Sunday, May 25, 2008

Ipoh Padang and Flyovers

Drove to Ipoh over the weekend, and was impressed by this new McDonalds 'Drive-thru' as you enter the city.

Ipoh's fly-over!

It was the first day of the School Holidays, and there were many families and individuals playing at the famous Ipoh Padang. Hmm, that's St Michaels Institution in the distance. Vaguely remember staying there one time, many yonks ago, for a Prefect (!) camp.

Heh heh, how could we resist not having some of Ipoh's coffee!

ps - Some research of Ipoh ...

The city of Ipoh is located about 200 km north of Kuala Lumpur. Journey through the North South Expressway (NSE or PLUS Highway) takes a breezy 2 1/2 hours through scenic rolling valleys, palm oil plantations and limestone hills of Peninsula Malaysia. Distances from other major cities: Penang (2 hours), Johor Bharu (6 hours), Singapore (6 1/2 hours) and Kuantan (5 hours).
Ipoh Field (Padang) is encircled by four streets - Jalan Sultan Idris Shah, Jalan Kelab (Club Road), Station Road and Jalan Sultan Yusuf.
Years ago, British men were seen wearing whites on the field, hitting a wicket or two (in the game of cricket, for the uninitiated). Some were then seen heading back to the exclusive Ipoh Royal Club adjacent to the padang, where the rules of "white men only" still applied.
Today, it is more of an exquisite playground for the rich and poor, brown or white. The British has long gone, taking away the rules with them. Ipoh Padang is a testimony of a common playing field that has withstood the test of time and prejudice, almost as old as the massive casuarina trees (pokok rhu) that dot parts of its periphery. It is today that the old town area surrounding the padang seems to be revitalised with a new lease of life. Some of the most intricately designed edifices in Ipoh old town reside here.
Today, citizens from all walks of life congregate at Ipoh Field for sporting activities, be it a round of rugby practice with friends and colleagues, football training or the good old jogging across the beautiful landscape.

The historic sights are aplenty, such as the FMS (Federated Malay States) Bar and Restaurant (1906) which used to be frequented by merchants and traders, the massive St Michael Institution (1912) with its proud Neo-Gothic architecture as the La Salle missionaries intended it to be, the India Muslim Mosque (1908) built by Sheikh Adam of South India, the old Hong Kong & Shanghai building (1931) which interestingly still hosts its so-called grand children under the HSBC Bank brand name, the colonial-themed Ipoh Court House (Mahkamah Tingi Ipoh) perched on a slope next to the Tudor-styled Royal Ipoh Club and a beautiful row of pre-war shophouses that has since been repainted and refurbished into fancy eating joints that come alive at night.

1 comment:

Seashell said...

You are from Ipoh too? Ipoh hasn't changed that great deal over the decade I reckon...