by M&C Asia | March 13, 2018

Firmly established as a top leisure destination in Malaysia, Penang has all the ingredients that draw tourists from around the world. All it needs to throw in are modern convention facilities and a professional MICE workforce - and that's what the city has been cooking up.

"One of the major projects (in Penang) is the Penang Waterfront Convention Centre that is due to complete in 2021. There will also be nine new hotels that will be up by 2019," shared Ashwin Gunasekeran, CEO of Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB). "These upcoming infrastructures will not only further boost Penang's appeal in the Business Events industry, but also give a boost to Penang's capacity in accommodating larger numbers of delegates for corporate events, meetings and conferences."

The Penang Convention and Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) was just established in 2016, and in that year alone it secured 1,251 events for the city. In 2017, Penang was selected to host the World Seafood Congress in 2019 - the first Asian country to host the global event.

Penang in Numbers

  • 25 cities with non-stop flights to Penang, including Doha (Qatar), commencing February 2018
  • 8,000 people: capacity of the Setia SPICE Convention Centre, the first hybrid solar-powered convention centre in the world
  • RM 375m investment into developing the Penang Waterfront Convention Centre (PWCC), which will open late 2021

A Rich Heritage

Penang's history as a sultanate, colonial outpost, and trading port has resulted in a panoply of colourful festivals, tantalising cuisine, and more. For delegates, unique venues offer the finest first-hand experience of Penang's cultural diversity.

Surrounded by a 130 million year old rainforest and boasting the highest vantage point on Penang Island, The Habitat Penang Hill can host receptions for up to 500. It's especially suitable for eco-conscious groups: The Habitat employs green initiatives in its everyday operations, including a "no single-use plastic bottle" policy.

Immerse guests in Penang's Chinese clan heritage at Khoo Kongsi, a clan house in state capital and UNSECO-listed George Town. Converted from a bungalow in 1851, the beautifully preserved venue comprises a courtyard that seats 400 in a banquet setting, while traditional Indian Bharatanatyam, Chinese lion dance, or Malay Kuda Kepang performances enthrall attendees.