Ong Ewe Hai was a leader of Sarawak’s earliest Hokkien immigrants and the patriarch of an influential family – one of three powerful Chinese clans of early Kuching – that produced many prominent figures in business and politics. Around 1885, he spent an extravagant sum on the construction of a mansion on the hill on Wayang Street. The lavish, geomantically auspicious house overlooked the natural beauty of the Sarawak River and beyond, as well as the commercial triumphs of Ong, in the form of shophouses that lined what would later be called Ewe Hai Street. In front of the mansion was a courtyard enclosed by low walls inlaid with translucent jade green tiles. A Chinese-style horned archway stood at the entrance of the courtyard.

In 1933, descendents of the Ong family sold the mansion to the Anglican Mission for a few thousand dollars. The building, with a newly added third floor, became the boarding house of St Mary’s School. From 1968, it served as the diocese’s guest house. The Chinese-style arch was pulled down in the 1990s to accommodate a new road (the current Jalan Wawasan) connecting Wayang Street with Padang Merdeka. In 2013, the historic house was carefully renovated and converted into The Marian, a boutique lodging house.

 

 

王友海故居

王友海是砂拉越第一代福建侨领,王家也是最早的华人三大家族之一,家族中出过许多政商界的要人。1885年前后,王友海在花香街的山丘上重金建设一栋豪宅,可以远眺砂拉越河及彼岸风光,也可以俯视山脚下由其所承建的友海街店屋,是一个视野辽阔的风水宝地。王家宅院的正前方是一个院子,院子四周是低矮的墙壁,墙壁上镶嵌着翠绿色的透雕瓷砖,而院子的入口则是典型的中国式拱门。

1933年,王家后人将这栋豪宅以数千元脱售给英国圣公会作为圣玛丽学校的宿舍,同时添加了第三个楼层。到了1968年起,这栋房子则作为教会的宾馆用。1990年代,为了开通道路贯穿花香街和独立广场,房子的中式拱门被迫拆除。2013年,老房子进行严谨的修复工程,而后作为Marian精品旅馆至今。

Share This