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House of Museums: Old Trades Gallery

Our rating:

This excellent small museum is the result of a private collection becoming unmanageable and the collector needing more space. What better way to store your treasures than share them in a museum?

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Exhibited over two floors of a restored shophouse, the Old Trades Gallery recreates vignettes of traditional trades operating in Melaka from the 1950s to 1970s. The mini-shopfronts display an extensive and obviously passionately collected array of memorabilia. A traditional sundry shop takes you to an era before 7-eleven with a terrific assemblage of old packaging, a time when cigarettes came in tins and were sold to kids.

Many brands are international, but some are uniquely Malaysian. There are cans of Ovaltine and Horlicks, Hacks cough drops and old magazines. A “buku 555” (555 brand notebook) is well known in Malaysia, used for writing debts at a time when you could wait until payday to pay the bill. We were fascinated by an old-style typewriter that typed Chinese characters.

Other exhibits include a traditional medicine shop, a cinema where you can sit and watch an old film, barber, tailor, mechanic and watchmaker. It’s little like wandering through a well-curated junk shop without the dust, as aside from a labelled theme there is not otherwise a lot of information. To be fair, they had only been open two days when we visited (in early 2017), and the friendly owners mentioned they may offer guided tours in the future. The House of Museums is a top-notch addition to a town that has almost reached saturation point when it come ... Travelfish members only (Around 200 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.

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House of Museums: Old Trades Gallery
82 Lorong Hang Jebat, Melaka
Mon–Wed 10:00–17:00, Fri–Sun 10:00–18:00
T: (0192) 699 569
Admission: Adults 12 ringgit, children (6–12) 8 ringgit.

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