Tiger Rock is the private home of David and Malaysian artist, Rebecca Duckett-Wilkinson. David's grandfather had a house on the island in the 1920's so for David, Pangkor Island in the state of Perak, was an annual family holiday. But when Rebecca and David joined forces and set up Owen Rebecca Designs, their design company promoting Malaysian culture, flora and fauna in the form of prints on fabrics and resort clothing, they worked with Pangkor Laut Resort. These visits brought David back in touch with some of the local people he met as a child. This resulted in finding the piece of land behind the Dutch Fort. They sold their home in Kuala Lumpur and made the decision to move with their 2 young boys to Pangkor, taking them back to an environment reminiscent of their own childhoods on plantations around Malaysia.
David plotted out the land and designed the houses on Tiger Rock to fit into the landscape around the trees, rocks and slopes. Villagers from Teluk Gedung, the bay off which Tiger Rock is located, built the Main House in the traditional kampung style, with coins left under the main tiang of the house, with no heavy machinery, all pure manpower and sheer will did they get the main pillars of Main House up. We used local attap for the roofing material and bamboo matting for the outside walls of the Main House.
The bridge between Main House and Hill House was built by the Chinese contractors from Sungei Pinang Besar and they stayed on to build Hill House, based on a tea planters home we had seen in Pahang. The central living pavilion at Hill House was based on a building we had seen on a visit to Kenya, allowing the outside in but giving plenty of shelter.
The Pool House and Pool was also built by the team from SPB. All the stone walls on the property were built by Pak Khalid from Teluk Gedung and he single handedly put all these walls up for us all around Tiger Rock.
We used materials that were available locally- timber from a yard in Setiawan, the rock barged over just from the mainland and we sourced all our bathroom fitiings locally from the island and Setiawan. Our Pool expert came from Ipoh but he worked with our SPB guys and they did all the building.
Our first paying guests stayed with us in 1996. Since then we have had Tessa Silver, our little girl, born in Sitiawan, just on the mainland, and in 1999 David got a job based in Penang in plantations. We have come full circle. As a family we moved up to Penang because schooling for the kids was another issue we had to face. Mohan and Bavanni have taken on the full time jobs of caretakers and managers and in Penang, we continue to work on our other projects such as China Tiger & Tiger Blue, going back to Tiger Rock as much as we can.
The interiors at Tiger Rock have Rebecca's touches of colour and style. Her paintings and artwork are found throughout Tiger Rock and she now works as a full time artist. She comes to Tiger Rock often to be inspired by the jungle, and works mainly between her studios in Penang and Piemonte, Italy .
Rebecca says......"David & I both grew up on the estates & plantations around Malaysia & had carefree & amazing childhoods that have impacted on everything that we have done together. Tiger Rock is very much inspired by the homes and life we had on the estates. All of us at Tiger Rock are very much part of the local community. Mohan, your wonderful host and his wife, Bavanni are well respected members of this island community and you will have all the privileges that go along with this, allowing you access to people, temples, events on the the island, that you would otherwise miss.
Having lived on the island with our own family, very much cocooned in our tropical rainforest hideaway, but with the 2 boys going through the Chinese school, and Tessa born on the island, Tiger Rock has been a great experience and we hope that some of the inspiration and excitement that comes from living on this small island, rubs off on you when you come and stay with us.
Very much a local destination, Pangkor has an established population of about 20,000 people, made up of all the races and cultures of Malaysia. Essentially it is, Malaysia in a nutshell."