|From the Helipad Bar, downtown KL.
One month ago today I touched down again in the city I grew up in. My family was in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from June 1983 to December 1990 before returning to Auckland, New Zealand when I was nine years old.
Even after a quarter of a century, it’s amazing to me how so many of the things about my Malaysian childhood I still not only love, but actively seek out as an adult: sunshine, hot weather, skyscrapers, bold architecture, lush jungle, beaches, swimming, Asian cooking etc etc. And watermelon. Some say I ate more watermelon during my six months working in the Whitsundays, Australia in my late 20s than the rest of the Whitsundays population combined…
And all because it reminded me of my childhood! Also it’s frustratingly only really available in the New Zealand summer and it’s a mighty fine fruit: nutritious, delicious and hydrating. Very good for the kidneys, liver, the heart and reportedly, the libido. But I digress. A month ago today I landed back in a city that will always feel like home.
Thanks to the great folks at Tourism Malaysia, the Novotel Kuala Lumpur and the Pullman Hotel Bangsar, I was looked after incredibly well during my two-week Malaysian trip. On assignment to write travel articles for the New Zealand Herald, Let’s Travel Magazine and The Roxborogh Report, this was simultaneously a trip down memory lane as well as a holiday and indeed work. Though travel writing never feels like work.
Stay reading for upcoming articles featuring the Novotel KL (perfectly located centrally if you want to be close to the action of Bukit Bintang and the Petronas Towers) and the Pullman Bangsar (an almost brand new 5-star hotel with service as good as any hotel I’ve stayed). In the meantime, here are my top 50 favourite photos from KL 2015:
|Nothing like street satay, Bukit Bintang.
|The colours of Chinatown.
|The view from the 26th floor Executive Lounge at the very charming Pullman in Bangsar.
|The view from the Pullman’s Executive Lounge – a relief to still see a lot of jungle in this part of KL.
|From the Pullman’s Executive Lounge – the highways of KL.
|The architecture in KL is rarely boring.
|My Dad was coincidentally back in KL at the same time as me – wonderful to see him there 25 years since we’d lived there.
|A selfie outside my old house. Unfortunately the current owner was too scared to let me in!
|The top of the very chic Helipad Bar.
|Don’t forget your selfie-stick, the Helipad Bar.
|The view from the Novotel Hotel.
|A tapir at Zoo Negara.
|No greater animal on earth in my opinion and tragically also one of the most rare – one of the tigers of South East Asia, Zoo Negara.
|The elephant enclosure, Zoo Negara.
|The Novotel Hotel.
|The view from my beautiful suite at the Pullman Hotel, Bangsar. This building is my favourite KL skyscraper – the Menara Telekom.
|The street-side jungle near my old school, Alice Smith School.
|The Petronas Towers in the distance.
|The old palace (now an excellent museum) with the CBD in the background.
|More favourite skyscrapers from the grounds of the old palace.
|The soccer pitch in front of the old palace.
|Even some of the motorways in KL look good.
|Enormous skyscrapers where once there were shanty houses – across the street from the National Museum (bottom right).
|The KL Tower and the Petronas Towers.
|The National Mosque and the famous KL Bird Park.
|The CBD as viewed from the edge of the Lake Gardens.
|A building that set the tone for KL’s outstanding architecture more than a century ago – the 1897-built Sultan Abdul Samad Building.
|More of KL’s defining central city architecture.
|The former wet-market that has been a focal point for KL’s arts scene for decades – Central Market.
|Why build a boring outdoor roof when you can build one like this? Next to Central Market.
|The world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge (428m), Sunway Lagoon.
|Apparently the largest water-slide of its type in the world, the Vuvuzela, Sunway Lagoon.
|Built in an old tin-mine, the wave pool (plus hotel) at Sunway Lagoon.
|The mosque at Putrajaya.
|The Prime Minister’s offices, Putrajaya.
|The lake at Putrajaya.
|High-rise government housing in the otherwise affluent Bangsar.
|Street stalls, Bangsar.
|Even better at night, the Petronas Towers.
|I loved how the buildings next to the Petronas Towers seem to compliment it in terms of design and lighting.
|I-Rene and the team the Pullman Bangsar could not have looked after me any better.
|My favourite KL skyscraper, the Menara Telekom.
|Same as above.
|The Pullman Hotel is the central tower in this trio of buildings.
|I couldn’t stop photographing this tower – unfortunately its gardens are not open to the public.
|The grand old KL railway station.
|The park at KLCC.
|Why don’t we have awesome, eco-friendly high-rise apartments like this in the Auckland CBD?
|These trees always seemed the stuff of fairytales when I was a kid – KLCC.
|The oddity of camera angles and depth of perception, KL CBD.