Hotels

In the White Room

A Weird and Wonderful Malaysian Mansion

74727ef7dd0e2adea73066a7b88bb126ba061b5b13 PhotosMacalister Mansion
Pro tip: never take LSD in Malaysia.

For one: you could get like 30 years. Or the death penalty. Seriously.

Fortunately, you really don’t need psychedelics when you’ve already got pastel-colored deer grazing about your hotel.

Welcome to the Macalister Mansion, a 19th-century colonial manor in Penang that’s been transformed into a luxurious acid trip of a boutique hotel, taking reservations now.

You’ll see it from a distance: a fenced-in beacon of whitewashed opulence. And then you see the giant stone head in the driveway. Interesting. You get closer. The house gets bigger. You see the bar adjacent to the pool. You feel like you’re on the set of The Bachelor: Malaysia. You’re not, but run with it: exit your car in slow motion; kiss the concierge’s hand; say, “Yes, I would prefer the sonnet room.”

And then go to that sonnet room—one of only eight rooms in the place. This one has old-English poetry on its wall. Read it out loud. Hmm... that felt weird. All right: time to explore.

There’s the dining room, with those pink and blue deer. Best not disturb them. There’s the living room—ooh, a nice pastry bar. But it’s not really time for pastries. Okay, head to the actual bar—there’s a glowing moose head on the wall.

Pro tip: he’s not your bartender.

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