The Saint Anne's Feast is a very unique cultural experience. Although it is a Catholic event, you are likely to see Hindus, Taoists, Buddhists, Protestants, atheists, Vietnamese and people of various faith or non faith from Penang attending. I asked them and many said it was about receiving blessings and also they like to be immersed in the spiritual side of the rituals. On another year, I saw a Muslim girl in tudung who stood out and I asked her too. She said she was the Chief Minister's photographer and was there early to snap her boss's arrival.
When I was last in Penang, I stayed at the area known as Bayan Lepas at the U Hotel. It is a budget boutique hotel in a relatively peaceful and unknown part of Penang. Even Penang island friends don't know where it is. They know the exact area when you mention Tesco Extra Sungai Dua though, which is just behind the blue hotel.
Address: 676, Jalan Sungai Dua, Taman Pekaka, 11700 George Town, Pulau Pinang.