Little India’s Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang

Little India’s Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang

Little India’s Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang

At Penang’s Little India, the oldest flower stall (the 1800s) is heavy with the fragrance that perfumes Pitt Street when you walk about.

Bright kaleidoscope colored posies jostle for breathing space with Indian flower garlands made from fragrant jasmine, champaka, roses and chrysanthemum with religiously-significant leaves used for worship.

OLDEST FLOWER STALL

Penangites make a beeline for the Indian florists here for the freshest flowers for temple prayer or their home altars.

Flowers with a riot of unbelievable colors are displayed in large blue and white pails standing two to three tiers high with hanging garlands at the Pitt Street Indian Florists in a row of kiosks along Jalan Kapitan Keling, George Town.

Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
Workers making flower garlands at the corner florist shop at Jalan Kapitan Keling, Penang

GEORGE TOWN FLORIST

Ameer Sultan, 65 is the second generation traditional florist who took over the business set up by his father the late S.P. Abdul Razak of George Town Florist in 1956. Ameer was 6 at that time and would help out at their original stall which was across the road where the Broadway Budget Hotel now stands. They used to live on Market Lane, just a few doors away from the old Tuak (Toddy) Shop.

TODDY SHOP

Historically Little India was densely populated by Indians laborers who favored the cloudy sweetish toddy also known as kallu (in South India). This coconut palm wine is made from the sap of coconut flowers.

Today after the closure of the Tuak Shop, Market Lane is overlooked by tourists of its’ cultural significance.

Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
A smiling Ameer Sultan with a photo of his beloved father, the late S.P. Abdul Razak
Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
Florist Noor Mohamed with Ameer Sultan
Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
The riot of colors of pretty flower garlands.

OLD PENANG

Ameer remembers fondly the Penang electric tram cruising along Pitt Street coming down from Weld Quay at the F.M.S Railway Station (Federated Malay States Railway now known as Wisma Kastams) where passengers would purchase their train ticket on the island before crossing over by ferry to board the trains on the mainland!

He laments that business is slow these days and only pick up during temple festivals and deity feast days.

MODERN FLORIST

Nowadays Ameer also takes orders for weddings, floral baskets, and wreaths. You could even order a hand bouquet right at the stall. The Indian florists specialize in creating garlands for religious and ceremonial purposes. Some florists even give flower arrangement classes.

S.P. Abdul Razak’s grandson, Basheer Ahmad 37 is set to continue as the third generation florist!

Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
Loose fresh flowers
Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
Colorful Garlands and Loose Flower

FLOWER GARLANDS

Flower garlands have special significance. The group of youngsters is all are wearing Poo Malai Flower Garland. This garland is made with fragrant flowers as a sign to welcome a respected guest.

Little India's Oldest Flower Stall Pitt Street, Penang
Super Loooonnnnnggggg! Ram Rengasamy Pillai, Sree Balrum Ganeshan, Vijay Ramalingam Pillai, Thamarai Ramalingam Pillai, Roshinni Sarah Soloman  at Tirupathur, India.

SP Florist | No. 1 & 2, Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling, Penang

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