9 April 2016
A visit to Han Chin Pet Soo, the Hakka Tin-mining Museum
Han Chin Pet Soo – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Han Chin Pet Soo (simplified Chinese: 闲真别墅; traditional Chinese: 閒真別墅; pinyin: Xián Zhēn Bié Shù) is Malaysia’s first Hakka Tin mining Museum managed by Ipoh World Sdn. Bhd. Located on the edge of Ipoh’s Old Town, close to the Kinta River. Within walking distance of the well-known Panglima Lane (Concubine Lane), it is the #1 attraction in Ipoh on TripAdvisor.
Originally the home of the Hakka Tin Miners Club, founded in 1893. The building was rebuilt in 1929 to replace the earlier double-storey club house on the same site. This unique museum encompasses approximately 5000 square feet over three floors. On display are artifacts, collectibles, ephemeras and also photographs from the 19th and 20th century. True to life murals painted by local students of the Perak Institute of Art (PIA) provides the experience of a tin mine.
Opening in February 2015, the museum attracted more than 6000 visitors in the first six months and is steadily increasing. It is open from Tuesday to Sunday but visitors are required to make bookings online prior to their visit.
This was the second place I went to with blogger, Jeyanthi Desan, of ‘HAPPY GO KL’ and her husband, Murali, and kids, S and V.
We had strolled along Concubine Lane earlier. At the end of Concubine lane, you can see Han Chin Pet Soo across the road.
For our leisurely walk along Concubine Lane, see:
We are early for the 3.30pm tour, so while waiting, I snap photos of V (left photo) and S (right photo).
By the way, here is an insight into the Hakka people.
It’s time for the tour so in we go…
The dining room is the first place we see. If you wish to eat here in this place, this is where you sit. Give them 3 weeks’ notice and they will serve you and your guests a sumptuous Hakka meal. GENUINE Hakka food!
Here is a selection of Hakka food. I see many that I grew up eating. Yes, I am Hakka. I even wrote my MA thesis on the Taiping Rebellion in China, a Hakka-Christian millenary revolution.
These are some of my favourites…
This is yummy but strictly haram.
Not many food sellers make this well….
This is sold in food centres.
But enough of food. It’s time to show photos of tin mining…
This is a dulang washer. She stands in the river and washes the silt with a dulang (pan) to get the tin ore. Do you see her dulang pass, that piece of paper on her basket?
Here is a close-up of the Dulang Pass.
Han Chin Pet Soo was originally a Hakka Tin Miners’ Club where the rich Hakka miners wined and dined and gambled (and whored, I suspect).
They were reminded of the 4 Evils but they practised three of them here: Opium, Gambling and Prostitution (Japanese women)…
Rich Hakka miners needed to eat at the Club…
Here is the kitchen with utensils and other paraphernalia…
Here is something familiar! It’s a mosquito spray and I used one of these until 1963!
The rich Hakka miners enjoyed an opium session occasionally (until they became addicted, and then it was more than occasionally).
Gambling was usually in the form of mahjong.
You could also play cards. Blackjack, anyone?
The women in those days were invariably Japanese. What a surprise!
I see familiar things such as Bovril and Meadow Gold condensed milk.
Horlicks! Milo (always in a green tun, even today). Fernleaf. Quaker oats.
Recognise the name? Knife brand is alive and well today…
It’s time to acknowledge the guy who started the Club that eventually became this museum…
It’s time to leave.
It’s been great having you, Jeyanthi, Murali, S and V.