Gopeng has another attraction, Heritage House, a restored shop lot located at No. 6 Jalan Sungai Itek, a stone´s throw away from Museum Gopeng on Jalan Eu Kong, 2.
The opening ceremony also coincided with Museum Gopeng’s second anniversary, World Heritage Day and the book launch of “The Osborne and Chappel Story: Tin Mining in Malaysia” a book depicting O&C’s involvement in the tin mining industry in the Kinta Valley. The book was written by former employees of O&C David Palmer and Michael Joll.
Heritage House is owned by the treasurer of Museum Gopeng and is being managed by Museum Gopeng.
Ng Yen Yen in her speech praised the organisers “for being visionaries first by opening the Museum and now Heritage House”.
However, she advised that for Gopeng to be a successful tourist town “all the town’s residents must participate. Keeping the town clean, planting plants outside their homes, having good food and shopping will attract tourists because tourism is a people interactive industry. Tour guides are necessary otherwise tourists will come not knowing about Gopeng. All of these must be in place otherwise Gopeng will not reap the benefits that come with tourism.”
Museum Gopeng’s president, Bernard Yaw, acknowledged the advice by Ng and responded that Museum Gopeng on its part has created “awareness of the town” with the opening of the Museum two years ago and had also come out with its own Heritage Trail map despite its very limited budget.
“Heritage House will further complement the tourism attraction of Gopeng,” he added. For the future Bernard indicated that he planned to engage students, possibly from UTAR to be tourist guides and envisaged the possibility of Gopeng becoming an “art village”.
Meanwhile, visitors will be able to appreciate the heritage feel of Heritage House which has been decorated with furniture from 100 years ago.
Heritage House also has three bedrooms upstairs which will be available for rent. According to Yaw these are to be used as “Boutique Heritage Stays” and themed to that period with four poster beds and similar bedroom furniture. “It would be suitable for whole families or wedding shoots,” he said.
For the time being Heritage House is only open during Saturdays and Sundays. However visitors intending to visit during the weekdays may contact Mr Phang, Curator of Museum Gopeng in advance at 05-3597828 for entry.