Time Required : 1-2 hrs
Entry Fee : No entry fee
Timings : 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM No entry after 5:30 PM Closed on Wednesday
Tucked in the parish of Sao Lourenco, Mandarin’s House is the former residence of Zheng Guanying, the legendary Chinese reformist who was active during the patronage of the Qing Dynasty. The house was influenced by ancient Guangdong residences and leaves behind an architectural legacy that is presently a UNESCO declared World Heritage Site.
The construction of the palatial Mandarin’s House was initiated in 1869 by Zheng Wenrui, Guanying’s father. The house covers 4000 square metres, making it one of the biggest family houses in Macau. It is also an epitome of architectural grandeur and beautifully combines eastern as well as western architectural styles. It was said when the Zheng family moved out, there were over 300 tenants who lived inside the large complex. Hence, it resulted in poor living conditions. Mandarin’s House was also a part of the ‘Historic Centre of Macau’.
The 19th-century Chinese style mansion with its unique architecture has an old world charm that evokes euphoria and engraves a beautiful frame in mind. The effortless blend of Cantonese and Western detailing add up to its beauty. The exterior looks like any other conventional Chinese mansion while the interior reflects the western architectural style that is an amalgamation of old and new.
The complex boasts more than 60 exquisite rooms, a main hall and a large moon gate. Surprisingly, the hall sits on the first floor instead of the ground floor as in traditional Chinese residences. The heritage building is made from grey bricks that perfectly complement the large lattice windows and the sedan way those teleport visitors to the bygone era. The western architectural elements are often visible in its arched ornamentation, false ceilings, window panels and the French windows.
Mandarin’s House was built in 1869 during the reign of Emperor Tongzhi, the 10th ruler of the Qing Dynasty. Around 1950, the Zheng family left the house and rented the property. There was a time when the mansion accommodated over 300 tenants.
The house got mostly damaged because of a fire and it took around 8 years to renovate it. As a result, many ancient relics were lost or stolen. Eventually, the Macau Government took over the complex in 2001 and preserved it. In 2005, this heritage mansion was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and also became a part of the Historic Centre of Macau. It was opened to the general public in 2010.
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