The name “Ren i Tang” is the phonetic spelling in Mandarin of South East Asia’s oldest Chinese Medical Hall Wholesaler, Yin Oi Tong which is translated as The Hall of Benevolence.
Yin Oi Tong was established in 1796 by Koo Suk Chuan , who arrived in Penang 10 years after Captain Francis Light founded the British Colony. He quickly established his business as an herbalist in a small shop on Pitt Street.
In 1885, Koo moved his growing business into a larger premise on Penang Street and Yin Oi Tong Chinese Medical Hall continued trading here until its move in 2009. Its history and influence still resonates through the walls of the building that housed it for 124 years.
Located at the junction of China Street and Penang Street, the building now hosts a variety of activities ie upper floors : Ren i Tang (heritage inn) ; ground floor : Tang (bistro) and The Yin Oi Tong Chinese Medical Hall Museum.