GUIDES • UPDATED SEP 2020

30 KUALA LUMPUR
HIDDEN INSTAGRAM-WORTHY HOTSPOTS
THAT YOU NEED TO EXPLORE NOW

Kuala Lumpur may not have the most glitzy modern architecture, but the interplay of old versus new is very much alive here as urban decay gives way to towering skyscrapers. If you look hard enough, lying just slightly off the radar of most urban explorers are plenty of gorgeous spots that will make your venturing off the beaten track worth the time and effort.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2020

MENARA TA ONE:
PETRONAS TWIN TOWERS
VANTAGE POINT

For decades the Petronas Twin Towers graced the KL skyline, and it's towering height a beacon of the country's march towards a developed nation. It's no wonder that we are so fascinated with catching them in our photos. Menara TA One sits right opposite the road from this landmark, and it's open-air top level of the carpark section presents the perfect opportunity to capture the twin towers from a very close, and higher vantage point than the usual street-level spots that you may find around this area. Come on a wet evening, and the extensive puddles on the floor will complete the magic.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2020

OWEN YAP
@ MELAKA

Our next adventure with Owen Yap brought us to the historical city of Melaka. While I have lost count of the number of times I've been here, the evolving city has proven to still have the ability to keep us entertained as we uncovered new sights to shoot in, especially along the river.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

PAVILION HOTEL
@ BUKIT BINTANG

Occupying the sharp intersection of Jalan Raya Chulan and Jalan Bukit Bintang is Pavilion Group's glitzy upscale hotel. This week-long assignment took us from the common areas to the string of f&b outlets within, and onwards to the Presidential Suite.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ PORTRAITS • JUL 2020

OWEN YAP
@ LAMAN PERDANA,
PERDANA BOTANICAL PARK

Two weeks back to back shooting portraits at the same spot. Laman Perdana truly deserves this kinda attention. While we didn't get as lucky with the weather this round, I brought along the heartpatrick magic mirror to add in something more conceptual.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

EBISU, PAVILION HOTEL
@ BUKIT BINTANG

You may be forgiven if your senses tricked you into thinking that you have been transported to Japan, for the rich interiors of Ebisu resonate with our experience of the finest Japanese touches.

 

 

PORTRAITS • JUL 2020

A SEASON FOR LOVE:
REY & LORAINE FAMILY PORTRAIT

Been such a long time since my last family portrait session. And I'm so glad I found time away from my commercial work to capture this set of memories for Rey and Loraine as they get ready to welcome their second child. There couldn't have been a better backdrop to all these heartwarming moments than Four Seasons Langkawi.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

TERENGGANU HERITAGE VILLAGE
@ PENARIK, TERENGGANU

Nestled in the idyllic village of Kampung Penarik is this charming set of Malay kampung houses restored from crumbling buildings around the state into this beautifully preserved heritage village.

 

 

OTHERS • MAR-JUN 2020

#CREATIVELOCKDOWN:
MINIATURE LIFE:

Our daily routine as we know it may have been disrupted during the covid19 lockdown, but this is finally our golden opportunity to spend more quality time at home, doing the things that we could only wish to do during busier periods. There's no better time for me than these few months of lockdown to finally put all the miniatures that I have been collecting the past year or so to good use. What a fun opportunity too to recreate the great outdoors while staying indoor, using everyday materials and food items found at home.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • JUN 2020

ASIA STREET FOOD CLUB
@ PETALING STREET

A vintage museum moonlighting as a restaurant, you could almost believe this tale - that is the impressive array of beautifully preserved tokens from yesteryear on display here. Visitors to Kwai Chai Hong should not miss dropping by the upper floor of this place for a trip down memory lane.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ PORTRAITS • JUN 2020

KEV CHONG
@ I-CITY, SHAH ALAM

There's no better time to pull off the abandoned themepark theme that I've always wanted to do than now, when entertainment centers remain closed as we recover from covid19. So I grabbed Kev Chong over to I-City one beautiful evening. We couldn't have caught a more glorious day.

 

 

SPACES • JUN 2020

WEWORK
@ KL ECO CITY
BY DSGNPHOLIO

Coworking spaces are the new cool hangouts in town, and WeWork's airy, sunlit enclave at KL Eco City is eager to please.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ SPACES • FEB 2020

ARTEPLUS
@ JALAN AMPANG
BY NUSMETRO

This is your instagram selfie museum on steroids, except that you can also bring your luggage in for a night's stay or more. Nusmetro's strong emphasis on meeting the demands of the throngs of instagrammers searching for a new playground in town has paid off. ArtePlus Jalan Ampang packs a dizzying array of visually-interesting spots for your OOTD and light saber low-light photography and everything in between. Most of these facilities are accessible by condo residents and guests only, so do book your stay through one of those vacation rentals vendors out there for your all-access pass.

 

 

SPACES • FEB 2020

DEREK'S ABODE
@ CENTRIO PANTAI HILLPARK
BY STUDIO+WORKS

Studio+Works' midas touch continues to work its magic at this refurbished studio abode in Centrio Pantai Hillpark. And there is no better prop for the beautiful stage other than the owner's fur kid, a 2yo Shiba Inu.

 

 

SPACES • JAN 2020

SIERRA 6 HOUSE
@ PUCHONG
BY ALVINTERIOR CONCEPT

Since covering the Park Manor show villas last year, we are back documenting another project for Alvinterior Concept, this time in the Sierra 6 neighbourhood of Puchong. Loving how bright and cheerful the space is, and how this was contrasted with a darker palette for the master bedroom.

 

 

TRAVEL • DEC 2019

AHMEDABAD

We came in search of the magic that made this place deserving of the title India's first UNESCO World Heritage City, and found it while navigating the labyrinthine alleys of the old quarters, choked with architectural details and bustling street scenes and everything in between. Ahmedabad is not for the faint-hearted, but among the overwhelming cacophony of traffic, crowd and noise, this city will charm you with the truest of smiles and warmest of hearts.

 

 

SPACES • JAN 2020

STONOR3 @ KLCC
BY TAN&TAN

The Jalan Stonor neighbourhood has a new addition to its bustling skyline with Tan&Tan delivering their 41-storey luxury development at the end of Lorong Stonor. Spent two days documenting the various spaces within as the light shifts from morning till night.

 

 

TRAVEL • NOV 2019

AUTUMN
IN MOUNT FUJI

There's nothing quite like the experience of autumn in Mount Fuji. That 3-night stay here was one of the most productive trips that I have ever had. I definitely could not get enough of Fujiyoshida town, the surreal sights of this sleepy town against a snow-capped giant sitting at such an unbelievably close distant are beyond words. Something tells me that I will be back again, soon.

 

 

SPACES/ URBEX • DEC 2019

BOOKXCESS, SUNSURIA FORUM
@ SHAH ALAM

Not all bookstores are created equal, and in the case of the latest BookXcess outlet in Sunsuria Forum, the interior architectural game has been upped by elevating a book store to the status of an instagram hotspot, perhaps having sought inspiration from similar cool bookstores and libraries in China and Korea.

 

 

SPACES • DEC 2019

THE CHOW KIT
BY THE ORMOND GROUP

If Momo's making Chow Kit hip, then its more upscale sibling, aptly called The Chow Kit, is bringing a new level of class to this neighbourhood.

 

 

SPACES/STREET • OCT 2019

WOLO KUALA LUMPUR
@ BUKIT BINTANG

A new, bold WOLO is here, fresh from a complete makeover a few years in the making. Bukit Bintang deserves a new hip hotel, and we have got it. It helps that the handsome brick facade has been retained too, giving the busy Bukit Bintang-Sultan Ismail intersection another beautiful angle.

 

 

SPACES • OCT 2019

ARIA LUXURY RESIDENCE
@ KLCC
BY HAP SENG LAND

Our first assignment for Hap Seng Land lands us at their newly completed high-end service residence project in the KLCC neighbourhood. Spanning over a period of two months due to the serious haze situation, and with perhaps the most number of blue hour slots allocated to one single assignment, the series of shoots done here were definitely as taxing as they are fulfilling.

 

 

GUIDES • UPDATED SEP 2019

15 KUALA LUMPUR
HIDDEN INSTAGRAM-WORTHY HOTSPOTS
THAT YOU NEED TO EXPLORE NOW

Kuala Lumpur may not be have the most glitzy modern architecture, but the interplay of old versus new is very much alive here as urban decay gives way to towering skyscrapers. If you look hard enough, lying just slightly off the radar of most urban explorers are plenty of gorgeous spots that will make your venturing off the beaten track worth the time and effort.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2019

KAI IN
BANK NEGARA MALAYSIA
MUSEUM AND ART GALLERY

Our National Bank complex may be famous for its spiral staircase, which rightfully is one of the most grand-looking one around, but the museum and art gallery here house quite a few insta-worthy spots that should not be missed during the visit. I especially love the giant flipping newspaper installation that took up quite some of our time to milk dry all the fun ideas that came up.

 

 

TRAVEL • AUG 2019

LISBON

It was the quickest Europe trip for me ever - a week-long journey to cover a wedding in Lisbon, and this is the spin-off album with some shots from the few hours here and there that I got to do some street photography. Absolutely loving the vibrance of the city during summer, I was mostly tracking the paths of the trams for all the best spots in town. One day I'll be back again.

 

 

SPACES/ URBAN EXPLORING • AUG 2019

SHUANG YI
@ PPR SRI TIOMAN

Taman Melati has a hidden secret, two impossibly colorful courts tucked quietly between blocks of low-cost flats. And I'm so glad that to have the company of Shuang Yi while exploring this, as I wouldn't be able to do much magic myself without his presence in my shots. The rainbow-colored facade of the flats is post-processed, but still, the courts themselves were already worth the visit.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2019

MENARA KHUAN CHOO
@ BUKIT BINTANG
BY PAVILION GROUP

Pavilion Group may have built their presence in the Bukit Bintang area with Pavilion Mall, but they have also been expanding beyond that into offices within the vicinity of their flagship retail space. The spanking new Menara Khuan Choo bears the same polished, upscale look and feel of its siblings, its clean, minimalist lines definitely a joy to document.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2019

DE WAN 1958
@ THE LINC
BY GENIUS LOCI

Traditional Malaysian motifs and crafts meet fancy urban tropical vibes in this new sexy space by Genius Loci. I had a field day soaking in the rich details adorning every square inch of the place, from its floor tiles to the wall coverings, translating Chef Wan's passion for Malay cuisine effectively into a well-rounded dining experience that is best savoured on a leisurely weekend evening.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2019

IJM SEREMBAN SHOW UNIT
BY MLA DESIGN

MLA Design's expansion beyond chic commercial spaces saw the birth of this welcoming show unit for IJM in Seremban. I love how the polished look of their charming restaurant and cafe projects is being translated into the homely residential portfolio.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2019

FASHION VALET
@ IOI CITY MALL
BY STUDIO+WORKS

The second Fashion Valet outlet to be covered in this collaboration with Studio Works is this smaller, though just as charming space in IOI City Mall. And we have a fresh set of quirky shopping quotes that are just as hilarious.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2019

HOMPTON BY THE BEACH
@ GEORGETOWN

I seldom venture beyond the heritage core of Georgetown when I'm in Penang but the Tanjong Tokong seafront looks like a fun place to be to get closer to the seaviews this side of the Penang island. This new hotel offers a decent stopover for a few casual nights away from the touristy bustle.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ STREET • JUL 2019

#HEARTANDTHECITY:
KUALA LUMPUR
STREET PHOTOGRAPHY SERIES:
ALBUM 3

My love story with Kuala Lumpur city continues into this third compilation of flats, and malls, and everything in between.

 

 

SPACES • MAY 2019

AH GONG HOUSE
@ CHERAS

This is perhaps as homely and cosy as a cafe could get. Former kindergarden teacher Doreen decided to make good use of the house that her grandfather left her and so converted this space into one of the most charming hideout this side of town.

 

 

TRAVEL • APR 2019

BANGKOK

My experience with the city of angels have had many stark changes over the years, but there's nothing quite as different as this past trip, where my urban explorer hat has grown so snugly fit on me that I could not derive any greater pleasure then to spend time digging out the best local scenes and hidden urban spots. The focus this round is on Yaowarat, Bangkok's thriving Chinatown that is both chaotic and charming at the same time.

 

 

SPACES • APR 2019

THE FENNEL
@ SENTUL EAST

This could very well be Heart Abode v4.0, but it is really a small ID project that I have taken on in recent months as an extension of my passion in design and photography. Loving how the place has come together, and to see it being adorned with my photography work is quite a fulfilment in itself. Can you count the number of frames that we used?

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2019

THE RUMA HOTEL
UR SPA & TRUEFITT AND HILL
@ JALAN KIA PENG

The city's spanking new addition to the luxury hotel scene is now set to extend its service to include spa and men's grooming as well, and their interiors reflect the same attention to details that is present in the local craft-inspired design seen throughout the hotel.

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2019

OPENHOUSE
@ KLCC

Easily one of the most beautiful space that I have shot in recent months, OpenHouse's dizzying array of fabrics and motifs and furniture and deco pieces came together in a marriage of cultures and styles that got my camera pretty pumped up as I scurried to take in the sight. Loving how the space has been compartmentalised into smaller sections, allowing plenty of opportunities for owners Brian and Andrew to give them varying themes, that complemented the rich and colorful Malaysian cuisine that I really do need to drop by one of these days to try out.

 

 

TRAVEL • MAR 2019

FUKUOKA
& KYUSHU ISLAND

Japan may not be an unfamiliar destination in my travel list, but my exploration of this charming country has been thus far limited to just Honshu and Hokkaido. So when the opportunity arised to venture into a new territory as part of the AirAsia familiarisation trip, I got pretty worked out in anticipation. And Kyushu certainly did not disappoint!

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2019

LEPROSY
VALLEY OF HOPE MUSEUM
@ SUNGAI BULOH

Leprosy may be a far from common desease nowadays, but Sungai Buloh was once home to the second largest leprosy settlement in the world. In memory of the role of this place, the Valley of Hope museum was envisioned and built to preserve the rich history of the lepers in the country. Integrated into the existing multipurpose hall of the settlement, this project is a joint effort between Seksan Design who worked on the exterior facade and mentahmatter design who delivered the interiors of the museum.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ STREET • FEB 2019

#HEARTANDTHECITY:
KUALA LUMPUR
STREET PHOTOGRAPHY SERIES:
ALBUM 2

Is Kuala Lumpur getting more pretty by the day, or am I just trying harder now to uncover its beauty? The urban explorer in me continue to build momentum as I spend more time being out and about and digging deeper into what my beloved city has to offer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPACES • NOV 2020

TAGO ALAIA SHOW GALLERY
@ TITIWANGSA

It's not an everyday event that I come across a space as well-designed as this one. And Tago did it again with the show gallery for their latest project in Titiwangsa. It was a fruitful day as we exhausted all the pretty angles of the gallery and the two show units above.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2020

CHIN SWEE CAVES TEMPLE
@ GENTING HIGHLANDS

On the way up to Resorts World Genting is a photo stop that many miss. While the top promises round-the-clock entertainment, the serenity that is Chin Swee Caves Temple is worlds away. I had a fun time working on a few night shots that have been in my mind for awhile. Armed with a speedlite on a tripod, and a drone with lumecube lights, they finally came to fruition.

 

 

SPACES • OCT 2020

THE MANSIONS
@ DESA PARK CITY
BY MATTHEW LIM ASSOCIATES

Within the award-winning, hilltop enclave of Desa Park City lies MLA's latest project. This 4-storey space became our playground for an entire day as we document the shifting natural light from the double-volume living and dining area, to the various themed spaces of the house.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2020

ANGEL TAN
@ TAMAN WENG LOCK
BANGSAR

It's been easily two years since my last portrait session here, and I'm glad to see Taman Weng Lock still holding up to the title of the most charming neighbourhood in KL. This round I'm accompanied by Angel Tan who wanted a set of photos to commemorate her 40th birthday. Among some of the cool spots to check out around here are Sekeping Tenggiri, Kurau Library, Kebun-kebun Bangsar, and the row of quaint fb outlets along Lorong Kurau.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2020

JUNK BOOKSTORE
KUALA LUMPUR
@ JALAN TUN H S LEE

Nestled in an old shophouse nearby KL Chinatown is the city's longest-running secondhand bookstore. Packed to the brim in this three-storey treasure trove are literary gems, comics and even LPs. If the collection itself fails to impress you, the interior architecture of the space will. The charming circular airwell in the middle helps open up the space and reduce the claustrophobic feeling when navigating the low ceiling and tight walkways on the uppor floor.

 

 

SPACES/ AERIAL • AUG 2020

ARTE MONT KIARA
BY SPARK ARCHITECTS/ NUSMETRO

Here's a first look at one of the city's most anticipated upcoming residential condo project. This gorgeous piece of architectural work is already turning heads even when it's still a few months away from completion. Designed by Spark Architects, and developed by Nusmetro, I'm looking forward to the three towers lending a cool twist to Mont Kiara's upcoming skyline.

 

 

PORTRAITS/SPACES • SEP 2020

OWEN YAP
@ SIN SEE TAI, MELAKA

Finally found the chance to check out this quaint cafe that has eluded me the last couple of visits to Melaka. Helmed by the passionate folk behind The Daily Fix, Sin See Tai boasts a cheerful, sunlit upper floor that is adorned with lots of greeneries and books, the perfect place to while a lazy afternoon away.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ PORTRAITS • AUG 2020

OWEN YAP
@ KUALA SEPETANG, PERAK

The thriving fishing town of Kuala Sepetang, once known by its english name Port Weld, may have shaken off its earlier role as an important part in the tin mine production in nearby Taiping, but its tight-knit community is a treasure trove of charming local cultures and practices. In addition to fishing and its related industries, the huge expanse of mangrove forest surrounding the town helps support the charcoal production here, and gave the town another reason for tourists on a heritage trail hunt. Among other fun activities to do here include taking a boat ride out for dolphin watching, eagle-feeding and a visit to Kuala Sangga.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ PORTRAITS • AUG 2020

OWEN YAP
@ KUALA SEPETANG CHARCOAL FACTORIES

This is definitely one of the major highlights of our Kuala Sepetang trip. The town's line-up of charcoal factories boast a collection of some really wonderful photo opportunities, from the transportation of mangrove tree trunks through canals to the manufacturing process. Pray that you get a sunny morning because the sight of light rays filtering down from the roof alone will be worth the trip here.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

BANYAN TREE
KUALA LUMPUR
@ BUKIT BINTANG

Our last stop in the series of shoots for Pavilion Group is Banyan Tree Kuala Lumpur. There was no shortage at all of beautiful interiors to explore, and we were scrambling to cover them all. The highlights are the hotel's Presidential suite and the string of f&b outlets including Altitude, Horizon Grill and Vertigo, all of which offer some of the best views of the city, especially in the evenings.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • JUL 2020

JIN YOW
@ KLCC PARK

Over two decades since their completion, the Petronas Twin Towers continue to be the most recognisable landmark of the city. While we are never short of a cool vantage point of the gleaming structures, the adjoining park offers one of the best spots in town to admire the towers, given its close promixity and varied installations.

 

 

OTHERS • MAR-JUN 2020

#CREATIVELOCKDOWN:
FUN SHOOTS TO TRY AT HOME

Other than miniature photography, the luxury of time at home gave me plenty of opportunities to try my hand on a string of creative shoots that I have always wanted to work on. Special thanks to Heart Mum as my most trusted (and only) assistant.

 

 

SPACES • JUN 2020

BEAUTY&CO
@ THE GARDENS MALL
MIDVALLEY

Befitting the title of an Instagram museum is this elaborately funky beauty center in town. In fact you will find phone tripod holders all over the place, because there's nothing better to document your glowing complexion after a facial treatment than a selfie.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

NORM
@ GEORGETOWN

There are so many reasons to fall in love with Norm. This cheerful, sunlit cafe has touches of industrial against a white canvas, and some structures from the original building were retained to contrast with the modern textures. But the waffles - that is certainly the magic that will keep us coming back for more.

 

 

SPACES • JUL 2020

IGB BACKYARD
@ MIDVALLEY CITY
BY YK INTERIOR

Midvalley city has a long list of charming nooks and crannies, and this sprawling 3000 sqft activity area for the employees of IGB may just be one of those that are unfortunately out of reach for the general public. Carved out from a previously unused space, YK Interior delivered a homey, welcoming space that took advantage of a beautiful pocket garden, also another hidden spot, right outside the windows.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • JUN 2020

PPR SERI CEMPAKA
COLORFUL COURT
@ KAMPUNG PASIR

Delivered as part of the Sayangi Rumahku campaign, with help from volunteers from EdgeProp, Paramount Property and Nippon Paint Malaysia, the outdoor sports court of this PPR has been given a much-deserved upgrade with splashes of colors now greeting futsal games and other types of activities here. This vivid spot may also be begging to be your next OOTD backdrop.

 

 

OTHERS • MAY 2020

SUNBATHER COFFEE
ELIXIRS

The COVID-19 pandemic may have kept us indoors, but the cravings for our everyday indulgences could be the last thing that we will successfully contain. These elixirs from Sunbather Coffee, other than looking pretty, do work wonders in making our stay-home episodes much more beareable.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • APR 2020

#HEARTANDTHECITY:
KUALA LUMPUR STREET PHOTOGRAPHY SERIES:
ALBUM 4

Album 4! Tying up the loose ends of newly-discovered spots and the usual tourist spots and everything in between.

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2020

TAMARIND SUITES SOHO
@ CYBERJAYA
BY STUDIO+WORKS

The magic of the architectural wonderland that is Tamarind Square extends seamlessly onwards to its residential arm, called Tamarind Suites, here in Cyberjaya's most handsome looking development. And within the beautiful brutalism-inspired block lies an equally charming interior, designed and delivered by no other than the very passionate people behind Studio+Works. There is so much to love with this space, from the array of thoughtfully concealed storage space, marriage of chic metalwork and woodwork, as well as the beautiful styling done head of the shoot.

 

 

SPACES/ URBAN EXPLORING • MAR 2020

KLOE HOTEL
@ BUKIT BINTANG

It was a quick afternoon spent at KL's latest and hippiest addition to the line-up of chic hotel around town, and it's easy to see why this place been garnering so much attention since its opening earlier this year. A quick tour of two of the designer lofts did not do justice to all the work spent on creating these spaces, they all deserve a good day or two spent within its walls just to soak in the atmosphere. I will definitely be back for more.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • FEB 2020

NU SENTRAL ROOFTOP
@ KL SENTRAL

In addition to the magnificient overhead pedestrian crossing, Nu Sentral Mall has a second architectural wonder hidden in plain sight since its opening. It is in the form of a glass pyramid structure sitting on its rooftop, a spot that has until now been off limits to the general public. With the opening of new f&b outlets there, this space is finally opened and ready to be explored.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • FEB 2020

GOOD MORNING MR GEORGE
CHINESE NEW YEAR 2020 EDITION

It's been my dream to celebrate the Chinese New Year in Penang, and I finally got the opportunity to do so this year. If Georgetown was already charming on usual days, the touches of red deco added another layer of magic to the visual feast. I only wish that I had enough time to stay on till the Jade Emperor celebrations. That's something to look foward to next year then.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ AERIAL • JAN 2020

PENANG BRIDGE
AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHY

To soar above Penang's iconic bridge and document its beauty upclose, that was perhaps one of the earliest motivation of the purchase of my drone. I just didn't know that this dream will only come true two years after finally owning one, but it was better late than never. And what a visual feast it was.

 

 

SPACES • FEB 2020

HAIR PORTER
@ SUNWAY GEO
BY DESIGNTONE

When a saloon is really an camouflaged architectural playground of lines and circles, a regular interior shoot turned into fun-filled exploration of the space as we find new angles and perspectives to interpret it by.

 

 

TRAVEL • DEC 2019

MUMBAI

If Ahmedabad was overwhelming, Mumbai took it up a few notches, its dizzying energy fueled by an almost 20-million strong population that just refuses to leave your senses alone. It's evidently too big to cover in five days, but the sights that we saw during the visit, from Asia's largest slum (Dharavi) to the world's largest outdoor laundry (Dhobi Ghat) was eye-opening enough to make the journey worthwhile.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ SPACES • DEC 2019

ICONIC BRIDGE &
RED LOOKOUT POINT
@ ELMINA CENTRAL PARK

The City of Elmina has done it again. Right after blessing the Klang Valley with the rainbow bridge instagram spot, a new sight has now been completed, called the Iconic Bridge, located right next to Elmina Central Park. Do remember to check out the similarly striking red lookout point within the park as well.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ SPACES • DEC 2019

PPR PERKASA
COLORFUL FACADE
@ MALURI

Not all low-cost flats are built the same. In the case of PPR Perkasa, the town-planning folks seemed to have spent a little more time here on creating a color scheme that will turn heads. I'm loving how the seemingly rigid, repetitive design come alives as the color blocks interplay to create new patterns at different angles and perspectives. We should have more PPRs like these!

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • DEC 2019

PPR SERI SELANGOR
@ PUDU

Seri Selangor may pass as any regular-looking low-cost apartment blocks from far, but a closer inspection reveals a futsal field that has been given a playful coat of orange and yellow colors, best appreciated from an aerial view. And then there is the set of semicircular monkey bar structure that I thought was charmingly reminiscent of the good old childhood days.

 

 

SPACES • DEC 2019

SUNNYHILLS @ MINAMI AOYAMA, TOKYO
BY KENGO KUMA

Like an bunch of artsily entangled chopsticks, Kengo Kuma's beautiful creation was one of the most memorable spots that I have had the opportunity to document in Tokyo. Add a dash of Japanaese hospitality in this Taiwan-based pineapple tart store, I was quite ready to camp there for a night but unfortunately had to rush off to our next spot.

 

 

SPACES • DEC 2019

MOMO'S KUALA LUMPUR
BY THE ORMOND GROUP

Chow Kit is shedding itself of its humdrum past with the arrival of a new boutique hotel in its turf. Employing a young, playful concept, Momo's Kuala Lumpur look set to be the accommodation choice of the hip and happening as it opens its doors this month.

 

 

SPACES • OCT 2019

PARK MANOR SHOW VILLAS
@ SIERRAMAS BY TAN&TAN

It was a beautiful weekday morning spent documenting two modern, sun-kissed show units at Tan&Tan's gleaming set of villas delivered in Park Manor, their latest addition to the Sierramas residential enclave in Sungai Buloh. The surrounding greenery helped to lend a cheerful mood to the already bright and spacious interiors, all important elements in creating a set of interior photos that I feel are among the prettiest that I have shot.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2019

SPIRAL STAIRCASE
@ PLAZA AMPANG CITY

And so my obsession with the beautiful geometric formations that are spiral staircases continues with the addition of this vintage set from a rather forgotten building somewhere off Jalan Ampang. Loving the contrast of the striking blue railings against the faded mosaic tiles. It's a space that is begging to be given a fresh spin on the perspective game. One day I will find time to be back for more.

 

 

SPACES • SEP 2019

KAYRA @ BANGSAR VILLAGE
BY SUPEREKA

Patrons to the popular restaurant Kayra may have been wooed by the authentic Keralan culinary offerings of the TTDI restaurant, but their spanking new outlet in Bangsar Village ups the experience with a charming space to match. Exposed brickwalls and cement screed finishes that double as abstract art pieces give hints of the humble Keralan beginnings, while fancy golden pendants and rattan chairs help soften the theme with a modern touch.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2019

THE LINC KUALA LUMPUR

At first there was a struggle but the explosion of instagrammable spots in Kuala Lumpur is thankfully not showing signs of slowing down, with a growing list of strong contenders vying for a spot in the list of the most colorful locations in the city. And the Linc is packed with them! This art-centric mall holds a winning combo of nature, food and creative retail, all housed in a structure dotted with backdrops that will slow down the most demanding instagrammer. The adventurous few that are able to make their way to the vast color block roof above will be in for a pleasant surprise.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2019

ELMINA RAINBOW BRIDGE
@ ELMINA CITY, SHAH ALAM

And another impossibly instagrammable colorful spot emerges in the Klang Valley, this time in the form of a set of bridges, built by Sime Darby as part of the infrastructure in its new township Elmina City. This place is best appreciated on a sunny day when the shadows of the colorful overhanging rainbow strips above add another layer of pattern on the walkway below.

 

 

SPACES • SEP 2019

PAVILION SUITES
@ BUKIT BINTANG
BY PAVILION GROUP

Bukit Bintang has a gleaming new tower, and while the structure may look a little unassuming, the glittery crown that lights up in the evening immediately catches one's attention. Did our rounds with the list of facilities housed within, and I especially find the jacuzzi area mesmerising especially when bathed in the afternoon sun.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2019

CANTON-I RESTAURANT
@ 1UTAMA

A familiar brand in the local chinese restaurant scene sees a refreshed look in its interior with this bright, inviting space at 1 Utama shopping mall. The predominantly pink hues help create a cheerful setting against the usual string of Hong Kong-inspired design elements.

 

 

TRAVEL • APR 2019

SINGAPORE

Yet another collection of shots from our ever-fun island city-state neighbour. The locations covered this round include everyone's new favourite insta spot Jewel @ Changi, Pearl Bank Apartment of which I'm blessed for the opportunity to finally explore before it's torn down, and other fun spots such as South Beach, Blessed Sacrament Church and Tan Boon Liat building.

 

 

SPACES • MAY 2019

MINGLE CAFE
@ JALAN SULTAN

Mingle Cafe joins the rank of Chinatown's most charming cafes, with its instagrammable entrance facade already worthy as a head-turning spot by itself. Combined that with an interesting line-up of F&b offerings, we have got a perfect place to unwind and recharge in between our urban exploring adventures.

 

 

SPACES • MAY 2019

TIMOTHY
@ JALAN TUN H S LEE

And here's another beautiful story of a charming revival of heritage shophouses in Chinatown. Adding on to the restored structures are recycled and repurposed vintage fittings that immediately throw us back to yesteryear. I especially love the vibes at the sun-kissed upper floor, which also houses a hidden bar called Potions. Try and see if you could spot the entrance to the bar in this set of photos.

 

 

SPACES/ STREET • APR 2019

RAINBOW WALKWAY
@ PUSAT SAINS NEGARA

This is perhaps Pusat Sain Negara's most impressive exhibit, and it's free. The rainbow walkway is the result of the sunlight filtering in from the rainbow cladding enveloping the circular building, and the good thing is, this breathtaking effect is visible all day long, as long as we have the sun. To get to this service lane, drive around the building until you see an external staircase leading up from the ground floor to the upper floors. Take that and you're there. Remember to greet the friendly guards who are sometimes seen around the walkway entrance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPACES/ PORTRAITS • NOV 2020

ISAAC IN VERNAKULAR STORE
@ BANGSAR

Vernakular is half a watch retail store and half a cafe, and the people behind the cool interiors of this place had to make sure your experience in each is as distinct as the boundary that runs across the space. This playful separation sets the stage for some really fun visual illusion that is begging to be experienced.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2020

PETRONAS TWIN TOWERS
@ KLCC

Here's an album dedicated to the urban landmark of it all, the twin towers that have been so quintessentially Kuala Lumpur that despite decades since their completion, they continue to outshine every other buildings that come even after it. Words can't fully describe our love for these two architectural marvel, and so we pointed our cameras and, more recently, drones at them.

 

 

SPACES/ PORTRAITS • SEP 2020

A DAY AT
BANGSAR SHOPPING CENTER

BSC is one of my most frequented malls in the city, and I'm glad to have been given the opportunity to document a day here in the company of two very fun talents, part of the collaboration with the mall on producing a series of lifestyle images for use on their social media platforms.

 

 

SPACES/ URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2020

LIGHT CAPTURE CAFE
BY HON
@ JALAN TUN H S LEE

It's not an everyday event that a cafe opening generates this much buzz, yet Light Capture Cafe by Hon deserves every bit of the attention thrown its way. Situated among the collection of old pre-war shophouses in the heart of Chinatown, owner Hon carved out this gem of a cafe interior from two adjoining lots that were previously damaged by fire. The result of an airy, sunlit interior that retains charming architectural elements from its previous life yet boasts plenty of cosy, modern touches fit for the most demanding of cafehoppers.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2020

OWEN YAP
@ PANTAI PASIR KLEBANG,
MELAKA

It was one of the most gorgeous evening that I have witnessed locally, and I had the honour of spending that at this charming instagram spot in Melaka, in the company of Owen. The Klebang sand dunes shot to fame a few years ago, and by not being here sooner due to the scare of heatstroke, I have unfortunately lost the breathtaking sight of a vast stretch of sand dunes and nothing else. Nevertheless, the set of trees lining the edges now added an hint of tropical wilderness to contrast the setting. It's the perfect reason for the early-visitors to come explore again.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2020

TIAN CHAD
@ AQUARIA, KLCC

In the underwater world of Aquaria, the predominantly blue hues are punctuated with red tones from my fotorgear pocket light, adding a tinge of highlights that sets the model apart from his surrounding. It's not an everyday thing to have the whole place to ourselves, so I had Tian Chad to thank for this opportunity.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2020

MERDEKA 2020:
KUALA LUMPUR
URBAN EXPLORING
SPECIAL EDITION

I may have lost count of the number of years spent combing the streets of KL searching for my next photo story, but I do know as a fact that I have never really given much thought to documenting the Merdeka mood around the city come August and September every year. 2020 is definitely not the best year for that, as we continue to practise social distancing and avoid large-scale celebrations. But the pandemic gave me the opportunity and determination to still try. Special thanks to Fotorgear for making the wonderful Magilight lightpainting stick, for without it, I would not have been as effective in injecting some patriotic themes to some of the locations that I covered.

 

 

SPACES/ PORTRAITS • SEP 2020

OWEN YAP
@ THE UPPER, MELAKA

The name of the cafe is a strong hint of what pretty things you'll find if you follow the hint well. This is the other cafe that captivated us during the last trip to Melaka. The sprawling two-floor space is charmingly styled with vintage memorabilia and greeneries, and a seemingly endless string of angles to pose in. Late morning on a weekday is the best time possible to visit for a care-free OOTD session.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2020

THE KASTURI
@ CHERATING, PAHANG

Nestled between the rainforest and South China Sea is a tiny resort that is possibly as far away as you could get from the bustle of the city. Brainchild of Malaysian architect Hijjas Kasturi, the individual chalets here are reminiscent of the traditional Malay architecture, expressed in a modern interpretation with its A-frame origami-like roof structures.s

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2020

FOUR POINTS BY SHERATON
KUALA LUMPUR @ CHINATOWN

KL Chinatown has a beaming new icon, and that's Sheraton hotels' third Four Points Hotel in Malaysia. dwp delivered a design that takes inspiration from the charming heritage identity of this neighbourhood, featuring exposed raw bricks, warm wood and traditional jade-hued tiles.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2020

TACHITICA SHOW GALLERY
@ PUCHONG
BY MLA DESIGN

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ PORTRAITS • JUL 2020

JVENE
@ LAMAN PERDANA,
PERDANA BOTANICAL PARK

Laman Perdana is most probably Perdana Botanical Park's most instagrammable spot. Completed in 2014 by GDP Architects, this canopy adopts a form that mimics its green surroundings, and is best admired on a sunny day when filtered light creates a mesmering pattern on the floor.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • JUN 2020

GOOD MORNING
MR GEORGE:
SET 8

Yet another fulfilling week-long trip to Penang, with fresh places and spots to explore, despite me having lost count of the number of times I have visited this heritage city. Georgetown continues to stay vibrant and interesting, and we'll definitely be back again when the hawkerfare starts calling our names.

 

 

TRAVEL/ URBAN EXPLORING • JUL 2020

PANTAI MANGKUK
@ SETIU, TERENGGANU

I must admit that I have quite given the East Coast a cold shoulder until now. And it took a virus the scale of COVID19 for me to get my first taste of Terengganu. And gosh it was one of the most idyllic places that I have been! Narrow roads lined with coconut tree, in a tight, almost deserted peninsula sandwiched between a river and the sea, and three glorious days of sunny weather. We were spoilt.

 

 

SPACES • JUN 2020

ARTE S
@ PENANG
BY NUSMETRO/ SPARK ARCHITECTS

The image of Penang architecture may be dominated by heritage buildings, and some say Komtar, but Nusmetro's awe-inspiring Arte S brought a new breath of life into the otherwise monotonous cityscape outside of Georgetown. The sexy, undulating waveforms on the exterior has teased our imagination, some describing it as two tall stacks of sushi plates, while the cracked cocoon-like structure higher up in the building formed an interesting focal point for the curious mind. I can't wait for a chance to see how the magic extends inwards to the interiors.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • JUN 2020

CHENG YIH
@ TELUK BAHANG DAM,
PENANG

Who would have thought that a long, straight staircase off the side of a dam could be this photogenic, but that's how photography reinterprets spaces, and I'm glad I managed to pull along my Penang friend, Cheng Yih, to pose.

 

 

SPACES/ URBAN EXPLORING • MAR 2020

SALOMA LINK BRIDGE
@ KLCC
BY VERITAS ARCHITECTS

Finally, after all these years of waiting, the city center received a strong addition to the list of iconic structures in town, one that is breath-taking and most certainly prominent enough to complement the Petronas Twin Towers. This RM31mil, futuristic-looking archi wonder is best appreciated in the evening and at night, when it's lit by a combination of 4100 LED lights for a mesmerising color-shifting display.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • FEB 2020

A SPIRAL STAIRCASE
IN KUALA LUMPUR

Had the opportunity of exploring this spot as part of a recce trip with a location manager, definitely one of the most surreal urban spots that I have been. I have been asked to keep the location details private unfortunately. Enjoy the visuals.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING/ SPACES • FEB 2020

MASJID TNB BANGSAR
@ JALAN BANGSAR

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2020

ANJALI SHOW VILLA
@ NORTH KIARA
BY TAGO

East-facing double-volume windows, glorious sun-lit living areas and bedrooms, contemporary ID and a charming roof-top pool, this show villa checks quite a long list of boxes in one's dream house.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • MAR 2020

MALURI MRT STATION
@ CHERAS

There may be tens of new stations that have sprung up all over the city as part of the MRT project in the recent two years or so, but none is quite like the Maluri station. The color block design of the facade is a refreshing change from the conservative design of other stations, and is rather hard to miss even from a distance.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • FEB 2020

TROPICANA GARDENS MALL
@ KOTA DAMANSARA

It's not everyday that we get a new but perfectly empty mall to play in. Clean lines and clear spaces interrupted only by the occasional cleaner or guard will satisfy the most OCD of urban explorer.

 

 

SPACES • MAR 2020

RIMBUN IMPIAN SHOW UNITS
@ SEREMBAN 2
BY IJM LAND

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • MAR 2020

INTELLIGENTSIA BOOK STATION
@ CHINATOWN

They don't make bookstores like these anymore. Nestled among a row of old shophouses along Jalan Tun Tan Siew Sin is this 20yo one-of-a-kind gem that may once be the haunt of bookworms, but as the Information age sweeps in, the keen-eyed instagrammers should find themselves with a space that is as messy as it is charming. Owner is very kind to allow photography, so do be the gracious guest and help support their business by bringing back some books with you for those me time moments at the beach.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • MAR 2020

TAMAN TASIK TITIWANGSA
@ TITIWANGSA

Opened in Dec 2019 after more than a year of upgrading work, the refurbished Titiwangsa Park now features a few interesting spots that are begging to be the playground of your next exploration out in town. My top picks include the black torii gate, which is really a series of square metalwork frames lining a walkway, a cocoon-like bird nest structure nearby, and an activity area drawn with a series of curvy lines on the floor, also not far away. Come on a weekday morning to avoid the crowd, and do pray for a sunny day.

 

 

SPACES • FEB 2020

GALASA CALDWELL
@ IPOH
BY KUEE ARCHITECT

Behold Ipoh's hippest event venue, tucked in a standalone lot along charming Jalan Caldwell, Kuee Architect delivered a space that takes advantage of the beautiful setting of this neighbourhood, affording a balanced mix of both outdoor space and an indoor event hall. This is our second collaboration with Kuee and we are proud to be given the chance to document the beauty of this new location.

 

 

URBAN EXPLORING • JAN 2020

COLORFUL UMBRELLA
@ EMPIRE DAMANSARA

Empire Damansara has an open secret that's been around since it launched many years ago. I've been slow in covering this spot but it is a gorgeous one nevertheless. So glad that I brought my prop along, turned out that it was the exact same umbrella as those hanging in rows above.

 

 

TRAVEL • NOV 2019

ALONE IN THE CITY

Being alone may be a luxury in a country as densely populated as Japan, yet with the lens turned at the right direction, those moments of quiet, reflective few seconds, away from the maddening crowd, evokes a special kind of emotions too complex for me to put into words.

 

 

TRAVEL • NOV 2019

JAPAN

Another two weeks spent with my favourite travel destination in the world, and the experience once again left me craving for more. There is simply not enough time to experience it all, this time amidst a country bathed in the golden, red hues of autumn.

 

 

TRAVEL • OCT 2019

ADD COFFEE
@ SEOUL, KOREA

Dedicated to the most memorable space that we had the opportunity to explore during the week-long trip to Korea, Add Coffee's perfect blend of industrial vintage interiors and cosy, functional layout spread across four floors of playground deserves a special mention.

 

 

SPACES • DEC 2019

IOI GALLERIA SHOW UNITS
@ IOI RESORT CITY

Happy to cover two spanking new additions to the show gallery units at IOI Galleria in Putrajaya. Drone footages were used for scenery replacements to give the visuals a truer representation of the gorgeous views afforded especially for the high-floor units.

 

 

SPACES • DEC 2019

SANTAN ASEAN AIRASIA
@ MIDVALLEY
BY MLA DESIGN

Now everyone can have inflight meals without flying. AirAsia's launch into the fast food market came packaged in a beautifully designed flagship restaurant by none other than MLA Design. Expect to find locally-inspired motifs and materials dotting the space as you indulge in your favourite Santan meals.

 

 

SPACES • NOV 2019

SOUTH KOREA

My first trip to South Korea, and I must admit that it was a fun one. The two cities have got enough spots to occupy me for a good few days, mostly in the respect of arts, street and architecture, and I saw some sights that I don't mind returning to for future trips.

 

 

SPACES • NOV 2019

DE WAN
PROJECTION MAPPING
EVENT HALL
@ THE LINC

Often a popular installation in art galleries and light festivals around the world, projection mapping is now finding its way into KL's dining experience, with De Wan having launched an event hall that promises to dazzle the sights as their food offerings work on your tastebuds.

 

 

SPACES • 2016 THROUGH 2019

CENTRIO SOHO
@ PANTAI HILLPARK

This award-winning property is in every way deserving of the recognitions given to it, picture double-volume spaces with spiral staircases and private rooftops, hanging gardens and bridges, peculiar structures and loads of nooks and crannies to get lost in. It's one perfect giant playground to while a peaceful afternoon away.

 

 

SPACES • OCT 2019

OCBC PREMIER BANKING
@ SUBANG JAYA

Tucked on the upper floor of an unassuming commercial square is this space that speaks exclusivity and style everywhere you look. Two months since the unveiling of OCBC's new luxury-curated premier banking center, we spent two good evenings documenting the beautiful result of a year of planning and execution.

 

 

SPACES/ URBAN EXPLORING • SEP 2019

TAMARIND SQUARE
& TAMARIND SUITES
@ CYBERJAYA

Brutalist architecture is very much alive and kicking at this popular photography spot in Cyberjaya, and it's easy to see why. Beautiful concrete formworks combined with a keen sense of art from the hanging gardens designed by Seksan right down to the creative signages deliver an integrated development that has so many instagrammable nooks and crannies it takes a while to just take everything in. This is a place I will come back again and again and still find fresh angles to interpret.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • OCT 2019

KAI IN
BALAI SENI LUKIS NEGARA

Must admit that I have never thought much of our national art gallery but oh gosh how wrong was I. The past weekday morning exploring its various interactive exhibits in the company of Kai was one of the most fun art gallery experiences that I have had in the recent months.

 

 

SPACES • SEP 2019

EQ KUALA LUMPUR

I have never seen a hotel as packed with cool spots as EQ Kuala Lumpur. While I already know the building itself is easily the most eye-catching new addition to the city center skyline, nothing prepared me for the pleasant surprise within. The magic starts right from the drop-off zone, paving the way to the gleaming spiral staircase at the lobby. Other hidden treasures soon got added to the list, from the surreal setting of the outdoor garden on the third floor, Sanctum Spa, to the beautiful jacuzzi on the pool deck and the amazing deck on Sky 51 where the otherworldly lift lobby sits. And that was where I had a closer look at the Merdeka celebration fireworks at midnight.

 

 

SPACES • AUG 2019

FIVE STONES CONDO
@ PJ SS2
BY OUKKA DESIGN

My first collaboration with boutique design house Oukka Design brought me to this charming condo tucked in a quiet side of Petaling Jaya. The theme is minimalist, with a predominantly monotone palette that is punctuated with a dash of brown throughout the unit. The lack of any strong design element is compensated with the attention to detail in the selection of material and finishing that comes together to give this space a certain understated class.

 

 

PORTRAITS/ URBAN EXPLORING • AUG 2019

SHIRLEY AT EURO FUN PARK
@ PUCHONG

A funfair like this is hard to come by nowadays, so I have Euro Fun Park to thank for giving me the opportunity to reminisce about my childhood and those carefree years of growing up. And of course no visits would be complete without the company of a model.