Most people visit Pekalongan to taste the traditional food, Nasi Megono, or to buy its various kinds of Batik. Others just pass through the city to go to other cities by trains, buses, or cars. Yes, Pekalongan is famous for its food and batik and as a city in the north part of Central Java, yet actually, there are many heritage buildings which are interesting to be explored. One of those is The Sidji Hotel.
Having the tagline as “Heritage Boutique Hotel”, The Sidji Hotel is located at Jl Cipto Mangunkusumo no. 66, Pekalongan. It has unique main building that nobody can neglect. The main building, built in 1918, was the house of a Chinese couple, Hoo Tong Koey and Tan Seng Nio, who had contributed a lot to local business and culture in Pekalongan, thus, Tong Koey was awarded a title of Liutenant der Chinezen, the third highest rank for Peranakan in the colonial Hierarchy. Peranakan refers to Indonesian-born Chinese (Adapted from The History of The House – Hotel Sidji)
Once you get through the door, a friendly receptionist would be happy to help you. Try to walk a little bit to your right, then some windows with beautiful glass will certainly make you stunned.
After greeting the receptionist, have your steps to explore this building. The first room in the left side of the main door has two cozy sofas, equipped with a beautiful bookshelf. The books are quite old, some are accessible while others are not.
A sofa is located below the bookshelf, then beside the bookshelf is a picture of the house owner, the Liutenant der Chinezen. Too bad, the photograph is not really clear so I was unable to take the picture.
To satisfy your curiosity about the house, a short story about the house is neatly written and placed across from the bookshelf. Well, let’s explore another part of the hotel.
Continuing to the backyard, a cozy place to enjoy your coffee is waiting. Located near the swimming pool of the hotel and equipped with various kinds of coffee, it offers a quiet atmosphere which would be a perfect place to read, to write, to daydream, or just to enjoy a sip of coffee on wooden chairs.
Just like other hotels, besides coffee shop, The Sidji Hotel also provides a restaurant which is easily accessible for public, especially for those who are curious to see the real deal from the past, like me 🙂 The restaurant offers many kinds of food and beverages, but one of the most recommended beverages is Lemongrass Tea or Teh Sereh.
There are still many things to be explored in the hotel, like batik stamps. Too bad, I didn’t enough time to explore everything including the philosophy of each batik pattern.
Well, few minutes to explore The Sidji make me feels like going back to the past, imagining how Liutenant der Chinezen and his family do their business and contribute to local culture especially traditional music.
The Sidji Hotel is open for public, not only for those who want to spend the nights there but also for people who want to learn more about heritage building in Pekalongan. Well, in my opinion, buying a cup of coffee won’t do any harm to the wallet, compared to the experience.