The Old China Cafe lies in the heart of Chinatown in Kuala Lumpur and entering this cafe brings you back to those nostalgic, pre-war colonial days. The saloon doors on the entrance give you an impression of a some sort of cowboy town establishment. The building used to be the old guild hall of the Selangor & Federal Territory Laundry Association. The guild was set up at the turn of the century and moved to this part of Chinatown in the 1920s.
Many of the architectural details of the building have remained unchanged, even the interior doors still have wooden latches. Inside there are two large mirrors that face each other and these are traditional feng shui mirrors that Chinese believe would perpetually reflect the good luck when the first rays of the morning sun light up the interior.
The cafe now serves a range of southeast Asian cuisine which originates from the Baba Nonya communities of Malacca and Penang which features Malay spices as well as Chinese ingredients and cooking techniques. The Old China Cafe tries to maintain a semblance of the Chinese community’s old social life which will unfortunately soon fade into history.