If you are a fan of heritage buildings and are planning to get to know more about the beauty as well as history of heritages buildings in Malaysia, the Badan Warisan Malaysia (The Heritage of Malaysia Trust) is definitely your best bet. Founded in 1983 for the conservation of Malaysia’s architectural heritage, Badan Warisan is a non-government and non-profit organization that runs regular campaigns and projects to save historical buildings from neglect and destruction.
The headquarter of Badan Warisan is rightly located in a 1920s British colonial style bungalow on Jalan Stonor (Stonor Street) in the heart of Kuala Lumpur. It occupies a spacious site but it looks difficult to find in the first place as signs are very discreet if you are not familiar with the neighborhood.
The colonial bungalow on Jalan Stonor in which Badan Warisan is sitting was renovated in 1995 and turned it into a heritage center, with exhibition facilities for art and craft shows as well as a resource center with books, drawings, slides and photographs for those keen to learn more about the organization’s conservation work. Badan Warisan is absolutely a fascinating place to browse and go back in time.
Other than the colonial bungalow in which Badan Warisan is located, other highly popular attraction at Badan Warisan is the Rumah Penghulu Abu Seman. The Rumah Penghulu Abu Seman is a traditional Malay wooden house dating back to the 1920s and was originally the headman’s house in Kampung Sungai Kechil in Bandar Baharu, Kedah. It was brought to this site in Jalan Stonor in a state of serious disrepair.
The restoration work of this heritage house took over a year to complete with the official opening on 19th November 1997. Many specialists were involved in the dismantling and reconstruction process to ensure its authenticity, windows and shutters were replaced and fortunately much of the ornate carvings remained intact.
No visit to Badan Warisan would be complete without a guided tour of the fabulously restored house of Rumah Penghulu Abu Seman. The tour of this extraordinary Malay house explains the function of each room, furnished in keeping with Malay style and gives an insight into everyday life in a traditional Malay home. This is a must for expats and visitors alike but if you have a real passion for preserving the heritage of Malaysia why not become a member and get involved in the many projects currently underway. All details are on their website.
Since then, Badan Warisan has been serving as an expert in heritage restoration and also a showpiece for modern conservation methods. All in all, the Badan Warisan is a must-go tourist destination for locals and expats.
Map and Driving Direction to Badan Warisan at Jalan Stonor (Stonor Street):