We had the opportunity to visit the recently refurbished Campbell House which in its short few months has attracted attention and rave reviews from the likes of Conde Naste and The New York Times. Not without just cause I might add.
The fabulous renovation of this boutique heritage Hotel is much more than the excellent design features which take you back to the opulence of a bygone era.
The real reason this little gem set in the heart of George Town, Penang is attracting such rave reviews has a lot to do with the hands-on owners, Roberto and Nardya.
When you call to make a booking, when you arrive to check in, when your luggage is carried aloft by ropes and pulleys it is Roberto and Nardya that will be there to greet you and see to your every need.
Nardya comes from an accomplished career in VIP customer service for a large chain of Casino’s that has seen her looking after the jet-set, high-rollers and seeing to their every desire. This level of service that only the ultra wealthy usually get to experience is heaped on every guest at Campbell House.
When you take breakfast, lunch or dinner it is the owners themselves that will be looking after you with their one-of-a-kind personal attention.
This does not mean they haven’t any staff, just that they believe in the personal touch which leaves you feeling as if you are personal guests
in their family home.
The level of luxury from the deep comfortable beds through to the espresso machines in every room as well as the iPod docking stations puts Campbell House into the new breed of luxury boutique heritage Hotels that has emerged from the UNESCO heritage status bestowed upon George Town, Penang in 2008.
Food plays a large part in the story of Penang and these heritage hotels are no exception to this rule. Campbell House has a very fine Italian restaurant, Il Navaro, which is as authentic as they come.
Roberto, who hails from Venice in the North of Italy, has been involved in Italian restaurants for the past 3 decades and the menu on offer has exceptional depth and variety.
The menu is equally notable for the items that are not on offer as for those that are. No spaghetti Bolagnese, no Lasagne, but great traditional Italian cooking of the highest standards, including traditional Italian Pizza to die for!
The room rates are extremely reasonable when compared to anywhere else on the planet of equal quality, with rates starting as low as US$ 120 per night including breakfast.
A decent meal can be yours from as little as RM 18 (US$6) but if you love Italian food as much as me you will be a little more adventurous and take advantage of this Northern Italian paradise and push the boat out a little with a 3 course meal and a nice bottle of wine.
Look out for our feature on Heritage Hotels in next month’s edition of ‘What’s On Penang’ which will have more details about Campbell House’s accommodation.
Address: 106 Lebuh Campbell
Phone: +60 426 18290
How To Get There:
First crossroads inside Campbell Street, on
your left. Right in the heart of George Town.