but it was fantastic !!! We will be back - volcano's allowing.

Oh - nearly forgot - the suite in the hotel was roomy, comfortable with a great bathroom but we never used the butler.

Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
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Hong Kong
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
273 helpful votes 273 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2010

My mother, partner and I stayed at the Eastern and Oriental for three nights from April 22-25, 2010. This charming old hotel has so much potential to be in the same league as the Oriental in Bangkok or the Metropole in Hanoi, but it is not. The hotel misses opportunities to deliver in almost every area. A great example is the breakfast. There are too many staff doing too little to smile, serve and clear the tables. Why the hotel chooses the front of the restaurant as an employee break area is beyond me. As the staff enjoy there cigarettes and tea in the open break areas, the guests beyond wait for things as simple as tea refills.

The staff lack any energy, smiles or passion. I can count on one hand the number of staff during our stay who smiled at us, greeted us or were even generally friendly. The recommendations made by the "concirege" desk made me believe the staff had not ever ventured beyond a few blocks from the hotel property. The restaurant they set us to one night was, like the Eastern and Oriental, was lacking in all areas.The fitness center was totally inadequate and out of date. I was oversold by the website description of the amenities provided. This hotel would do well for a complete management makeover.

A stay at the E&O is not inexpensive even through the package we booked with Cathay Pacific Holidays. If you choose to stay in lovely Penang, try one of the newer international hotels on the beach.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2010

Good points:
Location – in the heart of the World Heritage site.
Large spacious bedrooms and bathrooms (in a premier suite)
Staff – friendly and willing

Bad points:
Room furnishings are tired and in need of refurbishment; lighting is poor, TVs are old and both had reception problems; beds are very hard, pillows too soft. A pillow menu was discovered on the last night, so we were able to change to firmer ones. Rooms are as quiet as most hotels, with the usual problems of noisy door closing.

F&B facilities are a major problem in this hotel. Food quality is poor throughout. The limited choice of facilities centres around Sarkies Corner, a coffee shop, which focuses almost exclusively on buffet – at breakfast, lunch and dinner. The breakfast wait staff were scarce, but appeared after I went to the reception to ask for service. This included an absence of the maitre’d. The omelet was tasteless, and the only cheese that one could add was packaged parmesan. Buffet lunch (only) was essentially for local Georgetown custom, and was packed, resembling a loud and noisy food court. The alternative – room service was not suitable as we had an urgent appointment, and delivery was 20-25 minutes. The bar offered a salad/sandwich menu, but the Caesar salad was extremely disappointing – bottled ranch style dressing, with stale packet croutons. Dinner was again a huge disappointment, with regurgitated food in chafers, fish that smelled, and all of poor quality.

Exercise facilities are very second rate. The gym is an afterthought in a narrow corridor between another corridor and the pool, and is used for access to the pool. There is no gym manager, and therefore no one who knows how the dated machines work. The pool attendant seemed unaware, and when asked to explain the machines, disappeared. I went to reception and had various staff looking at the machines, until they worked out how to operate them. The pool itself is inadequate for the number of guest suites, and there are no separate facilities for children, so using the pool is not a pleasant experience, if you are looking for a quiet area in which to relax.

The staff are friendly, and appear willing. However, the fault in this entire hotel must rest with the poor management. There is clearly no attention to detail, and presumably a lazy attitude to improving standards. The E&O is considered 5 star and the best hotel in Georgetown. But there is no competition, so standards are low. On a normal scale this hotel is not awful, but it is certainly not 5 star, so manage your expectations accordingly. I think some people are impressed by decaying icons in whatever state they find them. Personally, I prefer icons to be maintained to a high standard, which then justifies the prices that are being charged.

Overall this visit was a huge disappointment. My parents stayed here in the 1950s, and I visited in the 1980s, for a cup of coffee. My experience means that I will not return to the hotel, indeed to Georgetown, and probably not to Penang, which has very limited attractions. The beach facilities at Batu Ferringi which might be a reason for coming to Penang, have been destroyed by over building, and there are much better destinations for that purpose in other parts of Asia.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
England
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2010

I stayed here as a stop over while on a business trip to Kuala Lumpur. As you enter the hotel's reception area you realise that you are stepping in to a world long forgotten. The colonial decor and the smartly dressed staff brought a smile to my face and the cool wet towel a welcome relief to the back of my neck. The rooms, as far as I could gather, were all suites. Reception area, bedroom and huge bathroom made up the space in my suite and every bit of furniture was antique or at least a replica of the original. I was lucky to get a suite at the rear overlooking the rectangular pool and the ocean. The bell to call the butler and the pillow menu, if you fancied a firmer or softer place to rest your head, impressed me. A lot of the guests were quite senior in years but I could see why this place attracted them, some of them obviously returning year after year. It is a quiet hotel and you can be waited on from morning until morning if you so desire. The bar closed a little early and there seemed to be few takers so was pretty much empty of an evening. There is a display cabinet in the foyer with photographs of past guests of the hotel. These ranged from presidents to silent kings and queens of Hollywood so I felt liek I was in good company. I checked out some other hotels on the island and the Easteran and Oriental seemed to be the best on offer by some way. enjoy. Wasn't massively impressed with Penang, but that said I didn't get up to much and probably could have if I had wanted to. The corridors are a little reminiscent of an asylum, wide and bare, not that I have stayed in one.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Sydney
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2010

We stayed here for eight nights and we wished we could stay longer. This is the third time we stayed at the E&O and I hope there will be many more in the near future. The check-in went smoothly as per usual. We asked and was given a room on the third floor next to the E&O suite. Had a sneak peak at the room. Awesome but unless I have cash to throw away, we are happy with the room we were given.

We felt so pampered, having our bedsheets changed every morning, and the bed turned down in the evening. As for the breakfast, what can I say. So many tasty dishes to choose. We will definitely be back.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Singpore
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2010

read review about this hotel in TA and booked the room. The reviews did not disappoint me and my partner as the room is beautiful and service is good. Staff was very friendly and even introduce us on places of interest in Georgetown! Thumbs up! Will definitely be back again!

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Eastern & Oriental Hotel

Address: 10 Farquhar Street, George Town, Penang Island 10200, Malaysia
Location: Malaysia > Penang > Penang Island > George Town
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in George Town
#1 Business Hotel in George Town
#2 Family Hotel in George Town
#5 Romantic Hotel in George Town
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Eastern & Oriental Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 99
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Eastern & Oriental Hotel is the embodiment of both a special time and a special place. For well over a century, this remarkable hotel - known simply as `The E&O' to generations of travellers - has stood as a testament to the grand elegance of the British colonial era.In many ways, it has also come to represent Penang itself; its story inextricably woven into the island's history, its traditions an indelible part of many a traveller's treasured memory, its name synonymous with the magical island once known as The Pearl Of the Orient. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Eastern And Oriental Hotel
Eastern Oriental Georgetown
Eastern & Oriental Hotel Penang/George Town

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