OUR STORY

Located on the banks of the river which in yesteryear teemed with Chinese junks and spice-laden vessels from all over the world, The Majestic Malacca provides a glimpse into the splendid saga of an extraordinary empire. Steeped in a rich tapestry of multicultural influences reflected in its heritage architecture, diverse lifestyles and eclectic cuisine, this classic hotel is an integral part of Malacca’s colourful history.

The heart of the hotel is a restored 1920s Straits Settlement mansion complete with its original porcelain tile flooring and teakwood fittings. It has been sympathetically extended to house the guest rooms and suites as well as an award-winning spa that is a reflection of that era, melding luxury, modernity and tradition.

A HISTORIC JOURNEY

THE MANSION

The origins of The Majestic Malacca began in 1929 as a private mansion of a tycoon named Leong Long Man where imported Victorian tiles, stained glass windows, expensive furniture and fittings were all incorporated into his home. Sadly, he fell ill and died in 1931, just two years after moving in. His son entrusted with the family estates squandered his inheritance and eventually sold the mansion to a businessman named Lim Heng Fang in 1955.

Fortuitously, Mr. Lim preserved the building and converted it into The Majestic Hotel. It became quite de rigueur to stay at the hotel in the 1950s and 60s with a clientele that comprised mainly of British planters and even played host to Malaysia's first prime minister when he announced the former British colony's independence in 1957.

Before its doors closed in 31 July 2000, the hotel had taken a turn for the worse, operating as a guesthouse with a dilapidated air. A public outcry to restore the mansion back to its former glory ensued in the years after its closure. Acknowledging the need to preserve an integral part of Malacca's rich heritage, YTL Hotels stepped in and the property acquisition was finalised in 2006. Sparing no expense, the historic building was fully restored and reopened as The Majestic Malacca in January 2008 with much fanfare.

THE HISTORY

Once a small fishing village, Malacca grew to become the seat of one of the most powerful sultanate from the 14th century under the leadership of a Sumatran prince named Parameswara. By the 15th century, it was a prosperous commercial hub for the trade of Eastern treasures – silk and porcelain from China, textiles from India, spices from the Moluccas, gold from Sumatra, camphor from Borneo and tin from west Malaya.

The lucrative trade and strategic position on the Straits of Malacca from a military standpoint soon drew the attention of the European powers. In 1511, the Portuguese arrived and began a European presence in Malacca that lasted for the next 450 years, before being succeeded by the Dutch and then by the British. Independence for Malacca and the rest of the nation was gained on 31 August 1957 and on 7 July 2008, Malacca was granted UNESCO World Heritage status.

These successive imperial powers along with local Malays and merchants from China, Arabia and India each left their mark in this former Straits Settlement, creating the city’s enduring allure steeped in a rich tapestry of multicultural influences that is reflected in its architecture, diverse lifestyles and eclectic cuisine today.

CULTURAL HERITAGE

The Kristang heritage, a culture unique to Malacca, arose between the 16th and 17th century when the city was a port and the base of the Portuguese Empire. A creole ethnic group of people of mixed European and Malaccan descent, the Kristang community largely originated during the age of Portuguese exploration. Malacca, then Portugal's main hub of commerce on the lucrative spice route, welcomed weary travellers, mostly sailors, traders and soldiers, many of whom married local native women. Their descendants marked the beginning of the Kristang community, mainly of Portuguese descent though many also have a strong Dutch heritage, as well as some British, Chinese and Indian ancestry; over generations creating their own culture, language and customs.

As a coastal city and thriving port, cross-cultural marriages were not uncommon and as generations passed, this not only resulted in the Kristangs but also the Peranakans. These distinct communities are a legacy of another time; of entwined cultures; of intermingled religions, languages and customs; of cuisine combining the best of several worlds; of ceremonies, feasts and festivals that live on in family scrapbooks and through stories passed down over the centuries to today's descendants.

The locally popular love ballad, Dondang Sayang is perhaps the quintessence of Malacca's unique intermingling of cultures. Originating in the city several hundred years ago, Dondang Sayang is a traditional Malay form of entertainment influenced by Portuguese folk music. Informal, light hearted and often humorous, Baba (male) and Nyonya (female) Peranakan singers exchange improvised Malay poetry against a melodic live instrumental backdrop.

A walk through Malacca will transport anyone back to the golden age of this colonial town that served as a link for East and West all those centuries ago. Its succession of rich cultural influences are still evident in its city centre, a vibrant testimony to its unique living multi-cultural heritage that continues to thrive to this day.

THE CUISINE

Nowhere is Malacca’s cultural diversity more evident than in its food – a curious marriage of culinary traditions stemming from all corners of the globe. At the Majestic Malacca, guests can sample two distinctive cuisines, each with its own idiosyncratic features yet emblematic to Malacca.

Kristang cuisine, with its fiery sambals, comforting stews and fragrant coconut curries, is an ode to Malacca’s cosmopolitan past. While not as well-known as other ethnicities that comprise Malacca’s colourful ethnological tapestry, the ever elusive Kristang cuisine is influenced by a harmonious mix of culinary styles including Dutch, Portuguese, Malay, Indian and Chinese - making it unlike any other yet uniquely Malaccan. Where Peranakan cuisine is characterised by complex, labour intensive methods, the beauty of Kristang cooking lies in its simplicity, emphasizing high-quality and the freshest of ingredients.

Synonymous with Malacca, the Peranakan cuisine passed down through the generations is one of the most enduring aspects of the Baba-Nyonya legacy. Fresh herbs, spices and ingredients are pounded using a pestle and mortar to achieve the delectable and flavourful recipe. Taught to master the art of cooking, it is said the Kebaya-clad Nyonya is able to determine a daughter-in-law’s cooking skill simply by listening to her proficiency in using a mortar!

Traditional Kristang dishes such as Aros Fretu Keluak and Kari Seccu can be sampled over lunch and dinner at The Mansion while the colourful traditional Peranakan cakes known as kuih can be tasted over casual afternoon tea at the lounge.

AROUND HERE

Imaginations are coaxed to wander back to the past with meandering 600-year-old narrow pathways and red brick Dutch colonial buildings. Close to the famed Stadthuys, built by the Dutch in 1650, and a short stroll from the Jonker and Heeren heritage areas, The Majestic Malacca is steeped in the multi-faceted history that surrounds it and ideal for those seeking a vibrant cultural escape.

Our Guest Services team will be happy to provide further local information during your stay.

NEARBY ATTRACTIONS CRAFTS THINGS TO DO

FACILITIES & SERVICES

LIBRARY

Original floor tiles offset the porcelain of traditional lamps; fine ceramic ware and portraits of the past are bathed in soft light streaming through louvered windows. Welcoming leather sofas and armchairs invite you to sit back and take your imagination back in time, exploring the history of your surroundings through a collection of tales from the past.

SWIMMING POOL

Set between the Spa Village and the gymnasium, the beautiful outdoor swimming pool provides a refreshing dip and an opportunity to soak up the tropical sun. Stylish loungers lining the waterside invite languorous relaxation with a cold drink in hand.

GYMNASIUM

Situated alongside the swimming pool, the glass-enclosed gymnasium offers a wide range of exercise equipment for guests seeking a total invigorating workout. Tone up muscles or test your physical limits and relax by the poolside post workout.

CONFERENCE ROOMS

The commercial foundations of Malacca are reflected in The Majestic Malacca with three conference rooms designed to provide the ideal setting for business interactions or unique social events. Flexible configurations allow for cocktail receptions of up to 100 people and seats 80 for dinner. Our professional banqueting and meeting planners work with every organiser to ensure successful events.
TOURS
Our location is perfectly situated to explore the myriad of activities offered and we will be happy to assist with bookings.
GOLF
We will be delighted to arrange a round of golf for you at the course of your choice in and around Malacca.
MEDICAL
Should you need medical assistance, our Guest Services team will assist to contact or direct you to the nearest clinic or hospital.
MAILING
Please contact Guest Services for any courier, overnight mail or express mail services. Postcards and stamps are also available for purchase.
OTHERS
Concierge, Babysitting, Laundry, Valet Services, Limousine and Taxi services, including daily newspaper and Wi-Fi access in selected areas are available.
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