Nearly all that glitters is gold at Sultan Azlan Shah Gallery (Galeri Sultan Azlan Shah) in Kuala Kangsar, the royal town of the state of Perak in Malaysia. I’ve visited Kuala Kangsar two times before. It’s a quiet settlement best known for its historic royal structures, but it was my first time at this particular museum honoring the important figureheads of Perak’s royalty, especially Sultan Azlan Shah (1928-2014), the celebrated 34th Sultan of the state.
The royal gallery is housed in Istana Kota (or Istana Hulu), a stately palace built from 1898 to 1903 by Sultan Idris Shah I, the 28th Sultan of Perak. A combination of Malay and European architecture, the building is roofed over with tiles from France and has floorings imported from Italy. Local stone and hardwood were also used throughout the structure, using floral motifs inspired by native plants. The architecture design of the building has common features from the National Palace, Ipoh High Court and Ipoh railway station buildings. Before the palace was transformed into a museum gallery from 2001 to 2003, the building also was used as a school at one point.
The gallery’s exhibit rooms are filled with old photographs and memorabilia of the sultans. Through the exhibits, Sultan Azlan Shah was renowned for his lifelong love for hockey, remarkable legal career and accomplished reign as Sultan of Perak and Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the elected king and head of state of Malaysia, from 1989 to 1994. Besides the traditional royal regalia glittering with gold and gemstones, there were also an overwhelming array of royal gifts that really caught our attention like a custom-made display case of luxury wristwatches and a Caran d’Ache Gotica Pen worth more than USD 400,000 – one of the most expensive pens in the world!
Galeri Sultan Azlan Shah (Sultan Azlan Shah Gallery)
Bukit Chandan, 33000 Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia
Contact Number: +60 57775362
Opening Hours: 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM from Saturdays to Thursdays and 10:00 AM to noon and 2:45 to 5:00 PM Fridays
Admission Fees: Adults: MYR 4 / Children: MYR 1
This blog post was made possible through Perak World of Wonders, a media tour held last March 23 to 26, 2016. The event was organized by Gaya Travel Magazine and Tourism Perak in celebration of “Visit Perak Year 2017.”