GEORGE TOWN, Malaysia - While many foreigners look upon Penang as a tourist destination, a Japanese couple feel the island is ideal for a second home.
Hiroyuki Hirano and his wife Hiroko love everything about Penang so much that they have no plans of moving elsewhere at the moment.
The 67-year-old hardware products quality control consultant moved to Penang in 2007 when he was offered a job here.
"As I had visited Penang previously, I had no hesitation taking up the job offer," Hiroyuki said at his rented house in Minden Heights.
He loves the local cuisine such as Hokkien mee and roti canai.
"I also like nasi lemak and char koay teow," Hiroyuki added.
Hiroko, 64, a professional dollmaker, said Penang's warm climate suited her and her husband.
"If the weather is too cold, we may get joint pains. Penang's weather suits us perfectly," Hiroko added.
Asked if they intend to buy property in Penang, the couple said that one of their sons, who is working in Kuala Lumpur, had plans to buy a house.
"We are comfortable in our present home as the neighbours are nice and friendly and the environment is peaceful," Hiroko said.
Japanese businessman Takayuki Kaneko said he was looking to buy a condominium in Pulau Tikus, Tanjung Tokong or Tanjung Bungah.
"I have lived in a condominium here for seven months with my wife and two daughters. As I am here for the long-term, I want to have my own property.
"Pulau Tikus, Tanjung Tokong and Tanjung Bungah all have easy access to shopping malls, schools, hospitals, restaurants and hotels," he said.