Penang has plenty of places to stay, from charming George Town boutique hotels , beachfront resorts at Batu Ferringhi, to a number of great Penang Airbnbs and a range of inexpensive Penang budget hotels that offer good value for money.
But if you come to Penang and are looking for some luxury hotels where to splash some cash in style, this article will introduce you to a series of fantastic Penang 5 star hotels. From sea view to luxury hotels, or resorts near one of Penang best beaches, here are 18 luxurious 5-star hotel choices in Penang you should consider.
We have divided our selection by areas, so that you may choose according to your needs, whether they are a charming city stay in UNESCO Heritage George Town, the northern beaches of Batu Ferringhi and Teluk Bahang, or the island’s southern reaches at Balik Pulau.
If you are going to Penang for the first time, don’t forget to check out our guides on the best things to do in Penang, what you can do in Penang with kids, and the best places to stay in Penang. We also have a list of Penang’s best cafes to relax and have a treat.
Penang 5 Star Hotels in George Town
UNESCO World Heritage inscribed George Town is a very good choice for a 5 Star Hotel in Penang that will put you in close proximity to all the best Penang food and culture. Pick and choose among the following properties, all located in George Town, popular Gurney Drive and Penang Botanical Gardens, or other central areas that are no longer than a 10 minutes drive or Grab car ride to popular Penang Road and Chulia Street.
1Eastern & Oriental Hotel
This Penang 5 star hotel institution was built by the famous Iranian architects Sarkies brothers in 1885, having hosted all sorts of international celebrities during their trips to the island. Tucked on the seafront at the farther end of Penang Road, the original Eastern and Oriental Hotel reopened in 2001, and a new wing was added in 2013. A full refurbishment of the old Heritage Wing completed in December 2019, giving this old dame a much-needed plush makeover that still makes it one of the premier 5-star hotel choices in Penang.
If you are after a colonial-themed sea-facing sea hotel with large, charming rooms, personalized valet service, and that timeless “Malayan feel”, you should stop reading and book your suite right now.
One of the latest addition in Penang’s 5-star hotel scene is the Prestige, which occupies a restored building tucked between the sea at Pengkalan Weld and Beach Street — only a five minutes walk away from the charms of Penang Little India. The 162 rooms are inspired by Penang’s Victorian heritage, and yet contemporize it with all the bells and whistles of the category. As an extra touch, guests can enjoy a shopping arcade and, what’s not very common in central George Town, a rooftop infinity pool. The Glasshouse, their restaurant located on the ground floor, will help you to never leave the premises, if chilling out in style is all you wish for.
This swanky hotel touts itself as “boutique”, and in fact, it only has eight rooms, but the standards are pretty high, and you may want to consider it for that special Penang 5 star luxury experience you are after. The beauty of the Mcalister Mansion is the way the original mansion has been turned into a piece of art of a hotel, where every detail counts. It’s a preferred spot for couples for their wedding receptions and pre-wedding photography in Penang. The on-site dining is excellent and special, too, with three dining outlets serving the best of contemporary fusion and high-end food. A secluded, quiet and very exclusive choice that will surprise you with the finesse of its design.
4G Hotel Kelawai
Towering above busy thoroughfare Kelawai Road, and in walking distance to Gurney Drive, Gurney Paragon, and Gurney Plaza, two of Penang’s best shopping malls, G Hotel Kelawai is a modern, almost minimal-futuristic 5-star hotel. The rooms are beautiful and cozy, there’s an outdoor swimming pool, and one of the perks is their rooftop bar Gravity, from where you’ll see the city nestle like a dollhouse against the viridian flank of Penang Hill. A beautiful place to soak in a purple island sunset with your lover. Don’t forget to check out their attractive lunch and buffet options.
5G Hotel Gurney
G Hotel Gurney is a long-standing, trusted Penang 5 star hotel set right next to Gurney Plaza shopping mall and in walking distance to the popular hawker center at Gurney. The lobby itself is a work of art: large, with loungers where both guests and passersby can mingle, and connected with an area of upscale dining options. Rooms are cozy and minimal-chic, decorated in neutral tones that make for a homey effect, and all have satellite TVs and large en suite bathrooms. You can try the excellent Miraku Japanese restaurant or one of G Hotel’s three other bars. A perfect retreat for those who want to be near the sea and yet in a few minutes taxi ride to the center of George Town.
6Evergreen Laurel Hotel
This is another popular 5-star hotel along Gurney Drive, and very close to the Buddhist temples of Pulau Tikus. Rooms have large bathrooms and all the bells and whistles of the category, even though without abandoning a rigorous hotel look — meaning, all are well-appointed, but don’t expect great touches of originality. The lobby has an almost colonial grandeur that exudes from the shiny marbled floor
Best Sea View Hotels and Beach Hotels in Penang
With UNESCO heritage, Penang street art, many iconic buildings like KOMTAR, most people choose George Town when thinking of staying in Penang. But don’t forget it’s an island — and even if the sea may not be as nice as in Langkawi or Pangkor island, Penang has tons of beaches, and many hotels that rely on a piece of sand to make a better impression.
Most are strung along Batu Ferringhi, a slice of northwestern coast that transformed from Hippie hangout in the 1970s to Penang’s resort haven. Here are some of the best sea view 5-star hotels in Penang.
Penang Sea View Hotels in Teluk Bahang
7Angsana Teluk Bahang
Opened in October 2020 as the first Malaysian property by trusted brand Angsana, the 250 rooms are all sea-facing, with cozy little balconies, large bathrooms with tubs, and a style that mix ultra-modern-chic with shades of Peranakan style. There are three swimming pools, one of which fronts restaurant Jendela and faces the pristine Teluk Bahang bay and the beaches of Penang National Park (read our ultimate guide to Monkey Beach). Umbrellas and bean bags spill on the beach below, a secluded crescent dotted with tall coconut trees that’s perfect for an early morning or sunset stroll with your better half. It’s kids friendly, too.
Penang Luxury Hotels in Batu Ferringhi
8By the Sea
Not a 5-star hotel per se but worth including in this list is By the Sea, a collection of perfectly cozy service apartments set right on a beautiful palm-fringed beach, and snuggled around an inviting swimming pool. It’s in a few minutes’ walk to restaurants, the Batu Ferringhi night market, and everything that matters in the area, and may appeal to those families or groups who still want a luxurious stay, yet without the “resort feel”.
9Park Royal Hotel
A trusted, long-standing property developed around a beautiful free-form swimming pool surrounded by lush tropical grounds, Park Royal is one of the best 5-star hotels along Batu Ferringhi beach. A nice stretch of golden beach is right outside the hotel, which has four restaurants, including sea-facing Italian eatery Gustoso. The rooms are spacious and blend modern and stylish touches with a timeless atmosphere — try to get a sea-facing suite if you can. At last, it’s very kid-friendly, with an indoor kid’s playground and plenty of space for them to scoot around — don’t forget to check out our other suggestions for things to do in Penang with kids.
10Shangri La’s Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa
Even Penang can bask in the glory of luxurious hotel brand Shangri-La, which brought a slice of upper-end paradise to Batu Ferringhi’s seaside. True, the sea is just a walk away and the garden with swimming pools surrounded by large, shady trees is delightful. But the rooms, appointed to resemble some homey apartments encased by balconies and boasting large en suite bathrooms, are really delightful and somewhere you won’t want to leave very much during your stay. If you really want to, you may play golf at their 9-hole golf course, or accompany your children to Adventure Zone, a fantastic indoor playground with slides set next door at Shangri-La’s sister property Golden Sands. Buy a DISCOUNTED Adventure Zone ticket for your kids on Klook here.
11Lone Pine Boutique Hotel by the Beach
Touted as a boutique hotel but really fit for a 5-star stay, the 90 rooms at Lone Pine — originally a bungalow opened in 1948 — are intimate, cozy, and very special. They snug around a beautiful garden strewn with casuarina trees and an outdoor swimming pool at whose sides sundecks and umbrellas line up for ultimate comfort. The recent renovations have spruced up this property with touches of minimal-chic design and rooms that make great choreographic use of floor tiles and romantic floor tubs. Sea-facing rooms are great, of course, but consider those facing the lush garden, each with its own private access. A delightful choice for a 5-star sea getaway surrounded by lush nature.
12Double Tree Resort by Hilton
Another trusted property set on a forested hill just across the main road from the seafront, which guests substitute with the large outdoor swimming pool. The rooms are large and comfortable, most coming with sea-facing balconies that are perfect to relax, writing desks, and a very classy feel. Guests appreciate the small personalized touches here, such as the freshly-baked cookies served upon check-in, and the emphasis on children, who have their own indoor playground, and a dedicated kid-friendly buffet breakfast. Recommended for families or for those who want to have a top-notch 5 star Penang stay without breaking the bank. It’s just across the road from the secluded and beautiful Miami Beach, whose cafe set next to huge boulders is one of the best places to see the sunset island-wide.
13Hard Rock Hotel
The famous rock and roll-themed franchise has its own property on a fine stretch of Batu Ferringhi beach, presided by a white marble statue of Michael Jackson right in the parking lot. The 250 rooms here are mostly sea-facing and tucked around a popular, beautiful, lagoon-like swimming pool with several bars, all a few meters from the real beach. Some of the ground floor suites have their private pools with swim-up porches that will drastically help you to never leave your room. These are decorated with warm, bright colors and minimal-chic touches that bring in the iconic rockstars the franchise is famous for — don’t forget to keep looking for guitars and other famous musical paraphernalia in the bar, and to tone up yourself with a treatment at the Rock Spa.
Penang 5 Star Hotels in Balik Pulau and the South of the Island
Very few people choose Balik Pulau, or the “back of the island”, for their Penang luxury 5-star stay — and that’s a mistake, because some of the most charming luxury accommodation on the island is exactly here, tucked between rolling hills strewn with durian estates and ancient rainforest. The south of the island offers other secluded coves and beaches, and a couple more high-end hotel choices.
14Malihom Private Estate
This is absolutely one of our favorites 5-star hotels in Penang. Set on top of its own private hill, surrounded by an estate filled with durian and tropical vegetation, this is a slice of Northern Thailand brought to Penang. The original wooden Thai barns here were actually imported piece by piece from Chiang Mai and surroundings: imagine soaking in your own floor tub as the sun dies behind the horizon like a purple fireball, while the treetops almost caress you, and your bungalow recharges you with its warm dark-hued wood and homey exposed bricks. Meals are included as you won’t go far once you get up here — and why you should, when Malihom is so incredibly unique. Did I mention the swimming pool?
15Fig Tree Hill Resort
If you want to splash some cash and have a memorable experience with your loved one or your family (the cabanas can host up to 6 guests), this unique eco-resort, entirely made in wood, straw, and bamboo, is the place to go. Hidden away in the greenery of Sungai Ara’s backwoods, along the way to popular Carpet Hill and Glass House viewpoints, Fig Tree offers six exclusive villas that are a blend of Balinese style and jungle retreat. They win extra points thanks to their choreographic location and the use of natural surroundings, pools, lotus flowers, and all that make Southeast Asia a timeless and charming destination to visit. The rooms are realized in wood, and yet conserve the high-class standards you come to expect from this price range. It’s also a coveted place for pre-wedding photo shoots in Penang.
16Lexis Suites Penang
The closest 5-star hotel to Penang International Airport has style and class and soars like a futuristic tower above Bayan Lepas and the southern shore of Penang — especially at night when it fires up with the colors of the rainbow. Lexis Suites is set right in front of one slice of Teluk Kumbar beach, which is just a short walk from the hotel. The rooms are very large, and so are the beds, which guests really appreciate for their softness and comfort. And if getting to the beach is a stretch, you can relax in the garden shaded by trees, or take a dip in the indoor pool. This becomes redundant when you get yourself a swanky Premium Pool Suite, so that you may soak as you watch the sea right from your balcony.
Set at 77-meters above sea level near the lush greenery of Bukit Jambul, Hotel Equatorial is a household name in Penang’s high-end accommodation scene. It features two wings, one of which is a 50-meters-long outdoor swimming pool with a bar, and four other dining options — including Sichuanese and Japanese restaurants. The rooms are surprisingly well-appointed even after many years in the biz, with large beds, wall glasses, and writing desks equipped with charming lamps. Some have balconies that overlook the lush forest all around. Incredible good value for the money it costs.
Penang 5 Star Hotels in Seberang Perai
Everyone comes to Penang and stays on the island, but don’t forget that Penang is a state and that the mainland, called Seberang Perai, also offers good 5-star hotels and many things to do. For starters, there’s a lot to do in the town of Bukit Mertajam — and if you like hiking, you should check out this guide on the best hiking trails in Mainland Penang.
18Vangohh Eminent Hotel & Spa
If you want to save money and yet have a fantastic 5-star experience that’s just a half-hour drive away from George Town, consider Vangohh Eminent Hotel in Bukit Mertajam, across the bridge in Seberang Perai. The rooms here are large, decorated with plush satin curtains and a gray-dark color palette that makes them all the more appealing — and some come with a jacuzzi. There’s an on-site spa, a swimming pool, and the buffet breakfast is pretty well assorted. A fantastic option for what you get at this price range.
Another excellent option in Seberang Perai, this time near the town of Seberang Jaya. The Light is a very modern hotel with 303 excellent rooms decorated in wood, floor carpets and pastel hues that make for a welcoming homey feeling with all the bells and whistles of the category included, of course. The family suites are particularly good value, with two double beds, a lounge-like area, and plenty of space to enjoy the company of your closest people. There’s also an outdoor swimming pool to soak and fight the heat, and guests compliment the very sumptuous buffet breakfast included in the room price.
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