GONE are the days when malls were only adorned with red lanterns and ang pow during Chinese New Year.
Now, it has become a major undertaking with shopping centres deciding on a central theme.
This year, many malls have opted for nostalgic decor that takes visitors down memory lane.
Beyond the Instagrammable moments, these decorations also serve to remind us of the importance of keeping elements of traditional culture alive.
StarMetro visited several malls in Selangor to give readers an idea of the resplendent decor to usher in the Year of the Rat.
Sunway MallsSunway goes colossal with tall structures of the ancient draft bank (predecessor to modern banks) for its Chinese New Year decor themed “Bank of Blessings.”
The “Bank of Fortune” at Sunway Pyramid takes on a glittery gold theme signifying blessings and good luck, while
the “Bank of Happiness” surrounded by adorable giant tang yuan is housed at the main concourse of Sunway Putra Mall.
At Sunway Giza, another “Bank of Fortune” takes center stage with a large gold coin and gold ingots marking the beginning of a new year filled with prosperity.
Each Sunway mall celebrates a different aspect of Chinese New Year, featuring traditional elements such as gold (for fortune), rice (symbolising abundance), bottle gourd (representing luck) and tang yuan (a sign of happiness).
The CurveStarting the new year with a bang, the Curve’s decor themed “Roar of Prosperity” highlights eight majestic, multi-coloured lions and enormous traditional Chinese drums.
The Curve in Petaling Jaya further embraces Chinese New Year elements by surrounding its centre court with pink cherry blossom trees and red lanterns.
On weekends and public holidays, visitors can catch the Roaring Lions Musical performance, featuring award-winning Kwong Ngai lion troupe, at 2pm and 5pm, until Jan 27.
IPC Shopping CentreTaking visitors through the lenses of rats, the team at IPC Shopping Centre in Petaling Jaya put together an oversized dining table setting with a gigantic plate of Yee Sang and an enormous treasure chest.
Visitors who wander through the tiny entrance will be greeted with IPC’s “Supersize Golden Mouse Prosperity Home” at its concourse.
To memorialise “superabundance” and age-old traditions featured in the set-up, visitors can opt to take insta-worthy photos from Level 1, for a good view of the jumbo-sized Chinese New Year set-up.
On weekends, IPC also hosts a list of interesting events, including Chinese orchestra performances, craft workshops and lion dance performances until Feb 9. Atria Shopping GalleryAt Atria Shopping Gallery, Petaling Jaya, the Chinese New Year decor features a massive traditional Chinese entrance with “rats” popping up in its surrounding area.
The four auspicious rat characters – Xiao Fu, Xiao Ji, Xiao Le and Xiao Bao – symbolise blessings, luck, joy and wealth, respectively.
Atria is a sea of gold and red with a striking golden tree standing gloriously in its centre court, surrounded by other items such as mandarin orange trees, red lanterns as well as gold details. Paper peonies also add a nice touch to complete the picture perfect backdrop. There are also pockets of seats for visitors to take breaks or some photos.
Atria also hosts performances and workshops on weekends until Feb 9.
1 Utama Shopping CentreA golden wishing tree garden which symbolises longevity, prosperity and good fortune welcomes visitors at the oval concourse of 1 Utama Shopping Centre, Petaling Jaya
Themed “Wishes Fulfilled, Happiness Abounds”, the garden hosts an ornamental pavilion at
its heart, providing a place for families and friends to sit down and catch up.
The oriental arch adorned with Chinese bead curtains and cherry blossom located at the Ground Floor Highstreet also serves as a stunning backdrop for photos.
Over at the rainforest on the second floor, the suspension bridge is magnificently lit with red lanterns.
On weekends until Feb 2,
1 Utama will host a series of events, including Chinese orchestra performances and cultural craft showcases.
Setia City MallEmbracing the true meaning behind Chinese New Year celebrations, Setia City Mall in Shah Alam has a Mongolian-inspired setting themed “Joy of Reunion.”
Visitors can experience Mongolian culture by wearing Mongolian costumes and trying their hand at archery. The replica of a yurt (traditional Mongolian house) placed at its centre court makes for a good photo spot.
To usher in the Year of the Rat, Setia City Mall also hosts events such as yee sang workshop, appearance by God of Prosperity, lion dance performances and more on weekends until Feb 23.
The StarlingGiven the short turnaround time between Christmas and Chinese New Year, the team at The Starling mall in Petaling Jaya left nothing to chance when they decided on a catchy theme, “Journey”, which features a bus.
The red bus, which was parked against a snowy London setting during Christmas, has become a green one continuing its journey to Old Shanghai after being given an Oriental touch.
Around the bus, snowflakes and holly have been replaced with mandarin oranges, winter trees have bloomed into pink cherry blossoms and the red phone booth is painted green to usher in the new year.
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