Postcard from the Oriental Hotel: George Town, Then & Now

AN ISLAMIC NEIGHBOURHOOD was holding a garage sale in the middle of downtown George Town, Malaysia back in February. V and I spent close to 30 minutes rummaging through the stock, eventually leaving with just one item: a postcard of the very hotel we’d checked into the previous day, the Oriental. It was uncanny. I tried to take a replica shot, but the honking traffic of modernity made running in the middle of the street a challenge, and then it started to rain and I got angry and hungry, so the shot you see below is the best I could do.

I think what’s surprising isn’t how different it looks today, but how similar. It summarizes what I love about the UNESCO city’s preservation efforts: touring George Town really does feel like you’ve stepped back in time.


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