Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Petaling Street (茨廠街) @ Night in Chinatown, Kuala Lumpur (吉隆坡) [Malaysia]

The night scene in Petaling Street is well known and that's the reason why i chose to blog about it now [my first post on petaling street in the morning can be found here].

Jalan Sultan - a street that is almost parallel to Petaling and is my favourite route as it bypasses the main entrance and goes in to Jalan Hang Lekir, the only road that cuts across Petaling street.

For the benefit of all, this was taken close to the signature Chinese arch at the main entrance; i was at most no more than ten meters away.

Compared to a few years ago when i was last there, i was comforted to see that the road was at last "walk-able" Gone were the many makeshift stalls that used to occupy the middle of the walking street.

Due to the lack of clutter, you would be able to take notice of those permanent shops - many of them selling items like accessories, comic books, gifts, souvenirs and not to mention the pirated goods.

Intersection of Petaling Street and Jalan Hang Lekir and the exact place where you can fill your stomach with the reputable Air Mata Kucing, street food stalls and restaurants brimming with customers.

It's not hard to realise after a while that most customers were tourists! This seems to be the case with Chinatown in Singapore as well.

We made a slight detour by walking along Jalan Sultan to the other end of Petaling Street. To be honest, most locals prefer to patronise the food stalls located at the T-junction of Jalan Sultan and Jalan Hang Lekir.

Most popular would be the section belonging to Hong Kee Claypot Rice! It is easy to recognise the stall from far; note the number of charcoal stoves (i counted fourteen) and the two fans cooling the cooks!

I would love to have some but my stomach was reserved for something else...

Chinatown at night is not all about pirated products! The above picture was just an example and i would like to emphasise that i am more likely to go into shops that offer gifts, food and to a much lesser extent, accessories for sale.

Chinese arch at the other end of Jalan Petaling (by the way, Jalan means street in Malay). You might have noticed from the above picture that the road was crowded with makeshift stalls with only two tiny lanes for visitors to enter!

Before we squeezed our way in, i am intrigued by this charming little coffee shop at the side of the arch. Please disregard the foldaway tables and stackable chairs as the focus should be on the display of liquor near the cashier counter.

Okay, we are in!

The passageway was barely two-person wide and should you be irritable in such a space constrained area, my advice is that you should avoid the lower section of Petaling street.

There was no lack of fake good (wallets, bags, attires, sunglasses etc) and it's easy to find major brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Coach etc. There are different letter grades accorded and the higher it is, the more authentic it looks (and feels) and of course, the more expensive it becomes.

Maybe it was a Thursday but i thought the stalls were actually closing a bit too early at around 10.30pm that day. Oh well, not that i am interested in fake products anyway.

My aim that day was to in fact to dine at this restaurant with a second level sitting! We ordered only one dish that shall be talked about in another post! Look out for it! :P

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Map
The "red" star denotes the cross junction of Petaling Street and Jalan Hang Lekir while the coloured area comprises the main Chinatown area.

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