Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Citrawarna 2017 | Celebrating Eco Tourism!




An eco effort in conjunction with Citrawarna 2017
And I am there to withness it



This time around, our Tourism and Culture Minister YB Dato' Seri Mohamed Nazri Aziz stressed the importance of nature and ecotourism as core elements of the industry, highlighting how nature is significant not only in the form of lifestyle but also in arts, heritage and culture. 

Inspired by the World Tourism Day theme, “Sustainable Tourism — A Tool For Development”, this year’s Citrawarna showcased performances from various communities such as Chinese, Indian, Thai and Orang Asli where nature has embedded into their daily life. This can clearly be seen in some of the dance movements - whereby influenced from the movements made by animals, traditional attire made of natural resources and imitating life nature. The famous Pohon Budi or Tree of Life by the Orang Ulu of Sarawak is the heritage and art form that appreciates mother nature. 



The Tree of Life is an important character for the Orang Ulu as it symbolizes their legends and myths. In their folklore tale, it says that it is the birth of mankind stems from the union of a Heavenly tree and an Earthly tree. If you look hard enough, you can see two trees intertwined, reflecting this traditional belief. 

New activities greet us in conjunction of Citrawarna 2017, primarily the Bring Your Own Plant (BYOP) and Tiffin Party picnic which is much welcome by the public. Both activities are lead by Locco in collaboration with Daun, stands for Local Companion; a local community organization that round-up public to assist in organizing and participate. The Bring Your Own Plant and Tiffin Party programmes’ objective is to promote the importance of nature and ecotourism in line with our culture and lifestyle. 



Lending help to are the students from Communication and Media Studies, UITM Shah Alam lead by En. Hamzani Izzamudin in creating big impact by paving the way at grassroots level.

Bring Your Own Plant is aimed:
▪  To create awareness and educate public on environmental sustainability.
▪  To help drive growth of ecotourism at community level.
▪  To minimize carbon footprint by cultivating public transport usage.

Where else the Tiffin Party is introduced to encourage recycling, saving our environment. The usage of tiffin has long been instilled in our culture, as an avenue for friends and family to meet up and socialize while sharing and enjoying home-cooked meals. This culture is hoped to be revived, embedding itself into our lifestyle and indirectly promotes recycling.




There will be a few activities happening during Citrawarna KL, as outlined below:

Agenda
04:00pm - BYOP Meet & Greet at Dataran Merdeka (Plant handover)
04:30pm - Urban Folk Games, #SayangMalaysia Photo & Message Wall, Busker Performance, Laman Seni, Tiffin Party & Food Truck Fiesta and MATIC.fm DJ Search
08:00pm - Citrawarna Performance
10:00am - End




The Citrawarna ends with big bang of fireworks blaring the Kuala Lumpur skyline, and as usual, the joget lambat session *smile*.



Eat Travel Doodle in conjunction with Citrawarna 2017 Fam Trip is in collaboration with Tourism Malaysia and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.









Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Home Away From Home - Philea Mines Beach Resort






Home Away From Home
As defined in Merriam-Wedster : a place that is as pleasant and comfortable as one's own home.
This is exactly how Philea Mines Beach Resort made me feel.



When I first saw the place I will be staying, I was rather confuse as I often thought that there’s only one Philea Resort in Malaysia. Well oh well, little did I know, we now have two - Philea Mines Beach Resort, located in The Mines, Sungai Besi – Kuala Lumpur and Philea Resort & Spa in Melaka. As I was googling to check-out the place virtually, I read the below; how they describe themselves :

Nestled amidst the concrete jungle of Kuala Lumpur, is an unexpected haven offering a full experience of sophisticated style, comfort, privacy and tranquility. Well known as the “beach in the city” and living up to its name, Philea Mines Beach Resort caters to varieties of services such as health retreats, weekend getaways, garden weddings, beach barbeques and other team building corporate events.

Gosh! I couldn’t agree more. Perfect to the T.



Philea has always been associated with Melaka (to my understanding lah), but this quaint resort tucked away in one little corner of Kuala Lumpur is basically a ‘resort in a city’ concept, with beach-feel-like environment, lake-facing chalet (and rooms) and attach-mall-by-boat experience. This is simply perfect for city-dweller type of traveller yet wanting a tinge of resort feel. Well, I guess Philea Mines Beach Resort is the palace for you then.

The chalet is to die for. Overlooking the beach front, with deck chair, patio and wooden-like finishing certainly added the resort touch, and if you want to fancy-fy and pamper yourself, ask for one of those room whereby the bathroom has no wall/door to the bedroom, bathtub out in the open (suitable for honeymooners, sumpah!), and spacious room that you probably can put 3 ping-pong table (I might exaggerated here abit but am sure you got my point). I guess, all those cool-manja-gilerbest stuff that you kinda always wanted in a resort/hotel lah.


The one thing I like about the food is the promotional offer at their coffee house (evening only I think), approximately RM20 for main dish of Roasted Mint Chicken+drink or local noodle+drinks+dessert – goodness, giler value for money. Pergi tau, jangan tak pergi. Sumpah balik modal.




They also have warung style buffet during the weekend if you want to sample local cuisine, else you can always walk over to the mall next door to try a more hipster-ish meal.

So, gi ler try!








Eat. Travel. Write Media Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.











Friday, October 13, 2017

Boyanese of Bawaen Island (Asal Orang Boyan)




It was learnt that the Javanese, along with other communities in Indonesia such as Banjarese, Minangs and Javanese migrated to Tanah Melayu (now known as Malaysia), seeking for a better livelihood and better future for their family. This was back in late 1880 till early 1900 when the Indonesia was being colonized by the Dutch. The Javanese especially traveled and settled in Selangor, where majority makes these few district their home till now, namely Tanjung Karang, Sabak Bernam, Kuala Selangor, Kelang, Banting and Sepang.

The establishment and name of the village started around 1920, by Indonesian immigrants from Java, Badang and Madura. Kampung Sungai Buah was originally located near KLIA Seremban, this was when the first settler from Madura stroll by a small river, they saw many ‘buah kepompong’ floating along the river side. The fruit is said to be round, green and sized as a marble, it is also toxic in nature and the hands will be itchy if held.

Boyanese traditional attire - far right.

Now, the population of Kampung Sungai Buah is approximately 1000 people with a majority of 90 percent being Javanese. Those that pioneered the land in Sepang or Dengkil area are namely from Aceh (Acehnese) hence there are a story about how the town was name; an old place called Nibong Dengkil. Another community in Kampung Sg. Bua hos the Boyan communities of Bawaen Island and the other, Javanese and Minang.

What I am fascinated was the Boyanese as I was never told of their origin nor did I ever check them up, until the recent event. My curiosity got the best of me. So I start to dig deeper and deeper, and this is what I’ve learnt.

The island of Baweans is located in the Java Sea, due to the migration of the local men to other parts of Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia in search for a source of income for their family members, the island constitutes approximately 70% of females thus it is also referred to as the Island of Women or Pulau Putri. The locals are known as Boyan or Boyanese.

One of the reason for Baweanese migration to Malaysia via Singapore is through pilgrimage hub activities, reason being during the steamship age, Singapore was one of the regional hub for the Hajj journey to Mecca. The formulation is that the Baweans will find work in Malaysia and for them to save up and fulfil their Hajj via Singapore. Obviously some stayed in both these countries permanently.
Nowadays, the Boyanese have assimilated and intermarried into the local Malay population and are regarded themselves as Malays.





Eat. Travel. Write Media Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.













Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Bangi Wonderland Theme Park




Bangi Wonderland Theme Park
Another theme park!??!
Isn’t this the one I read last month?

Well, I braved myself to visit this place and I wasn’t disappointed.  Before I even start my review of this place, let me share a couple of things first.


Below is my observation (jiwa marketing tak lari jauh)
1. Feasible and great place to have a small Family Gathering or Family Day
2. Fun place for a small scale birthday party too
3. Not too big for kids to get lost, small enough for parents to have eye-view visibility (as long as the kids don't wonder to adult rides lah)


4. Reasonably priced packages - entrance + food for group activities/booking. Package includes of managing few teambuilding games
5. Distance within KL/Selangor area makes it easier/accessible
6. There are medics available at the park to check on one’s health before going for the rides such as heart attack, high blood pressure and etc



Not a big fan of waterpark, I was surprise that what to me was a small scale park, actually have so many rides to offer its customers; namely Kids Adventure, Magic Funnel, Anaconda Trail, The Fall, Green Pearl, Wonder Loop, Spiralax, Body Slide, Pirates Bay, Water Cannon, Boomeriang, Surf Rider, Insane Racer, Typhoon River, Meander River and Pirates Spa.

Water Cannon is one game you should try.



There is a main area (with chairs and table and stage) for one to lepak, gather and organize an event. You can also liaise and work with the marketing person to check whether can they allocate a smaller and more cozy area for a small family and friends gathering. I am sure the team can work some magic for you and your event.

As the place is not that crowded especially during weekdays, my suggestion is for you to come during this period, try to avoid school holidays and weekends. This way, you and your friends/family/kids can have the place (almost) to yourself. Kiasu giler hokkay.




Bangi Wonderland Theme Park
2, Persiaran Bangi Avenue
Bangi Avenue, 43000
Kajang, Selangor

Tel : +603 8912 8333





Eat. Travel. Write Media Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.










Thursday, October 5, 2017

Tumis Betik | A Javanese delicacy in Kampung Sg. Buah





Earlier on you have read on me sharing a Banjarese Ayam Balaos recipe and the story on Nasi Ambeng and few other delicacies from the Javanese communities in Kuala Selanngor. This time around, I thought perhaps I should share another Javanese delicacy; Tumis Betik from Kampung Sg. Buah, located in Dengkil, Selangor.

This is so far, the simplest and easiest recipe I’ve learnt from the locals that I’ve visited so far. And the taste, super delicious, one that you can snack (ratah) without paring it with rice. Yup! Kid you not.

It is learnt that the Javanese, along with other communities in Indonesia such as Banjarese, Minangs and Javanese migrated to Tanah Melayu (now known as Malaysia), seeking for a better livelihood and better future for their family. This was back in late 1880 till early 1900 when the Indonesia was being colonized by the Dutch. The Javanese especially traveled and settled in Selangor, where majority makes these few district their home till now, namely Tanjung Karang, Sabak Bernam, Kuala Selangor, Kelang, Banting and Sepang.

Javanese, Minang and Boyanese

Those that pioneered the land in Sepang or Dengkil area are namely from Aceh (Acehnese) hence there are a story about how the town was name; an old place called Nibong Dengkil. Another communities in Kampung Sg. Bua hos the Boyan communities of Bawaen Island and the other, Javanese and Minang.

The island of Baweans is located in the Java Sea, due to the migration of the local men to other parts of Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia for in search for a source of income for their family members, the island is not constitutes approximately 70% of females thus it is also referred to as the Island of Women or Pulau Putri. The locals are known as Boyan or Boyanese, the largest from the island to largest cities in Indonesia and neighboring countries occurred in the later 1940s – early 1950s, and later during the 1880 till 1900. At the height of Bawaen Island, produce such as Indogo, cotton fabrics, tobacco, coal and even Bawean deer and local breed of horse were being traded.

Tumis Betik / Sauteed papaya with anchovies and chili

Javanese being one of the largest population in Kampung Sg, Buah makes it culture and cuisine more popular amongst the communities. Tumis Betik, a simple dish that I’ve learn and will be sharing.

Ingredient
Unripe papaya (betik)
Anchovies – pounded
Birds eye chili - chopped
Small onion (bawang merah/kecil)
Garlic
Oil
Salt
Sugar

Below are the step by step on how to cook Tumis Betik.


Fry garlic and small onion

Add anchovies 


 Add birds eye chili


Finally, add the unripe papaya








Eat. Travel. Write Media Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.










Thursday, August 31, 2017

Heritage Inspired | Confidence Has No Competition




Empowered.
Aspired.


Confidence Has No Competition.
This is what I felt  when I first met Hanisah Izzat from Sungai Buloh, the owner of HERITAGE INSPIRED. There isn’t much to shout out about her, except that she is a Primary School Science Teacher that has a passion on craft. The beauty about her is that her curiosity on dinner clutch bag drove her in learning to make one, from… you guessed it. Youtube.

If curiosity killed the cat, and Hanisah slayed it. On point. *wink*
Not only she is a self-taught in making a clutch bag maker, she decided that since she is good at it, why not go one step further by adding Malaysia element in this new hobby/craft of hers. Ie. our own culture. Our heritage. Our songket!



Started by ‘hijacking’ her father’s songket samping, followed by her mom’s beautiful batik and all, she perfected the art of songket/batik clutch bag. And there is no turning back ever since, nothing can stop this beautiful young lady, and guess what, she also does embroidery bags and looking at running classes for clutch-making.

When asked where did she source all her clutch frames (after all, we already knew how she got her materials *cheeky smile*), she said mostly via online and Singapore, as well as China. The next question was whether she plans to do it in a larger volume and expand her territory (in terms of market), well, she is pretty contented with her craft and the small scale output. This was she it is more personalized and rare as you won’t get 2 of the same. I kinda agree with this statement.


I guess this goes beyond aspiration, beyond empowering youth and woman, its sheer determination, turning passion into business while upholding our heritage values. She is a great role model to her students and us alike.


The world is her oyster and she embracing it gracefully, clutching a songket purse.







Kembara Kraf Selangor 2017 Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.














Monday, August 28, 2017

Living in the Shoe | Craft from the Heart





10 years ago.
I was introduced to hand painted shoes.
Love at the first sight.




Tucked away safely in this little corner in Kuala Lumpur, it is a great surprise that this unknown and unattractive small start-up company; Amaze Creative is doing more than what anyone can ever imagine.

Mr. Chang Wan Sang and Ms. Yee SK, the dynamic duo, the mastermind behind Amaze Creative said that it started with their parents being old and deaf, having experience the hardship of managing and caring a special need adult, gave them the idea to initiate and start this business; enabling this beautiful people with skill set such as drawing and painting on canvas shoes and bags. They hope that this small gesture will assist them when venturing into the real world.


Amaze Creative is located at the ground floor of TAR Villa Apartments in Desa Setapak, housing approximately 6-8 person per session whereby the finished product are being sold online at egoodshops.com or www.amaze.com.my .

This amazing company, did not just stop here, Amaze Creative & Art is also present in Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 or KLIA2. Being ambitious and having positive attitude are the key factor that drove this husband and wife team to establish their outlet in KLIA2, ensuring their fashionably hand painted products are frequently updated, by developing new design and new styles. And part of the proceed goes back to their main initiative that start it all, enhancing the special needs community with skill set, expand and improving the facilities thus providing comfort to these special friends of ours.

The shoes are sold at an affordable price ranging from RM49 – RM79 depending on size, catering for both kids and adult. They also can custom made, one will need to go into their website to place an order.





Amaze Creative & Art
L2-77, Gateway@KLIA2 Mall
Kuala Lumpur International Airport
Operation time : 6am - 12am









Kembara Kraf Selangor 2017 Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.










Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Kimekomi Craft| Bringing Japan Home






I always say ‘In every country you visited, you’ll take a piece of it home’, and for Kak Latifah, Kimekomi craft has found a new home. Malaysia.



A foodie will hunt for good food, a photographer will scout for beautiful subject, a fashionista clothes, and an artisan or craftsman, art and craft (obviously). And this is the story of Kak Latifah Hamzah of Pulau Indah, the artisan behind easy-tuck craft or kimekomi, as what the Japanese calls them; the birth place of this few centuries old craft.

Traveling to Japan in 2015 was certainly a life changing mexperience for Kak Latifah, marveling at kimekomi craft during one of her many subway train ride, has sparked Kak Latifah’s interest and now has become her greatest passion. And what makes it even greater is the fact that she combines our very own Malaysia heritage; batik and songket into this old craft from Japan. The result – astounding.


I remembered telling Sham that when you have a good story behind a great product, it makes us; digital storyteller easy to write. Well, ‘easy’ is an understatement really, the right word should be eager, excited, enthusiastic or perhaps passionate as we felt the artisan love and sincerity in producing the craft, and the depth is rather contagious and overwhelming. Thus me writing this, enjoying and appreciating the artisan and their craft even more.

‘Wah’ and ‘Ooooh’ was the first (and only) thing you hear as we entered her studio, just like her subway experience, we too went googoo gaga over the art pieces. This is especially amplified when we laid our eyes on her ‘kebaya songket girls’ as well as her ‘owl family’ piece. Awestruck (I wasn’t even this awestruck when I saw Sheila Majid during her concert recently). First thing that came into my mind (and I verbalized it [after all, I can only contain so much]) was ‘Kak Latifah, berapa harga ni?’ / how much does this piece cost?, wanting to own it.



One must wonder, why the fuss over her art piece?
Here’s the thing, not only she combines our batik and songket into this centuries old craft, she formulates it in a way that it portrays our beautiful aMalaysia heritage and hculture; girls wearing traditional malay attire such as baju kurung pahang, kebaya, cekak musang and etc, easy-tucked it with songket fabric. If Kak Latifah marveled at what saw in Japan subway, we now are experiencing and doing the same. In a magnifying scale. And more.

She strongly believes that there are more than one way to promote our heritage and culture – batik and songket, by using kimekomi craft, she is able to combine both our fabric (heritage) and traditional attire (culture) into a beautiful art piece that can be easily sold, transport and showcased to public.


Knowing very well that she takes custom made orders, participate in exhibition and sells some of her work of art online, I ask her on her next step and as I suspected - ‘beginner classes’. So, you guys out there, go to the link below and follow Kak Latifah on her Facebook and wait for her announcement on craft classes.

What is Kimekomi craft?
"Kimekomi" means to "tuck in" in Japanese. Farbric is of Japanese design silk brocade tucked (and/or glued) into grooves that was carefully carved into.


This craft dated as far back as early 18th century. A priest at the Kamo Shrine in Kyoto named Tadashige Takahashi created a doll body from scraps of willow wood trees and covered it with left over fabrics used for the Shrine festivals, thus the name Kamo dolls. However, kimekomi doll is not temari ball craft as often confused.
  


For more info on Kak Latifah’s artwork : https://www.facebook.com/queenlscrafts/





Kembara Kraf Selangor 2017 Fam Trip is in collaboration with UPENS (Unit Perancangan Negeri Selangor) and all its sponsors with #GayaTravel as media coordinator.












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